“And I don’t feel like we’re on the verge of losing our best players either and that was always the problem with Arsene when we had two or three good ones and they always wanted to go.”
I thought that was a really interesting point from Nick and it made me think about what Gary Neville had to say recently about Arteta potentially leaving if Arsenal did go on and get top four.
I don’t mind Neville and I think he usually speaks with quite a bit of sense. But I just didn’t understand his reasoning at all with this one.
“Mikel Arteta is a brilliant coach,” he said. “I love that we’re seeing a team that he’s getting the maximum out of, I can see exactly how he wants to play, we all can.
“But he gets to fourth, and if he was really hard about it, he’d probably say ‘right, that’s the best I can do there, I’m going now and getting my next job’.”
I just don’t get what Neville is getting at there. Arsenal are at the start of a cycle right now. They have done so much work to turn things round in the last couple of years and in doing so they have built a young squad that is full of potential.
This summer they will go again whatever happens over the next few weeks - and if they have as much success in the transfer market as they did last year, then who knows what they can go on and possibly achieve.
Will Pep Guardiola be at Manchester City in two years time? Will Jurgen Klopp be at Liverpool? No-one knows for sure, but both have hinted they could leave.
So why can’t Arsenal kick on again and soon be competing for the title? They have shown this season that they are not a million miles away and they’ve managed to do that without having any real goal threat from the strikers.
So, if they can fix that in the summer window and the rest keep developing the way they are, then it’s not entirely out of the question.
And if they do go on to secure Champions League football over the final few games, then that will only help bridge the vast gap that has been allowed to open up over the last decade or so.
These are exciting times at Arsenal and knowing Arteta like I do, he will not be thinking that getting top four is the ceiling for this team.
Did Klopp when he first arrived at Liverpool? No, he achieved it and then kicked on again. Arteta will absolutely believe he can do the same, no matter what Gary Neville says.
Having come as far as they have in such a short space of time this season, I really hope Arsenal can now go on and finish the job off.
It’s going to be tense, it’s going to be nerve-racking and I can barely bring myself to think about the north London derby next month. But doesn’t it just feel nice to be in this position again?
So, strap in everyone, enjoy the ride!
Whatever happens now, this has been a year of undeniable progress