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'I played under Prem greats and I'd have hated to work for Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta'

Newcastle legend Alan Shearer has admitted that he would have “hated” playing for Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta, despite his transformation of the Gunners. In nearly five years at the Emirates, Arteta has taken Arsenal from underperformers to Premier League title contenders, but failed to win everyone over in the process.

Arteta’s desire to have control across the pitch has ensured that Arsenal are able to go toe-to-toe with Manchester City, but that style of management may not suit every player and the likes of Mesut Ozil and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang clashed with the Spanish boss before departing north London.

Shearer played under greats such as Sir Bobby Robson, Kevin Keegan and Kenny Dalglish across his glittering career, though insisted that they were all very different to Arteta and he would have struggled to adapt to the Arsenal head coach.

“I never worked under an Arteta kind of manager,” Shearer wrote for The Athletic. “Someone manically cajoling, telling you exactly where to stand or exactly what to do.

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“I’ve always been of the opinion that if you’re a good player, then you know that stuff anyway. If I felt I needed to drift out to the right wing or the left wing or even drop deep, I would do it myself. And as a captain, I felt I had the authority to tell my fellow players to do something. If it needed saying, I would say it.

“Not everybody is like that, though, some footballers are brighter than others. Some are needier than others. Some are more effective when they are given precise instructions and are forced to stick to them. Shouting, repeating, shouting again and reiterating straightforward messages might be the best way to get through.

“What I wanted from my manager was to be led, to be guided. I wouldn’t have enjoyed being ranted and raved at from the touchline and I can’t remember it happening too many times. Why would I have hated it? Professional pride. You’re playing in front of thousands of people in the stadium and millions at home on television and you don’t want to be embarrassed. It might sound thin-skinned, but teams are delicate. Relationships hold them together.”

Arteta often stands on touchline shouting instructions at his players during matches, which has landed him in hot water previously, but the current Arsenal squad are thriving under his tutelage.

Having scored more goals and conceded fewer than any other Premier League team so far this season, Arsenal are potentially two games away from winning the title, but the boss continues to split opinion and Shearer remains unconvinced that Arteta would have got the best out of the division’s all-time leading scorer.


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