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Gary Neville has hailed Mikel Arteta and says the Arsenal manager is ‘punching above his weight’ at the Emirates.
The Gunners have largely impressed under Arteta since he replaced Unai Emery as manager last December. While Arsenal only finished eighth last season, there were signs of progress and they won the FA Cup at the end of the campaign, and the Community Shield at the start of this one.
Arsenal maintained their perfect start to the new season on Saturday with a 2-1 victory over London rivals West Ham, having secured an emphatic opening-day win over newly-promoted Fulham.
Former Manchester United and England defender Neville has been impressed by Arsenal under Arteta and says he is going ‘above and beyond’ in north London.
Speaking on the Gary Neville podcast, he said: ‘I think Mikel Arteta is punching above his weight. He is going above and beyond the players he has. ‘The shape and the organisation, things we have criticised Arsenal for in the past, is good.
‘They are not finishing in the top four like Arsene Wenger used to get criticised for but they look like a team which is more cohesive.
‘It has continued from the end of last season and he is doing a great job. ‘I just think Mikel Arteta would love that £150million that Frank Lampard has got this summer at Chelsea.’
Arsenal looked set to drop two points at home to West Ham on Saturday but Eddie Nketiah popped up with a late goal to clinch a 2-1 win. Speaking after the victory, Arteta said: ‘What I like is the approach the boys had in the last 25 minutes where I could see they were a bit down and then they lift it.
‘Probably a few months ago we would have drawn or lost that game and today we win it. In the end you have to find a way because there will be games like this through the season.’