Mikel Arteta has insisted that all of his Arsenal squad will be given a fresh start next season. hinting that Mesut Ozil and Matteo Guendouzi may yet be given stays of execution in north London.
Both players found themselves out of favour towards the end of the 2019/2020 campaign, and were excluded from a number of matchday squads, including the FA Cup final.
However, Arteta has insisted that he won’t be holding any grudges when the Gunners’ 2020/2021 camapign gets underway.
“I have been really clear that everybody starts from zero,” Arteta told his latest press conference (via BT Sport) ahead of Saturday’s Community Shield meeting with Premier League champions Liverpool.
“All the time in football, what you did two weeks ago or two years ago doesn’t matter. It is what you are able to contribute to the team now so everybody is going to have the same opportunities. They have to show with their performance and attitude that they are better than their team-mates or they are somehow contributing to what we want to achieve this season.”
Guendouzi had been linked with a move away from Arsenal earlier in the summer but interest in the Frenchman appears to have dried up of late. When asked if he had spoken to the midfielder about his attitude, Arteta confirmed the two had exchanged words.
“Yes. I told him exactly that, that he is going to be part of the team and at the moment he is like any other player in our squad. He deserves, first of all, to be treated exactly the same and I will do that to the best of my capability.”
Arteta also spoke about the future of Dani Ceballos, admitting he was keen to bring the Spaniard back in on loan from Real Madrid.
“We have had some talks,” he said. “Dani knows really well what I think about him – he was pretty clear with me as well that his intention was to remain with us.
“But obviously Real Madrid are involved and we don’t know yet what they want to to do with the player.”