Arteta not getting carried away over Arsenal's early season form
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Arsenal’s victory over Bournemouth on Saturday made them the first team since 1939 to win their first three matches of a league season after losing the first three matches of the previous campaign. Everton were the turnaround kings all of 83 years ago and, in a spooky Premier League omen for Mikel Arteta’s men, the Toffees went on to win the league title that year. With the future looking bright, Express Sport takes you through four players who have been key to the Gunners’ change in fortunes…
The Brazilian’s impact in north London was felt long before competitive action got underway. After completing a £45million move from Manchester City in July, Jesus hit the ground running with a flurry of goals in pre-season and he looks equally lively now that the Premier League campaign is three games old.
The 25-year-old already has five goal contributions in three matches and looks virtually irreplaceable as the spearhead of Arteta’s attacking quartet. Jesus has made Arsenal a more potent proposition and there may be a few fans out there who are quietly confident about his prospects for the Golden Boot.
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Question marks hung over the centre-back’s head throughout the summer amid claims that he would rather stay in France after three consecutive loan spells in Ligue 1. Guaranteed game time was thought to be a priority for Saliba and Arteta has been happy to oblige, shifting Ben White out to right-back and slotting him straight into the back four.
Three commanding performances have already given Arsenal more assurance in defence and his stunning strike against Bournemouth was merely the cherry on top of the cake. Oh, and his catchy new chant isn’t bad either.
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It was the trio of defeats to kick off last season that saw Bernd Leno give way to Ramsdale in goal. The England international was an instant hit and his spot between the sticks has been deemed safe ever since.
While a couple of shaky moments against Leicester and the Cherries will have got some hearts racing, he has still brought a certain togetherness to an Arsenal team that have often been criticised for a lack of backbone under Arteta. This season’s fast-starters could render those claims a thing of the past.
An unspectacular one-goal loan spell, followed by a permanent deal, won’t have had Arsenal fans dancing on the ceiling about Odegaard 12 months ago. He was absent for the first two matches of last term’s dismal run but, over the course of the season, his output surged with 11 Premier League goal contributions and he has become an integral part of Arteta’s team.
So much so, in fact, that the 23-year-old was made captain after a wave of departures this summer. Odegaard has led by example since grasping the step up in responsibility, bagging twice against Bournemouth to get his 2022/23 tally up and running.
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