MIKEL ARTETA has revealed Arsenal’s owner Stan Kroenke and CEO Vinai Venkatesham have apologised to him over the plans to join the European Super League.
The Gunners pulled out of the competition on Tuesday night after mass anger from fans with the FA Cup holders issuing a grovelling apology.
Mikel Arteta has revealed the Arsenal board apologised to him over their plans to join the European Super LeagueCredit: PA
Gunners owner Stan Kroenke has said sorry to Arteta and his players over the doomed plotCredit: PA:Press Association
The North Londoners spent Wednesday speaking to their Premier League rivals in what was said to be ‘awkward’ calls between Venkatesham and other executives.
And now Arteta has declared that club chiefs have said sorry to him and his squad after joining the Super League without his knowledge.
Speaking in the pre-match press conference ahead of Friday’s clash against Everton, the Spaniard was asked if the board have contacted him.
To which he said: “Yes. Starting from Vinai, the ownership and everybody that is involved in the process.
“All of them, with the right intentions to defend the club and put the club in the best possible position for now and for the future, but accepting that the way it’s been handled has had terrible consequences and that it was a mistake.
“I really have to respect that when people have genuine intentions to do the best for this football club. But if it doesn’t happen or not the right thing to do, they can stand up here and apologise.”
Pressed on whether the Kroenke’s have been in touch, Arteta remarked: “I spoke with them yesterday and those communications were in the same terms.
“As always, every time we need something and every time something is happening, they are straight away ready to act, to give the answers they can do, to give us the support they can do.”
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Before adding: “They apologised for disturbing the team, not having the capacity or ability to communicate in a different way earlier and explain the reasons why.
“They wanted me to pass on the message to the players. That’s all you can ask for. The way they’ve done it, I have to accept it completely.”
The Arsenal Supporters’ Trust are keen for fans to have more say on club decisions, as they spoke of the German model where teams are at least 51 per cent owned by supporters.
And Arteta believes that the club have to allow fans to express themselves if they want to build a relationship back.
He said: “The fans have to express, that is their right and they have to do it freely. For me, what it shows is the power and the capacity when they show that determination and passion to achieve what they want.
“If we can use this with our fans to support the team, I think that will be incredibly powerful and it will make us much, much stronger.
“So it’s time to leave them to express themselves and now, somehow, we have to engage them again, get them closer to us and believing in what we do. If we do that, we’ll be in a much better place.”