Arsene Wenger did not always enjoy his milestone matches as Arsenal manager.
The legendary French coach infamously lost his 1,000th game in charge of the Gunners 6-0 away to Chelsea. Wenger's 500th match had also been a Stamford Bridge defeat.
Yet, Wenger's former captain Mikel Arteta was smiling when he reached a major landmark as Arsenal boss with a hard-fought 1-0 win over Brentford. «Today's my 200th game,» he grinned post-match, «and when I see a team that behaves between them like that, and I see the staff's smiles, I'm so happy and I couldn't be prouder.»
Arteta has a long way to go to match Wenger's tally of 1,235 games at the helm of the Gunners. But his record compares favourably to that of his predecessor at the same stage of his tenure.
Arteta's time as Arsenal manager has been a test of patience. After taking over a side that had spiralled into disarray under Unai Emery midway through the 2019/20 campaign, Arteta won the only FA Cup final played behind closed doors before overseeing consecutive eighth-placed finishes. Arsenal had not slipped lower down the table since 1995 — before Wenger's reign had even begun.
The immortal phrase «trust the process», innocently tweeted by Mesut Ozil after Arteta's debut, became a stick with which to beat the Spanish coach. Yet, that faith appears to have paid off.
The last two seasons have ended in heartache — missing out on fourth place was swiftly followed by a collapsed title charge — but the sense of dread that had begun to seep from the crowd onto the pitch in recent times has been consigned to the past. That the club even have reason to lament losing out to this imperious iteration of Manchester City is all the credit Arteta needs.
To quantify Arsenal's success under theirRead on 90min.com