Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta explains his approach for signing players

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta says ‘strength of character’ is the most important attribute he is looking for ahead of the summer transfer window.

Arsenal will finish the Premier League season on Sunday, outside the top six for the first time since 1995.

There has been a gradual decline since days of Arsene Wenger finishing in the top four 20 years in a row.

And it is why this summer is particularly significant for Arsenal as they aim to reshuffle an under performing squad.

In January, Arteta brought in Cedric Soares and Pablo Mari on loan and has since made their moves permanent.

But he will be short on funds to sign several players unless the club is able to offload unwanted members of the squad.

Arteta has been clear about the need for investment and has now outlined the type of players he wants at the Emirates.

“For me, it’s the number one question when we bring someone to the club,” Arteta told Sky Sports.

“What is he like? How is he going to react in difficult moments? Is he a leader? Is he someone who is going to push his team-mates?

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“Is he hungry for himself, or does he have collective ambitions? Is he someone who can be stable and consistent in the long-term?

“For me, those are always the first questions when we try to sign a player.”

With concerns over the defence, Arteta has been forced to switch from his preferred 4-3-3 system to five at the back.

And Arteta says finding players that are adaptable and versatile is another essential quality he wants.

He said: “In order to build, you need to win, and we had to find a way to give a little bit more stability and be a little bit more unpredictable with what we wanted to do.

“We found a different formation that I believed could suit us, and it did, in terms of results.

“We want to have versatility. We will be more difficult to control if we are able to master two or three different formations without driving the players crazy. Always with the same principles, but being able to change system, and to attack and defend in different ways.”

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