Arteta brutally ignores Nevilles advice after "as good as it gets" blast

Mikel Arteta has ignored a previous warning from Gary Neville and penned a new long-term deal with the Gunners to continue his rebuilding project – despite being urged to quit the club as they "can't compete" with the Premier League's big-hitters.

Arsenal are on the brink of ending their multi-year exile from the Champions League after enjoying a stunning season under Arteta, who has been rewarded with a new contract. The 40-year-old – who had just 18 months left to run on his previous deal – has now committed his future to the Londoners until the summer of 2025.

And ahead of the run-in to pinch the final Champions League spot, Arteta has claimed that he's determined to take the Gunners "to the next level" after inking his new deal – despite being previously warned by Neville that finishing in the top-four is "as good as it gets" for Arsenal.

Speaking back in March, Neville told The Overlap: “I really like Mikel Arteta, I think he’s a brilliant coach. I think the team is fantastic in terms of the young players they’ve got. But it’s interesting when you’re in a cycle of a club and you depress the ambition and have a significant period of failure because you then get really happy about finishing fourth. I found myself saying that about Manchester United. But it’s because of a depressed ambition.

“I think Mikel Arteta is a good operator. My concern is if Arsenal finish fourth this season – which to be fair, I think is 50/50, I still think there’s a long way to in that race – but if they finish fourth, that’s in some ways as good as it gets. You’ve got Pep [Guardiola], [Jurgen] Klopp, Man United, Chelsea, where can Arsenal go? They’re not going to compete.

“Mikel Arteta is a brilliant coach, I love that we’re seeing a team that he’s getting the maximum out of, I can see exactly how he wants to play, we all can. But he gets to fourth [and] if he was really hard about it, he’d probably say, ‘right, that’s the best I can do there, I’m going now and getting my next job’.”

What have you made of the job that Arteta has done at Arsenal? Let us know what you think in the comments section.

Despite enduring a rotten start to the season, Arteta has the Gunners in pole position to pip their bitter north London rivals Tottenham to the final Champions League berth. But the Spaniard has already spoken about challenging for major silverware again in the future – although he has conceded that the club need to strengthen their squad for that to happen.

Arsenal's technical director, Edu, doubled down on that stance on Friday – and hinted that Arteta will be backed in the transfer market at the end of the season to help the Gunners realise their lofty ambitions.

Speaking after Arteta's new deal was confirmed, Edu said: “I think the timing is perfect. I really believe the message will be a big lift to everyone. To the fans, to the club, to the players, to Mikel. It’s important to show everyone where we want to go as a club. We are going to face a big summer again and it’s important to have our manager here.”

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