Mikel Arteta’s unlikely gratitude to Steven Gerrard as budding rivals clash – ReadSector

Both Arteta and Gerrard have impressed this season, with the duo earning praise for their work at Arsenal and Aston Villa respectively ahead of Saturday’s meeting between the two sides

Mikel Arteta was full of praise for former rival Steven Gerrard
Mikel Arteta was full of praise for former rival Steven Gerrard

Two iconic First League The midfielders will meet at midday on Saturday when Mikel Arteta takes over his arsenal side to face Steven Gerrard AstonVilla.

It is the first meeting between the two managers since then Gerrard was appointed to succeed Dean Smith in the villa park. the Liverpool Legende had earned his coaching stripes with Rangers, whose impressive transformation into title contenders impressed many.

Arteta has similar received praise for Arsenal’s recovery from a terrible opening into the current season, only to be considered favorites for a place in the top four. While the duo are now rivals on the dugouts and have clashed during their playing days, their relationship is surprisingly good.

In fact, Arteta even paid tribute to Gerrard for his work at Rangers, which the Spaniard used to play for. The Arsenal boss was delighted with his now-rival’s work at Ibrox as Gerrard had completely changed their fortunes.

The legendary Liverpool captain took charge of the Scottish giants in the summer of 2018, guiding them to their first Old Firm win over Celtic in six years in his first season in charge. Gerrard gradually built his side into genuine title contenders after a period when the Gers found it difficult to compete with their bitter rivals.

His crowning achievement during his three-year tenure at the Ibrox hotseat was his last full season at the club. Rangers went unbeaten in the league in the 2020/2021 season and won the Scottish Premiership as Invincibles.

Gerrard has impressed since taking over as Aston Villa manager

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That performance certainly caught the eye of Arteta, who won the Scottish title himself with Rangers during a two-year tenure at the club. And when Gerrard was appointed Villa boss, the Spaniard made it clear his admiration for the Englishman.

“Well, it was obviously a surprise. As a Rangers fan I first have to thank Stevie and the coaching staff for what they have done for the club. They turned the club around in such a difficult moment and managing to win the league the way they did was a huge boost,” he said in November.

The two rivals have received plenty of praise for their teams’ performances this season. Gerrard got off to a solid start in life as First League Manager who won eight, drew two and lost eight of his first 18 games as manager.

Arteta has also been pushing to be in the running for the Manager of the Year award after dragging Arsenal back into the table after a winless start to the season. The Gunners now appear well positioned to win the final Champions League Qualifying spot, with Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher praising Arteta for helping turn the tide.

“I’m a big fan of Mikel Arteta. I think sometimes he was questioned and sometimes he had to win because his job was at stake. And that always happens because managers win games and lose games, and sometimes acting under pressure is a sign that a manager is doing well,” Carragher told Sky Sports.

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https://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/mikel-arteta-steven-gerrard-arsenal-26486863 Mikel Arteta's unlikely gratitude to Steven Gerrard as budding rivals clash - ReadSector

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