Arsenal news: Ian Wright sends clear message to club’s owners after Aston Villa win | Football | Sport

Arsenal legend Ian Wright has told the Gunners board to continue backing Mikel Arteta by signing players that fit his exciting project – as there is clear progress for all to see in north London. Wright’s comments come off the back of his old side’s steely 1-0 win away at Aston Villa on Saturday lunchtime as Arsenal once again showcased their top-four credentials with a spirited victory.

Bukayo Saka’s low first-half drive was enough to seal all three points on the road for the Gunners as they comfortably kept Villa at bay.

Not many teams have managed to achieve that since the arrival of Steven Gerrard but the likes of Philippe Coutinho and Ollie Watkins were forced to endure a frustrating afternoon.

Arsenal remain in control of their own destiny heading into the final stages of the season but whatever happens, Wright has been pleased with the progress this term.

For that reason, he wants the board to use this season as a platform to build for seasons to come.

“I think a lot of people, a lot of pundits, have been very joyous in their punditry talking about Arsenal and how weak they are and having no leaders,” Wright told Premier League Productions.

“And look at them now. You need people now to start saying that this Arsenal team – a young side – we’re starting to see characters grow in this side.

“We’re starting to see people like Ben White, Gabriel, Kieran Tierney, Martin Odegaard, Thomas Partey… we’re talking about five, six, seven, even eight players who we’re getting 8/10 every week from.

“That’s what you have to do. Then it’s up to the owners and the management and the recruitment to bolt on the kind of players that are going to fit into that squad and continue to help them to improve.

“Like Bukayo said, last season it was something they really struggled at, defending and keeping hold of the lead, now they’re a lot better at it and they want to continue to get better at it.”

A number of Arteta’s signings – also backed by Edu – have slowly helped Arsenal turn their fortunes around under the Spaniard.

White, Gabriel, Odegaard, Partey and Aaron Ramsdale have all been excellent this season in red and white.

Furthermore, the development of Saka, Emile Smith Rowe and Gabriel Martinelli has also been an integral part of the team’s growth.

Arsenal are now four points clear of fifth-place Manchester United, who have also played a game more than their rivals.

Tottenham are also in the hunt, despite being six points behind the Gunners and they could turn the tide with victory in the north London derby.

Arteta has already detailed his determination to make Arsenal title contenders again.

He believes his side would need to score up to 100 goals in order to compete with the likes of Manchester City and Liverpool.

“To be with the top teams this season you need to score 90 to 100 goals at least,” he said ahead of the trip to Villa Park.

“Somehow you need those goals in the team. Don’t ask me how, but you need them. They have to come. That contribution, how it’s done and how possible it is to happen, you have to find the right pieces to do it. But it’s a non-negotiable. “

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