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Mikel Arteta: It hurts watching European football without Arsenal but that spurs me on

Evening Standard logo Evening Standard 16/09/2021 Simon Collings
Mikel Arteta standing in front of a crowd: MikelArteta.jpg © Getty Images MikelArteta.jpg

Mikel Arteta says the pain of watching European football take place without Arsenal in it is motivating him even more to guide the club back there.

Arsenal are not in Europe for the first time in 25 years this term after failing to qualify for it last season.

It means Arteta has this week had to watch as the Champions League return, while the Europa League and Europa Conference League are in action on Thursday.

Asked how hard it was watching the games over the past couple of nights, Arteta said: “It hurts a lot.


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“In the past few days it was hurting to put the television on and see those teams in there and not see Arsenal there, it was painful.”

Asked if it was a motivator so Arsenal are not in this position next year, Arteta said: “100 per cent.

“I don’t want to be sitting with Arsenal out of those competitions. We have the focus and the trigger is that.”

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