Arsenal midfielder and vice-captain Mikel Arteta has revealed that he has enjoyed his new role as a holding-midfielder and believes it was important for the team that he sat back more often.

The Spaniard midfielder is best known for his attacking-ways and his ability to score goals from midfield, but this season, he has been the defensive-minded midfielder in the heart of Arsenal's midfield.

With the likes of Santi Cazorla and Jack Wilshere being used as the attacking-midfielders, it has been down to Arteta to sit back and be the holding-man in the three-man midfield, something he has not done before.

The sale of Alex Song and the injury to Abou Diaby left Arsenal without a known strong-man in the centre, so it was down to the experienced Spaniard to sit-back and fill the role.

The 31-year-old has still kept his attacking-minded passing and shooting, but he has added tackling to his game and the player himself feels he did a good job this season in a role he has not been used too.

“I feel very happy because I think I have found a level of consistency throughout the whole year,” Arteta told Arsenal Player. “I missed two-and-a-half weeks with a little calf problem, after that I think I have played every game.

“I was the man to play in a different role, I had to adapt and I did the best that I could. I have sacrificed myself a lot for the team and worked as hard as I could and tried to help my team-mates.

“In my mind, I think ‘How can I make the players around me better? How can I make them feel more comfortable?’ I am talking about Santi, Aaron, Jack, Tomas Rosicky - players like that.

“That was the hardest part probably, but I knew I could succeed in doing it. I watched a lot of players in my position and I am happy with the way I have done it.

“I watched Sergio Busquets, Xabi Alonso and Michael Carrick, who is a good example. Before I used watch the likes of Iniesta and Xavi and in my mind I always think about them, but now I haw to stop that side.

“People may not understand why I don't go forward more but this is my job, it wouldn't be good for the team.”

When Arteta played in Spain back in his early days, he used to be the holding-man, and he believes that is the reason he was able to adapt so quickly.

“I know the concepts and I have the tactical knowledge to know what I have to do it,” he said. “I have had to change, but it is a mental thing really.

“I enjoy playing in that position a lot, I do - all the tackling and covering people and making the players around me better. I really enjoyed it this season.”

 

Write for GiveMeSport! Sign-up to the GMS Writing Academy here: http://bit.ly/12nAsNY

DISCLAIMER: This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeSport.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeSport.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

Topics:
#Premier League
#Arsenal
Flag article