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Maurizio Sarri reportedly lined up as pressure increases on Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta

Sarri

This would be a very surprising appointment.

Former Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri will reportedly be Arsenal’s preferred choice to replace Mikel Arteta if the club decide to part ways with the Spaniard.

Arteta has endured a disappointing start to his first full season at the Gunners, with only 13 points from 10 games leaving them in 14th place in the Premier League table.

Despite leading Arsenal to success in last season’s FA Cup, pressure has increased on the 38-year-old after a run that has seen them score only twice in their last six league games.

Sarri

Now, according to Italian outlet StadioSport (via Sport Witness), Maurizio Sarri will be the ‘first name on the list’ to replace Arteta were he to lose his job.

Sarri managed Chelsea during the 2018/19 season having impressed during his time as Napoli boss, but failed to live up to expectations at Stamford Bridge, departing after one year.

However, while Sarri’s style of football attracted criticism, he led the Blues to the Europa League title and narrowly missed out on the Carabao Cup with a penalty shootout defeat by Manchester City.

Sarri

The 61-year-old Italian has been out of work since being sacked by Juventus in August following their exit from the Champions League last-16 at the hands of Lyon.

Speaking ahead of Arsenal’s Europa League clash with Rapid Vienna on Thursday, Arteta admitted that his side’s recent form is ‘unacceptable’.

“I expected to be a little bit further than we are in the table, and a bit further with what we’ve done in certain games where we could have deserved more,” he said.

“But the worst thing [to think] is: ‘What if?’ This is our reality. In the end we can find excuses but I hate to do that. We are here, let’s get out of this situation, let’s face that challenge and let’s move on.”

“It’s not acceptable and we have to change it. We can say, ‘Yeah but the referee did that, he didn’t score, we should have done that’, but this is where we are.”

Arteta faces a crunch north London derby trip to table-topping Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday. Lose that, and the speculation surrounding his future will only intensify.

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