Mikel Arteta said you have to be 10 out of 10 to play for Arsenal otherwise the standard isn’t good enough, when retiring from football in 2016.

At the time, Arteta’s career had started to wind down in north London, and the Spaniard – who was also suffering with niggling injuries – saw his game time reduced.

He announced his retirement at the end of the 2016 campaign, admitting the decision was tough but ultimately the correct one to make.

He explained that he was only able to give eight out of 10 in his final season, and that’s not good enough when representing a club like Arsenal.

Arteta said about Arsenal upon retiring in 2016: “For me, the standards you need to play for this club – it cannot be eight out of 10.

Mikel Arteta said you have to be 10 out of 10 to play for Arsenal in 2016

“It has to be 10 out of 10. When you cannot deliver that, it is not good enough.

“Sometimes, people get away with it. Inside myself, my gut wasn’t clean and, when you are like this, I prefer to make the decision myself.”

He added: “It is very hard to stop but I wanted to leave it. I wanted to decide, and I thought for the last few months that I wasn’t good enough to represent this club on the pitch.

“You have to accept it. It has been a long time for me to be playing football and I didn’t want to cheat them or anyone. It is time. I want to leave it like this and we will see what happens.

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“You have to be honest with yourself. That’s why I haven’t been upset with the manager. I have been upset with myself. When you can’t get it right and you have been through injuries and difficult moments at this level.

Arteta has agreed a three-and-a-half-year deal to become Arsenal boss

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“For me, to play at this club, you have to be the best in your position. When you lose that, I think you should be away from this place. I have probably been here too long.

“In the last few months, I probably didn’t deserve to be here but at least I got the chance [against Villa] to stay in touch with them and it has been amazing.”

Arteta agreed a three-and-a-half-year deal to become Arsenal boss on Tuesday night, and is expected to be at the helm before the Everton match.





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