'I haven't had any luck': 28-year-old claims he was always 'very good' at Arsenal but Arteta barely used him
Pablo Mari has had his say on his time at Arsenal before he moved to Udinese on loan last month.
The Spanish defender joined the Gunners, initially on loan, from Flamengo in January 2020. That move was made permanent in the following summer, but he was never the first-choice for Arsenal.
In his two whole years at the Emirates, Mari only managed to play 22 games for Mikel Arteta in all competitions. Injuries were really cruel on him, but even when he was fit, the Gunners boss mostly preferred other options.
The 28-year-old, currently on loan at Udinese until the end of the season, has now delivered his verdict on Arsenal and Arteta.
Pablo Mari: I produced a very good level at Arsenal
The Spaniard told Radio Marca: “I haven’t had any luck at Arsenal, but when I’ve been on the pitch, I think I’ve given a very good level. In the end, there comes a point where you have to make decisions.”
Despite not getting enough chances, Mari does not have a bad thing to say about Arteta.
Speaking about the Arsenal boss, he told the radio station: “Arteta is one of the best managers I’ve come across.
“He helped me a lot to understand football better. It’s an idea very similar to Guardiola’s, but with its nuances.”
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Mari’s first few games for Arsenal were really good. He read the game very well, his positional sense was brilliant and the Gunners looked really assured at the back when he started.
However, his lack of place became a target to opposition attackers and they began to exploit his weakness. That made Mari struggle and Gabriel Magalhaes’ arrival and brilliant form made him the number one option at left centre-half.
Ben White and Gabriel have formed a sensational partnership at the back this season, which further pushed Mari down the pecking order. That’s why he had to leave on loan and Udinese is a really good club for him.
It will be interesting to see what happens with Mari once he returns to Arsenal in the summer. It’s unlikely he’ll play regularly for Arsenal, which makes a permanent move away the most likely option.
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