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Mikel Arteta delivers honest verdict on Javi Gracia’s job at Leeds United

Shamanth Jayaram

Leeds United replaced Jesse Marsch with Javi Gracia in February, and Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has been really impressed with the job he has done so far.

The Whites have found themselves in another relegation battle. They are 14th in the league table, but that’s just two points above the drop zone, which shows just how tight things are in the bottom half of the table.

Leeds had won just four Premier League games under Marsch this season, and although they were unlucky on multiple occasions, it was time for a change. Gracia became the chosen one.

Mikel Arteta Javi Gracia
Photo by James Gill – Danehouse/Getty Images

Mikel Arteta praises Leeds United manager Javi Gracia

Javi Gracia agreed to become the new Leeds United boss in the last week of February, and it has to be said that he has done a very good job so far.

The Whites have played four times under the Spaniard in the Premier League and have won three of those games. Their only defeat came against Chelsea, a narrow 1-0 loss at home.

Leeds are definitely not safe yet, but under Gracia, it looks like they are on the right path. Mikel Arteta was asked about his compatriot in his press conference yesterday and he raved about him.

He said, as per “They have been really good (since Gracia took charge of the club).

“I know him as a player as he used to play in my hometown really well. Now as well, as a coach. He is a really good coach, really dedicated, thoughtful and very clear in his ideas of how he wants his team to play.

“He can vary as well, as he has done at many clubs with his way of playing and formations, so he is very adaptable. He’s coached so many teams already so that shows the quality that he has, and I think so far he has done really well.”

Mikel Arteta Javi Gracia
Photo by George Wood/Getty Images

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Arsenal take on Leeds United in what is a huge game for both sides.

The Whites need the points to avoid dropping down to the relegation zone, while Arsenal, who are on top of the table, have to win to maintain the gap between themselves and Manchester City.

It’s not easy to beat Arsenal, especially this season. They have been the best team in the country and have dominated almost every game they played. However, one fixture where they were incredibly lucky was against Leeds at Elland Road, when they were awful in the second half but somehow held on to come away with the three points.

Gracia will be hoping his side can produce a similar performance today and take their chances.

Mikel Arteta Javi Gracia
Photo by James Gill – Danehouse/Getty Images

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