Everton boss Rafa Benitez believes that Mikel Arteta can serve as an example for his struggling Toffees side.
Everton welcome Arsenal to Goodison Park on Monday night for a game they hope will turn around their recent fortunes.
Rafa Benitez has won none of his las five, losing four. The only point they have managed in that time is the one they got against Spurs.
They sit some eight points, and 10 places, behind Arsenal who will be one point behind West Ham in fourth with a win.
“I think he (Arteta) is doing well and could be an example of a new manager at a new club under pressure from the beginning last year, from the beginning this season,” said Benitez of the former Everton midfielder.
“Little by little he has continued working the way he wants to work and the team are getting better.
“They have also spent some money and they did well as they have signed some good players.”
The Spaniard added: “He is an example of a manager at a new club who needed time and everyone was talking about ‘We need to give him time’ and now he is collecting the prize of that.”
Currently, Mikel Arteta is averaging 1.83 points per match with Arsenal (1.64 Premier League only) while Benitez is averaging 1.13 with Everton (1.07 Premier League only).
Weirdly, Benitez has only averaged more that two points per game just once in his career – when he was manager of Real Madrid.
Since then, is APPM has been on a downward spiral. It was 1.48 at Newcastle, his next job. It was 1.16 at Dalian Pro in China, whom he joined just a few days after leaving the Magpies.
We, of course, have no other Mikel Arteta managerial jobs to look at for comparison.