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Mikel Arteta reveals how Arsenal star has surprised him despite facing early setbacks

Mikel Arteta has revealed how Arsenal star has surprised him this season after facing criticism earlier this season

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Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta
Image credit: Getty Images

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has expressed astonishment at the unexpected transformation of Kai Havertz’s career at the club, with the German scoring the decisive goal in Saturday’s 2-1 win over Brentford that propelled Arsenal to the top of the Premier League.

Havertz, who struggled in the initial months following his £65 million move from Chelsea last summer, has now netted four goals in his last four games, showcasing a remarkable resurgence in form. 

Arteta acknowledged the surprising manner in which Havertz has won over the fans after a challenging start to the season.

“I’m so happy,” Arteta said. “If somebody told me after the first two or three months that the whole stadium would be singing his song with that passion, with that feeling, with that chemistry, I would have found it hard to believe.”

READ MORE: David Moyes claims Arsenal cheated West Ham when they signed Declan Rice
aRArsenal star Kai Havertz

Kai Havertz scored the winner for Arsenal against Brentford (Image credit: Getty Images)

The Arsenal manager praised Havertz’s exceptional qualities as a player and noted the fans’ increasing connection with him as he continues to contribute with goals and selfless team play. Arteta emphasised Havertz’s work rate, intelligence, and overall contribution, declaring, “It’s impossible not to love him.”

Havertz’s match-winning goal against Brentford came in the 86th minute, rescuing Arsenal from the prospect of dropping two points. Prior to his crucial strike, Brentford had held the Gunners to a 1-1 draw, with Yoane Wissa equalising Declan Rice’s opener. Wissa capitalised on an error from Arsenal goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale, who had been caught in possession.

Addressing Ramsdale’s mistake, Arteta acknowledged that errors are inherent in football, especially for goalkeepers, and praised Ramsdale’s exceptional response. The goalkeeper improved in the second half, making two crucial saves to deny Ivan Toney and Nathan Collins.

“Errors are part of football,” Arteta commented. “It’s how you react to it, especially for the keepers, which is probably the most difficult position. He did so in an amazing way. I’m not surprised because the whole team and the whole stadium were behind him. He has earned that respect and admiration. We really wanted to win for him.”

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