Mikel Arteta knows how tough the transfer window can be for players

Mikel Arteta will use his own deadline day experience to understand what some of his Arsenal players are going through.

There are plenty of members of the Gunners squad who could yet move on before the international transfer window closes on Monday, while Arteta remains keen to add at least one player.

Arsenal face Sheffield United in a Premier League clash at the Emirates Stadium just hours before the deadline.

Arteta admitted he could empathise with any players who may be distracted by talk over their future in the coming days as he recalled almost missing out on his move to Arsenal from Everton in the summer of 2011.

Sead Kolasinac is one player whose immediate future could lie away from Arsenal.
Sead Kolasinac is one player whose immediate future could lie away from Arsenal.

Asked if he could understand any distractions, he replied: “Yes, I do because I’ve been in that position.

“You can try to be very focused but then you leave the training ground and you get a phone call from the agent, a phone call from another manager, a call from another owner.

“Your head is spinning, you have a family, you’re thinking about moving to a different country, different city.

“All this is part of your daily life. But I just ask them ‘when you guys are here, try to be committed, focused and represent the club as well as possible’. But what will happen sometimes is just not in our hands.”

Speaking of his own late move and how close it was to the deadline, Arteta added: “No, it was 15 minutes late!

“It’s part of that and I know the nerves and the stress and uncertainty it generates. I’ve been there and that probably helps me to understand certain things when players feel like that.

“At some stage I saw it was not happening and I had this gut feeling that it was the right thing for me and somehow it has to happen.

“I was waiting for that opportunity for a long time and when that fax came through, even if it was 15 minutes late to the Premier League, I was so happy and relieved. I think it was the right thing to do.”

Now he is a manager, Arteta could be forgiven for not enjoying the rigours of the transfer market – but the Spaniard revealed he and his children are all fans.

“It’s not that I hate the transfer window, I think it is completely necessary,” he added.

“It is a big part of our industry and I think a lot of people love it because of trading players, I am a fan as well.

“You want to see a player in your team, there is excitement, I have my kids playing all the time on (Football) Manager and FIFA – so it is part of the industry and you have to pay attention to it because it is really important.

“I think it’s very exciting because at the end it’s the tools that you have to be able to do your job in the best possible way.

“You can dream about players that you can bring and how you can develop them and change certain positions to fit into what you want to do.”