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Keir Starmer compares himself to Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta

Stuart Telford
Keir Starmer and Mikel Arteta.
© IMAGO

Labour leader Keir Starmer has said that he “feels an affinity” with Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta, whom he credits with turning the North London club around.

Arsenal fan Starmer told the Radio Times that his party had “lost its way’ under his predecessor Jeremy Corbyn, but that he has righted its course.

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The Gunners are without a Premier League title since the ‘Invincibles’ season under Arsene Wenger in 2004, meanwhile, but Arteta took them close last season, finishing as runners-up to Manchester City, and they are in the mix once again this term.

The 3-1 win over Liverpool on Sunday means they are level on points with City, two behind the Reds, who continue to lead the way.

With Labour the bookies favourites to win the next UK General Election, Starmer was asked which football manager he is most like, to which his answer was emphatic.

Starmer: ‘Look what he’s done now’

“That’s actually an easy one for me at the moment because I feel an affinity with Arteta, the Arsenal manager, because again, if you look at his journey, he was appointed, it was hard to turn that Arsenal team around,” he said.

“To start with people said he can’t do it, there was talk about whether he should continue, and look what he’s done now.”

Second is unlikely to do for either Labour or Arsenal this year, but the latter might yet have to settle for that with City and Liverpool seen as more likely to take the spoils according to the latest odds.

He will have the budget to strengthen in the transfer market next summer, with a striker like Victor Osimhen or Ivan Toney understood to be top of the Spaniard’s shopping list.

Some of the budget for them could be raised by selling Thomas Partey to the Saudi Pro League, while Emile Smith Rowe and Eddie Nketiah were among those linked with moves away in the recent January transfer window.

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