Mikel Arteta backed by Sir Keir Starmer as Labour leader likens Arsenal job to leading political party and heaps praise on Bukayo Saka

Leading the Labour Party seems to come with the added criteria of supporting Arsenal these days.

Taking over from Jeremy Corbyn, Sir Keir Starmer is also a passionate Gooner and joined talkSPORT on Saturday to express his disdain for the failed European Super League plot, which his club were involved in.

The Labour leader took a break from politics to talk football
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But we couldn’t let him go without hearing what one of the country’s leading politicians thought about under-pressure Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta.

Sir Keir’s beloved Arsenal are languishing in ninth after a 1-0 defeat at home to Everton on Friday night, and all hopes rest on their Europa League campaign.

But the Labour leader urges patience from his fellow fans, likening the process of building a football team to his role in a recently reshaped opposition party.

“I’m a big Arteta fan,” Sir Keir told GameDay Warm Up. “Give him time.

Arteta is under mounting pressure at the Emirates
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“I think any manager coming in, or leader of a political party for that matter, you need time to sort your team out.

“Arteta is building a brilliant team around the young players. [Emile] Smith Rowe, [Bukayo] Saka, [Gabriel] Martinelli. Give him time to build that team – that’s my rule of leadership and management.

Saka has become indispensable for Arsenal
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“Give him time to sort the team out and turn the fortunes around. I think Arteta will do that, not withstanding last night.

“Players like Saka are really exceptional.”

On the European Super League, Sir Keir was delighted to see it collapse and hopes the country can use this force of outrage to inspire real change for football.

He said: “The proposal for the breakaway was just completely wrong and I’m really glad it came up against a wall of opposition from fans up and down the country. From fans that were involved and every other club.

Arsenal fans made their voices heard on Friday night
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“Completely and utterly wrong, it would’ve completely destroyed football and I’m really glad it would’ve been knocked on the head.

“What we can’t do is now lose the opportunity. There’s been momentum and energy behind this, we need to use that to change football. The ownership – we need an independent regulator.

“The government has promised a review, that’s a good thing, but we need it to be fans led and I’m a bit worried at the government’s reference that they’re ‘expecting’ to engage with fans. Well, that’s not good enough. We need to engage with fans.”