Man Utd legend Gary Neville believes a fourth-place finish will be “as good as it gets” for Arsenal under Mikel Arteta.
The Gunners are favourites to finish fourth ahead of West Ham, Man Utd and Tottenham.
They are currently three points ahead of Spurs in fifth and have a game in hand on their arch-rivals.
Arteta’s contract expires in less than 18 months, with Arsenal reportedly keen on extending the Spaniard’s deal.
However, Neville believes the 40-year-old could seek a new challenge in the summer if he guides Arsenal to a top-four finish.
He insists that the north Londoners are “not going to compete” with Man City, Liverpool and Chelsea at the top of the Premier League, hinting that Arteta should quit while he’s ahead if given the opportunity.
“I really like Mikel Arteta, I think he’s a brilliant coach. I think the team is fantastic in terms of the young players they’ve got,” Neville said at a Sky Sports fan debate (via Metro).
“But it’s interesting when you’re in a cycle of a club and you depress the ambition and have a significant period of failure because you then get really happy about finishing fourth.
“I found myself saying that about Manchester United. But it’s because of a depressed ambition.
“I think Mikel Arteta is a good operator. My concern is if Arsenal finish fourth this season – which to be fair, I think is 50/50, I still think there’s a long way to in that race – but if they finish fourth, that’s in some ways as good as it gets.
“You’ve got Pep [Guardiola], [Jurgen] Klopp, Man United, Chelsea, where can Arsenal go? They’re not going to compete.
“Mikel Arteta is a brilliant coach, I love that we’re seeing a team that he’s getting the maximum out of, I can see exactly how he wants to play, we all can.
“But he gets to fourth [and] if he was really hard about it, he’d probably say ‘right, that’s the best I can do there, I’m going now and getting my next job’.”
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