Arteta will be ’embarrassed’ by touchline antics and is finding Arsenal’s place at top of table ‘difficult to deal with’

    MIEKL ARTETA will be “embarrassed” by his touchline antics, according to Graeme Souness.

    And the former Liverpool midfielder believes the Arsenal boss is finding it “difficult to deal with” being top of the Premier League.

    Mikel Arteta was furious as Arsenal were denied a penalty against Newcastle

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    Mikel Arteta was furious as Arsenal were denied a penalty against NewcastleCredit: Alamy

    Arteta launched a furious tirade at the fourth official in the 95th minute of Tuesday’s 0-0 draw with Newcastle.

    The Spaniard was convinced his side deserved a penalty when Granit Xhaka’s cross brushed Jacob Murphy’s arm from point-blank range.

    He furiously gesticulated on the sidelines, confronted Eddie Howe and later labelled the decision not to award a spot-kick as “scandalous”.

    But Souness reckons the Arsenal manager will have recognised his behaviour was not good enough.

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    Souness wrote in the Daily Mail: “I have been there. On many occasions, I woke up the next day and was not necessarily proud of how confrontational I had been with the officials or opposition manager.

    Mikel Arteta would have felt like that this week, embarrassed by some of his behaviour during Arsenal’s goalless draw at home to Newcastle on Tuesday.

    “I am not even sure what he was getting so excited about, there was nothing greatly controversial.

    “Rather, what we are seeing is a young manager who has shown he is finding Arsenal’s position at the top of the Premier League more and more difficult to deal with.

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    “The pressure is mounting and his conduct at times this season has been very different to the previous three years.

    “He knows he suddenly has a great chance of winning the league and that brings out a different side, sometimes a not-so-nice side, and certainly one we did not see during Arteta’s playing career, when he was never overly aggressive.

    “Arteta is not finding it easy to control his emotions and he must learn there is a limit, a danger of that passion becoming counter-productive.

    “But as long as you stay the right side of the line — and by that, I mean not disrespecting everyone else around you — then it is all part of the show.”

    SunSport columnist Troy Deeney, though, admitted he “loves” the commitment displayed by Arteta at the Emirates.

    I love Arteta’s demeanour on the touchline

    Troy Deeney

    The Birmingham striker said: “Some people reckon that it’s important not to lose your head, especially in a title race, and that Arteta’s antics might have a negative effect on his team.

    “But I disagree with that and I think his players will, too.

    “If you’re playing a crucial match, you want to know your manager is in the trenches with you.

    “It’s not so much about showing ‘passion’. It’s about intensity. It’s about a manager setting a tone for his players.

    “I see Arteta kicking every ball, slinging the ball back in for throw-ins and getting in the ear of the match officials — and I like it.

    “Against Newcastle on Tuesday night, Arteta was particularly hyper and I think he overstepped the mark right at the end… but, generally, I love Arteta’s demeanour on the touchline.”

    Arsenal were charged by the FA after surrounding referee Andy Madley to appeal for the late penalty.

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    The club, who saw their lead at the top of the table cut to five points when Manchester City beat Chelsea, could be hit with a fine for “failing to ensure its players conducted themselves in an orderly fashion”.

    Graeme Souness thinks Arteta will regret his antics

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    Graeme Souness thinks Arteta will regret his anticsCredit: Getty

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