MIKEL ARTETA has revealed his 5-player dream team and it’s certainly unconventional.
The Gunners boss has proposed a squad that would represent an unstoppable attacking force, not least because it does not contain a goalkeeper or defenders.
Arteta spoke along Planet Football about what his perfect five-man squad would look like and had a first-man non-negotiable player on the team sheet.
Commenting on the ‘GOAT’ debate, the Spanish gaffer stated that Lionel Messi must be on his side.
He said: “The No.1 and I didn’t play with him or manage it, it would have to be Leo Messi, that’s for sure because in my opinion he was the most influential player of all time in the history of football.”
“We’ve never seen anyone do what he did on the field for so many years.”
But despite being on the Argentine side in the dispute between Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, Arteta was quick to include Ronaldo in his team alongside his bitter rival.
He said: “Then I would do the same thing with Ronaldo and use the other Ronaldo.” [Nazario] because I’ve been in love with him since I was a child.
An attacking force consisting of Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Ronaldo Nazario would be difficult to stop with Arteta barking instructions from the sidelines.
But the Arsenal coach did not stop at increasing his attacking power and his remaining two places went to two attacking midfielders.
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Firstly, the iconic Johan Cruyff, who Arteta explained, had always looked up to since his time in the Barcelona academy.
And the icing on the cake of his attacking team would be Diego Maradona.
The 41-year-old explained that his final choice was influenced by his Argentine heritage and his wife, who is from the South American country.
Arteta was clear that his team was all about attacking power, saying: “No defenders! We don’t have goalkeepers, it’s a five-on-five team. No goalkeepers.”
But when pressed to name who he would play in net alongside his All-Star team if necessary, he chose a close friend.
The former midfielder revealed he would bring former Liverpool goalkeeper Pepe Reina into goal with the two friends since they were teenagers.
Reina and Arteta both came through the famous La Masia academy together and Reina still plays for Villarreal today, although she is now 41 years old.