Thierry Henry delivers 'painful' verdict on Mikel Arteta's Arsenal

Thierry Henry fears Arsenal are ‘nowhere near’ challenging for the Premier League title and says it is ‘painful’ to see the club’s recent demise.

Under Mikel Arteta, the Gunners finished just eighth in the Premier League last season, six points behind fourth-placed Chelsea and 25 points adrift of champions Manchester City despite winning each of their last five matches.

Arsenal’s recent struggles is in stark contrast to the success they enjoyed at the start of the century under legendary manager Arsene Wenger, who guided the club to three title triumphs and seven FA Cup wins.

Club legend Henry told beIN SPORTS: ‘I don’t like to compare eras, people do and I understand that, it’s a different generation, a different time, different technology, they have different views of the game, different preparations and different ways.

‘The team hasn’t been successful recently, obviously winning cups along the way, but nowhere near the level of trying to compete for the title.

‘But you can say the same for a lot of teams. You see Liverpool wait 30 years to win the title, it takes time, even for great teams.

‘So hopefully Arsenal can come back and compete, because at the end of the day there’s only going to be one winner, but at least try and compete.’

Asked to identify the areas his former club need to improve, Wenger added: ‘Consistency. When you look at Arsenal’s squad right now, on a good day they can beat anybody, but on a bad day they can lose to anybody.

‘That’s why they find themselves in the situation they are in right now. They are a mid-table team because that’s what happened – some days yes and some days no.

‘Is Arsenal’s squad better than West Ham’s and Leicester’s? But then they are still behind them in the table. Arsenal’s squad is capable of finishing in the higher positions, although you don’t have the squad of Man City or Chelsea or Man United.

‘It’s painful to watch as an Arsenal fan, but consistency is very key.’

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