Arteta had enough of RVP talk
Mikel Arteta believes all the talk around Robin van Persie's Arsenal exit has made it tough for Arsenal to find their groove for the new campaign.
This, as the Gunners struggle to break their early season goal drought with Arsene Wenger's side playing to their second consecutive goalless draw in the Premier League at the weekend.
The north Londoners recruited prolific strikers Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud over the off-season, but the talented duo have yet to fire on all cylinders in the top-flight.
Critics have highlighted the Gunners' previous over-reliance on Van Persie's goalscoring prowess as the cause behind their poor start to 2012/13.
Arteta, however, wants everyone to get over the fact the likes of Van Persie and Cesc Fabregas have moved on and allow newcomers Podolski, Giroud and playmaker Santi Cazorla the time to settle.
"[Cazorla] is comfortable in that position, that free role. He has a lot of talent, you can see how good he is on the ball," Arteta was quoted in the Daily Mirror.
"We need to get him involved whenever we can because he can have a big influence.
"Lukas looked really good on the left. He was cutting in and causing problems. He had a couple of chances. We need to give them a bit of time.
"All the talk about Robin all of the time... you can get frustrated.
"Last year, [Cesc] Fabregas left. We all know what that meant. You cannot do in two games what it has taken eight years to create. It's impossible.
"Robin is obviously a really good player. He scored almost every time we played in the league last year. It's tough."
The arrival of Giroud at the Emirates Stadium preceded Van Persie's decision to join Manchester United, yet the former has since still been labelled as the latter's replacement.
But the expectation for the 25-year-old hitman to immediately replace last term's Golden Boot winner is woefully unfair, according to Arteta.
The Spanish midfielder added: "Of course, you can't replace Robin. We know that - it doesn't matter who is brought in.
"Manchester United went for him at the age of 29. What does that say? There aren't many bigger talents in the world.
"To replace Robin is an impossible thing because he's a special player. You can't ask anyone to be as good as him. I don't think it's possible."