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Paul Merson rates Arsenal’s top-four chances and sends message to Mikel Arteta

Arsenal legend Paul Merson has rated the Gunners’ top-four chances under Mikel Arteta (Picture: Getty)

Paul Merson has played down Arsenal’s chances of securing a top-four finish in the Premier League this season but insists he believes Mikel Arteta is taking the club in the right direction.

The Gunners finished just eighth last season – ten points behind fourth-placed Chelsea and 43 behind champions Liverpool – but improved after Arteta replaced Unai Emery in December.

Despite the progress at Arsenal, Merson still cannot see his former club finishing in the top four this season, with Liverpool hoping to defend their title amid competition from the likes of Manchester City, Chelsea and Manchester United.

‘I’ve liked what I’ve seen from Arteta, you can see what he’s trying to achieve and what direction Arsenal are heading in,’ Merson told Sky Sports.

‘There is a plan, players are being sent out on the pitch with clear instruction and they know what they are doing.

‘You don’t beat Liverpool, Manchester City and Chelsea by luck. Towards the end of last season they had a game plan and executed it well, the challenge for Arsenal now is to stick to…