“No one remembers who came in second.”

A line steeped in sporting history. A line originally uttered by golf legend, Walter Hagen. A line that has since been used across Rugby, Athletics, Basketball, Boxing, and more. A line which the red half of North London have decided that, in football at least, the buck stops here.

After being steamrolled on the home stretch by Antonio Conte’s Tottenham in 2022 — in the process losing the much-coveted-by-Arsenal-managers Fourth Place Trophy — Arteta’s men repeated the trick in glorious fashion throughout the season’s culmination in 2023.

Having spent a record 248 days atop of the Premier League table last season, at one point even being a full 11 points clear, Arsenal bottled it. No two ways about it.

Arteta, reminded that “No one remembers who came in second”, began the new season with a steely gaze, a crystal clear focus, and determination levels unseen before. The doubters will be proven wrong.

So, on a mild winters’ day in North London, after Arsenal had taken three points off table-topping Liverpool and once again moved into second place, Arteta put his plan into action.

The club captain, Martin Ødegaard, was sent back onto the pitch with clear instructions. He wrestled the camera from the club photographer before taking copious amounts of stills, so many in fact that forgetting this moment would be impossible. With the camera’s memory card full, Ødegaard, having played the full 90, sprinted to the closest Boots to have the photos printed immediately.

Every squad player got a set. Arteta took two.

As he locked his spare set in the club safe, Arteta could be heard whispering to himself in a vengeful tone “No one will forget who came in second this season”