Mikel Arteta praises Kieran Tierney for "incredible" work ethic

By Hamish Carton

February 14, 2020

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has praised the “incredible” work ethic of Kieran Tierney, but reiterated that they will have to be patient in his return from injury.

The former Celtic Park favourite, who left Neil Lennon’s men during the summer, hasn’t played for the Gunners since before Christmas.

Tierney has since returned to non-contact training after undergoing surgery (Daily Record) but isn’t expected to be back on the pitch anytime soon.

Tierney steps up his recovery (Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

However, Arteta, who wasn’t appointed as Gunners boss until after the injury, says he’s been bowled over by the Scottish full-backs work rate.

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“He is making very good progress but we need to wait for the bone and the attachment to the tendon to heal before he can make any contact,” Arteta said, as reported by the Daily Record.

“He has been training, his work ethic is incredible.

“I have been really impressed with him so hopefully we can get him back soon but we need to be a little bit patient with him.”

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta (Photo by Simon Stacpoole/Offside/Offside via Getty Images)

Celtic did the right thing moving Tierney on

It seems harsh to say it given what Tierney did in Glasgow, but it does seem like selling him for £25million (BBC) in the summer was a masterstroke.

Tierney has played just five league matches for Arsenal this season (Soccerway). Now can you imagine if that was his total in a Celtic shirt?

Fans would be pretty raging that we’d kept hold of him and worried that we wouldn’t get his true value in coming windows.

There’s also a fair chance that we wouldn’t have signed Greg Taylor had Tierney not moved on.

Greg Taylor playing against Rennes (Photo by ANDY BUCHANAN/AFP via Getty Images)

With Boli Bolingoli and Jonny Hayes already at the club, Neil Lennon would probably have felt he had enough cover if Tierney had stayed.

Nevertheless, it’s great to hear that our former favourite is working hard to get back fit.

He’ll be tearing it up in England, like he used to do with us, very soon.