Gary Neville leaves Jamie Carragher baffled with strange Mikel Arteta prediction

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Gary Neville leaves Jamie Carragher baffled with strange Mikel Arteta prediction

Gary Neville believes Mikel Arteta will be named Premier League manager of the year, even if Arsenal falter in the second half of the season and fail to win the championship.

The Gunners are currently in first place in the Premier League halfway through the season, holding a five-point lead over Manchester City, the defending champions.

Neville does not believe that Arsenal will win its first league championship since 2004 despite their impressive 3-2 victory over his former club Manchester United on Sunday.

Recently, the ex-United captain took a beating from Gunners supporters when he predicted that his former club would finish second and City would retain their title.

Jamie Carragher, on the other hand, believes Arteta’s team will win the league title for the first time in 19 years. Carragher was stunned by Neville’s prediction and urged Arsenal fans to continue trolling his colleague on social media.

“How can he be manager of the year if you’ve put them third?” Carragher laughed on Sky Sports’ Monday Night Football, as the duo made their mid-season predictions. “You think he is manager of the year if he finishes third?”

Firing back, Neville replied: “The reason why he is manager of the year if he finishes third, second or first is because at the end of the last season I thought he was in significant trouble.” Presenter Dave Jones then interrupted and noted to Neville: “You pretty much wrote him off on [an earlier episode of] Monday Night Football, didn’t you?”

The former United defender promptly added: “[Jamie] said the same by the way, let’s be clear. We both said it.” Carragher quickly interjected by claiming: “The whole point of football is that you watch something happening, and you can change your view!”

Neville was firm, though, affirming: “Third, second or first… I would say that is still a great season. I know Arsenal fans from this position and maybe even Mikel Arteta would say that would be disappointing – but it would be a great season. It would be.”

When tensions cooled in the studio and Jones was wrapping up the show, Carragher turned directly to the camera and hilariously pleaded: “Keep going at him, Arsenal fans! You’re really getting to him on social media. Keep going at him.”

Earlier in the show, Neville explained why he didn’t believe Arsenal would win the league despite being on pace for a record-tying 100 points. “I get asked this every 10 minutes at the moment. Even Arsenal fans, they must get tired of asking these questions,” he bemoaned.

“It’s too far out to be thinking about the title. Going back to my own experience, I think City are still messing about, they haven’t really started this season yet, when they start to purr they will hunt Arsenal down.

“That doesn’t always work. Blackburn held us (United) off, Newcastle didn’t. The run in doesn’t start until nine games in.

“I’ve done three Arsenal games since the World Cup and I’ve been impressed every time.

“Forget the first half against Tottenham, they managed it really well in the second half. On Sunday, they responded to going a goal down and persisted with their football all the way through.

“I’ve been massively impressed with them, but with young players I won’t believe it until the end of the season. I am amazed they’re in the conversation.”

Gary Neville leaves Jamie Carragher baffled with strange Mikel Arteta prediction

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