'Guendouzi is a pain on a daily basis' – former coach Landreau offers mixed assessment of 'talented' Arsenal star


Arsenal midfielder Matteo Guendouzi is a “complicated” player to coach, according to former Lorient manager Mickael Landreau, who says that the 21-year-old’s inflated ego makes him a “pain” to get the best out of.

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The France youth international has earned something of a difficult reputation following clashes with Gunners boss Mikel Arteta, with the playmaker farmed out to Hertha Berlin on loan for the 2020-21 campaign.

Guendouzi – who joined from Lorient in 2018 – has adapted fast to life in the Bundesliga and looks to have brought the curtain down on his career at the Emirates Stadium, where he fell fast down the pecking order following an incident against Brighton after last season’s Premier League restart.

Now, former French international Landreau – who led Lorient between 2017 and 2019 following his retirement as a goalkeeper – has addressed Guendouzi’s reputation, noting that while the national Under-21 skipper has talent to spare, his attitude can prove a major stumbling block.

“He annoyed me terribly, he is very complicated to manage,” the 41-year-old told Canal+. “He sometimes has some behaviours within a group that are very, very hard, but somehow, that’s what he is, a big character.

“He doesn’t let go, he is a fighter. He has an oversized ego, but he certainly needs it. I think he needs to be in the spotlight, to be a leader. He needs to be a captain or vice-captain, and he will try to make the most of it.

“That’s the way he is, and that means that his teammates have to accept him the way he is, because he’s a pain on a daily basis. He’s a pain on a daily basis, but on the other hand, he’s talented.”

Guendouzi found himself exiled following the incident at Brighton, and refused to apologise for his part, in which he grabbed Neal Maupay around the neck and was believed to have disparaged the hosts’ financial deals with their players.

He is under contract for two more seasons with the Gunners, but it is widely expected that he has played his last game after running foul of Arteta’s leadership in north London.

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