Arsenal went into Saturday’s game knowing that they had a huge task ahead of them but instead of facing it head on, they managed to fall apart incredibly quickly as they were torn to shreds by reigning English champions Manchester City. Pep Guardiola’s men put a severe beating on the Gunners and managed to come away with a 5-0 win, whilst never really having to get out of first gear.
After the game, manager Mikel Arteta attempted to explain what happened – but even he wasn’t able to do so.
On his frustration at the result:
Really big, really disappointed with he things that happened on the pitch. Obviously the summary after three games and losing the three of them it doesn’t make it any easier. I think are started the game really well and took the game where we wanted, we were really competitive but in the first action, the ball is wide, we didn’t stop the cross or deal with the runners or defend the box well enough, and if you do that here it is impossible to win a football match as there are so many basic things that have to be done better. After that we conceded the second one a few minutes later, which I think is a clear punch on Calum Chambers’ face, so I don’t know how the goal is allowed to [stand]. We continued and after another 20 minutes Granit gets the red card and we have to play 60 minutes with 10 men against the best team in the league. A very difficult day, yeah.
On having to iron out the issues during the international break:
We have some players here and hopefully we can get some players back as well. We missed a lot of players in recent weeks, hopefully some of them will be back in decent shape after the international break. It is time to reflect, to look in the mirror, each of us, and try to change the dynamic straight away because we need to pick up results.
On what he would say to the fans:
To the fans, the only thing I can say is, ‘Thank you so much’. We had 3,000 fans here, they were absolutely fantastic and in condition with the team throughout the game and that is why you saw the reaction after the game, the players and myself, we had to do that and say thank you because this doesn’t happen very often in football. We have to value what they have done today.
On his response to the critics:
I don’t think today is the day to talk about any process. Today we have to talk about the result, what happened on the pitch and that’s it.
On if he still believes he can get results from this group of players:
Yes, I do. You know that I wouldn’t be sitting here [otherwise].
On self-reflection and if the players can perform for him:
I’ve always said it, I will be the one [to take responsibility]. I think I’ve been more critical about myself and taking the blame every single time, but only when we have defeats. I stand here today and I do exactly the same thing. I question myself and I have to try and have the right people around me and look at every decision that we make, and that I make, and try to improve it and change it if we believe that we should have done something different, of course.
On Auba’s comments:
If he feels that then I really agree because they are the ones that are on the pitch and have feelings that no one else can have apart from them so if that’s the case, then that’s good.
Quotes courtesy of Arsenal.com
Is the end of the road near for Mikel Arteta?