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April 13, 2021

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Mikel Arteta slams ‘unacceptable’ Arsenal performance against Liverpool

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Mikel Arteta was unhappy with Arsenal’s performance against Liverpool (Picture: Sky Sports)

Mikel Arteta branded Arsenal’s performance in defeat against Liverpool on Saturday as ‘unacceptable’ and claimed he was ‘shocked’ by the nature of a damaging 3-0 loss.

The Gunners were without the likes of Bukayo Saka, Emile Smith Rowe, David Luiz and Granit Xhaka, but Arteta refused to use the absence of four key players as an excuse for such a dismal display.

Arsenal suffered a further setback when Kieran Tierney was forced off on the stroke of half-time with a knee injury, but in truth the Gunners were fortunate to go in level at the break.

Liverpool eventually made their dominance tell following the introduction of Diogo Jota with the Portugal international helping himself to two goals, while Mohamed Salah also got in on the act.

Reacting to one of the most comprehensive defeats of his reign, an emotional Arteta said: ‘We completely deserved to lose the game they were better in every department. They deserved to win with the margin they have or more and it was unacceptable from our side the way we played.’

Mohamed Salah was also on target in Liverpool’s win over Arsenal (Picture: Getty)

‘I accept responsibility for the way we played today. They made the right decisions, we didn’t. It is my fault. I have to set the team up to perform in a different way and that is it.

‘Congratulations to Liverpool because they were exceptional today. That showed the difference between the two teams – that when they play at that level, the margin is incredibly high.

‘I don’t have to use any excuses – that we don’t have five or six players – the standards are much higher at this football club and I have to get them to perform at that level. It was technical as well.

‘We gave every ball away and could not put three passes together. The basics weren’t there today. If you do that against this kind of opponent, you get punished like we have.

‘At the moment I am in shock. I didn’t expect that because of the way the team trained. It is a challenge. A challenge brings an opportunity. If you have courage and you represent a club like this, you have to stand up and take it.’


MORE : Jurgen Klopp explains decision to start Diogo Jota on the bench vs Arsenal


MORE : Paul Merson believes Sergio Aguero would fit Arsenal and Chelsea ‘like a glove’

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