Unai Emery says his side lacked a balance between attack and defence as Everton condemned Arsenal to a damaging 1-0 defeat at Goodison Park.
The hosts took the lead on 10 minutes when Phil Jagielka tapped home from close range and might have extended their lead on several occasions after the break were it not for poor finishing from Richarlison, Bernard and Gylfi Sigurdsson and brave blocks by Sokratis.
In attack, the Gunners mustered just two shots on target with the midfield unable to provide any platform for the strikers to work decent opportunities.
The result damages our chances of qualifying for the Champions League although we are still inside the top four courtesy of a better goal difference than Chelsea.
After the match, Emery admitted his side didn’t look right.
“Really, the second half we need to do one step more in the game,” he told Sky Sports.
“We changed some things to find that and we were better offensively in the second half but we were worse defensively second half. This is the balance.
“We need more like the first half but doing more offensively, but defensively we were better. The second half we need [to be] better defensively [and to] find more balance.
“The match is demanding how we can respond and our response was conditionally with the result and in the end, we cannot change that.
“We knew we needed to be defensively strong, solid and to be competitive. But after the result is negative for us at half time we need to change something offensively to find better options for this 45 minutes.
But we couldn’t find our goal – we created two or three options to score. If we score it can change the match. Also, defensively, we conceded more than we were doing.
“It’s good to respond on the pitch, in the first half and second half with different systems, it’s giving us a lot of information. Today, really, we cannot do more.”
Emery was also quizzed on Mesut Ozil’s angry reaction towards the Everton bench who confronted Unai Emery on the touchline after Shkodran Mustafi took out Dominic Calvert-Lewin to earn a booking late in the game. The German midfielder, not long subtituted, chucked his coat in their direction as tempers flared.
“We need to recognise our frustration. We are learning that. We have not had a good result today, but we are in a good way. We are fourth today. Thursday we have a big match against Napoli and then Watford, which is important again. We did with being consistent our progression and now we lost. We need to get up quickly and find the next step.”