Mikel Arteta says Arsenal paid the price for giving away too many free kicks in dangerous areas against Crystal Palace but maintains that his players will learn to better manage games.
Roy Hodgson’s side took advantage of lax defending by the Gunners for their equaliser in Saturday’s 1-1 draw, working the ball to the right flank for a cross when the visitors had expected a ball to be lofted directly into the box.
That we made 22 fouls on the Eagles across the 90 minutes is something that Arteta thinks we need to work on, especially as so many were in areas that allowed the home side to send men forward.
For all that, the boss was pleased with the effort of his players to close down opponents quickly.
“I asked them to go 100 miles per hour to chase the ball, to be very aggressive when we didn’t have it, to win it back as quickly as possible and they tried to do that,” he told Arsenal.com.
“We need to know that there are certain areas we can do it. Against these kinds of teams, it’s dangerous because they bring the two centre backs up [at set pieces]. They put the ball in the box and you have to defend.
“Their goal was a consequence of a sequence of a number of things that happened afterwards. We have to know to play these situations a little bit better. In terms of effort and spirit that they showed – it was top.
“It’s game management, it’s game moments, and we’ll get better at it.
“We need to know that at this type of ground, that we don’t want to put ourselves on the back foot in set-piece situations because they are really good and work a lot on it.”
On the subject of discipline, there were a couple of erroneous reports that claimed that Alex Lacazette’s fifth booking of the season, picked up at Selhurst Park, would earn him a ban. That’s not true, the threshold for a suspension was raised to ten bookings on match-week 20.
|No. of yellow cards||Before match-week||Duration of ban|
Here’s how we look on the yellow card front.