Arteta: Defeat is a massive blow


Mikel Arteta accepts that Sp*rs have dealt a massive blow to Arsenal’s hopes of qualifying for Europe following today’s 2-1 defeat at White Hart Lane.

Coming into the game unbeaten in five matches, it felt like the Spaniard’s squad had built up some momentum, however, with results in other games going against us this weekend, we’ve slipped back to ninth in the table; the same position we were in when football was suspended.

With a five point gap between us and Wolves in sixth, it’s going to be a real scrap for a place in next season’s Europa League.

“Points wise it’s a massive blow because we know the results this weekend,” said Arteta in his post-game press conference. “But we will keep trying while we have any hope.

“This is who we are at the moment and we will fight in two different ways – one is the league and the other is the FA Cup – to do our best to finish as strongly as possible.”

Alex Lacazette’s fine strike on 16 minutes gave us reason to hope the north London bragging rights might be ours, but familiar failings at the back reared their ugly head.

Within three minutes, Heung-Min Son capitalised on a poor Sead Kolasinac pass to equalise and while we dominated large periods of the game, we were undone by Toby Alderweireld’s late header from a corner.

Asked if he still feels positive about his side’s development since he took over, Arteta said:

“Yes. If we minimise the mistakes that we do and we keep playing like that, we’re going to win many, many, many football games. Because we’re going to make it really difficult for the opponent. I’m sure of that.

“But these two aspects, one has to be maintained and the other one has to be avoided and it’s on us.

“They believe in what we’re doing. You can see how they are trying and how they are going.

“It’s a shame because if you are able to win that well in such a big ground, on such a big stage as with today, it gives you big belief.

“I am gutted as well for them because they really tried.”

Arsenal have now dropped 15 points from winning positions this season; the most in the league. For the boss, not being able to hold onto a lead can’t be pinned on any single factor – the problems are many and varied – but he remains hopeful for the future.

“There’s been various things since I’ve joined that cost us games.

“I cannot just single out one of them but a few of the ones you have mentioned obviously are involved.

“Some come from errors, some is game management, some come from a set-piece, some from individual errors but look at the margin that we have.

“15 points is a lot and that means that we are fighting and competing in every game, we are very close but the margin to win, lose or draw is sometimes small and at the moment we have to improve on that.”

He added: “Sometimes errors are led by fatigue. We have made some errors and there have been some moments where it wasn’t about that, it was about paying attention at a short corner or not picking up your man from a corner, or just making an individual error or because the opponent does well in this league.

“It pushes you in the last 10 to 15 minutes and you have to suffer and sometimes you concede.

“We will look at that with more depth obviously but it is something where we have some margin to improve.”

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We should have won or drawn. Poor defending, we need to be stronger in defence and midfield.

Johnny 4 Hats

I liked the fact the commentator kept trying to convince us that it was a frenzied end to end white knuckle ride when in actual fact I can’t remember a derby when I’ve been more bored.

Naked Cygan

You could improve the defence or midfield, but if the players are not up for it and keep passing the ball to the other team or back then we wont win many games. The whole mentality of the team should change. We need to play like Sheff utd, with no fear and 200% commitment.

The Mighty Bun

So you are cloning on-pitch?


This season is well and truly shot. I really hope we don’t have to try and qualify for the Europa League at the beginning of next season. Take the financial hit and focus on rebuilding a competitive squad.


Arteta should take responsibility for this hugely. There’s no need to keep shoehorning Kolasinac into a back three. He is so dreadful and one dimensional, I honestly do not know how he doesn’t see it. And also — do we not have any one better than him? Is Holding honestly worse? And when we were absolutely dicking them in the second half, why did we stay with the back three? Why not keep Pepe on, get Saka on in midfield and really go for them? Why did he take Pepe off when that absolutely flannel Ben Davies was on a… Read more »

The Arsenal

Arteta is still learning. This is when senior or even professional players should be doing the manager a favor. What’s crazy is he is shoehorning Kola in but Kola seems to be doing the exact opposite of what Arteta is picking him there to do.


I’m sorry but Arteta should be smart enough to tell Bellerín to stop going back inside. He should’ve told him in the first 10 minutes to look outside for Pepe.

He it was blatantly obvious moving to a back 4 and going with another man in midfield was the best way to turn the screw even more for the 2nd goal. It was so obvious.

I just don’t buy the fact that he’s as good as everyone says he is.

Heavenly Chapecoense

Poor defending upfront as well. There was a situation where Pépé lost the ball and run unconvincingly after the opponent, making sure he stays three meters from him to not put on a tackle. This resulted in a counter attack almost costly. Isn’t this what De Bruyne pointed out as instructions they got when they beat us 3-0 at the Emirates?


true but bad substitutions cost us too. arteta has demonstrated he is a good coach. but needs more nouse and guts as a manager. hopefully that will come.


Most of those centre backs can go if we are serious about improvement. Arteta cannot have an impact on individual errors unless he brings in players with a better mentality.

Mari and Saliba are the only hope for me.


I’ve got a lot of hope for Chambers still. I know it means less than nothing but he was our best performing defender this season (by a considerable distance imo) and has a lot of attributes that I like from a defender.

Hoping he gets a chance when he’s ready next season (hopefully by the end of the year).


Me too. Holding and Chambers both. Don’t understand why they can’t get a real chance and be seen as established CBs. They have both been at the club for a long time and deserve it. I know Chambers is injured, yes.

The Arsenal

They have both had bad injuries. As much as we cry out for Holding he makes just as many errors as Luiz and Mustafi just not those swimming in the mud or giving away penalties and getting sent off ones. As good as Chambers can be he is prone also. Remember ostersunds and thats just off the top of my head. Although i do want to see him under Arteta.

Timorous Me

He may make the same amount of errors, but not all errors are created equally. It feels like too often guys like Mustafi, Luiz, Kolasinac, and Xhaka have committed dire errors that are swiftly punished. Fortunately Xhaka seems to have found a role under Arteta where he’s eliminated those (knock on wood). But look at Kola’s today–he might have well just passed it into his own goal, that’s how impossible it was for others to recover from it.

Cultured Determination

This is disguating. Having shit defenders doesnt mean that you play 3 CBs hoping we dont concede cos the defenders are so shit we cant play with 2 CBs. Start holding and saliba next season or buy another cb. No more kolasinac/ mustafi/ luiz bullshit.
At this point it’s best to probably start holding and sokratis for the rest of the season and put torreira in front of them.

Pete Plum

Only interested in seeing Luiz in midfield or on the bench, can’t imagine why he’d play centre back again


This has been a horrible week all round, Liverpool, Chelsea and Everton have done us no favours and this is a brutal run of fixtures. That dreadful pass from Kolasinac and the slow reaction from Luiz took the wind out of our sails, the pressure took it’s toll and we didn’t play anywhere near our best. Individual mistakes cost us again.This looks like the end of our Europa League hopes, I don’t see us getting anywhere in the FA Cup, although you can never say never. The players look tired and I thought that Mikel could have brought on the… Read more »


The pressure on us? We controlled the far majority of the possession. Their only attack was to hoof it to Kane on the “Mustafi-Bellerin” right side. It was poor defending from the back line and midfield DESPITE our control of the game.

The Arsenal

But that’s what makes this worse. All Mourinho had to do was apply simple pressure to one point of the defence and it brought about so much damage, Of course Mustafi made Kane who has been shit all season look like the Kane of three years ago against a retarded wombat.


This whole season will be one hell of a learning curve for Arteta. His influence on the team is clear to see today, at no point did I see us being out played we took the game to them and had our chances which is encouraging.
sadly its about the usual individual errors costing us again.
Thats the issue that has been with us for years.

Dublin Gunner

Today was Voldemort vs young Harry Potter. Voldemort’s dark tactics won out in the end because he’s been around for a few hundred years more than the younger wizard….

The Kolkata Gooner

Nothing the young wizard could do, though. He had Kolasinac on his side, who used a disarming spell on himself at a crucial point, thereby exposing the whole castle to the Death Eaters.

Dublin Gunner

The Death eaters ??


This is by far the worst team we have had in terms of technique and ability in a long time. They can’t handle pressure or concentrate for periods and then they end up making basic mistakes. Every few games (especially in big games) there is an individual mistake by someone. Sometimes it is a daft red card to go a man down, sometimes committing stupid fouls to concede penalties or unnecessary back passes leading to errors. No amount of tactics is going to help us beyond a limit.There has to be an overhaul of the team, (especially the defense and… Read more »

The Arsenal

Real football teams don’t have to be constantly told by the manager such basic information like lets not switch off when they have a fucking corner. We were invincible because we had players who had brains and knew what your meant to do on a football pitch. At all points in the game.. Like when you have just gone 1-0 up. You don’t get yourself in a pickle under no pressure and than put your aging inattentive slow centre back into a footrace with one of the quickest players in the league because you couldn’t complete a forward pass with… Read more »

Tuhumwire Moses

Some times I feel too annoyed for my team and the couch, should i think that our players don’t see wat other players from different clubs play?? Wen we score one goal it’s like as if we have finished or won the game Players relax and we end up conceeding a stupid goal caused by our panicky defenders. Some times also Arteta runs out of ideas, why do you make Toreira seat and wen u see a deep hole in the middiefield!!! He should also make Ozil play and he stops giving false statements about him coz we don’t have… Read more »


This is a massive blow not just for the season, damage of which was done ealier as is but for any rebuilding plans. Don’t expect us to clear out the players some prefer to see the backs off. More likely we will be prey to better clubs and see our more important assets poached. And don’t expect us to add wisely. We’ve already re-signed Luiz. Likely we will continue to do stupid moves like wasting 72m on Pepe or 27m on Saliba non-existent for one season. We do not have the right Director of Football team. We did not have… Read more »

Zet Yeo

My observation
1) Better for Tierney to stay at the back. Although he is fast, he doesn’t have the technique to take on defenders in the final third like Saka ,Pepe , Ozil
2) I like Auba, But i am not impress with his work rate
3) Spurs is a speedy team. Old legs cannot handle the run back. Arteta should have used younger players or make the substitutions earlier.
4) Kind of think we play too slow a game. Once we are ready to attack, Spur’s defence is already air tight.


Point 4 is the key point for me. We are just so slow when attacking, no movement up front, no one touch passing ala Citeh around the opposition making the ball do the work. Our players are just technically not good enough, Xhaka sideways and backwards all the time. Ceballos playing too deep, Pepe only got a left foot and goes inside everytime making the pitch narrow.

Don’t get me started on our defence…. been needing two ‘class’ centre backs since Sol left…. hey ho…

Kanaalo Fredrick

Arteta is pushing everything right but the players needs to believe in themselves!! We need to be stronger in all positions!!


Since Arteta came in,there has been a definite structure to the team.The derby was one of those where this was sorely missing during the final period of the game.Kola passing weakly,Mustafi twisting and falling to the ground,poor marking at corners is just frustrating.You can have ‘deja vu’ for just a few times.There was a lot of experience within this squad,its a shame they did not capitalize on the lead.


Sead Kolašinac’s artful mistake solidifies his first-team role next year by ensuring Arsenal miss out on European football and can’t afford a replacement. Nice work!

Teryima Adi

Let the Renaissance continue. COYG! It’s morning yet on creation day.

M Amjad

Arsenal season is over with this display I don’t think they will beat Liverpool