Kieran Tierney says the Arsenal players have to take responsibility for the ‘terrible’ situation they find themselves in following a fourth consecutive home defeat.
Burnley’s 1-0 win at the Emirates on Sunday night, sealed courtesy of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s second half own goal, means Mikel Arteta’s Gunners are now in real danger of being dragged into the relegation zone over the Christmas period.
It’s embarrassing. And Tierney, a serial winner during his time at Celtic, knows it.
“It’s not good enough,” said the Scot when asked about the situation. “There is no way to disguise it. It’s terrible, to be honest. It’s not what we are, not where we are as a club.
“It’s not what the fans deserve, it’s not what the manager deserves, it’s not what the board deserve. It’s us players that need to take responsibility for this.
“We have got a great manager and we believe in him 100 per cent. The blame is on us, nobody else.”
Since beating Manchester United on 1 November, Arsenal have developed an unhealthy obsession with repeatedly shooting themselves in the foot. Last night, as the Gunners took a grip of the game, Granit Xhaka became the latest player to get himself sent off for violent conduct. His moment of madness ultimately cost his teammates dear.
“Red cards change games for and against you,” said Tierney. “When you are a man down it is always going to be tougher, especially against a team like Burnley. They’re physical, they’re good at it, they play to their strengths and they did that tonight.
“But even if we do go down to 10 men we should be winning the game at that point. We should be taking chances. We are not scoring enough goals.”
So where do Arsenal go from here? High-flying Southampton visit the Emirates on Wednesday then it’s Everton, Manchester City (in the League Cup) and Chelsea, all before Christmas. Every one of those games looks intimidating right now.
According to Tierney, our beleaguered players just have to keep working and stay positive.
“Everything is going wrong,” said Tierney. “We are working on the right things, we are doing the right things in training, we are working as hard as we can, but just things that can go wrong are going wrong.
“That happens in football. It is the lowest we have probably all felt in our careers and nobody is going to help us except ourselves.
“So we just need to keep believing, keep positive. I know it is hard. I know the fans deserve much better and all I can do is apologise to every single one of the supporters through these tough times.
“We just need to work hard. It is easy enough to say we want to do better, but we need to actually show we want to do better.”
He added: “Confidence is massive in football with everyone. When everyone is out to get you of course confidence is going to be low, but we can’t let that affect us. We can’t use that as an excuse.
“We are Arsenal. We need to be better than this and we are not performing up to standard. We need to be better throughout the full game. We need to take chances, we need to score goals.
“It’s Arsenal. It’s just not good enough.”