Alex Lacazette said he made a deliberate effort to wake up Arsenal’s sleepy fans after his teammates’ performance fell off a cliff following a bright start against Crystal Palace.
Entering the field of play with 23 minutes remaining, the striker was quick to gee up the home support with some theatrical hand waving only for the Gunners to fall behind in sloppy style six minutes later.
Despite the setback, the Frenchman had the last laugh on a frustrating evening at the Emirates as he crashed home a last-gasp equaliser to secure a 2-2 draw.
“I wanted to bring a bit of energy to the team,” he told Arsenal.com afterwards.
“We know when the fans in the stadium are alive and with us, it makes it hard for the opponent. Maybe because of the way we were playing at that moment, they were a bit sleepy, so I wanted to just bring some energy that I know they like, and to change the game.”
Yet to start in the Premier League this season, the 30-year-old admitted it’s been a frustrating spending so much time on the bench.
“Yes of course, it’s never easy to be on the bench, you always want to play and bring something to the team. This is what I tried to do.
He added: “It’s my first time like this. I am just waiting my time, I work every day in training for this kind of moment when I can help the team and obviously today I scored so I’m really happy.”
While failing to beat Crystal Palace at home always represents a below-par result, the draw does at least continue an unbeaten run that stretches back six games.
“It’s always better not to lose,” said the Frenchman.
“Of course we wanted the three points today but sometimes when you can’t win, make sure you don’t lose.
“We spoke about never giving up and always playing football to the last minute. When we were winning we could have done more maybe, but I don’t know why that happened, but we managed to come back at the end.”
Tonight’s draw doesn’t do much for Arsenal’s standing in the table. We head into Friday’s clash with Aston Villa sitting twelfth.