Thursday, June 20, 2024

Saka urges focus as disappointed Gunners regroup for run-in

Bukayo Saka admits Arsenal were disappointed not to leave Anfield with all three points on Sunday and admits the clash with title rivals Manchester City in two weeks’ time will be a “massive game”.

Having raced to an early two-goal lead at Anfield, the Gunners really should have maintained their eight-point lead at the top of the table.

Unfortunately, lapses in concentration at the tail-end of each half ended up proving costly and the subsequent 2-2 draw, coupled with City’s win at Southampton, means the Gunners’ advantage has been cut by two points.

“The boys were really disappointed after the game because we all wanted to win,” the winger told Arsenal.com.

“But we can’t change that so we have to switch the focus to Sunday against West Ham. It’s really important – we all know that – so we’ll try and be ready for the game to give our best and get the three points.

“I’m not going to sit here and tell you I’m satisfied with a point [against Liverpool]. We wanted to go there and get all three so there’s a bit of frustration inside me that we didn’t do that. It’s a stadium I’ve never won at, so I thought that it would be the best opportunity and timing to do it, but we couldn’t do it which is a shame.”

Despite last weekend’s frustration, Saka was quick to point out that Arsenal’s fate is still in their own hands as they chase down a first league title since 2004.

They face West Ham United and Southampton before the trip to the Etihad and know two wins will really turn the screw on Pep Guardiola’s reigning champions.

“We know that everything is in our hands and we just have to keep going game by game,” said Saka.

“If we win these last eight games and get some good results, the title can be ours, so we just have to stay focused. It’s a long season and we have to be consistent all the way through, so that’s what we’ll try to do.

“I wouldn’t say [the Man City game] is the final, but maybe the semi-final because it’s massive, and so important as both teams are fighting at the top. It’s really close so it’ll be a massive game.”

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Arsenal’s remaining fixtures

West Ham vs Arsenal
Arsenal vs Southampton
Man City vs Arsenal
Arsenal vs Chelsea
Newcastle vs Arsenal
Arsenal vs Brighton
Nottingham Forest vs Arsenal
Arsenal vs Wolves

Manchester City’s remaining fixtures

Man City vs Leicester City
Bayern vs Man City (UCL 1/4F)
Man City vs Sheffield United (FA Cup 1/2F)
Man City vs Arsenal
Fulham vs Manchester City
Man City vs West Ham
Man City vs Leeds
Possible UCL 1/2F vs Real Madrid/Chelsea
Everton vs Man City
Possible UCL 1/2F vs Real Madrid/ Chelsea
Man City vs Chelsea
Brentford vs Man City

TBC – Brighton vs Man City

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Bill Hall

Still in our hands!
Perfectly capable of winning all the other games and getting a draw a city!

Magneto

I believe that we are capable of beating City in their own stadium, but we’ll clearly need to take our chances, defend well and hope that the match officials turn in a neutral performance (yes, I know that’s asking for a lot!).

Anon

I think we are capable of beating anybody but I’m not sure we quite believe it yet.

VAR will solve all the problems

After watching yesterday’s game between City vs Bayern, it will be a miracle if we won the league. They have the costliest squad in the world plus Haaland. If they didn’t cheat financially there’s no way they get Haaland who costs them a million per week. Their back 4 each of them costed over 50 to 60 mill. Everyone in the media talks like we are on equal footing with City. In reality, we shouldn’t be here. The whole thing is rotten and every time I watch city play I have this bad taste in my mouth. How manufactured their… Read more »

Bob the Gunner

There is a team in the Premier League that spent more than city but still sitting 4th.

Doghouse

Would like to know Saliba situation, love to think Rob Holding winning MOTM after game

C.B.

Good if they can bottle up that frustration and use it to drive their performance in the remaining games. Still not a bad result in comparison to the other teams that Liverpool have beaten this season at home, or in comparison to our recent record at Anfield, but great that their desire to win is high. Let’s win the next two and then fight against City.

Olawale Olayemi

What I’ve been telling myself is if we deserve to win the league, we’re gonna have to win a match or two that is very unlikely for us to win. Those matches would be either Newcastle away or City away. I believe we can win one of them, lose the other and win the rest of our games. We can do it.

Nketibag

Yes that’s all well and good, but if we beat Newcastle and then lose to City, they win the league.

A Different George

I watched Man City v Bayern. The first half was fairly even, with City’s goal not exactly against the run of play, but a bit out of nowhere. Both sides played a technically brilliant style. A terrible mistake gifted City a goal early in the second half and Bayern–as experienced a team as exists–briefly fell apart and the game. and almost certainly the tie, was over. Not a good result for us. But that first half (where–almost unheard of–Bayern had more possession) reinforced for me a couple of things that aren’t always obvious. As good as they are at these… Read more »

portugunner

bayern is massivly overrated!

Jasonissimo

The notable difference in the quality of teams in those sets of league fixtures is that Arsenal has to play away to two top 4 clubs (NUFC, MCFC) whereas Man. City only has a home match vs. Arsenal.

Obviously Man. City has maybe 6 more matches to play. If that many, then they would be going for a legend-making treble and have all the motivation in the world to finish out the league season. They have a better goal difference, too.

I can’t help but reflect upon Brentford’s equalizer that VAR incorrectly allowed and the two points “stolen” that day.

Tobi6footplus

To be fair, you can argue that man City also had probably a point or 3 stolen from them at old Trafford. I know our 2 points lost was a lot more blatant but just remembering that offside farce at old Trafford helps me deal with the Lee Mason debacle better.

jiggernaught

I knew on the day of the Brentford game it’s gonna cost us the league. And I know it will be impossible to make my peace with it

Teryima Adi

Have some faith, Bro. We’ve not lost the league yet.

Kels

City still has to go to Fulham, Brentford and Brighton. Notorious tough grounds to play. It’s still in our hands! A point at anfield is never a bad result. #COYG

PatJ

Actually, in may 1989 a point at Anfield would have been a rather bad result.

Walter White

I would rate Everton as an ever tougher ground than Fulham (who have lost the mojo) at the moment.
Sean Dyche battling for survival in the PL is perhaps one of the toughest fixtures ever.

Teryima Adi

The EPL is ours. I don’t how it’s going to happen bit it’s sure as day and night. COYG!!!

Teryima Adi

But***

Man Manny

To sustain this run through out the season is something bordering on a miracle. That shouldn’t be surprising with Jesus in the team though. It was a matter of when we start to fall off the top and not if for many a pundit. It was after the wins against United and Spurs that many of them began to think about Arsenal and the title race. At this point, there is nothing to lose; the season is already a huge success. We have more or less hit our primary target – CL qualification. Now is to try and go for… Read more »

Rich

We were better than City when we played them at home. We made a few silly errors and it lost us the game, but we were the better team. They are ruthless on those mistakes though, so any chance of winning at the Etihad will require us to be perfect. Its a big ask but not impossible.

Doghouse

Obviously hoping we win all our games in the run in but all we really need is to get 1 point at the 2 most difficult away games in our fixtures at Man c/Newcastle, if we and Man c win the rest we are champions by 1 point, apart from us man c only fixture where they might not get all 3 points could be ex city’s Lampard’s Chelsea, a London derby up next v Hammers in relegation trouble away is not going to be easy but hopefully our well rested squad can take all 3 from a team that… Read more »

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