Tuesday, September 26, 2023

“We were beaten by the better side” – Arteta reacts to Arsenal’s defeat at City

After watching his Arsenal side get comprehensively beaten 4-1 by Manchester City, Mikel Arteta fielded questions from BT Sport.

Here’s what the Spaniard had to say about a result that potentially kills off his side’s title challenge.

Mikel, that’s a bruising night, it’s got to hurt. What was missing out there tonight?

Well, we were beaten by the better team, that’s for sure. They were exceptional today and when that’s the case, it’s extremely difficult to reach that level and we were not near enough our level, especially in the first half. And when you open that gap against them, you get punished.

They set the standard, but did they change tactics a little bit? Did they catch you with the long ball tonight?

They did that in their previous game [against us]. When you have them in one corner and they kick it 60 yards, they win that duel, they run through you. You have to start first of all competing and winning your duels and all the very basic things today against this team, we didn’t do them in the first half and we were punished and we could have been even more punished. We concede from a set piece, we concede from our own throw, an open goal.  Very difficult…

And they scored early, that knocks a bit of belief out of the players after three successive draws as well…

It does, but especially, you know, the way we were in the in first 20 to 30 minutes. They were on top of us, we could not handle that situation. We did not compete well enough in every duel and it has to start at that. The game they proposed it was being extremely, extremely direct and we knew that they had the capacity to do that because they can stretch the pitch 60, 70 yards with this goalkeeper. First of all, you have to be in the right position, then you have to compete for that ball. And once we won it, we lost it straight away.

As you said before, this doesn’t decide the title but does it tip the balance now?

Well, today is a very difficult night. Obviously, after the way we lost. We have to stand up, look at the bigger picture and the fact that we are competing toe to toe with this team. It’s incredible, to be fair. And we want to compete, and we’re not going to give up. And it’s five games to go in this league, anything can happen. I’ve seen a lot of things because I’ve been here more than 20 years, and you have to believe. Tonight it’s difficult to do that. But you have to look in the mirror. As well, we have to accept that we have lost against an exceptional team. And that’s the level.

Related articles


Notify of

newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

You can really see why everyone else just parks the bus against city.


Never really was a fan of parking a bus. Just try your best.


Yeah I hate it too, and it’s easier said than done when you’re not a team built to park the bus


Just win the remaining games and see where that takes us. Trossard has to have a place in the starting 11 soon too. No team in the world would’ve won that game tonight against an excellent City team and the whole lot at VAR backing them.


Like that’s all we can do now, just win our remaining 5 games, and push City right till the end. If that means we get to May and we’ve only lost 4 games across an entire campaign and we don’t end up as Champions, like fucking hell — that’s as close to flawless as you can be. Let’s also not forget, we’ve been hoisted by some awful VAR calls, and we’ve had some hugely important players out for key parts of the season, and still fought on for this long. It’s been an unbelievable season, but we have to keep… Read more »


People keep saying just win the last five games, but Arsenal are there for the taking right now. Newcastle is looking like another painful away day.


I think Newcastle will have Champions League wrapped up pretty soon, so hopefully by the time we get there, they will have taken their eye off the ball.

And they don’t possess anywhere near the individual quality that City do. We can go there and beat them.


Tell that to Everton and Spurs.


Both those teams are absolutely dross, and there’s a huge disconnect between the fans the team and the ownership’s. But listen Newcastle will be a fucking tough game regardless, but I think we can deal with them, they do not have anywhere near the same quality as City player for player. With that being said, I think we do need to change things slightly if we’re going to continue with Holding. I think he has to go to a back 3. Rob has always done alright in that formation. And I think the re-jig will help refocus us a little… Read more »


The tactics at The Etihad were a mess. You could see that result coming from a mile off. Without Saliba they need a a back 3 against good attacks, or we will be battered again and again.

Reality check

Seen enough good stuff from the boys this year, with right profiles added, we might just do it next year. The only way is up.


At least i can say that i am a proud arsenal fan
Love the club, the team, the players
We are the gooners


Different game same errors and weakness of thought

Gervinho is Driving

Look, City are a fake team. We all know why — the FA charges, the soverign ownership, the unlimited budget, the soulless collection of high-tech footballing robots. They’re a sort of abstract thought experiment that happens to be playing in the Premier League.

Of the flesh-and-blood, bricks-and-mortor teams, we’re by far the best this season. That’s not a consolation. To make another analogy, we’re the most attractive, well-aged 40-something who hasn’t had plastic surgery. Who hasn’t, in a word, cheated. And despite our billionaire and iffy sponsorship and ESL dalliance, I’m happy to be what we are: legitimately the best.




I know it is easy to put it on the unlimitted money available but it is not entirely true. It is how you invest in the new players and manage those high-earners. We’ve spend twice as much as city in last 5 years but not that wisely. And you can talk it up as much as you want but we’ve got a rookie manager absolutely resiliant to admiting his own shortcomings or addressing those.



Please mix up the team. Trossard, KT, and Jorginho deserve a run of games


100%. All 3 should have been far more utilised the last few weeks.

Trevor James

The vile bitter taste of City will pass , but unless the Premier League copies the NFL and divides up the money equally amongst all the teams and bring in a salary cap, this nonsense will continue year after year.There is no glory in The Blue Scum or the Oilers .


Problem is that the prem let MBS buy Newcastle. So it’s getting worse. The president of China could buy a team if he wanted to. Also this nonsense about how unpredictable the prem is. No it isn’t. City keep winning and will always keep winning until MBS gets Newcastle up to speed. The league has turned into a PR machine for dictators.

Emi Rates

I was thinking this today that the PL with Citeh and their money has become a one horse race much like the Bundesliga with Bayern Munich.

Man Manny

Holding, a £2m acquisition from Bolton, and a constant reminder of Wenger’s often failed attempts at bargain buys in his latter years.


Put him up front.


The whole team lost and you mocked Holding. I am sure you will mock Saka very soon if he didn’t perform in 10 games. I know Holding is not very good but it is always the whole team responsibility in a game like this.


No shame in losing to city as we are still far behind them but at least put up a fight as we were petrified of them. I know if someone offered us champs league at the start of the season we’d have taken it but still gutting. Said at the time a big mistake going out of the europa league as it was a trophy we could have won.

Third Gooner

Don’t even mention EL. It’s what ruined our season with that Saliba injury. 2nd place is still a much better proposition. I just hope we don’t bottle that as well as.


Are we totally reliant on one player who was not good enough to play for us last season?


He’s levels better than Holding and we’ve not won a game since he was injured. We’ve also conceded more goals per game as well. It’s not all one players fault but Holding was clearly targeted and as the weak link, he just isn’t good enough.


Big mistake was not playing our reserves in the EL, losing Saliba 🥺

Another big mistake was not using Trossard and Tierney properly in the last few weeks. If we are going to be so poor in attack whilst starting Zinchenko in big games might as well start a bit defensive with KT


Perspective helps. We have punched above our weight all season. Nobody expected us to do more than scrape into the Top 4 at best. We have the second youngest squad in the Premiership, and our most expensive player is Ben White at 50m! City have one of the best squads ever assembled. They are a juggernaut. They know what it takes to win the title. We have out performed every other team over so far. The table doesn’t lie. I know everyone will say that we have bottled it, but let’s look at where their teams are in the table.… Read more »


I am disappointed not only by the result but by the way we played, it was as if man c had an extra player on the pitch, we were second best by a long margin on everything, that said the league dosent lie and we can all hold our heads up for having a great team who have given us wonderful displays and memories this season, CL place and St totteringhams day achieved and only a miracle for us to win PL lets not get to down hearted, 90 points if we win all our 5 remaining games, man u… Read more »

Cobbler No1

I still don’t see them as a big club.


We are really seeing how much Saliba means in the team. Gabriel and Holding does not give me confidence.

What’s up with Partey lately?

Let’s finish the season on a high, finishing 2nd is not the end of the world, and with Champions League next season we will be better financially for transfers to improve or provide better backup players!

david napier

You only have yourself to blame your defence is rubbish and why KT wasn’t playing beggars belief


Pep had the best team in the world and changes tactics, yet Arteta doesn’t change a thing. That equals 1-4. I think Arteta sees changing his lineup as a sign he’s done something wrong. With all the upgrades this team needs. KSE will only give money for 2-3 players.


Playing a midfielder at left back works for a while but the best teams will always figure it out. If you have someone playing left back who isn’t your best left back but you won’t play him as a midfielder because he isn’t your best midfielder you will struggle when you come up against teams that you can’t dominate. Why he didn’t switch things around is a mystery only he knows the answer to but it shows that Arsenal will definitely need a KT type player next season to give them more flexibility. KT will be gone so it will… Read more »


And exactly that is the reason Arteta is not a great coach and will never become one. He just can’t admit his mistakes or shortcoming but is quick to scorne the players for not wining duels. How can you win duels when the tactics your manager employed leave the gaping holes and you are not even close to the oposition players but have to chase them across the entire field.


lol gtfo of here, it’s one thing to express an opinion but this and your other comments is just shameless trolling. Still top of the league but he’s not a good coach 😭😂 make me laugh.


Hard to see how we can close the gap on a club that’s consistently spending like no club in history for 14 years now. Hopefully we can do a Liverpool and at rival them for a season or two.


Stop posting the same table and do your homework. City has been spending and assembled a large portion of that squad over 5 years ago. You are not taking into accounts wages, Halland makes a couple million dollars every month, not to mention the rest of the lot on 200k+ a week. Also not factoring intermediaries. I believe they topped that list at 50m over the past season paying Hallands father 30m or something ridiculous to lure him in.

Tony Kassam

It’s a shame a manager can only be poetic about this game. It all comes down to luck of experience and immaturity with this team. It’s (the season) all gone and lost.


City won the league last season. 4 out of 5 seasons, or something. And they added Haaland the best striker in the world. What do people expect. Also, haaland is worth 200 million. Yet city bought him for 60? That’s less than stones and grealish. Fishy


That was the release clause Haaland negotiated with Dortmund.

Only here to see Eboue

“WE WERE BEATEN BY THE BETTER SIDE”? Nah mate, you were beaten by the better manager. Arteta had no reply to Pep’s change of formation to a 4-4-2. Arteta was totally unprepared and completely out maneuvered. Individuals in the team are getting blamed, but really, this one was Arteta’s fault and no one elses.

Aleksander Włodarz

After the game I found I don’t like Jack Grealish… very, very much

Share article

Featured on NewsNow

Support Arseblog

Latest posts

Latest Arsecast

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x