Arsenal’s pathetic collapse at Manchester City 10 years on from 8-2 thumping from United summed-up the Gunners at their worst… the players either don’t understand Mikel Arteta or don’t want to
- Arsenal were thumped 5-0 by Manchester City on Saturday at the Etihad
- The Gunners have yet to score a goal this season after three Premiership games
- Mikel Arteta is on the brink, there is a disconnect between him and the team
- It was a pathetic performance that summed-up Arsenal over the last decade
A picture of disarray, Arsenal were not even aware of how they should set up from Ederson’s goal kicks. Utterly clueless, in fact. Mikel Arteta, or any manager, should not be directing traffic from a dead ball at the other end of the pitch.
But here he stood, on the touchline he once prowled as Pep Guardiola’s hugely successful assistant manager, berating his players before Ederson had restarted play.
Saed Kolasinac decided to wander into midfield from one, ignoring the unattended Gabriel Jesus and leaving Kieran Tierney to cover when the wing back was instructed to press higher up the pitch.
Arsenal were thumped 5-0 by Manchester City on Saturday in another miserable defeat
The champions ran the 10-man visitors ragged, leaving Arsenal still wihtout a goal this season
Watching that unfold provided a startling example of quite how bad Arsenal are and raised questions as to what had been going on at London Colney in the days prior.
It was little surprise that Manchester City’s third goal 10 minutes after that embarrassment originated from their goalkeeper simply passing 40 yards into midfield.
Ferran Torres’s closest marker was in nearby Gorton and City had the ball in the net seconds after, Jesus allowed two unopposed touches inside the six-yard box to make sure.
By the time Rodri had guided in a fourth just following half-time – again without challenge, the theme of the afternoon – the Arsenal travelling support who had not already scarpered were dancing in the aisles, ridiculing their own situation.
This was pathetic, the sort of performance that sends even the most stoic boardroom tittering.
Mikel Arteta has spoken of a project at Arsenal but his players don’t seem to understand him
The Gunnres’ play was lazy and seneless as the champions danced around a sorry Arsenal
Arteta has endured Covid and injury problems at the start of this season yet there was a sense that this display would not have changed much even with a full complement.
Three defeats from three, no goals and a distinct lack of hope. All while spending more than any other Premier League team in the transfer market. Some achievement really.
It is either that Arteta cannot translate his ideas across, that this collection of players do not want to hear them or that they simply cannot understand them. Norwich City and Burnley are next. Imagine if those go badly.
They will stew over a sixth consecutive defeat at the Etihad Stadium across the international break. The videos might be best thrown in the bin. Nothing good can come of dissecting them.
Granit Xhaka was sent-off on Saturday in the latest moment of madness from the Swiss player
What can you learn from picking apart the completion of only one pass in the six minutes between first and second goals? That can happen at City but spoke to Arsenal’s consistent failure to respond – one they knew about already.
There came the obligatory Granit Xhaka red card, another for his bulging dereliction of duty catalogue, the lazy flicked leg of a clearance by Cedric Soares that contributed to the opener. Bernd Leno’s indecisive goalkeeping. The shakes of heads and near silence from the forlorn management team in the dugout.
Bottle everything you think you know about Arsenal at their abject worst, and here it was, a decade to the day since that 8-2 humiliation across the other side of Manchester.
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