Later News Apr 10

Arteta: Arsenal deserve to be slapped

Mikel Arteta has echoed the sentiments of every Arsenal supporter by suggesting that the team should be ‘slapped’ after their 2-1 defeat to Brighton last evening (SGT).


Drawing inspiration from the book of ‘Slapping to show your displeasure’, by author Will Smith, Arteta believes that getting ‘slapped’ is the first step to recovery, following their meek display against the Seagulls.


WATCH: Arteta says Arsenal deserve a slap


“What happens is we criticise ourselves a lot again, get slapped again because we deserve it and then lift ourselves up,” Arteta declared.


“We know this road is taking us nowhere, especially with where we want to be. We have everything to play for in the last eight games and we have to have that energy and visualise the beautiful challenge that we have ahead and not sit back and see what happens.”


Arsenal’s defeat – coupled with Tottenham Hotspur’s win over Aston Villa – has seen the Gunners go from being hot favourites for the top-four, to becoming Manchester United’s greatest rival for the ‘Meme Team of the Week’ award.


As it stands, Arsenal are three points behind Spurs in the table, although Arteta’s men do have one game in hand over their North London rivals, who have to also contend with the ‘Spursy’ curse.


Arsenal, however, have a far tougher run-in than Spurs, and are also reeling from the loss of key players in Kieran Tierney and Thomas Partey.


And Arteta admits he was worried with what he has seen from his players over the last two games, which also saw them lose 3-0 to Crystal Palace.


WATCH: Pitchside footage of Crystal Palace's win over Arsenal


“We’ve shown for many weeks how well we can play. It has been a difficult week and we’ve lost some big players, but if you get what you want, not everything is going to be with a blue sky,” said Arteta.


“This is our team in the good moments and especially the defeats. There are many games to play but we have to be concerned about that performance, especially first half (against Brighton).


"We made it really difficult for ourselves. We were sloppy, we had no purpose to attack, we were really imprecise and we didn’t want to play forward.


“It has been a tough week, especially because we wanted a reaction [to the defeat at Crystal Palace].It came in the second half, which is too late. We have to have the courage and personality to play much better and raise the level in the first half.”


Arsenal’s next game will see them take on Southampton at the Saint Mary’s Stadium on Saturday.




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