That, last night, was an utter shameful display from a team who should know better. I don’t even know where to begin this morning. A 4-0 defeat to a mid table team who have already been embarrassed by Liverpool and shown up by the Tiny Totts last weekend, is totally unacceptable.
Is it the desire of the team that needs to be questioned? Is it the set up? I don’t know, but what I do know is that with performances like that yesterday, you don’t win league titles.
I thought the days of conceding a multitude of goals in one match were over. I thought this Arsenal team had matured. I thought they were ready to kick it up a gear and start breaking away from the chasing pack. How wrong that feels this morning.
We were utter tripe. From the first whistle to the last, we were outfought and out-thought, losing to a team who aren’t that great but work hard. That’s all Southampton did. They weren’t particularly impressive I thought. They just turned up on the night. Arsenal, however, simply did not.
The goals. There’s nothing you can do about the first one and the Southampton defender – unfortunately for us – had his one ‘Danny Rose’ moment in his career yesterday. You just have to applaud. But the rest of the goals were avoidable. Yes, the second and third shouldn’t have stood, but let’s not pretend we were done out of three points yesterday, because I don’t really recall seeing Steklenberg be called in to action at all.
Offensively we were anonymous. Giroud did nothing. Theo had one of his vanishing act games. Campbell ran about a bit defensively, but offered nothing going forward and Özil couldn’t get a footing in the game.
We looked cumbersome at times, especially in defence, where Big Per absolutely stunk the place out. His partner in crime Koscienly, also had a horror show, typified with one moment in the first half where his control from a drop down pass over the top fell right to Ward-Prowse in the box. He probably should have scored.
In front of those two clowns was a Flamini who looked like the real Flamini 2.0. We’d all been thinking that he had a resurgence, that perhaps we’re getting a glimpse of the Flamini who we used to have the first time he played for us, yet we found out that he hasn’t changed much. Charging in to headers and not winning them, being outpaced in midfield by players as if he’s not even there, being pretty useless at his primary role. It’s nights like yesterday that we’d have given a limb to see Coquelin offer some protection.
There might be some who will talk about the injuries this morning. Some people might ask “are we spread too thin as a squad?” But that didn’t seem to be an issue against Moneychester City, did it? This was the same set of players who dismissed City and so should have had enough for an out of form Southampton. Those players showed so much desire against City, but where was it yesterday? Where was the intensity of that City match?
Ahh yes, the City match, where hopes were raised so high. Yet now they are dashed. And with City smashing Sunderland yesterday, the three points we picked up against them are rendered effectively irrelevant. That’s what happens when you aren’t switched on in the Premier League. That’s what happens when you’re over complacent.
So who’s fault is it? The players themselves? The manager for not preparing them? Probably a bit of both. But I don’t care. I just want them to fix it. Bournemouth and Newcastle come to town within the next five days and quite simply, there needs to be a reaction from the players. There can be no excuses for fatigue. Bournemouth also played yesterday and so will be feeling the pressure too. But we have to react. We have to regain our stride and start again with a winning run.
I don’t want to talk about Southampton any more. I want to move on quickly and we have the chance to do that tomorrow. Come on Arsenal, it’s time to step up.