Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has spoken out after his side’s 0-0 draw with Burnley on Sunday afternoon. The Gunners dominated the ball, having 75 per cent possession, but were unable to take all three points. Now, they face a battle to secure Champions League qualification for next season.
Arsenal went into Sunday’s match with Burnley looking to respond.
The Gunners saw their hopes of Carabao Cup glory ended ruthlessly by Liverpool on Thursday night, with Diogo Jota’s brace sending the Reds through to Wembley.
With Manchester United beating West Ham on Saturday, Arsenal knew they needed to claim all three points against Burnley to boost their hopes of finishing in the top four.
Yet despite dominating possession, it wasn’t to be.
Arsenal were blunt in attack, resorting to bombarding the penalty area with crosses that Burnley were able to cope with time and time again.
They managed just five shots on target from 20 attempts, with Alexandre Lacazette missing their biggest chance of the match.
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And Arteta, speaking after the game, lamented his side’s flat display while also taking a subtle dig at Burnley for their ‘slow game’.
“We started slow, we looked leggy and didn’t have enough rhythm or intention to attack the way we wanted,” he said.
“We started to play better, more rhythm and threat and came out in the second half completely different.
“We tried in every different way but lacked the quality in the final third.
“At the end, when we have a really low block, you need spark and creativity to win football matches and today we didn’t do that.
“It is what they do, they want to play a slow game, it takes long, it is their game and you have to respect that.
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“We need to start scoring goals and get back the players, the last four weeks it has been extremely difficult to put training sessions and squads together because of the amount of Covid and injuries.”
On his side’s transfer plans, he then added: “In this market things are complicated.”
Arteta wasn’t the only Arsenal figure unhappy with the result.
Goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale also spoke out following the contest at the Emirates Stadium.
And he urged his team-mates to regroup and go again, with the Gunners now suffering a bit of a dip in form.
“I will give credit to Burnley, we know what they are about,” he said.
“It is frustrating from our behalf because we were putting balls into the box and that’s meat and drink for Burnley.
“We didn’t create that quality we needed. We are at the moment depleted and the lads have played a lot of minutes, I don’t want to make any excuses.
“We have time to regroup now.”
Burnley boss Sean Dyche, meanwhile, was happy with the result.
“We will see in the bigger picture but it is another platform to restart,” he said.
“It is a small step because there is a lot of work to be done, but with three weeks without playing, the players have had little training, we are working with the group and trying to stay fit and well.
“We are looking to re-find that edge, slow Arsenal down and find a format that will change the feel of the game – there were moments in the game if we had a bit more quality on the transition we might have nicked something, but we’ll take the point.
“The main thing is physical because in isolation players can’t do much. I was really pleased, the output was excellent.
“We have been trying to add quality and create chances but haven’t found that balance, it was about being hard to beat, diligent and it got us a nice point.”