Yesterday, we reported on Bernd Leno’s remarks about the underperforming Arsenal side, who are on the worst run of form of since 1959 and not looking likely to pull out of it any time soon.
Leno pulled no punches when he said: “The attitude is bad, the discipline is lacking and we have no self-confidence.” and the German should be listened to as he is there on the training ground every day and playing in every game as well, so has close up knowledge of the situation.
Many JustArsenal readers have been blaming Mikel Arteta’s management as the reason for our slump, but Leno said that the Boss could not be faulted, saying: “That [pressure on Arteta] is not an issue at all. The coach is least to blame for the fact that we are in this situation.
“If you look at the way we were running around on the pitch at times, then the players are the only ones to blame. I have to be honest about that.”
Another theoyr being mooted by readers is that the presence of Mesut Ozil in training every day, could be a factor, but Leno has also ruled that out of the equation. “That is of course a difficult question,’ Leno continued on Sky Germany. “He’s not even registered for the first half of the season, so he wouldn’t be an option until January, if at all. The trainer made that decision.
‘Of course, Mesut has exceptional quality, there is no question about that. But the coach selected 25 other players, we have to accept that.
‘He trains quite normally, he behaves professionally, and gets along well with everyone else. Mesut does not bring any negative energy into the group. Everything else is not in his or my hands either.’
So, Ozil may not directly be a problem in the training ground, but surely his presence must be a destabilizing factor, especially if he is playing well while our underperforming midfielders keep getting games and making a pigs ear of the job.
But the fact is that there is something desperately wrong at the club at the moment, and Leno thinks it is just the players that need to buck up their ideas.
Whatever the cause, Arteta needs to fix it very quickly with games against high-flying Everton, Chelsea and Man City coming on the horizon this coming week…