Arteta pleased with the defence but not the “end product” against Palace

Arsenal have been on a really good run since Christmas, so I think it was inevitable that we were due a game that didn’t go our way, and it finally arrived against Crystal Palace yesterday. Even the energy of Saka and Smith-Rowe couldn’t find a way past the Eagles low block, and we were missing the attacking capabilities of Martinelli and Tierney.

It seemed like we effortlessly kept our fourth clean sheet in row, but we were completely toothless up front in the crowded final third of the pitch, with Aubameyang and Lacazette mostly anonymous.

Mikel Arteta was happy to take the clean sheet at the end, but bemoaned our lack of finishing prowess. “After a great run we wanted to come here today and win the match, but I think we lacked some freshness,” Arteta told


“We lacked some quality and end product in the final third to win the game. We took a point, another clean sheet which is really positive, but disappointing not to get the three points.

“I think the spirit – and we did have some difficulties in the game where we started to give some difficult balls away without any pressure – and the attitude the team showed in tracking back, I think the boys were terrific there but we lacked that freshness today and that spark in the final third/

“We will assess and review what we have done in the last two games that we have to do better. Defensively, we were really solid and we are not giving things away easily. We’re making it really hard for the opponent. In the final third, we’ve progressed a lot but today there are things that we have to do better.”

So we remain in 11th place in the table, and all the teams above us have at least one game in hand. That Top Six is receding into the distance unless we regain winning ways against Newcastle and go on another winning run…

READ MORE: Some Arsenal fans turn on Aubameyang after another blank display!


  1. it is precisly poor defense that makes attacking weak.

    Once you play Luiz and ceballos as a DM, it is over.

    1. Mogunna, will you stop being so miserable please.
      You are complaining about the defence when we have just had our 4th clean sheet in a row.
      Please try making sense when you comment please…

      1. I believe he means that the attackers lack freedom with the extra concern of having to get back all the time. Yes attackers do have to defend normally but with a weaker defence you have to be that more cautious in attack.

        You may get a clean sheet with the help of the whole team at the same time somewhat stifling the attack potential.

        The comment makes sense.

      2. @Admin Pat

        Very poor comment on your side, you clearly don’t grasp what he was saying.

        Please refrain from being so salty with views you dont agree with.

        1. Oh really? So I’m “salty” with my readers am I? LOL
          Only with ones that make idiotic statements that are not based on actual facts.
          So I “can’t grasp” that he is saying the defence is rubbish, straight after our fourth clean sheet in a row? That is not a VIEW, it’s a FACT.

  2. Improved defense, give the guys credit for another clean sheet. Have to take the positives when we can get them.

    The low block really gives us problems and we have yet to come close to solving it. It just seems that we have so little movement, and can’t drag any defenders out of position to create any space.

    Credit to Palace too though, very organized and disciplined in their defense yesterday.

    1. Hodgsonball, the only way CP can stay in the premiership. Another dose v Newcastle Bruceball this weekend. Just boring, boring. But then, the best exponent Mourenhoball. Wouldn’t cross the road to watch any of them. MA can’t come up with an answer.
      90 year old Gooner.

  3. A clean sheet even with the help of the post is nice.

    The big problem with our offense is that Auba is a one-dimensional player. He can’t create on his own and our current formation and style of play does not let anybody create for him.

    At this stage he is a luxury player and needs to be on the bench.

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