Learn FAST or FORGET Champions League warns Arsenal captain

The Arsenal captain was not absolving himself of blame for the dire performance and defeat by Borussia Dortmund on Tuesday night, but Mikel Arteta has taken the captain’s role and delivered a stark and honest appraisal of where Arsenal went wrong and how we have to change quickly or forget about winning the Champions League.

The elite European competition is a different animal than the Premier League, or any domestic league for that matter. It takes even the best teams some time to get used to it, as highlighted by the terrible struggles of Man City in recent years as they swept all before them in England.

But Arsenal have plenty of experience in the UCL and should have known better, as Arteta explains in a Daily Express report. The Spaniard even admitted that the Gunners knew what they had to do, and not do, in a tough away game in Dortmund. The problem was that the players failed to implement that plan and were punished accordingly.

Arteta was as culpable as any Arsenal player on the pitch and is clearly giving himself a talking to as well, but I don’t mind that. He is the captain after all and it is up to him to tell his team mates that they must learn from this, because any repeats will see us out of the competition yet again.

Arteta said, “If you make the mistakes that we did, against top sides, we know that there is no chance to win the Champions League.

“We encouraged them to attack us by giving the ball away so many times in very difficult positions where the team is open and trying to get out and when that is the situation, they are very good at that. They exploit the spaces very well and they put us under pressure.

“We know this is one of the toughest places to come in Europe and we’ve seen Real Madrid get battered here as well, but we had a different game in mind before the start.

“I am very disappointed because we knew their strengths, what we had to avoid and what we did was encourage them to play their game.

“Right from the start, they broke on us five or six times in the first 10 minutes when we gave the ball away and it’s not good enough because when that situation comes, they are a really good team doing that and they put you in trouble.

“After, we defended very well on some situations and it was very disappointing to give the ball away with just 10 seconds to go in the first-half with a throw-in for us in the other side of the pitch. With three against one, they managed to score.

“We have to react. We have to analyse what we have done wrong and try to improve. In four days, we have another game. That is the best thing, another game to try to react and improve.”

It happens, Arsenal fans, and every team has off days and makes mistakes. The key is to learn from them and put things right. Hopefully that game will serve as a wake up call. Only time will tell.

Tags Arteta Dortmund Wenger


  1. He also said that home performances would be the key. We need to win every game from now on so we might top the group.

    1. why did wenger play mostly the same XI as he did v manc?
      why didnt he put on his fresh bench players as they would have been far more motivated and fresh (caz/pod/roz/campbell..) ???

      after manc, i wasnt too surprised they couldnt get themselves up for dortmund.
      + by playing ramsay & wilshire at the same time v manc, he didnt have a b2b for tuesday.

      wenger should’ve left after the FA cup: guess he just cant say no to the 8M.

    aHHHHH.. Cannot seem to get rid of this…

  3. I believe villa game will be awesome.. We will probably win it..

    It still only papers over the cracks of a canyon of home truths that won’t go away..!!

    1. every game i hope wenger will wake up, ditch the 4141 and play some of his subs (& bench underperformers).
      maybe it will happen on the weekend & i hope we’ll win.

  4. OT*
    Bendtner on for Wolfsburg. I guess AW played him out of position too. Thats why he left. Now watch him shine down in Germany…lmfao

    1. He never was a Defensive mid, and the last couple of years has seen him slow down considerably, For me he seems to be a very week link, and often makes a mistake which puts to much pressure on Per and Kos particularly. It is interesting to see Everton in action and to hear the comments that their mids give such good protection to the CB’s that it allows their backs to rampage up the field. This is so often our undoing especially on the left when Monreal or even Gibbs sometimes go up the field. We so need a really good DM.

      1. diaby is playing well for u21 and we still pay him dont we?
        flam/arteta: no good options.

        bring in diaby: or let him leave.

  5. with our current defensive players we have i rather get out of the champions league before we get a major embarrassment in front of millions across the world.

    1. We cant fall lower then we currently are. There is not a single team in the world who fears us. I am not over-reacting at all.

      1. imagine we get through draw madrid ronaldo vs mertersacker? knowing our recent history score line can end up 6,7-0 so lets save the world embarrassment, ultimately wengers fault for leaving the defense like this

        1. There is no need for him to battle against Merti. He will be standing outside the danger zone and bombard the living hell out of our keeper.

  6. So what can Arteta do differently if his body is physically unable to stop a powerful counter attack like against Dortmund?

    Our full backs can learn from their mistakes and stop bombing up the pitch but we all know they will do it again. What can Arteta do when a powerful player runs at him and past him with the ball? Will he magically learn to get an extra yard of pace to win the ball back like the CDM’s can at our rivals?

    What Arteta said seems to be directed at Wenger rather than the players. Knowing the theory is all good, we all see our mistakes but if a player is unable to do the practical stuff in CDM and break up play then it’s a lost cause until he’s replaced with a player that can do the job.

    Arteta is being made to perform like and do a job like Fernandino and Matic. He knows what to do but his body physically cannot do it as we saw against Dortmund.

  7. you know your in a bit of a bother when you cant even take your club captain seriously. captains are ment to be real leaders on the pitch and they need to be top class player leading by example arteta is neither while or vice captain my be a bit vocal but is pure rubbish player simple no hiding from that ultimatly wenger is to blame

  8. Beat Villa go 4th
    beat Spurs go third
    beat Chelsea go 2nd
    beat Hull go top.
    Knock off Gala and Anderlecht
    and we 2nd in our group.
    By the 22nd of Oct we’ll be back on track
    every one smiling and praising players
    and management. This wine tastes sooo good 🙂

    1. Half full Davidé … 🙂 like it..

      Someone said you were a troll.. Na.. You’re just like our deluded manager.. 😉

  9. Off topic but anyone see Wenger’s answer to who he felt was his best ever signing??

    He said guys like Lauren who came as a right midfielder and went on to be an invincible at rightback…. because nobody else sees that potential.

    Not to fire unnecessary shots at Wenger, but isn’t it interesting how he values players only he spots the talent in over guys like Henry who went from good to legend at Arsenal? It backs the claims many have that Wenger is too interested in unearthing unknown talents rather than buying what is needed for the club.

    Oh and f#ck off Arteta, only thing worse after your performance is hearing you blabber on about how bad you were etc.

    1. For a good four or five seasons arsene with all his French league and player knowledge did unearth some amazingly good players eg Pires,Viera etc but sadly other English clubs saw what he was doing and were able to offer more money to them and their clubs. With these players added to the players which he had inherited eg Seaman,Adams,Parlour etc it was almost a perfect match. The trouble is in my opinion that arsene still believes it is the late nineties still where he and only he can spot a player,pay relative peanuts for them and take on the best teams in Europe. Some managers look at the players they have and create a team and style which suits the players and gives the chance of winning, our manager does the opposite, he has his vision but without the players to carry it out.

      1. He CAN spot a talent, but it’s not just a skill he possesses. It’s clear now that he fails to pull the trigger on transfers.

        Cabaye went to Newcastle for 5mil, where was Wenger with his in depth Ligue 1 knowledge? Remy could have been a gunner 3 years ago…still didn’t pull the trigger, but Bendtner, Sanogo, Park all where bought/used.

        Varane, Valbuena, Hazard, Matuidi, Lloris were all there and glaringly obvious in how they would improve us. I just can’t defend the guy when such clear issues are not addressed or even attempted. I would accept if he addressed an issue, let’s say DM, but the guy doesn’t work out – because at least I know he tried to improve a deficiency.

        But we just went through 2 years of having no top drawDM. Our options now are a deadline day buy who is not a defensive player, and a bosman who had no other top clubs interested. That’s just unacceptable for a club like Arsenal. It is the equivalent of having Cazorla (arteta) and Bendtner (flamini) as sole striker options….who would accept that?

    2. Do you know that Arteta is has been playing out of position for his entire Arsenal career? I don’t see you feeling sorry for him like you do a certain player being played on the wings..

      At least Arteta has been man playing DM even if we all know he will never be a DM, he get on with it for the sake of the team.. Took a pay cut and accepted being played out of position for the love of Arsenal…

      But as your comment has just proved, you will disrespect him and call him names, but in 2 second when an article is written about your favorite Arsenal player (Ozil) you will dry yourself to bed talking about, “Aww I am so sad, Ozil is being played out of position as a winger”..

      Am I right? smh

  10. If you’re having central midfield problems I feel bad for you son/I got 99 problems but an AM ain’t one

  11. I really feel for Arteta. The guy has to take fleck for being played out of his favourite position. I hope things change soon at AFC.

  12. Arteta is a legend. He did so much for Arsenal that its simple impossible to forget. He will turn out to be a fine manager if he ever decides to become one in the future.

    1. Well yobo, lugano, yepes, knight, or some old fella called George McCartney who used to play for west ham. who really cares? All I care about is arsenal winning. If that means, signing up some old cack to pull us through a defensive crisis then so be it. I am not here to slate wenger, my passion is watching arsenal win. I know that some people are more interested and passionate about slating our manager or slagging off our team, but for me it’s about supporting my team. I love my club, I support our manager and roar on our players and go to every match. I Just wish more would do the same.

      1. Sorry let me get this right,firstly you go to every game and if so are you happy by how much you spend on your ticket plus what you spend in the ground.as you are a regular match goer does it not frustrate you that you pay the most in Europe for that ticket Atid

  13. I saw Wenger today in a video where he was answering question and such. There was a question about ambitione and he answered that he personally always try to archieve 10 points out of 10. He thinks only about winning. My thought about this was: Is he actually serious? 10 of 10, but yet refuses to make these changes in the team to turn this club into a 10. No striker, no dm, no cb, no class. Is he being all deluded or does he try to delude others.

    The second question which brought me to think hard was about him losing Ronaldo. I thought to myself, even if we succeded back then in buying Ronaldo. 3 years at most and he would be sold to the next bidder who would show us the money. Even to manure we would sell. Sigh very frustrating. Wenger is trully an anigma.

  14. That’s why I respect players like Arteta.. He was an attacking midfielder, he took a pay cut to move to us, he was asked to play DM for the sake of the team and he just got on with it, very quiet and never complains..

    Arteta has been getting ridiculed, called names, disrespected season after season just because he is a nice guy who gets on with it even if he has been played out of position all his Arsenal career.. But I have never seen such a show of unity and solidarity to back him like some SPECIAL PLAYER has been getting since last season even if he was played in his so called best position for all of last season, but he did fck all playing in that position.

    All we are used too is Arteta hearing being called all names under the sun. No one one has ever backed him like they are backing some SPECIAL PLAYER whose will not mention even if he has been played out of position all his Arsenal career.

    WALCOTT is even in a worse position, he is a second striker as he has said since moving to Arsenal, but what has he done about being played out of position? He puts his head down, fights and plays as a WINGER for the sake of the team, he just gets on with it even if our fans curse him, call him overrated, headless chicken, no footballing brain, he is all pace and nothing else.. But all of a sudden when he gets injured he is being looked at as some kind of Top player to galvanize our record signings. But before that he was in the same bracket of so called average players at Arsenal that are making our record signing look bad.. smh.


    Some of those guys i mentioned will be benched for having a bad game and will not see for the next 3-4 games, just because of one game.

    But I will take them over any so called world class player who does not give a damn about the cause. The likes of Arteta, Giroud, Monreal, Sanogo, etc even if they did not cost £42 million and not on £150,000 a week like some world class players in the team but they will keep fighting to the last minute even if they are limited in ability.

    Respect to our fighter players. SO MUCH RESPECT for you guys..

    1. Yes.. 100x yes.
      People hide behind the too slow and physically outplayed excuses and gloss over his tackles per game, interceptions and ability to dictate our play from midfield.
      He’s not a traditional DM and never will be, he’s a deep lying playmaker who organises the team.
      As he has rightly pointed out, when we commit needless turnovers against quality sides we get exposed due to his shortcomings. However, for the 95% of games we dictate the play his strengths far outweigh his weaknesses.

  15. Learn how to not expose your cbs all the time, learn how to combatively own the mf, learn that a new dm player is needed as “I’m too old and slow”, (MA), learn how to work hard as a team and track back, learn that our manager cannot be relied on to make key and timely substitutions, (we’re on our own), learn how to deal with injuries which WILL happen! Learn how to cover for per, learn how to cover rhe left side if ozils playing there, learn how to take free kicks, learn how to defend set pieces, (mtm and zonally), learn how to communicate well on the pitch especially with the goal keeper, learn to be a leader and motivate and instruct clearly during a match, learn to not get any hopes up for a diaby return, learn to accept wenger doesnt like campbell or poldi, learb to accept our club is 100% in it for the money……….jees a lot of leraning is going to be have to done and sharpish.

  16. Wow… The amount of knee-jerk reactions on this website is actually ridiculous.
    4 league games into the season and people are forgetting we had one of the best CB pairings in the league and back to mertesacker is too slow!!
    Arteta, our captain, has a bad game first game back from injury while the entire team puts in a terrible shift and singled out yet again!!
    People need to get over the summer if it didn’t go exactly as they’d planned!! Seriously!! I’m so sick of the whinging.. It’s as if people want the team to fail just so they can say I told you so..
    We’ve lost one game, one f$&king game!! While so, so, so painfully obviously out of form and adjusting with new players and people are acting like our seasons finished. We will hit stride, every rational fan knows it.
    Yes it’s taking a while longer than other teams, but in the grand scheme of things we’re unbeaten in the league with two extremely tough fixtures knocked off and we’ve lost our hardest CL fixture with 5 to go…

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