“They looked out of their depth” Paul Merson reflects on Arsenal’s latest loss

Paul Merson has predicted Arsenal’s top-four chances and says he doesn’t think Mikel Arteta’s men can get inside the Champions League places at the end of this season.

After winning the FA Cup in the last campaign, Arsenal strengthened their team in the summer as they looked to build on that success.

They even handed a new long-term deal to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang as several teams looked to sign him.

But he hasn’t been as in-form as in other seasons and they have struggled for wins.

Merson was predicting the top four chances of several teams this season and says he isn’t confident that they will play in the Champions League in the next campaign if it comes down to their league placement.

He says it disappoints him to see how his former team has turned out and Manchester City is now miles ahead of them.

He then adds that a lot more has to be done before the Gunners can become top-four challengers again.

Merson says on Sky Sports: “I can’t see Arsenal doing anything between now and the end of the season to get into the top four.

“I played at Arsenal for a good number of years a long time ago and it is just a phenomenal football club. It’s a Rolls Royce of a football club but when you look where they are now, it’s just hard to watch.

“Man City used to be a million miles away and talk about turning things on its head, they are so far ahead of Arsenal. The only thing that can give you hope if you are an Arsenal fan is that you can watch City and think things can turn around.

“I was so disappointed yesterday. It’s so easy for me to sit and say Arsenal should have had a right go at Man City because I know you can end up losing 4-0 or 5-0, and then it looks an awful result. But if you look at Arsenal’s performance, they looked out of their depth and that was really worrying.

“When they got to 75 minutes and were only a goal down, they had to have a right go. But it looked like the players just didn’t have that belief. It seems a long time ago now and it was a long time ago that Arsenal had that. They had that fear factor for teams playing them. I found it a really hard watch.

“It’s probably now time to focus on the Europa League for Arsenal, but they’d do well to win that with the way things are going. There are some really good teams in that competition – some good English teams as well.

“It’s a real massive rebuild job at the Emirates Stadium and I think it’s going to take a long, long time. That’s unless they’ve got some money from somewhere and they have a right go, but we’ve seen Chelsea have a right go and look where they are. We are talking about whether they will get in the top four and that was a lot of money, so there are no guarantees.

“It’s a really hard one to take for Arsenal at the moment.”

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    1. Just like for many years when Paul Merson played, teams came to Arsenal knowing they were going to lose. As he says the fear factor has gone.

  1. Arsenal is well set for a mid table life by a mediocre manager and this is the aim and aspiration of the club, unless the club present owner is forced to sell to an ambitious person

    1. Or the punters stop turning up at the Emirates to watch the rubbish on show, merchandise sales drop and advertisers and corporations reduce support.

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