Arteta Opens Up: Arsenal Boss Reveals Insights on Where Things Went Wrong This Season
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta believes Manchester City’s six points this season cost them the title.
While many look to draws against Liverpool, West Ham, and Southampton as pivotal, Arteta believes City’s home and away wins were essential.
He told arsenal.com: “When you are 2-0 up at Anfield and you draw the game in the 90th minute, and then you got West Ham and you’re 2-0 up after 20 minutes, enjoying complete domination and miss a penalty – you have to win that game. Then you have Southampton and you basically give them two goals and you have to climb a mountain. We could have won it at the end but drew 3–3, so the fourth game against City becomes crucial.
“To be fair, they were much better than us. They raised the level like they did against Real Madrid the other day, and when they play at that level, it’s like ‘wow’. We could not reach it. That psychologically paid a big price on the team.
“Looking back, even if we’d won at Anfield and against West Ham and Southampton, we could still have finished second. In the end, you have to beat them when you go toe-to-toe with them because that’s 12 points – six more that we would have than them, and they’d have six less.”
Arteta, on the other hand, insists that there is much to be optimistic about this season.
“We made it to the Champions League with five or six games to go and finished second,” he remarked. I believe we have developed a number of players and moved them to different stages of their careers, and they have made outstanding contributions to the squad. We’ve built a strong relationship with our fans and established something special around the team.
“So if I look at it that way, there are a lot of positives to take from the season, probably more than was expected with the capacity, ability and resources the team had. But, as well we spent 248 days on top of the Premier League, and at the end, we didn’t have enough, or show enough, to win it.
“We tried our best, and we made some mistakes that have cost us, but the reality is there’s a team that you have to congratulate, and that’s Manchester City as well as Pep and the coaching staff. Throughout 38 games they’ve been more consistent and when that happens, you have to shake hands, say congratulations, take a lot of the things that you’ve done well over the season, keep them and learn from the others that need to change or improve to get to another level.”