Arsenal boss left frustrated after Aston Villa ran riot with 3-0 win at The Emirates; Ollie Watkins scored twice in a dominant performance from Dean Smith’s side; Arsenal drop to 11th in Premier League table.
Mikel Arteta took full responsibility for Arsenal’s 3-0 defeat at home to Aston Villa on Sunday, saying “we weren’t a team”.
Victory at Old Trafford last weekend was another step in the right direction under Arteta, and the Spaniard would have expected his side to build on that morale-boosting result.
However, they slipped to 11th with this defeat and Arteta wasn’t impressed with what he saw.
“First of all congratulations to Aston Villa for the way they played and the victory,” he told Sky Sports.
“After that, we performed below our standards and I have to say it’s the first time I’ve seen us play and we weren’t a team.
“I take full responsibility. We didn’t start well enough, we got away with VAR for an offside situation but we lost all the races, the duels and we were sloppy on the ball. When we created chances we didn’t hit the target. It’s a really bad combination. We left spaces and on the counter we looked really vulnerable.
“I take full responsibility. I am responsible to make the team perform on the pitch and today we were not a team and it is my job. It is why I am standing here.
“It is a frustration. It takes a lot to build momentum, to build a way of being, living and performing and when something like that comes up it’s a hard one to take but in a hard moment you learn more than in a positive moment and I want to see how we react.”
Speaking in his press conference, he added: “I didn’t see the spirit for the first time – and it’s totally my fault as that’s why I’m here. Today I’ve not managed to get the team to play at the highest level like we need to every three days.
“I’m struggling to find the reason but obviously there was something there today. They wanted it more than us. If you can’t defend your box, it’s a really complicated way to win football matches.
“We need to be more ruthless but today it was about how we went about the job and who we were as a team. I didn’t like it from the first whistle when we got away with the goal and then afterwards. It just wasn’t good enough.”
Smith: Just as good as Liverpool performance
Dean Smith was delighted with his side’s performance in their win over Arsenal, particularly the defensive side of their game.
The fine away victory was a real statement of intent from Dean Smith’s Villa, who have now beaten Liverpool, Leicester and Arsenal this season. It’s a result that lifts them up to sixth in the Premier League – with a game in hand. Win that and they would go level on points with leaders Leicester.
“Personally, I felt it was as good a performance as when we beat Liverpool 7-2,” Smith told Sky Sports.
“Our work without the ball was the most pleasing aspect of it. We worked with the whole 11 to restrict a good Arsenal team.
“We looked so composed and played with such intensity with and without the ball. We were a threat whenever we went forward. It was a really top performance. The players are really excited about the win after the last two results. We were in no doubt we had to be at our best tonight.”
Ollie Watkins, who helped himself to a hat-trick against Liverpool, has adapted quickly at this level – but Smith was never in doubt that the 24-year-old would swiftly make the step-up in class.
“I was always confident that he would hit the ground running,” he added. “The kid’s a young lad but he’s played 250 games. He was a regular at Exeter and at Brentford. When you’ve played that number of games, you understand it. Working with better players helps him, that’s for sure.”
Arsenal travel to face Leeds live on Sky Sports Premier League on Sunday, November 22; kick-off is at 4.30pm, while Aston Villa host Brighton on Saturday, November 21 at 3pm.
Breaking: Man City win EPL in dramatic comeback despite Liverpool beating Aston Villa 3-1
Manchester City on Sunday clinched their sixth English Premier League title coming back from 0-2 against Aston Villa to a surprising 3-2 win at the Etihad Stadium on the final day of the league.
The title chaser Liverpool although won their game against Wolves but it was not enough to lift the league trophy.
The City’s three goals came in five minutes to seal the title.
The win on Sunday sees Pep Guardiola’s Man City successfully defend their EPL title.
Matty Cash and Philipe Coutinho had given Aston Villa a 2-0 advantage before Man City scored three times in five minutes late in the second half.
A brace from Ilkay Gundogan, a substitute, and Rodi helped City snatch victory from the jaws of defeat and with it the EPL title.
A nervous Man City fell to Cash’s header in the 37th minute before Coutinho doubled Steven Gerard’s side’s lead in 69 minutes.
The introduction of Gundogan changed the dynamics of the encounter, with the German international heading into the net before Rodri drilled in the equalizer two minutes later.
Gundogan completed the comeback from Kevin de Bruyne’s cross to send the fans into frenzy mode as Guardiola’s side clinched the club’s fourth title in five years, punctured by the 2020 triumph of Liverpool, who finished second.
The final day final scores are:
Arsenal 5-1 Everton
Brentford 1-2 Leeds United
Brighton 3-1 West Ham
Burnley 1-2 Newcastle (Burnley are relegated)
Chelsea 2-1 Watford
Crystal Palace 1-0 Manchester United
Leicester City 4-1 Southampton
Liverpool 3-1 Wolves
Manchester City 3-2 Aston Villa
Norwich 0-5 Tottenham
Newcastle United agree N3.4b deal for Victor Osimhen
Super Eagles and Napoli striker, Victor Osimhen, has reportedly agreed personal terms with English Premier League side, Newcastle United hoping to join them before the end of the summer transfer window, according to report on respected Italian media outlet, La Gazzetta dello Sport.
The deal is reportedly worth twice the amount (4.5m euro) he’s presently earning at Napoli that amounts to N3.4 billion in Nigerian currency.
Further cementing his spot as the highest earning Nigerian player in Europe.
Newcastle United is however yet to agree a deal with Napoli over his transfer fee with the Serie A side holding out for a transfer fee in the region of around 100 million before they can sanction any deal.
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It was gathered that the idea of asking for a 100 million is due largely to the fact that 30% of whatever is gotten from the sale of the forward will go to his former club, Lille as agreed in the deal that’s aw him join Roma two seasons ago.
Similarly, Manchester United is willing to pay Osimhen ₦75million in wages per week if he agrees to join them this summer.
Osimhen has been the subject of numerous transfer talks. Top Premier League sides Liverpool, Arsenal, Newcastle United, and Manchester United have all been linked with a move for the Napoli talisman.
According to teamtalk, Ten Hag wants to bring Osimhen to Manchester. Manchester United faces a challenging task luring the Nigeria international, but the club is looking to entice Osimhen by doubling his current earnings.
Teamtalk reports that Osimhen would earn £146,000(₦75million) per week if he joins the former Premier League champions.
Just in: Jose Peseiro confirmed Super Eagles head coach
The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has confirmed Jose Peseiro as the new head coach of the Super Eagles.
He replaces Austin Eguavoen who was drafted from the technical team to step before the last Africa nations cup after Gernot Roh was sacked.
Paseiro’s appointment is coming months after an initial deal fell through.
His appointment was confirmed in a statement released by the federation on Sunday.
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