‘I am concerned’ – Arteta demands Arsenal improvement ‘in the final third’

Mikel Arteta has called for improvement in Arsenal’s attacking performances after failing to find the net in back-to-back Premier League defeats.

The Gunners have produced defensively solid yet uninspiring displays of late, succumbing to 1-0 defeats against both Manchester City and Leicester in recent weeks. The latter result in particular would have been especially concerning for the Spaniard as he witnessed his side dominate proceedings, before a late Jamie Vardy header snatched victory for Brendan Rodgers side.

That limp display at the Emirates did see the home side have an early Alexandre Lacazette strike controversially ruled out by VAR, although the lack of creativity and killer instinct in the final third was clearly lacking once again for last season’s FA Cup winners.

That inability to score – particularly at home – has rightly left Arteta feeling “concerned”, with the former Man City assistant insisting it was the “role of everybody” to try and improve in attacking situations.

“When we are at home and we’re not able to score a goal, I am concerned,” Arteta said at his pre-match press conference ahead of the Europa League game against Dundalk. “I am concerned about the second half, we should have done better, we only had the chance for Hector.

“They didn’t have anything to be fair until after 75 or 80 minutes, but still it is something we have to improve in the final third, the solutions we have to give them to attack better, to be more continuous, to be able to sustain attacks in longer periods and put the ball in the box more. We have been working on that so hopefully we can improve it.

“It is the role of everybody, first of all mine to give them the solutions and structure to attack better. Obviously this block and the way they set up is not easy at all, but we opened them up five or six times in the first half and should have scored a goal.

“It is something we are not too used to because we have not faced teams [like that] too regularly but I think it is a really good sign when Leicester suddenly comes to your house and acts like that, it is because they really respect you now and they are concerned.

“We have to take that as something very positive and and as an advantage because if teams are going to start to do that, I’m telling you we are going to win a lot of games.”

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