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HomePremier LeagueArteta questions offside decision as Arsenal held by Brentford

Arteta questions offside decision as Arsenal held by Brentford

Arsenal’s mini-blip continued after they were held to a 1-1 draw by Brentford at the Emirates.

Arsenal came into the game sitting pretty at the top of the league, though were looking to get back to winning ways after losing both of their previous two matches in all competitions.

 

Both sides had chances in the opening stages of the game, though perhaps the best fell to Brentford midway through the first half, Bryan Mbeumo and Ivan Toney combining for Brentford, only for Toney to crash his effort off the bar.

The second half continued much in the same way that the first had gone, with Arsenal enjoying plenty of possession, but regularly being frustrated by a well-organised Brentford side.

However, the Gunners would finally find a breakthrough in the 66th minute following some fine work down the right from Bukayo Saka. The England international showed plenty of pace and determination to get to Martin Odegaard’s through-ball before firing an inch-perfect ball across the six-yard box to find January signing Leandro Trossard who tucked home from close range.

The lead would last just eight minutes, however, as the Gunners failed to properly clear their lines from a Brentford free-kick, with the subsequent penalty area scramble finally falling to Ivan Toney who nodded home from close range.

The Gunners were unable to find a winner to leave them six points ahead of Manchester City prior to their game against Aston Villa on Sunday, though Mikel Arteta felt his side were ‘really dominant’ before questioning the decision not to give an offside in the buildup to Toney’s equaliser.

“A really difficult game. Obviously, we knew that,” he told Sky Sports. “It’s not a coincidence and credit to them for the way they played, the way they compete for every single ball. But I thought we were really dominant in the game.

“We grow into the game and had better and better moments and we scored a goal that was probably against the super low block that they had, the most difficult thing to do.

“After that, disappointment, because we knew that they were going to throw everything at us with direct play, set pieces, and take the game to that rollercoaster that they want to take you.

“And then you apply certain principles in your defending unit, because you know there are certain rules that you cannot do or you are offside, but apparently they weren’t applied.

“We apply what the referees have told us every single week before the game, If there are blockers, they will be offside, it doesn’t matter which phase, then…it’s offside.”

Leandro Trossard has impressed for the Gunners since making his January move from Brighton, and Arteta praised the forward’s intuition and talent.

“Really pleased for him and the team because he is a player that can contribute in key moments and it is going to be tough to put the ball in the net and to make things happen, and I thought he came on really well today.

“[I told him to] Exploit his talent. There were spaces that we could find – which there wasn’t a lot because of how they defended – but he had his intuition, he had his talent, and then he is a really brave player to make things happen when the game is under pressure.”

“We didn’t win, but winning is about small margins,” he added. “When you win, you win by a small margin, and when those margins are taken away, it’s a draw. But if you cannot win it, don’t lose it, that’s for sure and it was still a strong performance.”

Next up for Arsenal is the visit of nearest title challengers, and Arteta’s former club, Manchester City.

“Another big game and I know we have two big games coming up in the next six days, we know that, so get ready for that one because it is going to be a big one and a beautiful one too.”

Read – “He’s got something special” – Arteta delighted for ambitious Balogun

Read Also – Ranking the 8 best right-backs in Premier League history

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