After losing back-to-back games against Manchester City by an identical 3-0 scoreline, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has admitted his side are shorn of all confidence at the moment and has called upon the Gunners to remain united as they bid to finish their season on a high.
“You go up by stairs and come down by the lift. That’s what confidence is. That’s what you have to show, that you have the level to be at Arsenal Football Club,” Wenger told his post-match press conference at the Emirates on Thursday night.
Sunday’s loss in the Carabao Cup final at the hands of the Premier League leaders was a chastening one but Thursday’s defeat at the Emirates was even more embarrassing for the Gunners were ripped apart in the first-half itself in front of their own fans.
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Goals from Bernardo Silva, David Silva and Leroy Sane saw the Sky Blues canter into a 3-0 lead and the North Londoners never truly recovered from thereon.
“When your confidence is not at the best, the first thing that goes is your fluidity in the movement, the spontaneous side of the game,” the French tactician continued as he added, “You could see that tonight. I don’t deny their quality because they have top quality, but we’re going through a difficult patch at the moment. That’s part of football as well unfortunately”.
Notably, club-record signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang missed a second-half penalty to spurn a golden chance to reduce the deficit.
When asked on how the team could recover their confidence, Wenger responded, “By staying united inside and focusing on the next game to continue to put the effort in”.
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Sixth in the league table and 10 points behind fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur, Arsenal’s top-four chances are all but over and the Gunners will now hope that the UEFA Europa League brings them some joy.
They face European heavyweights AC Milan in a mammoth round-of-16 tie next week but before that, they travel to in-form Brighton & Hove Albion for a Premier League clash on Sunday and will look to give their fans something to cheer for by registering their first league win in three attempts.