‘As bad a performance as I’ve seen from an Arsenal side… the effort and work-rate from a team that was rested was nowhere near good enough’: Ian Wright fumes at Mikel Arteta’s flops after Gunners were beaten 3-0 at home by Aston Villa
- Aston Villa put on a show as they beat Arsenal 3-0 at the Emirates on Sunday
- Ian Wright criticised Arsenal’s attitude and work rate in the embarrassing loss
- Meanwhile Alan Shearer praised the ‘complete team performance’ from Villa
- CLICK HERE to read the full match report from Arsenal versus Aston Villa
Arsenal fans were unimpressed with the team’s performance against Aston Villa on Sunday, none moreso than club legend Ian Wright, who laid into them on the BBC’s Match of the Day 2.
The Gunners slipped into the bottom half of the Premier League table following the defeat, leaving manager Mikel Arteta with plenty to consider for the upcoming games.
‘It’s as bad a performance as I’ve seen from an Arsenal side,’ said Wright, ‘when you consider only two of them were playing in midweek.’
Ian Wright fumed at Arsenal’s players following their woeful performance against Aston Villa
The Gunners lost 3-0, as Aston Villa’s players ran rings around them during the match
Arteta rested most of his squad for Arsenal’s Europa League game against Molde on Thursday, but they still managed to get a 4-1 win.
However the supposedly rested players looked sloppy against an impressive Villa side on Sunday.
‘It was poor in every department,’ said Wright. ‘They need to break the lines, they need space to hit the ball into, they were dithering on the ball. It was a million miles away from the performance against Manchester United [where they won 1-0]. They were streets ahead of us today.’
Mikel Arteta took responsibility for the loss, while Wright lambasted their attitude
Meanwhile, fellow MOTD pundit Alan Shearer was praising the Aston Villa players.
‘Every single one of them was fantastic,’ he said. ‘It was a complete team performance, with and without the ball. Close control, running in behind, working as a team, ability on the ball.
‘Ross Barkley and Jack Grealish ran them ragged at times. It could’ve been a lot more [than three goals], it should’ve been.
‘The performance was magnificent, it had absolutely everything.’
Ollie Watkins scored a brace after an early goal was disallowed due to offside, and Bukayo Saka also scored an unfortunate own goal in the 3-0 result.
Ollie Watkins scored twice for Villa, while Bukayo Saka scored an unfortunate own goal
Bizarrely, Wright even likened Villa’s swagger to that of John Travolta’s character in the movie Saturday Night Fever.
‘The effort and workrate from a team that was rested was nowhere near good enough,’ Wright continued. ‘You need to impress your game upon them.
‘There’s a lack of central midfielder that can create what [Arteta] needs, but you can’t go into a game like that.’
Arteta was the first to condemn his players’ efforts after the game, saying the performance lacked ‘spirit,’ while taking responsibility for the loss.
New signing Thomas Partey will undergo a scan for a thigh problem he picked up in the game
Arsenal’s troubles deepened, as £45million new signing Thomas Partey was sent for a scan after being substituted with a thigh problem.
Aston Villa climb the table to sixth place with the win, while Arsenal have now fallen behind Manchester City on goal difference.
Next up in the league the Gunners take on Leeds, then Wolves, followed by an important north London derby against high-flying Spurs the following week.
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