- A total shambles! Spineless Arsenal throwing away top-four place14:11 | 25/04/2019
The Gunners failed to move back into the top four after turning in another dire performance in a 3-1 loss at Wolves on Wednesday evening.
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What a difference a week makes!
Arsenal went into the weekend looking well-placed to go on and finish third in the Premier League, but two shambolic defeats later they are now facing up to another season outside of the top four.
If Unai Emery’s side were bad against Crystal Palace on Sunday, then they were truly dire on Wednesday evening as they were steamrollered by a Wolves team led by the quite magnificent Diogo Jota.
The Portuguese attacker was unplayable, leaving the Arsenal defence in his wake time and time again as he drove at them with an intensity and drive that was unmatched anywhere within the visitors’ ranks.
When the 22-year raced onto Granit Xhaka’s loose pass just before half-time, you knew what was coming. He glided past Sokratis’ pathetic attempt of a challenge before firing in a shot which squirmed under Bernd Leno to make it 3-0.
As he and his Wolves team-mates celebrated, Emery stood motionless propped up against his dugout, hands plunged deep into his pockets.
What he was thinking only he will know, but you would hope for Arsenal’s sake he was already dreaming of the summer and the chance of bringing in players of Jota’s quality.
Because that’s what Arsenal need if they are going to get back competing with England’s best, let alone the best in Europe.
Yes they were atrocious defensively once again at Molineux, conceding three goals for the second successive game, but they were equally as inept in attack, a total shambles, from back to front.
They dominated possession, enjoying more than 70 per cent all night, and constantly had the ball in Wolves’ final third. But they never looked like doing anything with it.
It wasn’t until Eddie Nketiah came on for the final 20 minutes that they anyone who at least tried to drive at the Wolves defence and cause them problems.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan was awful, Mesut Ozil was no better and Alex Iwobi was his usual frustrating self.
Alexandre Lacazette ran the channels all night long, but was given absolute nothing to work with from those who were supposed to be his supply line. How the Frenchmen would loved to have had either of Jota or Ruben Neves behind him.
After what happened against Palace at the weekend you would have expected some sort of response from Arsenal, who had picked up wins in each of their last two away outings.
But from the moment Neves smashed home a free-kick on 28 minutes to give Wolves the lead, there was only ever going to be one winner.
The sight of a couple of Arsenal players turning their backs and shielding their faces rather than trying to block Neves’ set piece summed up the visitors’ performance. It was cowardly.
From that point on it was so easy for Wolves. They doubled their lead through Matt Doherty’s header and then Jota left the Arsenal defence in his wake to add a third – both were goals Leno will not want to see again.
Sokratis did pull a goal back late on in the second half, heading in Xhaka’s corner but it was no more than a consolation. The game and the battle had long been lost.
Arsenal’s hopes of a top-four finish is now out of their hands, they are relying on others to do them a favour – something that is entirely possible given the way the season is going.
But with two of their remaining three games away from home – starting at Leicester on Sunday – you do not have any confidence in Emery’s side being able to get the points they need to ensure Champions League football returns to the Emirates.
Source – Goal.com
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