Mikel Arteta defends Martin Odegaard after mistake costs Arsenal in Nottingham Forest defeat
Posted by  badge Boss on May 21, 2023 - 02:14AM
Martin Odegaard’s error cost Arsenal in their 1-0 defeat to Nottingham Forest (Getty)

Mikel Arteta refused to blame after his error cost Arsenal in their 1-0 defeat to which handed the title.

Pep Guardiola’s side have retained their Premier League title with three games to spare as Taiwo Awoniyi’s first-half goal sealed Forest’s 1-0 win on Saturday evening.

The goal came after Odegaard gave the ball away in midfield, which allowed Morgan Gibbs-White to race through towards Arsenal’s box.

But Arteta insisted that the Arsenal captain should not be made a scapegoat for their latest defeat.

‘That’s for sure, the amount of goals we’ve conceded and the number of goals we have given to the opponents too easily,’ Arteta said after Arsenal’s defeat to Forest.

‘We should not look for excuses or start to put the guilt on someone, it’s about that.

‘We should have been better as a team and in the last few weeks we have fallen short.’

Mikel Arteta says Arsenal’s defeat is ‘very painful’ as Man City win the Premier League title (EPA)

In his post-match press conference, Arteta also highlighted Arsenal’s defensive weakness in recent weeks which allowed City to gain control in the title race.

‘It started with what happened at Anfield in the 90th minute. Then at West Ham if you put it away to make 3-1 everything changes,’ Arteta said.

‘We have conceded a lot of goals. We have given 16 goals away in those matches. It’s a lot. You cannot sustain that. In this league, you have to be exceptional with everything because there are no margins. That team doesn’t give you any margins. We have extended those margins to much and that’s why we lost the league.’

When asked how painful it is to see Arsenal miss out on the title, Arteta replied: ‘Very intense.

‘It is a very sad day, we have been working for 11 months with that aim and being on top for so many days, building the enthusiasm, that belief and that quality that is necessary to compete against Manchester City.

‘We’ve done that but at the end we didn’t have enough for many factors.

‘Now we heal in the next few days. It is very painful, extremely sad. I have to find a way to lift the players and we have a difficult week ahead of us and we have a huge responsibility, we play in front of our fans who have been incredible all season and they deserve a really good match.’


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