Jamie Carragher warns Arsenal WON’T win the Premier League because of two players… and insists David Raya has become a ‘huge problem’ for Mikel Arteta
- Arsenal lost their first league game of the season at Newcastle on Saturday
- The Gunners are fourth on the table, three points behind Man City
- Big debates on Man United, Chelsea and Arsenal on It’s All Kicking Off podcast
Jamie Carragher believes David Raya is a ‘huge problem’ for Mikel Arteta and warned Arsenal they will not win the Premier League unless they address their shortcomings in goal and upfront.
The Gunners led the title race for the majority of last season, but eventually fell short of winning the Premier League for the first time since 2004 as Manchester City pipped them to the post.
Arsenal underlined their ambitions in the summer by investing a combined £200million on Declan Rice, Kai Havertz and Jurrien Timber.
But Carragher suggested that their spending spree was not enough to turn Arsenal into title winners.
‘It wasn’t a mistake as such to replace Aaron Ramsdale, as Ramsdale wasn’t going to win you the league,’ he said on Sky Sports on Sunday.
Jamie Carragher has warned Arsenal will not win the Premier League unless they address their issues in goal and up-front
The Sky Sports pundit suggested Arsenal were a ‘different team’ from the one that led the Premier League for most of last season
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‘But the guy [Raya] he’s chosen right now to come in is absolutely all over the place.
‘I think bringing in Declan Rice has improved them but they’ve not moved the dial with the goalkeeper. They don’t seem as fluid, and it’s not just about the players they’ve brought in.
‘The ones who were playing out of their skin last season are not quite firing this season.’
Aaron Ramsdale was ever-present in the Premier League last term and played the first four games of the season, before losing his place to Raya.
The 28-year-old was a surprise loan signing from Brentford in the summer and Arteta has previously indicated he would be happy to rotate the pair throughout the season.
But Carragher believes signing Raya has only created an issue for Arsenal, with the Spaniard looking far from rock-solid in goal.
‘This is now a massive problem for Mikel Arteta,’ he said.
‘This is a huge problem. He’s made the same mistake [against Newcastle] he made as he did a couple of weeks ago against Chelsea.
Carragher believes David Raya has become a ‘huge problem’ for Mikel Arteta
Aaron Ramsdale was ever-present in the Premier League last season but lost his spot to Raya
Arteta has insisted he would be prepared to rotate the two keepers this season
‘He got away with it against Sevilla, but he’s not got away with it here.’
Arsenal have the second-best defence in the Premier League and only four teams have scored more goals through the first 11 games of the season, but Carragher suggested the Gunners lacked cutting edge in the final third of the pitch.
Arteta’s men had just one shot on target during Saturday’s controversial 1-0 loss against Newcastle.
Havertz has scored only one goal in 17 appearances in all competitions since joining from Chelsea, while Gabriel Jesus has scored once in seven Premier League appearances and has already missed four games because of injuries.
‘I feel like I’m watching a different team,’ Carragher explained.
‘They’re more solid defensively, but they’re not as fluid and they’re creating as many chances.
‘Have Arsenal got a centre-forward and a goalkeeper who can win you the league? I don’t think they have. When you think of vital positions where teams win leagues, it’s in both boxes.’
The defeat at St James’ Park was Arsenal’s first loss in the Premier League this season and saw them drop to fourth in the table, three points behind City.
Kai Havertz has scored just one goal in 17 appearances in all competitions since joining from Chelsea in the summer for £65million
Gabriel Jesus has scored once in seven Premier League appearances and has already missed four games because of injuries
The reigning Premier League champions went top of the table with a 6-1 rout over Bournemouth, but Tottenham could go two points clear of them if they beat Chelsea on Monday night.
Arsenal’s defeat at Newcastle was overshadowed by VAR controversy, with Arteta slamming the standards of refereeing in England in his post-match interview.
The Arsenal boss was left fuming after the final whistle at St James’ Park as Anthony Gordon’s match-deciding goal was allowed to stand, while Bruno Guimaraes avoided punishment for a supposed elbow on Jorginho.
Gordon’s decisive strike went through three separate VAR checks before being allowed to stand, with referee Stuart Attwell and VAR official Andy Madley deeming that Joe WIllock had kept the ball in play, Joelinton had not fouled Gabriel and that the goalscorer was onside.
‘How the hell did this goal stand up? It’s incredible,’ he said.
‘I feel embarrassed. It’s an absolute disgrace that this was allowed. For many reasons it’s not a goal.
‘It’s so difficult to compete at this level. This is nowhere near the [refereeing] level to describe this as the best league in the world. I feel sick to be part of this.’
In a statement on Sunday afternoon, the club said it was backing their manager after ‘yet more unacceptable refereeing and VAR errors’. It added fans, players and managers ‘deserve better’ from the PGMOL.
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