Mikel Arteta makes feelings to Premier League clear as he is asked about Brentford clash

Arteta apologises to Arsenal fans after defeat at Brentford

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Mikel Arteta’s position in the Arsenal dugout has been precarious to say the least over the duration of his tenure at the Emirates Stadium – and with the defeat to Brentford last week, it did the Spaniard no favours in preserving his job in north London.

The Gunners were stung 2-0 by a buoyant Bees side who were enjoying their first game in the top-flight since 1947 – not creating many chances of note as their set-piece frailties were once again their downfall.

Goals either side of half-time from Sergi Canos and Christian Norgaard gave Brentford fans their most famous result in well over fifty years.

And with new signings Ben White and Albert Sambi Lokonga not doing anything to impress the Arsenal faithful – at least not for their combined price tag of £65million – fans were left reeling at yet another toothless performance.

It wasn’t necessarily the defence who were the sole downfall of the poor performance, with all due respect to them; the Gunners attack was abysmal as well, with Emile Smith-Rowe the only forward thinking player who could hold his head high.

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The non-involvement of star strikers Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette gave cause for concern as Florian Balogun, Gabriel Martinelli and Nicolas Pepe did nothing to endear themselves to the Arsenal support despite their bit-part roles.

The pair have been Arsenal’s key front men for the past four seasons, with Aubameyang claiming a Golden Boot in the process.

Yet, when their removal was reported, it left Arsenal fans wondering just what happened on that dismal Friday.

However, news came to light this week that the reason for Aubameyang and Lacazette’s omission was that the two had tested positive for COVID-19.

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Alongside Willian and Icelandic goalkeeper Alex Runarsson, the quartet didn’t feature after contracting the virus, which heavily impacted Arsenal’s chances of gaining a result despite being favourites going into the clash.

Arteta was rightfully within reason to request a postponement of the game given that it was the start of the season, with plenty more game weeks to host the game in the future.

And, when quizzed on whether he thought last week’s game vs Brentford should have been postponed, the former Gunners midfielder gave a scathing reply to Premier League officials at their decision to let the game go ahead.

Speaking to the press ahead of his team’s game against Chelsea, Arteta said: “Yes. I was surprised but the regulators decided that the best thing to do was not to postpone the game.”

There were various postponements last season across the league, and famously Arsenal were involved in the first COVID-19 cancelation of a game in the Premier League when they took on Manchester City in March 2020 – ironically because Arteta contracted the virus.

Arsenal will hope to get their first points of the campaign at home to Chelsea in a London derby on Sunday afternoon.

However, with Lacazette still recovering and Aubameyang lacking match fitness, it will be an even harder task than the one Brentford posed.

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