Former Manchester United defender and pundit Gary Neville has singled out three senior Arsenal players who need to improve.
Throughout the majority of the season, Mikel Arteta’s Gunners have looked on course to lift their first Premier League title since 2004.
However, after failing to pick up wins in any of their last three matches, defending champions Manchester City, who have remained hot on the Londoners’ heels, are now firm favourites to go on and lift this season’s title.
Arsenal’s stuttering form began against Liverpool at the start of the month. Despite racing to an early two-nil lead at Anfield, the Gunners were pegged back twice and eventually shared the points after Jurgen Klopp’s Reds managed to salvage a 2-2 draw.
A similar scenario then played out against West Ham United the following week with David Moyes’ Hammers managing to boost their survival hopes after coming from two-nil down to draw 2-2.
And in action most recently against relegation-favourites Southampton, Arsenal, who hosted the Saints at the Emirates on Friday night, were looking to bounce back to winning ways. Failure to start the game well saw the league leaders fall two-nil behind, and despite pulling one back, Ruben Selles’ side were able to regain their two-goal advantage and make it 3-1 in the game’s second half.
Arsenal weren’t done there though and refusing to be beaten on home soil, two late strikes from Martin Odegaard and Bukayo Saka rescued Arteta’s title hopes but made next Wednesday’s potential title-decider away against Manchester City a must-win game.
However, despite Arsenal’s determination and late showing against Southampton, Neville has highlighted three senior stars as players who need to ‘sort themselves out’ in time for Pep Guardiola’s Cityzens.
For Arsenal the more experienced players needed to step up and be composed. In the last 3 games the more ex ones haven’t.The younger ones have looked more assured. Zinchenko, Jesus, Partey haven’t been right. They have 5 days to sort themselves out. The huddle last night a bluff!
— Gary Neville (@GNev2) April 22, 2023
Oleksandr Zinchenko and Thomas Partey haven’t put in good performances in their last few outings and with Gabriel Jesus also looking off the pace on Friday night, it is hard to argue with the Sky Sports pundit.
And of course, it goes without saying, with Arsenal having one of the youngest squads in England, if they’re to stand any chance of defying the odds and be crowned champions, their senior and most experienced players must step up.
Wednesday’s game at the Etihad is scheduled to kick off at 8 p.m. (UK time) and will be broadcast live on BT Sport.
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