Arsenal were over motivated, claims Per Mertesacker

Per Mertesacker says Arsenal were too eager to get back into the game after a 3-1 loss to Monaco

By Dipak Patel

Per Mertesacker says Arsenal’s eagerness to get back into the game cost them after a 3-1 loss to Monaco in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie.

The German defender was at fault for Monaco’s second goal when the centre-half decided to press high up the pitch and left Anthony Martial in acres of space to set up Dimitar Berbatov.

Yannick Ferreira-Carrasco added a third from another counter-attacking move as Arsenal left themselves exposed, and Mertesacker believes this sort of naivety in their defending is what lost them the game.

“Overall it’s very disappointing for us,” Mertesacker told Arsenal’s website.

“I thought in the second half we exaggerated a bit, looked a bit over motivated at times and they got us on the break.

“That’s what we expected, but when you try to come back as quickly as possible, you can make some mistakes. That’s what hurt at the end.

“We never give up. That’s always the sense of our game, even if the expectations will be low now.

“It’s easy to write us off now but it’s just half time. A lot of things can happen over there and we will try.”

The German World Cup winner has played almost every game this season clocking up 34 appearances and scoring one goal.

But Arsenal have also had a poor defensive record conceding 29 goals in the league, more than any other side in the top-four.

They will need to improve on their defence if they wish to overturn a 3-1 deficit in the second-leg, and no team in the European Cup has been able to come back to win when conceding three away goals since 1969.


MORE: The latest football transfer news

MORE: Meet the Premier League's most stylish footballers

MORE: Do you know the top Muslim footballers in the Premier League?

MORE: Man United latest news

MORE: Arsenal latest news

MORE: Chelsea latest news

MORE: Liverpool latest news

The Sport Review
Friendly rivals Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer celebrate ‘the great memories we shared’
The Sport Review
Top 50 most stylish footballers in the world in 2017: Arsenal, Man United, Chelsea, Liverpool stars feature
The Sport Review
Top 40 Muslim footballers: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Man United stars feature
The Sport Review
Top 25 footballers’ cars: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Real Madrid players feature
The Sport Review
Top 20 Nigerian footballers in Premier League: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool stars feature
The Sport Review
Arsenal player wages 2017: Do you know how much Xhaka, Ozil and Coquelin earn each week?
The Sport Review
Ander Herrera: Why Man United trust top 19-year-old
The Sport Review
Steven Gerrard predicts where Man United will finish this term
The Sport Review
Chelsea and Man United have edge over title rivals, claims Schmeichel