‘Disease’: Jamie Carragher gives verdict on Arsenal’s woeful defending
Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher says Arsenal's defence has been affected by a "disease"
Jamie Carragher says the Arsenal defence has been affected by “a disease”.
The Gunners slumped to a 3-0 loss to defending Premier League champions Manchester City at The Emirates on Sunday to lose further ground on their top-four rivals.
Arsenal conceded three goals in the opening 40 minutes after Kevin De Bruyne scored twice and Raheem Sterling found the back of the net at the Emirates Stadium.
The north London side have conceded 27 times in 17 games in the Premier League this season despite signing two new defenders in the summer transfer window.
David Luiz has struggled to perform in the Arsenal team following his switch from Chelsea FC, while Kieran Tierney has been blighted by injuries since his move from Celtic.
Arsenal centre-halves Sokratis Papastathopoulos and Shkodran Mustafi haven’t really convinced since their respective moves to the north London outfit, while English defender Calum Chambers is still developing as a player.
Former Liverpool FC defender Carragher didn’t hold back in his assessment of the Arsenal defence.
“Every time I watch them play, every time the ball comes in on the attack they just drop off,” Carragher told Sky Sports. “Remember the Norwich goal where [Shkodran] Mustafi and [David] Luiz let [Teemu] Pukki get it and turn?
“It’s something that needs to change on the training ground. Keep the line and press. I said on commentary about it. They drop off when they should press, they press when they should drop off. It’s like they don’t know what they’re doing.
“Sometimes you look at a big mistake in a goal; Calum Chambers loses the ball second half, Manchester City go through on goal. Everyone can see that. But these are things that kill the team. It’s your job and sometimes you think you’re looking after yourself, but you’re hurting the rest of the team. That’s why David Luiz isn’t playing.
“I’m glad he’s gone with Calum Chambers. We know Luiz isn’t good enough, that’s all he does, drops off to protect himself. But he’s catching the disease as well too – make the mistakes being aggressive and going forward, I’m sure that’s what Freddie Ljungberg wants. Do it that way, doing the right thing.”
Arsenal are in tenth position in the Premier League table and seven points adrift of fourth-placed Chelsea FC in the race to secure a Champions League qualification spot.
The Gunners haven’t won the Premier League title since 2003-04 when Arsene Wenger was in charge of the north London outfit.