How the once ‘Invincibles’ are just five points off the relegation zone

After another disappointing defeat for Mikel Arteta’s side, this time at home to Burnley, it would seem that once again the Premier League’s laughing stock belongs at the Emirates.

Often berated by fans of other clubs for their inconsistencies and with calls for a cut-throat approach by their own supporters, it’s been a sad and often agonising fall from grace for last season’s FA Cup winners.

Things quickly went from bad to worse, as Granit Xhaka was shown a red card for throttling Ashley Westwood whilst Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored at the wrong end in the 1-0 loss.

But after another matchday to forget, the question remains, how have Arsenal plummetted so far?

Some blame must lay with decision making. With their highest paid player not even registered for Arsenal’s 25-man Premier League squad, it shows an unrest that goes some way in explaining the poor performances of late.

Mezut Ozil is a superb footballer on his day, but his commitment and work ethic has often been questioned by the Arsenal faithful, flaws which feel more synonymous with the club than ever.

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The defence remains an ongoing issue, with the lack of a true leader something that again seems to be a perennial Achilles heel for Arteta’s side.

Leadership in general is seemingly brought into question every time Arsenal perform poorly, a theme that crawls back to the days of Patrick Viera’s fearless captaincy. 

Patrice Evra even revealed on Sky Sports after Sunday’s defeat, that former Arsenal legend Thierry Henry could not come to terms with watching the Gunners when Granit Xhaka held the armband. 

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Xhaka was stripped of the captaincy in November of last year following an angry confrontation with sections of the Arsenal crowd after a 2-2 draw with Crystal Palace.

It was always going to be a difficult task for Arteta in his first managerial role, a challenge in which he hoped to relish. But with fans starting to turn against the former midfielder, it seems the Gunners must start firing quickly or he could be the Premier League’s next managerial casualty. 

Featured image credit: Getty

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