Arteta demands better ‘game management’ from Arsenal

Mikel Arteta

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta admits they must find a way to manage games after dropping points against Crystal Palace.

Arteta has made a patchy start to life as Arsenal manager following his appointment as Unai Emery’s successor on December 20.

The Gunners have won just one of his four Premier League games in charge, picking up another victory in the FA Cup against Leeds United, and remain well adrift of the European places.

Saturday’s 1-1 draw at Crystal Palace sees them trailing fourth-placed Chelsea by 11 points, while they are six shy of Manchester United in fifth.

They did look on course for all three points at Selhurst Park after a strong first half showing which saw them lead through Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s strike.

But Arsenal allowed Palace back into the game in the second period, largely after Aubameyang was sent off, as Jordan Ayew found the equaliser.

It’s the second time in four league games that the north London side have allowed a lead to slip and a problem that Arteta clearly needs to address.

The Spaniard admits that they must improve in several areas but highlighted game management as a key one.

Arteta said: “Their goal was a consequence of a sequence of a number of things that happened afterwards. We have to know to play these situations a little bit better. In terms of effort and spirit that they showed – it was top.

“It’s game management, it’s game moments, and we’ll get better at it.

It’s difficult to see where Arsenal’s next victory might come from with tough fixtures on the horizon for the Emirates outfit.

Sheffield United, who are flying high in sixth, make the trip to Arsenal on Saturday before Arteta must prepare his men to head to Chelsea the following Wednesday.