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Mertesacker Blames Attitude In Training For Poor Performances

Per Mertesacker has issued a incredibly blunt assessment of Arsenal’s attitude in training and has also gone on to criticise some of the in-game tactics that have been used in recent games.

“We are not at our best,” Mertesacker, the Arsenal vice-captain, said. “Football-wise we lack a few things. We have to be honest to ourselves and train harder. Everyone knows that it is a difficult start to the season for us and confidence is not how we want it. Again, it is away from home on Saturday and again I think we have to do better with our own possession, to put more pressure on them [opponents], not to lose so many balls in the middle of the park, to play more in wide areas”.

 “I think it is better to expose them there, instead of playing one-twos through the middle. It doesn’t work as much as last season, so we have to work on that. The passing game is not as efficient as last year. But all of a sudden we lose players week-by-week.”
Mertesacker did not fail to criticise himself either,”For me personally, it is difficult at the moment because that was really a long season last year, and to come back from the World Cup and get the motivation back – I am nearly back – but you can feel there is something missing at the moment,” Mertesacker said.”It’s a bit of everything. Such a long season last year, without a winter break, and with a World Cup. That is nearly 100 days ago, so I think it is time to raise the game, raise the mentality, to come back and just think about Arsenal. It is going to start, the season is going to start.”

“We didn’t even have time to celebrate properly [after the World Cup]. You realise, month after month, what happened, but we are still not there. Maybe in five or 10 years, we can really realise what was going on there.”

It has been a difficult start to the season for Arsenal who have only won 2 of their first 8 games these were a scrappy 2-1 win on the opening day of the season and a 3-0 away win at Aston Villa who had a virus going through their squad. This has not exactly been the form of a title contender, Wenger’s men are currently 7th but a whopping 11 points off league leaders Chelsea who have already beaten Arsenal this season.

Arsenal travel to troubled Sunderland tomorrow for a 3 pm kick off knowing a win is a must and is expected of them if they are to try and keep up with the early pace setters Chelsea.
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