I have fighters: Arteta trusts the Arsenal team as decisive Christmas looms

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Mikel Arteta is convinced that he has the fighting spirit in his Arsenal team, which will allow the Gunners fighters to change their sad national season.

Arsenal have not won a match outside of the Europa League since November 1, when they defeated Manchester United at Old Trafford in the Premier League.

The FA Cup champions have lost five of their last seven Premier League matches and were eliminated from the EFL Cup by Manchester City on Tuesday, with Pep Guardiola’s side winning 4-1 at the Emirates Stadium.

It was the first time Arsenal have conceded four home goals in the competition since November 1998, when they lost 5-0 to London rivals Chelsea, who were also the last team before City to win four straight away games against the Gunners. in all competitions. , with the Blues doing it between 1960 and 1965.

With Arsenal ranked 15th in the Premier League table, just four points from the relegation zone, Arteta now has to rally his players for matches against Chelsea, Brighton and Hove Albion and West Brom between Boxing Day and on January 2.

Gunners manager Arteta admitted that race will likely decide Arsenal’s league campaign, but insisted he has full faith in his players.

“It’s difficult to accept considering how the game was. This level of opponent, when you give away the goals makes the game impossible, ”Arteta told Sky Sports.

“A lot of strange things happen in every game and that makes things really difficult.

“We have to turn it around, there is no doubt that the games we have are going to decide our season.

“Based on what we have shown tonight against tough opponents, I have fighters on my team. Yes, I have fighters. “

One player who can embody the fighting spirit that Arteta spoke of is Gabriel Martinelli, who made his first season start after returning from a long-term knee injury.

Martinelli came back as a substitute in Saturday’s loss to Everton and looked lively in the first half against City, having a try and setting up Alexandre Lacazette’s draw.

However, Martinelli suffered a blow to the shin and, despite trying to keep fighting, had to be withdrawn in the 49th minute, although Arteta suggested the injury was not serious.

“It was a very strong kick to the shin, it was swelling up and couldn’t continue,” Arteta said at a news conference.

“I think Gabi has a unique energy and a way of transmitting her passion for the game. I think he plays the game differently than any other player, we can’t compare him.

“What we have to say is, it’s great to have him back. To bring that spirit and that fight, and play against this opponent the way he did in the first half, I think it’s something to be really proud of and happy about.

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