Three losses in three matches have put the red contingent of north London on edge
Pep Guardiola defended managerial counterpart Mikel Arteta after Manchester City thrashed Arsenal 5-0 on Saturday.
Guardiola, who had Arteta on his coaching staff for several years, said “Arteta knows how I love him” and pointed out the Gunners are competing without numerous first-choice players amid an injury crisis.
However, the lopsided result has cast further doubt on Arteta’s job security at Emirates Stadium as Arsenal are now without a win in their opening three Premier League matches this campaign.
What has been said?
“Arteta knows how I love him,” Guardiola told BBC Sport. ”In the two or three years he was here he was important to what we built. People want results right away, with the players he had today, Ben White, Thomas Partey were missing, many players they invested in were missing, without that it is difficult.
“I know his awareness as a manager and as a leader, the moment everyone is back he will do an excellent job. I know this because I know him, I know the job he can do.
“We scored a goal that we didn’t deserve. We didn’t play that good to score a goal.
“The first time we arrived in the Arsenal half we scored. We had problems in the first 15-20 minutes in our build-up. After 2-0 and the sending off [of Granit Xhaka] the game is completely different.”
Guardiola then emphasised that he still wants his side to be stronger all-round moving forward.
“It was nice winning today but we have to be better,” he said.”We created chances, we scored [three] more [after the red], the most important thing is that we played with respect to the opponent and not do silly things with the ball. We are still in the process of improving.”
While Arsenal were indeed without several key players, that will provide little assurance to fans who could see their team closer to a relegation place than European qualification at the end of September.
Currently bottom of the table, the Gunners must travel to Turf Moor for a typically difficult fixture against Burnley and meet Tottenham on short rest before the month concludes.
Arteta’s job will only become more tenuous if Arsenal cannot pull together a positive string of results soon.