Kieran Tierney said Arsenal’s players must take the blame for their “terrible” form after a chastening defeat against Burnley that piles pressure on Mikel Arteta.
Arsenal have now made their worst start to a top-flight season since 1974-75 and, for the first time in 61 years, have lost four consecutive home games. Tierney has been among their better performers but the left-back believes the squad must take ownership of a run that threatens to make this season a write-off at best.
“It’s not good enough,” Tierney said. “There’s no way to disguise it. It’s terrible, to be honest. It’s not what we are, not where we are as a club. It’s not what the fans deserve, it’s not what the manager deserves, it’s not what the board deserve.
“It’s us players that need to take responsibility for this. It’s on us and nobody else. We have got a great manager and we believe in him 100%. The blame is on us, nobody else.”
Arsenal had shown signs of improvement before Granit Xhaka was sent off in the 58th minute after grabbing Ashley Westwood’s throat. They then went behind to a Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang own goal and Tierney said it was hard to enthuse about the openings they had created.
“We might have had chances, we might have been the better team in the first half, but it’s still not good enough. Even if we do go down to 10 men, we should be winning the game at that point. We should be taking chances. We are not scoring enough goals.”
Arsenal sit 15th in the Premier League and, in the eight games since Nicolas Pépé’s winner against Sheffield United on 4 October, they have scored only through an Aubameyang penalty at Old Trafford and a Gabriel Magalhães header from a corner routine against Wolves. It has left them feeling distraught but Tierney says good intentions must now be backed up by action.
“It is the lowest we have probably all felt in our careers and nobody is going to help us except ourselves,” he said. “I know the fans deserve much better and all I can do is apologise to every single one of the supporters through these tough times. We just need to work hard. It’s easy enough to say we want to do better, but we need to actually show we want to do better.”
They will have the chance to stop the rot when fourth-placed Southampton, who have picked up 10 points from their past five games to Arsenal’s one, visit the Emirates Stadium on Wednesday.