Mikel Arteta has admitted Arsenal’s key players need to be contributing more on the goalscoring front, but it’s not just them.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette both featured in Arsenal’s match against Newcastle United at the weekend, extending their respective runs of games without any goals or assists.
Aubameyang has now gone four games without a goal contribution, whilst Lacazette is up to six.
Over the last four games, Arsenal have been reliant on their young players for goals, with Bukayo Saka, Emile Smith Rowe, and Gabriel Martinelli scoring four of the five.
Gabriel Magalhaes scored the fifth, and at 23, he’s not much more senior than they are.
The youngsters stepping up has been a saving grace for Aubameyang and Lacazette, who would surely be facing intense criticism had Arsenal not been winning most of their games.
When asked about the lack of goals, Arteta admitted it’s a problem at the moment.
“We need more goals that’s for sure,” Arteta said. “Our main players have to contribute more but it’s a collective thing.”
The Arsenal boss went on to explain that the problem was more than just the man up front against Newcastle United.
“The first half we had our difficulties in attacking,” Arteta continued.
“We kept them in the final third in long periods but our rhythm, pace, and our composure in the final third to get the right pass and cross and the finishing wasn’t good enough.
“We changed a few things in the second half and our dynamic was better. We kept patience but we played with much more urgency and we saw that we were more of a threat.”
That’s all true enough, but Arsenal can’t keep relying on their secondary goalscorers to provide all the goals, if they want to achieve anything this season.