Xhaka rips Arsenal timidity in draw: ‘Nobody wanted the ball’


Granit Xhaka proffered the sort of post-match comments that can make a manager blush.

“We knew they had nothing to lose and they would come for us but we didn’t show our game, we were too scared, nobody wanted the ball,” said Arsenal’s captain following a 2-2 draw with Watford.

[ MORE: Recap | Watford “smell” Arsenal timidity ]

The Gunners led 2-0 on a pair of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang goals but couldn’t manage another as Watford scored on two of a remarkable 31 shots over 90 minutes at Vicarage Road.

That’s an unprecedented level of bad for the club, at least as far back as Opta keeps data.

Arsenal boss Unai Emery said Watford did what it could to force mistakes out of the visitors, and that the Hornets succeeded in that regard.

He also doesn’t like the look of the point gained from the match, even if the maxim goes that they all count the same. From the BBC:

“We couldn’t break their pressing in the second half. They are physical, a very strong team. They pushed for our mistakes, they were playing for our mistakes. When you are trying to break their lines you can have chances. They won the second half and my summary is it is not a good point.”

Arsenal sits seventh ahead of visits from Eintracht Frankfurt and Aston Villa, and a trip to Manchester United.