Arsenal: “We were scared therefore no one wanted the ball”
Xhaka admits Arsenal were too scared against Watford and no one wanted the ball. This marked the first time in Arsenal’s history when they failed to win a Premier League match in which they were two goals ahead since April 2016.
Granit Xhaka says the Gunners, “were too scared” as they let slip a two-goal lead to draw 2-2 at Watford.
Pierre Emerick Aubameyang scored twice in the first half for the visitors. However, the Hornets hit back after the breakthrough from Tom Cleverly and a late Roberto Pereyra penalty.
Watford finished with 31 shots on goal. 23 of these came through in the second half.
“No one wanted the ball. In the end, we are happy to take a point,” Xhaka said.
“We did not show our game in the second half. We were too scared.”
Watford’s first game came as a result of Gunners defender Sokratis Papa Stathopoulos giving away possession inside his area allowing Cleverley to score.
Since the beginning of last season, Arsenal players have made a combined 14 errors loading to opposition goals in the Premier League.
The 31 shots Watford had against Unai Emery’s side were the most Arsenal has ever faced in a Premier League fixture since Opta began collecting such data in 2003 and 2004.
Xhaka added, “Every team in the Premier League is strong enough to score, but you have to keep calm to show good character and to be mentally strong. We weren’t today.”
After winning their first two Premier League games of the season against Newcastle and Burnley, Arsenal is now without a win in three following the defeat at Liverpool and draws against Tottenham and now Watford.
“We have a lot of young players,” said Emery. They will learn in the next matches.
“We will continue with our way of working. We need to improve, to take some information from this match. But also we will learn about that.”