Manchester City ran out comfortable 3-0 winners against Arsenal for the second time in less than a week, further underlining the problems at the Emirates Stadium.
These performances are becoming too common for the Gunners that they can no longer be seen as embarrassing. They are expected in matches against the top six. Pep Guardiola’s team were far superior in every department and excellent value for the three points.
There are now 30 points separating Arsenal from Manchester City in the league table. To put that into context, the Gunners are close to the relegation zone than they are the title. For a team that has ambitions to challenge for major honours, that is a worrying statistic.
Here are three talking points from the Emirates Stadium…
Arsene Wenger needs to leave
This has been a raging debate within the Arsenal fan-base for a number of seasons. He had more supporters than haters when he was regularly leading the Gunners to top-four finishes, but they are now ten points below the Champions League places. It is difficult to see them qualifying for the competition and their failure is no longer a surprise.
Arsenal have been regressing as a club since their last league title win in 2004 and they are now the 6th best club in the country. They are regularly outperformed by local rivals Tottenham and until Arsene Wenger leaves, their decline will only continue. He has been left behind by the game and he no longer commands respect in the dressing room.
It is easy to target the lack of fight and desire in the squad, but they are a problem. Players were once again going through the motions after the third Manchester City goal and showed no interest in trying to get back into the game.
If there isn’t a managerial change this summer, it will be another huge mistake by the board.
Leroy Sane deserves to be talked about as one of the best in the league
The young German winger has been taken on as a project by Pep Guardiola at Manchester City. The Spanish manager was quick to bring Sane to the club and clearly sees huge potential in him. He was initially used in a squad role but has since emerged as a key first team player and this could have been his coming of age performance.
The 22-year-old was unplayable at times when running with the ball and his dynamism is a joy to watch. He completed six dribbles during the match.
For the first goal, he beat a couple of Arsenal defenders before playing the ball to Bernardo Silva to finish the move. It wasn’t a straightforward finish, but the goal was down to the individual flair of Sane.
After impressing with his dribbling ability, Sane scored a well-earned goal to put the result beyond doubt. It won’t be remembered as a classic, but it was good movement to get into the goal-scoring position.
Guardiola will be pleased with the winger’s distribution considering he only misplaced two of 35 total passes. If he can consistently perform to this level, he will be talked about as one of the best players in the Premier League.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang hasn’t added anything to this Arsenal team
It is early days and it may be too soon to be overly critical of Aubameyang, but he has been totally anonymous in the majority of his matches in a Gunners’ shirt.
The 28-year-old is renowned for having a lot of pace and that was his most feared attribute during his time at Borussia Dortmund. However, at Arsenal, he looks uninterested and isn’t making the runs in behind that made him dangerous in the Bundesliga.
His pass success rate shows how he is struggling to adapt to the Premier League. Aubameyang completed only 55% of his passes. In addition to this, he has failed to win a single aerial duel and isn’t concerned about working hard for the team defensively. He is a passenger in matches and hasn’t offered an upgrade on Alexandre Lacazette.
Aubameyang’s short career at the Emirates Stadium was symbolised best by his penalty miss. It was encouraging that he had the confidence to take the responsibility, but his kick was tame and he made it easy for Ederson. Given his price-tag and reputation, he needs to be offering a lot more to the Arsenal attack.