Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher lambasted Arsenal’s German defender Per Mertesacker, following the Gunners’ 3-2 loss to Stoke City over the weekend. Speaking to Sky Sports, Carragher branded Mertesacker’s performance as unacceptable and said that the captain failed to assert himself adequately.
The German international, who is stand-in captain for Arsenal due to an injury to Mikel Arteta, failed to rally the defence during an awful first half that saw us concede three goals to the Potters. Carragher also targeted Mertesacker because he believes that a player with the quality and experience of Mertesacker should have done much better.
Despite Arsenal starting strongly in the second half, their hopes of snatching a point were dashed when Mertesacker’s partner Calum Chambers was sent off for receiving a second yellow card. It summed up another bad day at the office for the Arsenal defence, and yet again highlighted how frail we are at the back.
We talk about leadership, character – like Wenger always talks about after the game.
He’s abandoned ship, he’s left them on their own and that is not acceptable for a player of that quality and experience. He’s abandoned ship. It’s just not acceptable.
You’re in a game away at Stoke in a tough venue – let your players around you know you’re not going to accept what’s going on. This is your captain on the day.
The entire side share the blame for the loss and assigning blame is not going to help anyone. It is time to move on and focus on the run of fixtures coming up. However, this game should not be forgotten. Wenger really needs to take a look at his defensive tactics and the team needs serious reinforcement in January.