Arsene Wenger says his players only have themselves to blame for Tuesday’s defeat to Everton at Goodison Park.
The Gunners slumped to a 2-1 loss despite taking the lead through Alexis Sanchez and dominating large parts of the game.
However, headers from Seamus Coleman and Ashley Williams gave the hosts all three points and Wenger says he side must tighten up defensively.
“In football you have to defend well. We knew exactly what was happening and the first goal is exactly what we planned not to do,” he said via Arsenal’s official website.
“We have to look at ourselves tonight because we punished ourselves by not respecting completely the rules that we put out the night before we played.
“We started well and were in control of the game. After that we lost a bit of urgency and Everton made the game very physical.
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“From that moment on we lost some goals we are not used to losing. They disturbed our game really, they played a real cup game and at the end of the day we lost on two headers from two defenders.
“I believe it’s frustrating to lose with five minutes to go on a header like that and the first goal was a header as well. You could expect Lukaku to score a goal against us but not the way we conceded two goals here.”
Arsenal almost grabbed a late equaliser in a frantic finale with Sanchez denied a penalty and Wenger admits he thought it was a spot kick: “I think so, but what can I do?”
The Gunners now travel to Manchester City on Sunday and Wenger has urged his side to bounce back against Pep Guardiola’s side.
“We have to recover. We play five games away from home out of six and we have a fantastic away record. We want to keep that strength and prepare well for the next one,” he said.
While Tuesday’s defeat was a blow, Arsenal now have the perfect opportunity to put things right at the Etihad on Sunday, and will go into the game with confidence having not lost in their last six games against City.