Mikel Arteta admitted that fatigue was creeping into Arsenal’s play as they failed to break down Crystal Palace.
After getting back on track with four wins in a row recently, Arsenal’s streak of victories came to an end with a goalless draw against Palace.
Arteta’s side were unable to create many chances of note, with the same going for their opponents in a game that lacked quality.
Arsenal would have gone into the top half for the time being with a win, but instead find themselves 11th in the table. Hence, they may see this as a missed opportunity to make ground in the Premier League.
Manager Arteta said after the game that his players were lacking energy after a busy few weeks.
“Some freshness and quality in the final third was missing,” he told Sky Sports. “We had a lot of entries into the final third but no big, big chances.
“I wanted to see a win today and to score a few goals but we were fatigued. We gave the ball away, but I cannot fault the spirit. It wasn’t enough.”
Arteta was not particularly surprised by the difficulties they faced, as he knows Palace boss Roy Hodgson sets his teams up well.
While Arsenal had prepared for that, they were unable to put their plans to break Palace down into practice.
“Roy Hodgson has done that all through his career, that is how they beat a lot of big teams,” Arteta said. “We had the plan, we just didn’t have the execution.”
Arteta waiting for Tierney update
It may have been a different story if Kieran Tierney had been available. The left-back has been a key player for Arsenal in recent weeks, but missed the game through injury.
Arteta will be anxious to find out how much longer he will have to do without the Scotland international.
“Kieran Tierney is a real threat and the way we attack on the left is really important,” he said. “But he is injured and we have to find a solution. He will have an MRI scan tomorrow.”
READ MORE: Hodgson explains why Crystal Palace ‘deserved’ draw against Arsenal