Arteta unmoved by boos after Chelsea loss

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has insisted he has no problem with the boos directed at his team after they fell 2-0 to London rivals Chelsea on Sunday.

The Gunners were overall defeated by Thomas Tuchel’s European champions, who took control of the game through first-half strokes from Romelu Lukaku and Reece James, and Arsenal never looked to return to the match.

Arsenal were beaten by Chelsea / Shaun Botterill / Getty Images

After the full-time whistle blew, the Arsenal squad was greeted by a chorus of boos from the home fans, but when asked for answers from supporters, Arteta insisted that there was nothing to worry about.

“I have to thank the fans, even when it looked difficult, they tried to give the players a boost,” he said (via the Daily Mail). “I see very positively with the audience and the team today.

“In the end, I did not see a bad reaction with any of the players. But that is my opinion. Feeling sorry for yourself does not help. You have to face the challenge, face the criticism – because it will come.”

He later told BBC Sport: “When you lose, you can not expect them to be happy. They have given all the support they can. When we do not win, they have to show it and that is natural.”

The defeat leaves Arsenal 19th in the Premier League table, without a win and not even scoring a goal yet, but Arteta was keen to give some context to his team’s struggle. Strikers Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette, winger Willian, goalkeeper Alex Runarsson and midfielder Ben White have all fought against COVID-19, while various injuries have also prevented a number of other key players.

“I do not think the club in their history has encountered anything like this,” Arteta said of the situation. “We have to face the challenge. The league or the table will not be decided in August. The worst thing you can do is throw in the towel. We will definitely not do that.

“I’m sorry for the fans because we really wanted to give them something special today.”

More from Mikel Arteta after #ARSCHE?

– Arsenal (@Arsenal) 22 August 2021

“You have to understand the situation we have. We’re missing nine players, and it’s difficult. It’s not just nine players – they’s some big, big players.

“There are many positive things. Five players who are 19 or 20 years old playing at this level for the first time – it will have a positive impact but at the moment it is difficult. I do not like to feel sorry for myself. I think everyone can see at the moment that we do not have the squad we want and it seems to be more difficult every day. “

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