The Gunners are at the fifth position with Crystal Palace being just a point behind them.
Unai Emery’s Arsenal had the chance to stamp their authority on the third position with a win but the Gunners faltered against Sheffield United losing the game 0-1 away from home.
It was a collective effort from the Blades as they secured a vital win. It was at the hour mark when Lys Mousset found the net after Jack O’Connell’s headed goal an Oliver Norwood corner kick.
There were questions raised at this side and their mentality to churn out results away from home. Former Manchester United and France footballer Patrice Evra criticised their performance on the night and stated Arsenal as “babies” on Monday Night Football show.
Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka soon reciprocated on all the criticism, saying, “We have to stop about mental [strength] bulls*** like this. For me, it is the same whether you play home or away – you have to win and show a big character and a good game and not to always find the same excuse.”
The Switzerland International even came up with a prompt answer addressing Evra’s comments on Arsenal, he said, “A lot of people they speak too much. It is not the first time he has spoken something about us.”
“I have a lot of respect for him as he was a great player but you have to be careful what you say. But it is not only him – a lot of people speak a lot of bulls*** about us. It’s always the same.”
“For me, it is strange as they were in the same situation as us, they were players as well. Sometimes it is good and sometimes it is not always good but every week they speak bulls*** like this every week.”
“I tell you the honest truth, I’m not interested in what people say and speak. We have to speak in our group to improve things and work hard and not listen to these people.”
Arsenal had a lot of chances and created several opening in front of goal but the Gunners were wasteful in the final third coupled with Sheffield United’s excellent defence. Chris Wilder’s men have the joint best defensive record in English Premier League as they are the only team apart from Liverpool to concede only seven goals in the nine games so far.
Therefore Xhaka feels that the Gunners did a lot of good work but failed to find the net whereas Sheffield had one chance and they scored.
“I think we did a lot of good things and they had one chance, and it was a goal.
“But it’s too easy, you shouldn’t lose a game because of a corner or a free-kick. We have to improve but there were some good things as well. In the end, if you want to be top four then you have to beat Sheffield.”
While defence and Dean Henderson between the sticks remain their standout players so far, goal-scoring still remains a huge area of concern for Sheffield United.