Mikel Arteta: “We never had a chance to win the game,” after 4-1 defeat.

By Xorkpe Sosu 5 Min Read

In a breathtaking display, Manchester City secured a 4-1 win over their title rivals, Arsenal, to narrow the gap to just two points.

With two games in hand, City will be looking to make the most of this advantage in the final weeks of the season.

On the other hand, Arsenal seemed to be far from their usual standard during the game at the Etihad, and they have not won any of their last four matches.

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Manchester City put in a dominant display to secure a 4-1 victory over title rivals Arsenal, closing the gap to just two points with two games in hand.

Kevin De Bruyne was the standout performer, scoring two goals and providing an assist for John Stones’ header.

Erling Haaland added a fourth for City, while Rob Holding managed a consolation goal for the visitors.

Arsenal struggled to keep up with City’s scintillating performance and are now winless in their last four matches, with manager Mikel Arteta conceding that his team was completely outclassed.

“Analysis is clear, the better team won the game, they were probably at their best, especially in the first half and we were nowhere near our level, Arteta said.”

“When that happens, the gap becomes too big, He added.”

“In the first 30 minutes, all the basic things you have to do against an exceptional team in terms of competing, winning duals, understanding what the game requires, we didn’t do it and we got punished and we could have been punished even more.”

“We wanted to tweak a few things but we were unable to execute. We have to be loyal to what has brought us all this way because we have done it in the past as well in different ways.”

“It doesn’t guarantee you anything but it is time to look in the mirror as well at what we could have done better.”

“We played an exceptional team but we are an exceptional team too and today we were not at the races at the level required to win the game.”

“We lost today and we have to accept we lost in a very different way to at the Emirates. The quality of the performance today was very far between one team and the other.”

When questioned about why his team failed to execute the fundamental aspects of the game in the first half, Arteta said: “I prefer to give that to the players.”

“They were better in every department. There were more aggressive, kept the ball better, won every single duel, we had them in the corners and then with two passes they are through on our goal. They deserved to win the game because they were better.”

“The way we started the game did not help us. We put ourselves in trouble in many situations. We lost all the first and second balls.”

“That created uncertainty and we could not grab the game in the way we wanted, that’s credit to them as well because they were really good.”

“I can’t follow the stats because the stats at the start of the season said we would be sixth or seventh,” he said.

“We are where we are with five games to go and those players deserve a lot of credit to be nine-and-a-half months against this team being where we are and there are still five games to play.”

“I have been in this country almost 22 years and I know how much it shifts game-to-game.”

“First we have to lift the players because it is a difficult one to swallow.”

“[We have to] accept the reality. That is the best way to move forward. We never had a chance to win the game.”

“We have to improve, be better and be humble enough to accept that in sport if we are going to get better.”

“We knew we would need our best as a team and individually. You need 11 players doing that. Today we were far from them.”

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