Per Mertesacker has laid into his Arsenal team-mates following the “unbeliveable” collapse at Swansea City on Sunday.
We led 1-0 heading into the 75th minute but Gylfi Sigurdsson beat Wojciech Szczesny with a fine free kick to level matters, before Bafitembi Gomis headed the winner minutes later to bookend a miserable week for the club.
On Tuesday, we let a three-goal lead slip at home to Anderlecht, and the German believes that it is about time for he and his team-mates to start playing “serious football”.
“The game was completely in our hands, especially in the second half when we scored,” Mertesacker told reporters.
“Then we have to play serious football and not lose the ball but they got us on the break, and that’s completely unbelievable in our situation.
“We have to play simple, even if we are 1-0 up – even more then. We played through the middle but we need to keep possession and keep patient, something that we did all the way through until the 60th minute and we had the game in our hands completely.
“That’s what I mean by serious football.
“When you get such a result (like against Anderlecht) normally you come back quickly and after such a setback normally we bounce back immediately.
“But that was not the game and we have to take the (international) break now really seriously and work hard on the issues.”
The Gooner believes that if the big German was as vocal on the field as he is in the media zone then maybe, just maybe, these collapses would not be as frequent.
Mertesacker captained the side yesterday in the absence of Mikel Arteta, and perhaps as the stand-in skipper he ought to implement his ambition to see “serious football” in the moment, as opposed to a day after the game.
I’m a big fan of the BFG; I think he’s a fine defender and one of the best centre-halves we have had in the last decade, but if he is the authority figure we believe him to be then perhaps these capitulations are on him as much as any other player.