Alexandre Lacazette was given the nod for Arsenal against Everton on Monday night after Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s disappointing performance against Manchester United
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was dropped for Arsenal’s defeat against Everton due to his recent struggles, but the same issues persisted with Alexandre Laczaette.
Mikel Arteta’s men suffered their second successive defeat as their ten-game unbeaten run is firmly in the rearview mirror.
The Frenchman was given the nod against the Toffees as it finished 2-1 to the home side after the Gunners captain’s poor performance at Old Trafford during the 3-2 defeat by Manchester United.
But it was the same old story for Arsenal as they struggled to create goal-scoring opportunities.
Lacazette was deprived of any real service and was forced to drop deep to get the ball. He received seven passes in the first half, but just one was in the final third as the visitors failed to be a consistent attacking threat at Goodison.
Does Mikel Arteta need to sign a new striker in January? Comment below
The striker’s frustration was clear to see as on multiple occasions he could be seen waving Kieran Tierney up the pitch as he pleaded for support, according to football.london.
If there were are any lingering questions that Arsenal’s troubles in front of goal were an Aubameyang issue, they have now been squashed. The fact these issues are still rife with Lacazette suggests hints it’s a systemic problem for Arteta.
The numbers back that claim too.
Arsenal have taken 10 or fewer shots six times this season, which is 40% of the games they’ve played so far.
The north London club have only scored 18 goals this term, fewer than Watford who are in 17th place just above the relegation zone.
If only they had a £72million winger among their ranks that could provide that attacking spark Arsenal so badly crave.
In fact, they do. His name is Nicolas Pepe but the forward was excluded from Arteta’s squad against Everton.
Eddie Nketiah, who has expressed his desire to leave the Emirates, has been preferred to the Ivorian in recent weeks.
Arteta explained his decision to bring Nketiah on against Everton.
He said: “Because I decided to play Eddie today. He created three chances and hit the post once in 25 minutes I think.”
When pushed on the decision, Arteta claimed that it was his performance in training that merited his place in the squad ahead of other players.
He added: “He does every day in training what you see him do here. Every single day. That’s why I picked him.”