Arsenal 1 Newcastle 0 – Saturday 16 December 2017 3pm
We asked a number of our regular writers to give us a brief instant reaction after the final whistle.
Now no wins in nine and one point from the last 27:
“If we had been told in August that we would be in the relegation zone at Christmas, would anyone be surprised.
“The season has to start again now, start playing ugly and wrestle back some points – it’s the only way out of this I can see.
“Finally, it’s time to go Mike, if the deal is not done for new year it will be a disaster.”
“When I saw the team we had out I wondered what Rafa was doing but in the last 10 minutes it became clear.
“He’d obviously seen the footage of Foreman v Ali and decided that we’d let Arsenal punch themselves out before delivering a decisive blow.
“Great tactics Rafa and they almost worked, except Arsenal got bored rather than punched themselves out.
“The only other flaw was that we don’t have anyone who can score any goals.
“To be fair, for the first 75 minutes Sanchez, Ozil and Wilshere were magic and they are all leaving Arsenal for free in the summer, so most teams have their fair share of problems.
“One of our main problems seems to be that all of the other teams in the bottom half of the table seem to be able to spring that surprise result to relieve the pressure and we don’t.
“There were some positives today though, despite at least an hour of the game being the most one-sided game you have ever seen.
“Apart from that, we had 10 shots, and if we’d had a £20million striker in the team we’d have got a point perhaps, accepting of course that they could have been 5-0 up at that point.
“All is not yet lost but it is a defining next 5 weeks for our two fatties up top.
“Let’s hope the one we like is the one smiling on February the 1st.”
“Well that was inevitable.”
“Well I came down to London today expecting us to lose (there is always a little part of me that thinks maybe today it will be different) and we duly obliged.
“The scoreline might not be as bad as I had feared but a loss is a loss and makes next weekend’s trip back down here all the more crucial.
“Tough times ahead and 4 games to play by the end of New Year’s Day…”
“Not ashamed of losing there, it’ll happen.
“The headline story as it has been for weeks is that we’re bang in trouble due to uncertainty caused by under investment and lack of ability due to the exact same under investment.
“Unfortunately, being in the actual relegation zone (if West Ham keep their lead at Stoke)only adds gravitas to the relegation clause squabble.
“This rubbish run needs to end.
“The return of Lascelles has at least reduced the concession of 3 per game.
“Now we need to actually score a few.
“Unlikely by pumping it long to Joselu, hopefully a West Ham we will see more ambition.”
“What a rank day of results!
“On to next week…”
“Mike Ashley has built a Championship club at NUFC.
“This is an owner who thinks Premier League survival can be done on the cheap. Well, it can’t.
“Cash is king in this league and we’re such miserly spenders that it’s no shock to see us tumbling down the division.
“The players are an honest bunch, they’ve battled hard at the Emirates today.
“The thrashing that we all expected was averted, but an Ozil goal has been enough to see us leave north London empty handed. Ozil cost more than our entire team today.
“The club needs to buy a proven goal scorer in the top flight.
“If Rafa has written off Mitrovic then we need something else.
“Things are looking very bleak at the moment for Newcastle United.”
“Played decent to be honest, then when we had momentum…
“Diame was brought on to kill any hope of snatching a point.”
Stats from BBC Sport:
Arsenal 1 Newcastle 0
Arsenal: Ozil 23
Possession was Arsenal 71% Newcastle 29%
Total shots were Arsenal 23 Newcastle 10
Shots on target were Arsenal 5 Newcastle 2
Corners were Arsenal 7 Newcastle 5
Referee: Stuart Attwell
Elliot, Yedlin, Lascelles, Lejeune, Manquillo, Murphy (Gayle 67), Hayden, Merino (Diame 82), Atsu (Ritchie 54), Perez, Joselu
Darlow, Clark, Dummett, Aarons
Crowd: 59,379 (Newcastle 3,000)
(Method in the madness of Rafa’s team selection – Read HERE)