The Gunners went seven games without a league win before beating Chelsea and their coach opened up about his personal angst.
Mikel Arteta says he felt responsible for Arsenal’s “draining, frustrating and painful” poor form, admitting he was questioning himself every day during their recent winless run.
Arsenal beat London rivals Chelsea 3-1 on Saturday to relieve some of the growing pressure on Arteta, who recently celebrated a full year at the helm.
This follows a seven-game Premier League winless streak, with the Gunners returning 14 points in 14 games, their worst comeback at this stage of the season since 1974-75, converted to three points for a win.
Arteta’s side are still just six points above the relegation zone and the Spaniard opened up on mental anguish of spending eight weeks between league wins.
“Since I arrived here, I first had to analyze very well what was going on, what we could and could not do. Obviously, in terms of results, in the last few weeks we have all suffered, I suffered. I feel very responsible for this, “he told media before Arsenal’s trip to Brighton Tuesday.
“The worst feeling is that I want to do so well for this football club and for the moment where we are, I want to bring all my passion, the knowledge that I have, the good intentions to act as fast as possible to a club. of football.
“To do that, we have to win football matches, be stable and buy time. When I don’t, I feel like I’m letting down the club and the people who work for us, and obviously our fans. . ”
Arsenal have collected just five points between the start of November and their weekend win Chelsea, a four-game losing streak at Emirates Stadium.
It equaled the North London team’s worst top-flight home run since 1959 and Arteta is grateful for the support he received during the disturbing crash.
“It’s exhausting, it’s frustrating and it’s painful,” he said. “At the same time, I know we have to fight to come back.
“In tough times is when you see the right people, they give me a lot of encouragement because I see people who are willing to fight with me, with the people we have here. It gives me energy every day to keep doing it. .
“It’s a 24/7 job. Plus a lot of things outside, very stimulating. A lot of problems and then when the results hit you like that you sometimes can’t find the right reasons to understand why we lose football matches, when we produce what we produce.
“It’s a big puzzle. But that’s also the beauty of this game, to find ways to do things in a different way.
“My responsibility is to motivate the players as much as possible, to keep them united, to keep the team spirit alive, even when you don’t win matches.
“When you are frustrated and sad, you have to find a place to do it all the time.
“My life has been my family and everyone who is here with me at the club, on the board, [technical director] Edu, they all supported me very well and that helped me a lot. ”
The 38-year-old was named Unai Emery’s successor in December 2019, winning the FA Cup at the end of his first season at the helm and the Community Shield at the start of the 2020-21 campaign.
When asked if he finds management more tiring than being a player, Arteta said: “The simple answer is management.
“Because you have a lot of people around you to take care of. I always say you have 70 hearts in the training ground and stadium that you have to take care of every day.
“Every decision you make has an impact on their life, their mood and the day after. So you are very aware of that and you get emotionally attached to them and I am emotionally attached to this football club.”