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Arteta bemoans Arsenal loss but urges team to look ahead after Europa League loss

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By Martin Graham | 29th Oct 2022

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has urged his side to look forward to their next challenge and not dwell on their loss to Eredivisie side PSV Eindhoven in the UEFA Europa League on Thursday night.

The Spaniard oversaw his side’s first loss of this season’s competition when they travelled to The Netherlands to take on last season’s KNVB Cup winners. The reverse fixture was played at the Emirates on the Thursday before and the signs of Arsenal’s eventual struggles against PSV were visible.

It came as no surprise when the Dutch team ran the Gunners to the ground on their home soil. Two first half disallowed goals helped Arsenal survive until half time, but they could not keep PSV out for long and eventually ended up losing the match by two goals to none.

In his post-match comments, Arteta expressed his disappointment at what was only Arsenal’s second loss of what has been a very solid campaign to date. The former Everton midfielder said: “I’m very disappointed. It’s the end of a long run, where we won a lot of games and today is our first defeat [since the start of September] and we have to reset.

“Congratulations to PSV – they were the better team today. We were nowhere near our level and we know that in Europe, it’s very difficult to win [then].

“We didn’t get any control. We didn’t get the ball in the areas we wanted. We gave so many balls away, which allowed so many transitions, which was what they were looking for whenever they got in the right structure. They were on top of a lot of things that last week was different.”

Arsenal have already qualified for the knockout rounds of the tournament. However, they can escape the round of 32 tie against the team’s that have been demoted to the Europa League from the UEFA Champions League by sealing a victory in their last group stage game against FC Zurich next Thursday.

Beating the Swiss team will help them seal the top spot regardless of whatever results PSV get in their own game.

Arteta is hoping to reset using the team’s upcoming Premier League game against Nottingham Forest on Sunday. The Spaniard said: “It’s really difficult to win every game in Europe.

“We are in a really good position. We’re disappointed tonight but there’s no time to feel sorry for ourselves. We have to react. On Sunday, we have a really important game, and then we’ll look at Zurich.

“We have to be much better than we were today. We knew what they were trying to do and the way we executed certain actions, the way we competed, it wasn’t good enough.”

Martin Graham is an MFF sports writer

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