Arsenal’s scintillating unbeaten run came to a shuddering halt at Saint Mary’s on the weekend as Southampton shocked the north London club 3-2.
Unai Emery has been a breath of fresh air since arriving to replace the legendary Arsene Wenger but the last few days have been thoroughly forgettable.
After the limp performance at Saints, it went from bad to worse for the Gunner’s as rivals Tottenham Hotspur stormed the Emirates Stadium, dumping Emery’s side out of the Carabao Cup.
While the Emery revolution has certainly shown signs of vast improvement, this recent blip has shown that there is still plenty of work to be done.
The Gunners are three points off that coveted top four and a whole 11 points behind league leaders Liverpool.
Mesut Ozil’s mysterious absence
One of the most interesting aspects of Emery’s tenure has been his relationship with, and management of German midfield star, Mesut Ozil.
Ozil has spent large chunks of the season completely absent from the Arsenal squad with little explanation as to why.
Now, Arsenal legend Ian Wright has had enough of the whole debacle, calling on Emery to provide some clarity on the situation with Ozil.
Speaking after Arsenal’s loss to Spurs, Wright made it clear that Emery needs to provide some proper answers.
“I’ve got to say now… We have got to find out what’s going on with Ozil. He wasn’t in the squad again.”
“Is he ill? What’s wrong? We need to know because we cannot afford to carry that kind of weight in respect of wages and find out what is going on with our so-called star player.”
“Is he leaving in January? Is he leaving at some stage? Is he in the manager’s plans? It doesn’t look like it.
“So they’re going to have to sort that out. But as long as the guys get together and go again, that’s the main thing.”
There is no doubting that, on his day, Ozil is simply unplayable, but he is yet to hit it off with his new boss.
As a result, the Spanish manager has sidelined the German leading to mounting speculation that he could be shown the exit door in January.
It will be interesting to see what Emery has to say in the coming days.