‘The attitude is bad’ – Bernd Leno slams Arsenal teammates and questions ‘slow’ tactics

Arsenal v Aston Villa - Premier League
The Gunners’ number one gave a frank interview about the side’s poor recent form (Picture: Getty)

Bernd Leno has heavily criticised Arsenal’s recent performances, slamming the attitude and work rate of his teammates as well as the side’s approach in games – though does not attach any blame to manager Mikel Arteta.

The Gunners have endured a miserable run of form, losing their last four home games in the Premier League, and currently sit in 15th place – closer to the relegation zone than the top of the league.

Leno has not pulled any punches in his assessment of Arsenal’s performances, saying the players have lacked focus and intensity on and off the ball, while he still believes Arteta is the right man to lead the club.

Arsenal v Burnley - Premier League
Arsenal lost 1-0 last time out at home to a struggling Burnley side (Picture: Getty)

Asked about the mounting pressure on Arteta, Leno told Sky Sport Germany: ‘That’s not an issue at all. The coach is the least reason for us being in this situation.

‘If you look at how we sometimes walked around on the pitch, then the only fault lies with the players. I have to say that honestly.

‘We get red cards, make mistakes, are disorganised. These are things that we have clearly addressed a thousand times. In the end, that’s a lack of focus among the players.

‘The coach is not an issue in the dressing room, and there is no criticism of him. We criticise ourselves and the players know that they are responsible.’

Despite his defence of Arteta, Leno also criticised the approach the team have taken in recent matches and feels their current tactics do not suit the personnel at the club.

He continued: ‘Of course, if you look at the statistics, we obviously miss the goals. But the offensive isn’t so much the problem.

‘We’re just making the game way too slow at the moment, the opponent can always sort himself out and that makes it difficult to find the right gaps in the front.

Mikel Arteta Arsenal Training Session
Leno says the players are to blame for Arsenal’s poor form, not Arteta (Picture: Getty)

‘We hit thousands of crosses in the penalty area against Tottenham, but we don’t have a player up front who can prevail against the robust central defenders. That also makes it difficult. We miss switching quickly. Overall, we play too slowly and make unnecessary mistakes.’

He added: ‘There were just too many poor results and disappointing performances. The attitude is bad, there is a lack of discipline, we don’t have confidence in that.

‘Many factors are currently coming together. We have addressed this very clearly internally and everyone agrees that we have to change that very quickly.’

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