Mikel Arteta has lamented his side’s record of five red cards after two more Arsenal players were sent off in the loss away to Wolverhampton Wanderers.
The Gunners have picked up five red cards this season, a league-high in the top-flight, after David Luiz and Bernd Leno were sent off during the clash with Nuno Espirito Santo’s men.
Speaking ahead of the game against Aston Villa, the Spaniard admitted no one with as many sending offs as the Reds would be top of the league.
Arteta said: “Well, when I was worried about the discipline it was on two occasions with Nico and with Granit. What is clear is that when you have five red cards in this period, you are going to lose a lot of points. If we would have some of those points, we would be in a completely different position in the table, that’s for sure. There are no teams with five reds up there at the top, it doesn’t happen.”
Is Arsenal's discipline a worry?
The side’s disciplinary record is a bit of a worry in all honesty. There was claims in years gone by that the north London outfit are too soft with Graeme Souness labelling them a team of ‘son-in-laws’.
However, it seems the boys in red and white have gone to the opposite extreme in order to impose themselves on their opposition. There needs to be a middle ground between being cautious and making rivals fear you.
With that being said, some of the red cards picked up this season have been some of the stupidest red cards I’ve witnessed. Two headbutts, from Granit Xhaka and Nicolas Pepe, less than a few weeks apart from each other is virtually unforgivable especially as Arteta’s side were in a desperate run of form.
Then you have Gabriel Magalhaes’ red against Southampton, where the Brazilian hauled Theo Walcott down on the half-way line with the Reds in no immediate danger of conceding.
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There needs to be some thought behind your actions, but, it seems there’s a lack of common sense within this Arsenal squad, who despite their quality, are mentally fragile.