Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has described as a “disgrace” the decision to allow Anthony Gordon’s goal which ended his team’s unbeaten Premier League run in the 1-0 loss to Newcastle on Saturday.
Arteta’s side were defeated for the first time in 11 league games, with the manner of their loss leaving a bitter taste.
Joelinton clearly pushed Arsenal defender Gabriel as the pair challenged for Joe Willock’s cross, with the ball running for Gordon to score from close range.
As well as appealing in vain for a foul by Joelinton, Arsenal angrily claimed the ball had gone out before Willock’s cross. But the goal was given after a lengthy VAR check, a development Arteta says is “embarrassing”.
“Embarrassing what happened – how this goal stands, in the Premier League – this league we say is the best in the world. I’ve been 20 years in this country and now I feel ashamed,” he said in his post-match conference at St. James’ Park.
“It’s an absolute disgrace and there’s too much at stake here. We are trying to do incredible things to be at the highest level every single week. But when we’re not good enough I hold my hands up and take responsibility.”
“The outcome is nowhere near the level this league needs to have and the way this league is getting competed in. It’s not good enough. I feel embarrassed to be part of this,” he maintained.
After a lengthy VAR check, it was ruled there was no foul, while Arsenal’s appeal that the ball went out of play before Willock crossed it was also ignored, as were claims that Gordon was offside.
“The result should not be what it is. Embarrassing what happened, how this goal stands, in the Premier League, this league we say is the best in the world,” Arteta said.
Arsenal’s second loss this week was a huge blow to their title bid, ending a dismal few days after they were also knocked out of the League Cup by West Ham on Wednesday.
But the debatable manner of the defeat left a bitter taste for Arteta.
“There’s so much at stake, we put so many hours. The margins are so small. It’s a disgrace. That’s how I feel and how everyone feels in that dressing room.
“You cannot imagine the amount of messages I got saying this cannot continue. I have to be here now to say it is not acceptable.”