Arsenal were plunged deeper into crisis with a 1-0 home defeat against Burnley on Sunday.
In the aftermath of that game, Football.London reported on the state of Mikel Arteta’s relationship with his squad.
It claimed that some first team players weren’t impressed with Arteta’s treatment of Nicolas Pepe after his red card against Leeds.
On top of that, it said that David Luiz and the boss are not speaking to each other any more.
Luiz’s representatives denied that claim about the defender, it should be added.
But the Football.London report also said some players have ‘mentally clocked out’, including Granit Xhaka, who was sent off against Burnley.
At a Q&A, via Goal, the notion of a rift between Arteta and his players was put to technical director Edu.
He said: “The stories about a split between the players and Arteta are not true. Stories about players not believing and not trusting Mikel are not true.”
Some might say that Edu could hardly have said anything else – but he could have dodged the issue.
He didn’t and has said the rumour is totally false.
Ultimately, until results improve on the pitch, Arteta is going to have his work cut out.
That starts tonight against Southampton. Arsenal desperately need a win but they’re playing a side full of energy and confidence.
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