If it were not already a crisis at Arsenal, then the latest news to have emerged from the north London outfit will certainly send the club into crisis mode.
According to recent reports, there are a number of players within the team that are angry about the way Mikel Arteta has been handling some players and believe that there are some ‘double standards’ at play.
Indeed, the pressure will have already been mounting on Arteta’s shoulders after a run of six Premier League games without a win continued on Wednesday as they drew 1-1 with Southampton. To make matters worse, they have only tasted victory once in their last nine top-flight games which was a victory over Manchester United, thus putting his name amongst the favourites to be sacked in the near future as many have been tipping him to do so.
Ill-discipline has been a huge problem this season for the Gunners as well, as Gabriel was shown a red card against the Saints. He became the third player – with Granit Xhaka and Nicolas Pepe both before him – to have received a red card in the last five league games.
Although the manager is clearly trying his best to turn things around, there are rumours of players being unhappy behind the scenes and it might only be a matter of time before things become untenable.
According to The Athletic, a number of players are unhappy with how certain players are perceived to be treated differently by the manager.
One of the biggest examples to have highlighted this claim and perhaps provide evidence was when Willian was allowed to start the match against Leeds United despite having only just returned from Dubai on a trip that was not authorised by the club.
It is said that there is a feeling amongst some members of the squad that certain players would have faced punishment for their actions if they had done the same thing or something similar and believe it is incredibly unfair that Willian was not given that treatment.
It has also been claimed that David Luiz was left angry with the decision to leave him out of the squad that beat Manchester United earlier in the season. He was left out as an injury precaution, however it has been claimed that the Brazilian felt fully fit and believed he could play.
Arteta is said to be fully backed by the club’s hierarchy, though, as they are confident he will be able to turn things around soon enough. In fact, he is going to need to.
The Gunners currently sit 15th in the Premier League table with over a third of the season having already been played. Furthermore, they are just five points clear of the relegation zone although you would have to imagine there is enough quality in the team to ensure they avoid it.
Matches in the top-flight do not get any easier, though, with games against Everton at Goodison Park, Chelsea at the Emirates Stadium and Brighton and Hove Albion at the AMEX Stadium all to come before 2020 finishes.
Sandwiched between those is a League Cup quarterfinal match with Manchester United as well.