Thursday 18 September 2014 08:09, UK
Mikel Arteta admits to being left 'bitterly disappointed' after seeing Arsenal fluff their European lines at Borussia Dortmund on Tuesday.
Arsene Wenger’s men headed to Germany hoping to enjoy a positive opening to their UEFA Champions League campaign.
But a forgettable display saw them leave empty-handed, with the hosts cruising to a 2-0 success.
If you make the mistakes that we did, against top sides, we know there is no chance to win the Champions League.
Arteta has offered a brutal assessment of Arsenal’s performance on the road, conceding that there is no way they can be considered continental contenders unless a dramatic improvement is made.
The club captain said: “If you make the mistakes that we did, against top sides, we know there is no chance to win the Champions League.
“We encouraged them to do that by giving the ball away so many times in very difficult positions. They exploit the spaces very well and put us under pressure.
“I am bitterly disappointed because we knew their strengths, what we had to avoid, and what we did was encourage them to play their game.
“We have to react. We have another game soon at Aston Villa. That is the best thing, another game to try to react and improve.”
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who took a knock to his ankle in midweek, is another looking for Arsenal to bounce back when they return to Premier League action on Saturday.
The England international said: “Villa are a good side. It is a nice place to go and play football and we have to be at the required level.
“They will be tough but, if we believe in ourselves as title contenders, we will have to go with the belief that we will win – and that is what we are going to do.”