Mikel Arteta

Mikel Arteta laments missed chances after damaging Southampton defeat

Krishan Davis
Arteta was not impressed with his side's finishing
Arteta was not impressed with his side's finishing / DANIEL LEAL/GettyImages

Mikel Arteta has lamented Arsenal's lack of a world-class goalscorer after their top four hopes suffered a "huge" blow courtesy of a 1-0 defeat to Southampton on Saturday.

Arsenal have endured a torrid April so far, with the loss at St Mary's their third consecutive defeat of the month after a Champions League place had been firmly within their grasp.

The Gunners have slipped to sixth in the Premier League table, three points behind north London rivals Tottenham in fourth and level on points with Man Utd in fifth - although they do have a game in hand on the two above them.

Jan Bednarek's first-half strike was enough to win the game for Saints on Saturday, with Arsenal spurning a host of chances.

Speaking after the match, Arteta admitted the lack of the kind of goalscorer that their rivals possess - such as Harry Kane or Cristiano Ronaldo - was making life difficult.

"It is what we have," he said. "The players that we have, they haven’t done it in this league. When you have a world-class player that has been playing in the league for 10 years, probably you are not sitting here.

"But I am the first one to defend them, to support them. You see how [hard] they tried, and the only way to do it is to insist and what happened today might happen the next week or the next month." 

He added: "Arsenal has played with this team, where they have created and dominated in a game more and better. But the result is what at the end we need to be where we have to be, and if we are not able to do that we aren’t not going to be there - it’s as simple as that.

"Because you don’t have enough quality to be there, because we have to win football matches and we have to score more goals, and that’s a problem we have at the moment."

The Spaniard also conceded that the Gunners' failure to capitalise on Spurs' slip-up against Brighton in the day's early kick-off was "huge".

"Huge. Because for somebody that doesn’t know the result and is watching the game, you know what they will tell you…that Arsenal won the game - and we didn’t," he continued.

"It’s very disappointing, and difficult to explain with words. But this is sport, it’s what makes it different to any other - because again in basketball you have 25 shots and the winner has one and you win 10 out of 10 times."