The Independent employs reporters around the world to bring you truly independent journalism. To support us, please consider a contribution.

Mikel Arteta insisted that David Luiz’s 25-minute horror show in the 3-0 defeat by Manchester City will not have any impact on whether he stays at Arsenal next season.

The former Chelsea striker came off the bench in the 24th minute to replace the injured Pablo Mari, with Arsenal boss Arteta forced into two early changes following Granit Xhaka’s withdrawal in the eighth minute.

But Luiz looked miles off the pace in Arsenal’s first Premier League match in more than three months, with the Brazilian mis-controlling the ball into the path of Raheem Sterling to score the opener in the 45th minute.

Sharing the full story, not just the headlines

Four minutes after the start of the second half, Luiz was caught out once again as Riyad Mahrez managed to sneak in behind him to bare down on goal, resulting in the 33-year-old pulling back the Egyptian and conceding a penalty that Kevin De Bruyne scored – and earning himself a red card in the process for not making a genuine challenge for the ball in preventing a goalscoring opportunity.

Luiz fronted up to his nightmare display, with Arteta confirming that he apologised to his teammates in the dressing room afterwards and took it upon himself to face the media to explain why his evening’s performance went so wrong.

Arteta accepted Luiz’s apology, but stressed that his poor showing which cost Arsenal so dearly will not have any impact whatsoever on whether the centre-back will remain at the club beyond the end of his contract come the start of July.

“He spoke in the dressing room, David is someone that is very honest and straightforward,” Arteta said.

“My opinion on David doesn’t change, the moment I joined, what he has done for the team and for me, it won’t change because he had a difficult performance tonight.

“For me it won’t change (the option to extend). Whatever we are going to do before today’s game, we will keep it internally.”

Luiz told his teammates to remain in the changing room after the match as he wanted to face the Sky Sports cameras to explain his actions, cutting a solemn figure as he admitted the uncertainty surrounding his future had forced him to take his eye off the ball in the last few months.

“I take the decision to play, I should take another decision in the last two months that I didn’t,” Luiz said.

“Today the team did well, especially after we went down to 10 men, the coach is amazing, all the players did amazing, it was just my fault.

“I should have taken a different decision in the last two months, and I didn’t, it was all about my contract, if I stay here or not. I have 14 days more to be here and that’s it, today it was my fault.

“I should have taken a different decision to decide my future, to try to decide as early as possible, but I didn’t. I don’t want to use it as an excuse.

“I love to be here, that is why I continue to train hard and I came here today, that is why I try to do everything, that’s why I said to all the players nobody huge me to speak, it’s me, I have to show my face and be here so I want to say, the coach knows, the coach wants me to stay, so it is just we are waiting for the decisions.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like

Tour de France 2020 schedule: Start date, route, how to watch, TV coverage

The 2020 Tour de France begins on Saturday, August 29 through September 20. The three-week long event was originally scheduled to take place from June 27 to July 19 but was postponed because of the pandemic. This year marks the…

Tokyo Olympics could be postponed due to coronavirus, Japan confirms

The Tokyo 2020 Games could be postponed until the end of the year due to the coronavirus outbreak, Japan’s Olympics minister Seiko Hashimoto has said. Under the terms of Japan’s contractual agreement with the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the Games…

‘If I take risks, I’ll do it caring for patients’: Super Bowl champion opts out of season to help treat Covid-19 patients

Duvernay-Tardif, who was the starting guard for the Chiefs in their 31-20 victory against the San Francisco 49ers at Super Bowl LIV in February, becomes the first player to opt out of the 2020-21 season due to begin in September…

CORONAVIRUS PANDEMICRussian tennis chief Tarpishchev says Medvedev, Rublev returned to on-court trainings

MOSCOW, June 3. /TASS, Andrey Kartashov/. Russian tennis players Daniil Medvedev and Andrey Rublev have returned to their on-court trainings, Shamil Tarpishchev, the president of the Russian Tennis Federation (RTF), told TASS on Wednesday. The Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) and…