Robin van Persie ‘surprised’ by Arsenal errors

Arsenal captain Robin van Persie has spoken of his displeasure at the club’s disappointing start to the season.

The Gunners have lost three of their opening five league matches to leave them one place above the bottom three.

“It just frustrates me and it is happening too often,” Van Persie told the Arsenal website. “Every time we start positively we keep making the same mistakes and that is surprising.”

But the striker insisted there is still time to turn their fortunes around.

Arsene Wenger’s side slumped to a 4-3 defeat at Blackburn on Saturday, with both Alex Song and Laurent Koscielny turning the ball into their own net.

That came three weeks after the 8-2 thrashing by Manchester United and the Netherlands forward spoke of the need to improve sooner rather than later.

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Some of their tactical play is still the best in the league

George Graham Former Arsenal manager

He commented: “Even before the game on Saturday I said to the boys ‘today is a big, big day’. We have to get back-to-back wins, and we just cannot do that at the moment.

“That is our aim for the next couple of games, we have to win them after each other.

“We just need a couple of good weeks in the Premier League where we get a lot of points, and hopefully we can start next week against Bolton.

“There is lots of time [left this season], but at some point you need to pick yourself up and prove what you are capable of. We are not doing that at the moment and are not consistent enough.”

With Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasri leaving Emirates Stadium during the summer transfer window, Wenger had little time to replace them, though he did bring in Mikel Arteta from Everton, Andre Santos from Fenerbahce and Werder Bremen’s Per Mertesacker shortly before the deadline.

Arsenal’s next five Premier League fixtures

  • 24 Sept – Bolton (h)
  • 2 Oct – Tottenham (a)
  • 16 Oct – Sunderland (h)
  • 23 Oct – Stoke (h)
  • 29 Oct – Chelsea (a)

Former Gunners manager George Graham, who led his Arsenal side to two league titles, told BBC Radio 5 live: “They left it late to bring in these players so he’s not had time to work with the players he’s brought in.

“Some of their tactical play is still the best in the league and even against Blackburn, their possession play was fantastic.

“Arsene’s been there for 15 years and this is probably going to be the toughest period. In the past he’s brought in players who are good players and turned them into world-class players.

“Now the jury is out. Can the players he has brought in recently turn out to be as good as the ones from his past?”

Arsenal take on League Two side Shrewsbury in the third round of the Carling Cup on Tuesday night.

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