‘The boys are still fighting’ – Arteta bemoans Arsenal’s bad luck after defeat at Everton

The Gunners have failed to win any of their last seven Premier League games and sit just above the relegation zone

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta is adamant his players are ”absolutely still fighting’ after a 2-1 defeat to Everton on Saturday, which intensified the Gunners’ on-field crisis.

Arteta’s men went to Goodison Park without a win in their previous six Premier League outings, a run which has seen them plummet down the standings.

And there was to be no improvement on Merseyside as the Gunners went down once again.

Everton took the lead after 22 minutes when Arsenal captain Rob Holding deflected the ball past Bernd Leno.

And while Nicolas Pepe levelled from the penalty spot, Yerry Mina appeared on the stroke of half-time to restored the Toffees’ lead, which despite Arsenal’s best efforts they maintained until full-time.

The north Londoners could now fall as low as 16th by the end of the weekend, while a win for Burnley on Monday would leave them perilously close to the relegation zone over Christmas.

But despite this latest setback, Arteta insisted that his squad were showing the necessary commitment to end their run of bad results.

“Without conceding much we lost the game on two key moments,” the manager explained to Sky Sports after the final whistle.

“We reacted really well. We dominated the game. We created enough chances at least to not lose. We hit the bar. We don’t have the luck.

“We are in a big fight. We lost against Burnley without them having a shot on target, and now we lose because of a couple of chances.

“It’s really difficult when you play a team who are defending low and wasting time. We make it difficult for ourselves conceding the first goal.

“I think we had 15 shots but only two on target. We need to improve our rate, that’s the reality.

“We need to generate more to win football matches. When it comes to small details, the other team wants it more.

“The boys are absolutely still fighting. They’re hurt right now.”

Arsenal are back in action on Boxing Day, when they host Chelsea at the Emirates Stadium before they face Brighton and then West Brom away from home during the festive period.