Arsenal can't blame injuries for Liverpool demolition, says Leno

The goalkeeper had to pick the ball out of his net five times on Saturday, but says his team only have themselves to blame for their humiliation

Arsenal cannot use injuries as an excuse for their 5-1 humiliation at the hands of Liverpool on Saturday, insists goalkeeper Bernd Leno.

Unai Emery’s men were without several players for the Premier League clash at Anfield, as a knee injury to Mesut Ozil saw the attacking midfielder added to the list of absentees which already included Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Hector Bellerin and Danny Welbeck, among others.

Although the north London side took an early lead through 21-year-old Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Jurgen Klopp’s men drew level three minutes later to send them on the way to a resounding victory.

And Leno says his side have no excuse for shipping five goals against their rivals, even though they were without some key players.

“Of course we conceded five goals but I think we as a team made too many mistakes,” Leno told reporters.

“We have enough quality, even when somebody is injured.

“Injuries were not the problem.”

The Germany international stressed that the Gunners only have themselves to blame for weak defending against the Premier League leaders, urging them to bounce back with a win over struggling Fulham in their next game.

“They capitalise on every mistake and turn it into a big chance,” he added. “We made too many of these mistakes.

“Of course we’re disappointed, but tomorrow we have to look forward because we have another important game on Tuesday.

“It’s the first game of the year and on Tuesday we want to beat Fulham at home. We need to win.”

Arsenal, who have picked up four points from their last four games in the English top flight, host Fulham at the Emirates Stadium on January 1.

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