'They were conceding goals' - Jamie Carragher rubbishes William Saliba 'myth' as Sky pundit dissects Arsenal's title collapse
- Saliba has been out since March
- Arsenal's form has suffered without him
- Carragher dismisses injury as reason behind decline
WHAT HAPPENED? Saliba has been out since mid-March with injury, with the Gunners struggling to replace the Frenchman in the centre of their defence. They've dropped points in five of their nine Premier League matches since Saliba was sidelined but Carragher believes his absence has not been the sole factor in the title swinging towards Manchester City.
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WHAT THEY SAID: "Defensively, that's been the massive drop-off," Carragher said on Sky Sports' Monday Night Football when asked why Arsenal's title bid has failed. "When you think of title winners, you go through players in my position: Vincent Kompany, Virgil van Dijk, Nemanja Vidic, Rio Ferdinand, Jaap Stam, John Terry.
"When I look at Arsenal's centre-backs, I don't think they've quite got one of those yet - even though Saliba may become that. With Saliba, they were still top of the league, but this idea that they weren't conceding goals, or looking vulnerable, with Saliba at centre-back is a myth."
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Arsenal's form has been patchy of late, but City have embarked on a stunning 11-match winning run in the league and are now odds-on to lift a third successive title under Pep Guardiola. Arsenal look set to finish a rather distant second.
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WHAT NEXT? Arsenal conclude their season with a trip to Nottingham Forest this weekend before a final home game against Wolves.