'It really hurts so much' - Bukayo Saka agonises over 'what could have been' for Arsenal after title collapse - but vows the squad is still hungry for trophies
- Arsenal had a meltdown in Premier League title race
- City came from behind to become champions
- Saka admits that it hurts to lose in such fashion
WHAT HAPPENED? The Gunners led the title race for a record 248 days but suffered a dip in form at the business end of the season, which allowed Manchester City to make up lost ground and win the Premier League crown. In fact, they have won just two times in the last five matches, including a 4-1 defeat to champions City, which might be regarded as the final nail in their coffin. Saka has now admitted that the way Arsenal's challenge was derailed was painful, but also vowed to help bring success to the club in the future.
WHAT THEY SAID: “We’re going in the right direction, like this (moving his hand to signify an upward curve). I have seen a lot of change [over the years]. Obviously speaking about this season, it hurts a lot. It really hurts so much to even think about how we’ve ended this season and what could have been. But one thing I can say is, like you said, since the last two or three years that I’ve been playing, I’ve seen this team and the club grow," he said in a sit-down with former Gunners striker Ian Wright.
“Time is on our side. You can look at our team and a lot of the players are young. We’re hungry, and a lot of us haven’t won trophies at Arsenal so we want to achieve big things. If you watch the way we all speak, we want to win and we want to win here."
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Saka, who was awarded a contract extension on Tuesday, had been in incredible form for the bulk of the season, scoring 13 goals and laying 11 assists, which has often made him the target for rough treatment from opposition defenders. However, he insisted that he is "fine" and has what it takes to deal with the physicality of the division.
"Listen, I’m fine. I don’t think you really need to worry about me. I think I have everything in place to be healthy, be on the pitch week in, week out. I’ve been able to play every game this season despite all the games and tackles, and so on and so forth," he added.
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WHAT NEXT? Saka will be in action in the final domestic game of the season on Saturday when the Gunners welcome Wolves to the Emirates Stadium.