Mikel Arteta joked he had “run out of ideas’ when it came to fixing Arsenal’s disciplinary issues after his side earned a hard-fought 1-0 win over Wolves, despite Gabriel Martinelli’s bizarre sending off.
Gabriel Magalhaes struck from close range to break the deadlock midway through the first half and the Gunners held on to secure three points at Molineux, their third away victory on the bounce in the Premier League.
But the Gunners had to withstand a barrage of late attacks with just 10 men on the field after Martinelli was shown a red card for a pair of bookable offences in the same passage of play with 20 minutes remaining.
Martinelli’s first yellow was for a push on Daniel Podence and his second came after a foul on Chiquinho just seconds later while Wolves broke forward with pace in search of an equaliser.
Arsenal have now had four squad members sent off in 2022 – despite playing just six games since the turn of the year – and Martinelli’s red card is the 15th since Arteta’s tenure began, Metro UK reports.Indiscipline: Arteta ‘runs out of ideas’
Arteta was proud of Thursday’s performance, especially after the sending off, but has warned his team that they must stop going a man down if they want to finish in the top four.
He told BT Sport, “It is tough enough to play against Wolves here away from home, and we made it even tougher playing again with 10 men. The result is really positive, we needed to win, but we suffered in the final 20 minutes.
“The character, how we dig in, the spirit that we showed, how they defended so many difficult situations for such a long time, I am really proud of the boys. When I talk about the unity and the togetherness in the group, this is when it comes and they showed it on the pitch.
“We need to play with 11 players in the final 16 games – that is going to be key to give us the best possible chance for us to win football matches. To win games in the Premier League is hard enough, with 10 men it is very unlikely.”