Theo Walcott apologised to Arsenal supporters for the team’s abject performance in Monday’s 3-0 loss to Crystal Palace, saying “we’ve let them down tonight.”
Walcott admitted that Palace simply wanted it more than the Gunners, who fell to their fourth straight away league loss for the first time under Arsene Wenger and further away from a top four finish.
“The biggest thing is letting the fans down tonight. We all did. That’s not Arsenal at all,” Walcott told Sky Sports after the game. “We’ve let them down tonight, and we need to respond. And that’s only going to come from hard work in training.”
Palace took the lead through Andros Townsend in the first half and Yohan Cabaye then doubled the lead after the break with a perfect lofted finish over stand-in goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez. Luka Milivojevic finished off a well deserved win for Palace from the penalty spot, and the game ended with Arsenal’s away fans chanting “you’re not fit to wear the shirt.”
And Walcott said it’s now up to the players to prove them wrong.
“Obviously everyone is entitled to an opinion, we don’t have a problem with that,” he said. “We want to try do a job, we don’t go out there to lose a game of course.
“We try to work the best we can. Tonight it just didn’t happen. All we can do is apologise for that performance tonight.
The loss ruined whatever momentum Arsenal had built up with a 2-2 draw against Manchester City and 3-0 win over West Ham last Wednesday. And Walcott feared the team’s confidence will now take a hit again.
“I think they just wanted it more. You could tell they wanted it more. You could sense that from the kickoff. It was an uphill battle towards the end there,” the forward said.
“Like I said before, this isn’t Arsenal at this moment time. We felt we had gotten out of that little patch, and hopefully we haven’t been dragged right back into it. But judging from that performance tonight, it looks like [we have].”