A win at Everton on Sunday would have put us three points clear of fifth-placed Chelsea with six games of the Premier League season remaining.
But Phil Jagielka’s early goal at Goodison Park consigned us to defeat, leaving us ahead of Maurizio Sarri’s side on goal difference only.
We’ve taken only 19 of our 63 points this season on the road but, with four of our final six games taking place away from Emirates Stadium, Unai Emery is calling on his team to find consistency in the closing stages of the campaign.
“We know it’s going to be difficult and that we are going to have to take opportunities like today,” Emery said in his post-match press conference.
“It was a good opportunity to take three points today and continue [in third] in the table, but after the result we are fourth. “We need to be consistent in 38 matches but we lost that consistency today. We will have more chances, more opportunities in the next matches. It depends on us and also on other teams. After this result, we can be negative because it’s three points lost, but it’s in our hands to continue to take chances to be in the top four.
“Today we had two different halves. In the first half we were consistent and we didn’t concede good chances to them, but they scored from one throw-in, unfortunately for us. In the attacking third, we really needed more. If the result was like we deserved in the first half… we couldn’t continue like that in the second half. We needed to take chances in the attacking half. In the second half we decided to change and play with a 4-3-2-1. “Defensively, we lost consistency in the second half. They created more chances in the second half. We created better chances than in the first, but we couldn’t score and they also didn’t.
“We need this balance in the first and second half, we need to do it better offensively and defensively with the balance. It gives us lots of information. We lost a great opportunity today to take three points.”
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