Same old Arsenal, always frustrating.
The Gunners have made so much progress recently, with the young protagonists at the forefront of their rejuvenation making their recovery from a woeful start to the season that little bit sweeter.
A first defeat in eight league games last week can be written off as one of those VAR days, with decisions like David Luiz's sending off having the potential to go against anyone this season, given the glaring ineptitude of those official watching from afar in Stockley Park.
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But this second loss in the space of four days, against a Villa side who had won two of their last eight as they dealt with a corornavirus outbreak at the club, tells us a great deal more about where Arsenal are at, and the sizeable task Mikel Arteta still has ahead of him.
This is a very good Aston Villa team, who are as well organised as any side in the Premier League, so it is no shame to lose to Dean Smith's men, but the lack of intensity in the final third, having worked so hard to find that spark and get the chemistry right up front, will leave Arsenal fans watching from a far banging their head's against the wall again.
It wasn't calamitous. There were no Arsenal performances to get the blood boiling. There was just very little, at all, in terms of a cutting edge in the final third, or even any desire to turn things around, despite a wealth of attacking talent being on the pitch at the end.
These are not the sort of games for Alexandre Lacazette. When things are going well, the Frenchman is a wonderful asset to any club, possessing boundless ability and a finesse in front of goal that cannot be taught. But games when you really have to be proactive, take games by the scruff of the neck, are not Lacazatte's bag.
No shots, on or off target, and zero touches in the Villa penalty area was Lacazette's output on Saturday afternoon. For a man that has averaged over four and a half touches per game in the opposition's box in the Premier League this season, and more than that in the Gunners' recent resurgence, that is immensely disappointing, and so frustrating for Arteta.
There was decent service from Bukayo Saka, and the much-improved Nicolas Pepe was doing everything he could to engineer a chance, but when you have nothing to aim at, their efforts were always going to be in vain.
If Ollie Watkins was playing for the opposite team, the result would have been very different indeed. Playing in the same lone-striker role as Lacazette, Watkins had four shots at goal, often engineered himself, three of which were on target.
A look at the running stats from the match gives an even clearer picture of the contrast in effort and intensity from the two strikers. Watkins completed 20 sprints compared to Lacazette's seven, while the Villa hitman covered 10.85km in the match, whereas a static and ineffective Lacazette covered 6.45km.
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Yes, these are different strikers in terms of their style of play, and even role in the side, despite their similar position. While Lacazette did not finish the match, the numbers still do not make for pleasant reading, with such a disparity in terms of the application the difference between victory and defeat at Villa Park.
Lacazette was not alone. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang offered very little when he came on, as did Willian, who is fast becoming the target for frustrated fans' ire. Pepe and Saka will have better games, but at least they had a go.
This is a Villa team on the up, so you really have to be on your game if you are going to get anything from a trip to the Midlands. The effort Arsenal put in, especially in the area where it matters most, was never going to bear any fruit at all.
It is back to the drawing board for a manager whose powers of motivation are needed to get the Gunners' strikeforce firing again.
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