Sam Allardyce has told talkSPORT he would fix Arsenal’s defensive woes ‘tomorrow’ if he was appointed as the Gunners’ new manager.
The result means the Gunners have claimed just one win in their last 12 games in all competitions, and have gone six games without a win at home – their longest run since 1995.
It was another day to forget for Freddie Ljungberg, who has guided the north Londoners to just one win from his five games in charge as interim manager.
Although not his fault, the club legend has been unable to get more out of the squad than axed boss Unai Emery had during his ill-fated spell in charge, or improve their leaky defence.
And Sam Allardyce – who was tipped for the Gunners job by Gooner on talkSPORT – says he would quickly firm up their back-four if he was appointed at the struggling club.
And he also pointed out what Ljungberg could do immediately to improve Arsenal results – play top scoring Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang together up front.
“Arsenal have lost their way at the moment,” said the former England boss on Monday’s Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast.
“They need to bond and connect as a squad, somebody needs to get in the dressing room.
“I could come and work on Arsenal’s defence and make them better tomorrow, not a problem whatsoever.
“I’ve done it everywhere I’ve been – Newcastle, Blackburn, Bolton, West Ham Crystal Palace, Everton, I’ve done it all there.
“But what you can’t do is get the front line performing that much better, you’ve got to hope you’ve got good quality players up there, and Arsenal have.”
Lacazette and Aubameyang drew another blank against a top-six side on Sunday, but while the rest of the team has struggled the frontmen have continued to score with 14 goals between them so far this season.
But they have rarely been played as an attacking pair this term, with Aubemeyang often starting as a lone striker and then pushed onto the wing when Lacazette comes in to lead the line.
But Big Sam says Arsenal will get the best out of both players if they are played together.
“The top end of Arsenal is unbelievable,” he said. “Lacazette and Aubameyang are two of the best goalscorers in the Premier League, they proved that last year.
“But you’ve got to get them up front. You’ve got to fit them in and play to strengths, and I’m not so sure they’re doing that at the moment.
“Aubameyang is not a front-up player, he likes to go in behind, he wants to live on the shoulder and have balls played down the side and down the channels with quality.
“You’ve got to go 4-4-2 or play a back-three and go 3-5-2. You’ve got to get them up front.”
The defeat to City leaves Arsenal as close to the relegation zone as they are to the top four and also leaves Ljungberg’s position unclear.
The club are said to be on the hunt for a long-term successor to Emery, with the likes of Carlo Ancelotti, Mikel Arteta and Patrick Vieira in the running alongside the former Sweden international.
Ancelotti was installed as the top favourites last week after he was sacked by Italian club Napoli.
But Allardyce told talkSPORT: “I’m not so sure Ancelotti would want it.
“A manager of his calibre would look at the quality of the squad and wouldn’t want to put his own reputation and career at that much risk.”