Nicolas Pepe has quickly deleted an Instagram post in which he joked “we are staying up” after Arsenal’s 1-0 win over Norwich on Saturday.
A Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang tap-in helped the Gunners to their first win of the season but mocking chants could be heard around the ground, with many poking fun at Arsenal’s lowly league position.
Pepe appeared to echo the sentiment in his Instagram post but it was removed shortly after the Ivorian uploaded it, presumably following advice from his entourage.
The message from Aubameyang post-match was much more sincere, with the Gunners captain having held ‘crisis talks’ with the squad following the 5-0 defeat to Manchester City.
“For some people it’s only 3 points – for us it means a bit more,” he said on Instagram. “When we loose as players we are the first to be sad and touched inside.
“We are human beings which is why you can now see the happiness in the pictures – and now we need to keep going and keep this happiness thanks to all the fans today, you gave us the extra push!”
Mikel Arteta, meanwhile, has hailed the past fortnight as the best of his career after observing the resilience of his players and staff.
“I must say that probably it has been the best 10-15 days I have ever had since I have been in football,” he said.
“I am not saying that they were the easiest, but probably the best. Because you have to find a purpose, why you do what you do and why you have made the decision to become a football player, a coach.
“It is about the relationships that we have built, it’s about the level of trust that everybody at the club has, the connections.
“Emotionally, how players react, how everybody in the team, and I am talking about any department at the club, supports, follows and tries to be positive around the situation. You have to win football matches but it is a joy to watch how everyone was behaving around the context that we had around.
“I got pretty emotional to see that because I think it is pretty difficult to see football and people maybe were expecting something, they want to go another road – try to transmit hate or whatever – it wasn’t the case at all. So, thank you so much.”