‘Tooting his horn’: Neville doubles down on criticism of ’emotional’ Arsenal man

Zinchenko criticised for being too emotiona

Gary Neville has doubled down on his criticism of Arsenal left-back Oleksandr Zinchenko after being challenged repeatedly on Twitter by Gunners fans.

Neville was quite passionate on Monday Night Football when talking about how Arsenal let their substantial lead slip over the last seven games, when they picked up only nine points from a possible 21.

He traced the problems right back to early March, when the Ukrainian celebrated a late win over Bournemouth wildly.

“I always doubted whether this Arsenal team, looking at some of the things that were happening; the over-celebrations against Aston Villa,” said Neville on Sky Sports.

“I look at little things that might be a little bit harsh. Zinchenko after the game against Bournemouth celebrating an hour after the game with the fans and screaming.

“You want your leaders in the team who have been there before to spread composure around the dressing room and to calm everybody down, you don’t want them to lift the anxiety and lift the emotion.

“There is an element of emotion; Xhaka at Anfield, [Thomas] Partey losing his form in games and getting caught on the ball in difficult moments.

“It has become very tough on them mentally. I think mentally it has caused them a big issue in the last few weeks.”

Neville has been challenged for that theory on Twitter as Arsenal beat Fulham, Crystal Palace and Leeds with ease after that Bournemouth win.

But he was back on Tuesday morning to explain his theory, claiming: “If he was tooting his horn 15 games out after beating Bournemouth , calling huddles 6 games out v the bottom of the league I’m filling in the blanks of what was going on behind the scenes!!!

“I’ve seen it before from emotional teams! The experience I’m talking from isn’t just from winning titles! I lost 4/5 title races as well. Some emotions aren’t positive ones for a group even if they look it!”

He then asked “How many fan channels have Arsenal got?” after being hit with a barrage of abuse for his views on Arsenal over the last few months of the season, when he has repeatedly said they would be caught.

Neville did praise Arteta’s side for finishing as high as second behind an incredible City team, especially after he did not expect them to finish in the top four before the season got underway.

“We never had them in the top four, our predictions are there for everyone to see,” he added.

“I think this is an exceptional season for Arsenal to finish second because I didn’t have them anywhere near this and neither did anybody else.

“The problem for some people is ultimately it doesn’t look like a good season because of where they’ve been.

“They’ll find it difficult themselves to think this a good season because they’ll think they should’ve won the league.

“Overall, I think it’s been an outstanding season to do what they’ve done.”

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