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EXCLUSIVE: Arsenal legend Dixon highlights Emery flaw that is holding the Gunners back

PUBLISHED: 13:45 02 November 2019 | UPDATED: 13:45 02 November 2019

Arsenal manager Unai Emery on the touchline during the Premier League match at the Emirates Stadium, London. Picture: Nigel French/PA

Arsenal manager Unai Emery on the touchline during the Premier League match at the Emirates Stadium, London. Picture: Nigel French/PA

PA Wire/PA Images

Arsenal legend Lee Dixon thinks Unai Emery's failure to change tactics during games is behind the Gunners' struggles this season, but believes it is too early to call for the Spaniard's head.

Arsenal manager Unai Emery on the touchline during the Premier League match at the Emirates Stadium, London. Picture: Nigel French/PAArsenal manager Unai Emery on the touchline during the Premier League match at the Emirates Stadium, London. Picture: Nigel French/PA

Despite losing just twice in the Premier League this season, Arsenal's performances have led to plenty of dissatisfaction among supporters, with many calling for Emery to go.

A lack of goals and defensive struggles have been the focal point of anger, with the Gunners scoring the same number of goals (15) as 15th placed Aston Villa and conceding one less (14) than 17th placed Newcastle.

Dixon believes that the problems have been caused by Emery's inability to change tactics at important moments during games, while also highlighting the midfield as an area of concern.

Speaking exclusively to Islington Gazette Arsenal reporter Dan Mountney, Dixon said: "There's definitely a transition period going on at the club, there's no doubt about that, and it's not just personnel, but ideas and mentality.

"But, there comes a time that if the team are still making the same mistake and if the tactics aren't working in the game then that has to change.

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"In some of the games I've sat there and said 'that has to change', like the narrow midfield wasn't working against Watford and against Liverpool.

"Giving away too many chances is the be all and end all for me as a defender and the same mistake and same gaps in midfield keep happening. "It's not just a defensive issue it's a team mentality issue.

"He (Emery) has got to change that and I'm waiting for the manager to instil a defensive style and keeping the ball away from the net."

Dixon doesn't think that Emery should be sacked just yet though, adding: "I thought I had worked Emery out, what his style was.

"When he first came there was obviously an increased energy level on pressing and a lack of organisation.

"It's kind of gone a bit cold at the moment.

"He's been there a year and a half now, so we are still in a position where the manager should be given time, at least two to three years in my book.

"The clock is ticking at the moment, it always is at this level, but I still think it's early to talk about Emery out."

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