Jamie Carragher thinks Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta made the right decision to substitute Nuno Tavares at half-time in their 3-0 loss to Crystal Palace.
The Portuguese left-back replaced Kieran Tierney in the starting XI with the Scotland international ruled out because of a knee injury.
And following a terrible first-half performance from Arsenal, Tavares was hauled off at the interval by Arteta.
Tavares was at fault for Jordan Ayew’s goal with the Portugal under-21 international failing to track the Crystal Palace forward’s run, while Gabriel couldn’t cut out the pass to him.
And Carragher thinks Tavares left Arteta no choice but to subsitute the Arsenal defender at half-time.
“He is at fault for the second goal but it’s not just this goal,” Carragher told Sky Sports.
“They’ve got to bring him off. I think they’ve got to make a change, Arsenal. I’ll be very surprised if he comes out for the second half.
“This is something you’re taught as a young kid, when you’re a defender, you’ve got to think the person next to you is a dummy and a poor player. Tavares stops, Ayew keeps running because he thinks Gabriel’s going to miss it, Tavares thinks he’s going to cut it out, so he stops.”
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Jean-Philippe Mateta and Ayew gave Palace a comfortable lead heading into the break before Wilfried Zaha scored a penalty in the second half to wrap up the match.
And Carragher’s fellow Sky Sports pundit Wayne Rooney criticised Alexandre Lacazette for failing to win the ball back before Ayew’s goal.
“Lacazette’s got to better than that to challenge,” said Rooney.
“It’s a good pass, it’s not a great pass, Ayew’s anticipating Gabriel missing the ball but Tavares isn’t.
“Arsenal were okay, Ayew’s gambled and Tavares has stopped and anticipated Gabriel getting the ball, it’s a huge mistake.”
Meanwhile, Arsenal boss Arteta was annoyed with his side’s performance and called it “unacceptable”.
“Overall, it is unacceptable, we hold our hands up, me the first one and apologise, we regroup, tomorrow is a new day and a new opportunity to start to prepare against Brighton,” the Gunners boss said.
“No, because the pressure has been there for the last seven or eight weeks and we are talking all the time about the race and the top four and this is while they have been performing extremely well, getting results and playing well.
“Today we didn’t perform and it is as simple as that. We were second best in every department, especially in the first half.”
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