Arsenal manager, Mikel Arteta, explained his tactical decision to go with a false nine against Villarreal.
The Gunners put in a limp away display in the Europa League semi final first leg versus the Spanish side.
Villarreal raced into a 2-0 lead, before Arsenal got a dubious penalty to give themselves a valuable away goal to take into the second leg at home.
“It’s the way we prepared the game and the decision that I made, thinking that it was the best way to play, but the game was different after four minutes,” Arteta told reporters when asked about not playing a striker.
“So it’s difficult to assess if it would work or not, considering the set pieces as well changed it and after, we have to approach it in a different way.
“The main reason [the system didn’t work] was that after conceding the goal, we disorganised ourselves… We didn’t give ourselves the chance to get set in the final third to do what we wanted to do because we weren’t precise on the ball as well so overall, it was not the best.
“We started the second half with the same players in a completely different way. We played with three strikers sometimes, and we didn’t score any goals many times in the season, so it’s a decision that I made and that’s it.”