Freddie Ljungberg said he told Arsenal’s players they needed to show pride after a dismal first half against Manchester City.
The Gunners were beaten 3-0 at home and all the goals were scored in a one-sided first half.
It was a difficult experience for interim boss Ljungberg, who had the tough task of preparing the players for a second half when the game was clearly already lost.
Speaking at his post-match press conference, he said: “I must say, to get 3-0 down against a team like City that can play so well with their possession, it’s tough.
“What I said to the players at half-time was ‘I know this is hard, especially against City’ – because I believe Liverpool and City are in a league of their own at the moment in the league.
“But I said ‘This is about pride. You have to go out and show it in the second half. I know it’s going to be difficult for you guys to win 4-3, but there should absolutely be no chance to score another goal’.
“We tried to at least impose ourselves a little bit. It was hard. City kept possession well.
“We did as well, sometimes. They understood the gameplan of trying to keep the ball.
“We tried to change it and tried to open them up a little bit, but we were not dangerous enough.”