Mikel Arteta rued the consequences of an 'unacceptable' performance from his Arsenal side at Crystal Palace and admitted he had not anticipated anything like the 3-0 defeat that raised serious question marks about their top four hopes.

Arsenal were flat all night and got what they deserved against their superior hosts. They remain fifth in the table on goal difference behind Spurs and, while they have a game in hand, they must visit their north London rivals next month.

'We weren’t at the races, especially in the first half,' Arteta said. 'We were late to every ball, we were soft in the duels and we didn’t earn the right to play. 

'We were sloppy on the ball and we didn’t have any dominance, any sequences of play where we could take some control of the game and we conceded two poor goals [before half-time]. Overall it’s unacceptable. We put our hands up, apologise, regroup.'

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