Mikel Arteta admits he must “take the bullets” for Arsenal’s poor form and has urged his players to put their bodies on the line to arrest the Gunners’ slump.
Arsenal went down 1-0 at home to Burnley on Sunday to record their third successive loss in the Premier League.
Arteta’s side have won just one of their last eight games in the competition and lie 15th in the table – just five points above the relegation zone.
The Gunners’ form has led to questions over Arteta’s future – just 12 months after he replaced Unai Emery – and he knows he must accept the criticism coming his way.
He said: “This is our reality right now and we have to face it by being brave, fighting and no one giving up. It’s not time to hide – it’s time to put your face and your body on the line.
“At the moment, I’m sorry, but we have to take the bullets. We are not winning football matches and you have to put your chest there. Hit me, because you have the right to hit me because we are not winning.
“What else can I do? Put my head down, work harder, and try to improve.
It’s natural. I accept it and it’s part of the job. When you are not getting results, it’s the manager who has maximum responsibility. That’s why I accept because you can say whatever you want to explain, but at the end, you have to win football matches.
“This club is too big to accept this many losses in the last weeks. My chest is here – hit me, guys.”