In the 2023–24 Premier League season, the Gunners went to St. James’ Park as one of only two undefeated teams. The other team was their bitter rival, Tottenham Hotspur, whom they had the opportunity to pass with all three points against Eddie Howe’s squad.
But in extremely controversial circumstances, Arteta’s team lost for the first time this top-flight season as a second-half goal by Anthony Gordon ended a fierce match in the North East.
Though Arsenal anticipated the linesman’s flag to be raised to indicate the ball was out of play, Joe Willock just avoided terminating the attack before hitting a cross into the box, therefore Gordon’s winner was tainted by dispute.
Gordon, who was judged to have been onside, was there to smash home from a few yards out after Joelinton appeared to nudge fellow countryman Gabriel Magalhaes in the back as he headed the ball down into the six-yard box.
Gordon’s goal was awarded after three different VAR reviews, and in the remaining time, Arsenal, who were without their top creative Martin Odegaard because of an injury, had nothing to say.
Kai Havertz and Bruno Guimaraes both avoided a red card in the first half, with the former receiving a yellow for a careless charge on Sean Longstaff and Guimaraes appearing to elbow Jorginho in the head, before Gordon’s crucial effort.
After the loss at St. James’ Park, an enraged Arteta called the way his team lost a “disgrace” and said he was “sick” and “embarrassed” by the standard of Premier League referees.
In a sharply worded club statement, Arsenal defended their manager and blasted the “unacceptable” standards of Premier League officiating in the midst of a wave of controversial VAR rulings this season.
The Spanish player ran the risk of getting into hot water with the FA, who have since accused him of making “insulting” remarks that could “disrepute” the game. He has until next Tuesday to answer.
“Mikel Arteta has been charged with a breach of FA Rule E3.1 following comments that he made in media interviews after Arsenal’s Premier League game against Newcastle United on Saturday 4 November,” said a statement.
According to the allegations, his remarks are improper because they are derogatory to match officials, harmful to the game, and/or reflect poorly on the sport. Mikel Arteta has until Tuesday, November 21, to address the accusation.”
Tottenham ended the Premier League season with the best undefeated record after Arsenal’s 4-1 loss at St. James’ Park, but the Lilywhites quickly lost their own winning run to Chelsea (4–1).
Following their defeat at Newcastle, the Gunners bounced back with consecutive home victories over Sevilla and Burnley to secure third place in the Premier League standings.
They are now tied with Liverpool and one point behind Manchester City ahead of their November 25 trip to Brentford.