Santi Cazorla says a lack of maturity throughout the team has led to Arsenal making their poorest start to a season under manager Arsene Wenger.
The Gunners are already 18 points behind league leaders Manchester United, and were knocked out of the Capital One Cup quarter final by League Two side Bradford City on Tuesday.
And although the north Londoners have made it through to the knockout stages of the Champions League, Cazorla admits that the picture could be far more rosy for the Emirates Stadium club if they could string together a run of positive results.
“We haven’t been consistent,” the former Malaga man told reporters ahead of his side’s visit to Reading on Monday night.
“There have been games where we haven’t been mature enough as a team and haven’t held onto the positive results. We are hoping to make up some ground.”
The Gunners midfield has been boosted by the long-awaited return to full fitness of youngster Jack Wilshere, and Cazorla says he is relishing the chance to line up with the England international, and fellow countryman Mikel Arteta.
“I am very comfortable with where the manager positions me, support striker, with the freedom I like to have,” he added.
“The team also plays a type of football which suits me very well and I take on more responsibility every day.”