Even if I had seen a vision that Brighton would come to the Emirates and pick all three points, I'd have fought and laughed it off, but here we are, barely 24 hours after the game, The Seagulls licked their lips out of North London with three points.

I wonder why we had to wait till the final seconds to see the hunger of a team that had something to play for. It was indeed too little too late.

I must first commend Arteta for realizing that Nuno Tavares was not an option at that left back position. His 45 minutes against Palace caused us more harm than we have faced in the last month. Losing Tierney for the rest of the season is a big blow. Xhaka, though not a fast player, was a lesser evil and he did fairly well, albeit, I think he was found wanting for Brighton's first goal.

We didn't start the game like a team that had just lost a match they were meant to win and one seeking an instance response. We started like a disjointed unit. Brighton weren't better either and both sides complemented each other's poor start.

Just when Arsenal were beginning to pull things together, that Brighton goal threw everything in the trenches. Xhaka was caught out of place, high up the pitch and the opening was well taken advantage of by Mwepu, who was arguably Brighton's best player on the day. I think he deserved the Man of the Match award.

Aside from Xhaka's poor positioning, an overall poor defensive outlay was responsible for that first goal. This is where I miss Thomas Partey. There was no one checking the run of Trossard, who was coming in behind and Mwepu finely picked him out. Trossard didn't disappoint and confidently hit the top corner.

Immediately Partey went off in that game against Palace, I knew Arsenal were in for it. I wrote a post two months ago, you can read it here. There, I noted that if Arsenal were to finish the season strong, two players were vital to that; one of them, Thomas Partey, the other, Granit Xhaka. This is very glaring. They balance and solidity that Partey brings to that middle, which allows Xhaka venture forward and relieves the Swiss of chances of causing costly errors, gives the forward players confident to thrive.

Again, I don't see Lokonga as a player who's ready for the Premier League. He's very light on the ball and doesn't guard his ball well. He was caught napping a number of times, just like he's always been caught almost everytime he gets to play.

Yesterday, there was no one linking the defence to the attack, which is what Partey does perfectly. Even when in tight corners, we've seen how the Ghanaian is able to manoeuvre himself out of such positions. There was no one tracking the third man run into the box. There was no one breaking the opposition's attack. Odegaard couldn't roam in front freely liked he'd normally do because he had to provide support for Lokonga in an unusual role. Simply, having Xhaka and Partey out of that midfield cost us that game. I'd prefer Arteta plays Elneny instead of Lokonga. I'm tired of seeing mediocrity.

The Martinelli disallowed goal on the stroke of half time could have given Arsenal the needed lift going into the break, but it was painfully disallowed. That was a clean goal. Yes, I get it was very close and took time to be decided, Cucurella's leg was left behind Martinelli, which played him onside. There was seemingly no concrete evidence that he was offside after almost four minutes of review. I'm almost sure they took a guess or flipped a coin to make that decision. A very poor call, but it's Arsenal, anything goes.

Talking about Cucurella, I wonder how he ended that game without a yellow card for the numerous fouls he committed. The one on Saka in the first half on the touchline was not less illegal that the foul that got Odegaard booked. Teams get away easily with things that Arsenal get punished for.

Credit to Mwepu for that second goal. I think Saka also needs to learn techniques like that because he had a similar opportunity at the other end just before Brighton's second goal. That goal would have been the turning point in the game. A shot like that should be put through your laces, not your inside foot. I want to believe that he'd have learnt from that.

I never believe this day would come when I'd call for Lacazette to be dropped. It's either he's not interested in playing for Arsenal anymore or he just has lost his quality. I've always made a case for him and wanted him to play even ahead of Aubameyang, but he has repeatedly shown that he's only good when the team is good and when we're down and need a leader, he's not up to the task. For the second game in a row, Nketiah came on and had more impact in 28 minutes than the current Arsenal captain had in 90.

I don't know if Nketiah is playing to get himself another contract or to sell himself, he's shown in the last couple of games that he deserves to start maybe the next game. He was very unlucky not to have scored with that incredible diving header.

Saka and Smith Rowe didn't have a good game for the first time in almost forever. Odegaard was frustrated having to play in a deeper role and he deserved the goal, even though it took a deflection off Danny Welbeck. I still wonder though why he had to try playing in Martinelli with a free kick in range for goal rather than go himself. We saw what he could do when he hit the bar with the subsequent kick.

Arsenal is crumbling and they look to have returned to their default mode; bottling when it matters most. Issues were not helped by Tottenham's 4-0 win at Aston Villa and we now sit three points behind our city rivals and they have a better goal difference, even though we have two matches in hand against their own one, one of which is against them. That rescheduled game against Spurs will determine who finishes in that final Champions League spot, albeit, their respective positions as at then would play a big role.

A part of me is giving up already on this top four battle. These performances are not encouraging We've got nothing to lose even if we finish outside the Champions League place, but I'd stay hopeful till the end.