Per Mertesacker feels that poor results in away games against the current Premier League top three is what killed Arsenal's title hopes this season.
The Gunners spent more time at the top of the Premier League table than any other side this season, but are now battling it out with Everton for a fourth-place finish after a succession of heavy defeats at Liverpool, Manchester City and Chelsea.
And Mertesacker admits the north London outfit 'do not deserve' to be amongst the top three clubs at the end of the season.
"Everyone dreamed about the title, but it takes more than staying on top until the winter period," he is quoted by the Daily Mirror.
"We could not afford [to lose] those big games against big teams, so we did not deserve to be in the first three.
"That is something we have to manage much better next year. The games were all similar, we got caught on the break and that is something we have to look at.
"The away games killed us. We have to learn how to play and how to defend in the first 20 minutes."
However, the Germany international believes Arsenal will learn from their mistakes and that their recent run of form following a 3-0 defeat to Everton shows the battling qualities in the squad."Everyone questioned our qualities but the way we have come back, especially from those away games, as a team makes us stronger for the future," he added.