Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said his side have to “forget the title race” after their 2-1 defeat by north London rivals Tottenham.
Danny Rose opened the scoring with a thunderous volley just 10 minutes into his Premier League debut before Gareth Bale doubled Spurs’ lead just after half-time.
Although Nicklas Bendtner pulled one back for Arsenal late, Spurs held on thanks to several impressive saves by goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes.
The defeat left the Gunners six points behind league leaders Chelsea with just four games left.
“We must forget the title race and try to finish as high as we can,” he said. “It’s unlikely but you never know.
“It shows that we’re not mature enough because you can’t afford to lose these games if you want to win the league.”
“Our job is to fight and we will do that. But even if they drop points we are far (behind).”
Arsenal had been unbeaten in their last eight league matches, earning 22 points out of a possible 24, a run which had put the Gunners in with a chance of winning their first league title since 2004.
“We have made progress this season but had too many players missing tonight,” said Wenger, who welcomed Robin Van Persie back to his substitutes’ bench.
“You need a miracle to make it happen like that. Tonight our weaknesses were exposed.
“We’ll continue to fight but even a point wasn’t enough from tonight – we needed three points.”
The Gunners lost Thomas Vermaelen to injury in the first half and Wenger revealed the Belgian defender had suffered a calf strain which is expected to keep him out for three weeks.