Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang had given the Gunners a 2-0 lead against the Hornets as they looked comfortable at half-time.
However, the second half was an entirely different story as the home side dominated the contest, with Tom Cleverley and Roberto Pereyra scoring to win a point for Quique Sanchez Flores on his first match back in charge of Watford.
The Hornets had fantastic chances to win the game, with Abdoulaye Doucoure spurning a great opportunity, and Xhaka admits that Arsenal were happy with just a point by the end of the 90 minutes.
Disappointed of course, we paid for the second half today, Xhaka told Sky Sports. We have a good first half, played very well, together, we had a good balance between offence and defence.
We score, 2-0 up, you go to the dressing room and everything is good, everyone is happy and after you come out and play such a bad second half, and you pay for this one. In the end you have to say we are happy to take the point.
Arsenal faced 31 shots from Watford over the game, more than they have ever faced in a Premier League contest, and Xhaka made the unusual claim that they were scared after half time.
When asked what went wrong in the second half, the Switzerland international replied: Everything, from the first second in the second half until the last we didnt play our game anymore, we were scared.
We knew they would come and push us more than in the first half but in this position we have to show more character, we have to play and not be scared.
We didnt have the character like in the first half, we was too scared in the second half.
They pushed us more than in the first half, but you cannot give a performance like this in the second half.
Sky Sports pundit Graeme Souness agreed that Arsenals senior players did not show the character required in the second half.
Arsenal in that second half were like a semi-pforessional team playing football, by that I mean they were not learning from their mistakes time and time and time again, said the Scot.
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