David Moyes felt Sunderland "didn't deserve to lose 4-1" when Arsenal put on a masterclass at the Stadium of Light.
The Black Cats boss saw his side concede three goals inside seven desperate minutes to go down to their eighth top-flight defeat in 10 matches - the equal worst start in Premier League history - as the Gunners went top.
Jermain Defoe had given Sunderland hope when his 65th-minute penalty cancelled out Alex Sanchez first-half opener.
But Arsene Wenger brought on Olivier Giroud and his first goals of the season, in the 72nd and 76th minutes, turned the match back Arsenal's way with Sanchez adding his second two minutes later.
Moyes told Sky Sports 1: "I think it was tough and I certainly don't think we deserved to lose 4-1.
"We worked hard, really hard to stay in the game first half when Arsenal were very good.
"We stuck at it and I thought we grew into the game second half. And at that point I thought we were the better team when we got back into the game at one each.
"But their quality all over the pitch is always going to cause you a problem."
Sunderland's record of only two points from their first 10 league games matches Manchester City's low, set in 1995-96.
However, Moyes is confident that once some of his injured players return to fitness they have the opportunity to get out of trouble.
Adnan Januzaj returned today, as a second-half sub, though on the flip side they lost skipper John O'Shea before half-time.
Moyes said: "Once we get one or two of the injured players back that will give me a few more options.
"We were quite limited today to what we could do and the changes we could make so hopefully we get a few of those players back and that will give us a better chance, different selections and different formations as well.
"The message is the players are giving everything they can.
"You can see that today. It wasn't for the lack of effort or the lack of trying. They played against a team with good quality."