Mertesacker – We Were Awful

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Having crashed out of the FA Cup yesterday at the third round stage for the first time under Arsene Wenger, Arsenal captain Per Mertesacker reflected on our loss to Nottingham Forest.

Losing out four two on the day at the City Ground, there were few highpoints if any in reality and our skipper and soon to be Academy Manager wasn’t about to pull any punches.

Speaking to the Official Site as he met with the media following the game, he felt no one had ‘justified their selection’ on the back of that performance.

Asked to sum up the game.

‘It`s pretty easy. The manager made a lot of changes, gave a lot of trust to players who haven`t played a lot recently and I don`t think anybody justified their selection today. That sums it up I think.’

Pressed further on the game and the woeful showing, he went on to explain.

‘It`s difficult. In the first half we played in the park a little bit. We were not precise, especially in the final third. We couldn`t create a lot of chances. In the second half there was a little bit more spirit from ourselves, but in the duels you could see that they out-battled us and that little momentum never really changed. When we scored to make it 3-2 and when he mis-kicked the penalty, obviously we expressed it to the ref but he didn`t listen. It`s difficult to take because for those players who played today, that was probably a last chance to show up and show the manager that they`re ready to play more games. It`s not the case anymore.’

The penalty issue also irked him and he was adamant in response.

‘Yes it was a double contact. It would`ve been a free-kick for us. You could clearly see it, that`s why we shouted to the referee. He didn`t have any explanation and that`s on him. They obviously spoke to each other, and nobody saw the incident. David saw it and all the players did too.’

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