Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has revealed that despite being knocked out of the UEFA Champions League by Monaco, the French side do not deserve to be in the last eight.
Going into the game, Arsenal had to score at least three away goals if they wanted to progress into the next round and they got the crucial first goal in the 36th minute after Olivier Giroud found the back of the net from close range. The Gunners pressed for the second goal but had to wait until the 79th minute when Aaron Ramsey scored. From then on, they probed for the third tie-clinching goal but were denied by Monaco’s defense.
When Wenger was asked if Monaco deserved their entry into the next round, he replied, “I don’t believe so. If you look at the number of shots on target they had you will be surprised. Every defeat hurts but we didn’t lose.”
After facing tough opponents in the round of 16 games for the last five years, this was supposed to be Arsenal’s easier game if you like. However, the Londoners bottled it in the first leg which has cost them dearly. “I would take it separately from the other years. The overall situation is very disappointing but if you look at the game tonight it is very positive. This game is in line with what we have done recently.”
“We paid for not producing the performance we wanted in the first game but this time Monaco played at home, had zero shots on target and go through to the quarter-finals,” Wenger said.
Wenger also added that despite the loss and subsequent exit, Arsenal’s season isn’t over yet as they are doing well in the league and have a good chance of retaining the FA Cup that they won last season, “I am realistic enough to know that every season is different and we will judge it at the end of the season.
“Tonight we didn’t have a disappointing performance. We want to take this performance into the rest of the season.”
Despite his manager’s comments, defender Per Mertesacker said that Monaco deserved to go through after their first leg performance, “The best team went through. Monaco deserved it because they played much better in the first leg.
“We came here and tried absolutely everything. We could have scored more than two. We regret the first game.”