The beauty of cup football came to the forefront once again on Tuesday, as the mighty Arsenal FC bowed out of the Capital One Cup to minnows Sheffield Wednesday.
Cup football, with its endless list of upsets, has never been a letdown in surprises and on Tuesday, a new game made its way in the long lists of upsets as the match between Arsenal and Sheffield Wenesday made its way in folklore.
Arsenal FC made a trip to the north to play Sheffield Wednesday on the back of two impressive victories that saw them resurrect their staggering UEFA Champions League campaign, as well as maintaining pressure on early season league leaders, Manchester City. But a crowd of 35,065 remained witness as the Gunners were taught a lesson in attacking football, as well as raising question on the mental resolve of Arsenal players that the manager Arsene Wenger had praised after the victory over Everton.
Wegner, though, was more worried about injuries than a defeat with tough match coming up ahead that could very well define their season.
“The injuries are two muscular injuries and we have to make the scan and wait 48 hours to see how bad the damage is,” Wenger was qoted saying in the press conference by ESPN FC
a It was a bad night at the office. We lost the two players and after that we were not good enough. We have a big game on Saturday, a game at Bayern [Munich] coming up and already we are short, so to lose two offensive players is damaging for us.a
Wenger admitted that he would have savoured a victory against Sheffield Wednesday but rued about the squad’s depth.
“Ideally, I would have loved to win tonight but it is true that with the squad we have now, we cannot deal with all the competitions. I have to manage the workload of the players at the moment. I still think I brought too many experienced players here because we lost two players, and once I lost two players I had Gabriel and [Nacho] Monreal on the bench. I didn’t bring them on because I couldn’t afford to lose any more players.”
Mental Resolve .
Last week Wenger had praised Arsenal for their mental resolve over the two consecutive victories, but losing to a club ranked 26 places below will surely bring back the questions on the mental resolve. Arsenal FC, in recent seasons under Wenger, have fizzled out after showing initial promise and the fans, as well as the players would be wary of that.