Wenger concedes that his side were outfought at the Britannia Stadium.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has admitted that his side were ‘soft’ and ‘inexperienced’ at the back after they were humbled by Stoke City at the Britannia Stadium, report the Mirror, with the Gunners having lost the game 3-2 in the end – although the final scoreline could’ve been much harsher on Wenger and his side after they fell 3-0 behind before half time.
Arsenal player ratings Stoke
The Gunners have been found wanting both physically and mentally in the Potteries in the past – so it came as no surprise when they failed to live with Stoke’s whirlwind start, an error from young right back Calum Chambers, who would later be sent off for two bookable offences, allowing Peter Crouch to put Mark Hughes’ side inside 20 seconds.
It was a clear ploy by Stoke to play at a ferociously high tempo and test the desire of Arsenal to become embroiled in a battle and stand up to things in defence – something that Wenger was willing to concede after the game that his side were simply unable to do:
“I think we were a bit inexperienced at the back. We couldn’t play Laurent Koscielny and couldn’t play Nacho Monreal, [so] all together [we were] maybe a bit softer.”
Goals from Bojan and Jonathan Walters, also owing to weak and timid defending on the visitors’ part, had Stoke 3-0 ahead at the break and they thought that they had made it 4-0 in the second half before a late flag from the linesman – although goals from Santi Cazorla and Aaron Ramsey would make it a nervy finale for Hughes.