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Arsenal exit the League Cup


Arsenal v Southampton - EFL Cup Quarter-Final
Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images

Well, that was about what could be expected, I guess - Arsene did field his “90% first team” side as promised, but he fielded a bunch of first teamers who don’t play together very often, or don’t play very often at all, and what you saw was what you got. And what you got was Arsenal’s first loss since Opening Day - 19 unbeaten before this 2-0 defeat.

Arsenal made 10 changes to the side from the weekend, and it showed - even with the likes of Iwobi and Aaron Ramsey, Arsenal didn’t look fluid or like they were ever in danger of controlling the game, much less winning it. Granit Xhaka and Ox were brought on in the second half to try to shake things up a bit, but in a game where Francis Coquelin has your two best chances, you’re not likely to make a whole lot of noise, and Arsenal basically didn’t.

Note: that is NOT a slam on Coquelin, but more intended as an indictment of the fact that a team can’t really rely on its CDM to score goals. Would have said the same had Xhaka blown two great chances - that’s not what we pay Coquelin for, so I can’t be bothered that Coq didn’t convert those chances.

But, full credit to Southampton; they came to win, and win they did, with very little fuss.