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FA Cup: Arsenal captain slams Iwobi, others - FCNaija

FA Cup By: Ayodeji Tunde | 08/01/2018

Arsenal captain Per Mertesacker has slammed his teammates including Nigeria's Alex Iwobi for their display against Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup.

While the Gunners were collectively poor in their Third Round clash, Iwobi was largely anonymous all through his stay on the pitch and was rated among the worst performers for Arsene Wenger's team.

None of Iwobi's three shots was on target against Forest, he had a passing accuracy of 85.5 percent and his defensive frailties and lack of creativity were exposed after making only one tackle and winning one foul for his side.

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"You couldn't see that we really wanted to defend it," Mertesacker was quoted as saying by Reuters.

"This round is always the toughest. You face a Championship side away and you need to be ready but for the majority of the game, we were not."

Wenger is currently serving a three-match touchline ban and had made wholesale changes to his team following the 2-2 draw with Chelsea.

But even with a second string team, the Gunners were expected to progress to the fourth round and Mertesacker believes the players did not justify the manager's team selection.

"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," Mertesacker added.

"That sums it up I think. 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."

The north London side still remain in the Europa League and Carabao Cup, where they will face Chelsea next on Wednesday (10 January) in the first-leg of their semi-final at Stamford Bridge.
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