Our captain on the night Per Mertesacker revealed on Arsenal‘s official website the reason for our disappointing loss against AS Monaco was the team’s over eagerness.
The giant German had a poor game, along with many of his teammates. He should have been braver when blocking the shot that resulted in Monaco’s first goal, and he suicidally gifted Dimitar Berbatov their second.
He is confident we can still make it through to the next round, but admits the team were trying far too hard to get back into the game.
Pushing for goals left us open to the counter attack, and we gave ourselves a mountain to climb by allowing the Ligue 1 side to score three away goals.
“Overall it’s very disappointing for us,” he said on Arsenal Player.
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“We came out quite well, tried to put pressure on them and created a few half-chances. After, we dropped and fought not to concede.
“That would have been the key for us, then we conceded that goal with a heavy deflection – but that can happen. I thought in the second half we exaggerated a bit, looked a bit over motivated at times and they got us on the break.
“That’s what we expected, but when you try to come back as quickly as possible, you can make some mistakes. That’s what hurt at the end.
“We never give up. That’s always the sense of our game, even if the expectations will be low now. It’s easy to write us off now but it’s just half-time. A lot of things can happen over there and we will try.”
Many are calling for the BFG to be dropped following his display, with January signing Gabriel Paulista waiting in the wings to take over.
The 30-year-old has been largely solid this season, so it seems a little harsh to drop him. You are only as good as your last game however, and if Gabriel is ready then perhaps he should be given a shot.