Arsene Wenger feels Arsenal could have ultimately beaten Chelsea within the Premier League were it not for Per Mertesacker’s early dismissal.
Going down to 10 men and failing to ultimately beat Chelsea within the Premier League left Arsenal “with a great deal of regrets”, in line with Arsene Wenger, who defended his decision to withdraw Olivier Giroud.
The Gunners have not beaten their rivals from west London within the league given that October 2011.
With Arsenal challenging for the title and champions Chelsea, obtaining sacked Wenger’s nemesis Jose Mourinho in December, languishing within the incorrect half of your table, the match at Emirates Stadium on Sunday was viewed as a perfect chance for the hosts to end that sequence.
A red card shown to centre-back Per Mertesacker just after just 18 minutes dealt a significant blow to Arsenal’s hopes and they proved unable to find a way back immediately after Diego Costa struck the only objective of the game for the guests five minutes later.
Wenger praised his players for staying in the contest regardless of their numerical disadvantage but couldn’t disguise his disappointment at passing up a golden opportunity to overcome a lingering psychological hurdle.
“We played with ten males, we had been 1-0 down straight away,” he mentioned.
“Normally you shed a game like that three or four-nil.
“We come out [of the game] with a lot of regrets mainly because we feel we couldn’t play with our group and taking a look at Chelsea right now there was plenty of space to beat them if we had played with 11 players.”
The Arsenal fans produced their feelings identified when centre-forward Giroud was sacrificed for defender Gabriel Paulista within the 22nd minute to compensate for the departure of Mertesacker.
Wenger did not appreciate getting held to account more than the enforced transform, saying: “Do you want to make a poll immediately after just about every selection to view who does what?
“I produced the choice and for me it was very a typical decision due to the fact we … required pace to go from one target towards the other.”
Asked if Giroud was match enough to begin the match right after reportedly struggling with an ankle challenge, Wenger said: “I believe yes, but it was a little in my thoughts – if he gets injured, he didn’t practice yesterday, right now we declared him match [but] certainly it was on my mind.
“I had to adjust a player, I thought that was essentially the most rational choice.”
The defeat to Chelsea leaves Arsenal third, 3 points behind leaders Leicester City and two ahead of fourth-placed Tottenham.