Speaking after Arsenal’s win over Nottingham Forest in the League Cup on Tuesday night, Arsene Wenger admitted that his side had learned from their elimination last season at the hands of Sheffield Wednesday.
One of the biggest low points in a season that delivered many, the team that featured last year contained far more seniors than were on show against Forest as they lost 3-0 to the Owls.
Starting that game were players such as Petr Cech, Mathieu Debuchy, Per Mertesacker, Kirean Gibbs, Calum Chambers, Mathieu Flamini, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Joel Campbell and Olivier Giroud.
Only Gibbs and the Ox remained from the 11 that started that game that took place at the end of October, 2015.
Speaking at his press conference, which you can watch below, Arsene explained how the side had learned from that humiliation.
“I told the players that last year in the third round of the League Cup we won at Tottenham and then we went to Sheffield Wednesday and lost 3-0 because we were not ready mentally for the commitment of the Championship and I think our history helped us a little bit tonight to start in a much stronger way.”
Arsenal now turn their attentions to the Premier League again and the upcoming visit of Chelsea to the Emirates when we should see a completely different starting XI.
Has Xhaka done enough to push for a start? I hope so, but I wouldn’t count on it.