Arsenal met Southampton at the Emirates on November 30 in a game that could have sent the Londoners into the semi-finals of the EFL Cup to face Liverpool.
The Gunners should have gone into the clash full of confidence, but Arsene Wenger took the decision to make several changes to his line-up, much to the disgust of a myriad fans.
With winning silverware a huge priority for the Premier League’s big clubs, fans believed the Frenchman should have fielded something closer to a full-strength team and it’s difficult to argue with that viewpoint.
— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) November 30, 2016
Emiliano Martínez, Rob Holding, Reine-Adelaide, Alex Iwobi and Lucas Perez all started in what was a bold but ultimately wrong move from Wenger.
With Southampton resting only a couple of their starting eleven, the match was crying out for the influence and impact that players like Alexis Sanchez or Mesut Ozil would have brought to the table.
To play so many inexperienced players in such a crucial match was a calculated gamble, but one which just didn’t pay off.
In Wenger’s defence, the team that featured against Southampton had got the club to that stage in the competition, with all the players featuring at some point during the previous rounds.
However, in crunch games such as this even the most talented youngsters need guidance and the match day squad just didn’t have that.
Olivier Giroud, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Granit Xhaka have struggled for game time recently, but both the Ox and Xhaka had to sit on the bench and watch when they could have made a real difference.
Our friends at Betway have been debating whether Wenger was right to trust in youth for the EFL Cup in their latest episode of the popular “Blow the Whistle” segment.
Panelists Adam Drury and Tom Clee debate Wenger’s selection, as well as whether injuries could derail Liverpool’s title challenge and if Alan Pardew is to blame for Crystal Palace’s problems.
You can join in on the debate in the comments of the YouTube video below, with fans that comment with their arguments for either side in with a chance of winning a free £10 bet.
You can also comment on Facebook as well as YouTube to win the £10 free bet.