Arsene Wenger spoke with the press ahead of the game against Southampton in the FA Cup and explained why he went with such an inexperienced midfield.
With the internet going a little bit loopy when the team news was announced, things were a bit different by halftime. By the end of the match people seemed to have forgotten about it altogether.
Speaking before the game, Wenger explained that he was forced into playing the Ox, the Jeff and Ainsley Maitland-Niles in the middle and admitted it could be a problem.
Aaron Ramsey and Francis Coquelin, he said, were not available. A small concern, we imagine, and one not worth taking a risk with given their respective hamstring problems and Watford on the horizon. Granit Xhaka is, of course, suspended, and Mohamed Elneny is at the AFCON.
Martin Keown mentioned on BTSport that he heard Mesut Ozil was carrying a small problem, but this has not been confirmed.