By Dan Ferguson
Forest 4 Arsenal 2
Lichaj 20 Mertesacker 23 Lichaj 44 Brereton 64(pen) Welbeck 79 Dowell 85(pen)
Arsenal were absolutely bloody awful.
As turgid as anything under Terry Neill, Don Howe, GG, Stewart Houston, Bruce RIoch. The club embarrassed themselves at the City Ground.
Wenger was absent because of his mouth. He picked a team so obviously unprepared, uninterested, unprofessional, unconfident, and incapable.
He chucked the FA Cup, but will claim he picked a side capable of beating a lower league team in the midst of a dreadful run. The bench was shocking in its inexperience. Steve Bould’s role is inexplicable.
Forest wanted it more, they worked harder, they used their brains more efficiently by choosing their runs, their challenges, when to play compact and when to stretch the pitch.
Arsenal played like a bunch of Fancy Dans who could not string enough passes together to create any real threat in the final third.
Their shots on target tally today would be shocking for Swansea or Stoke.
Welbeck is useless, Walcott was useless today. Holding was like Stepanovs at his worst. A truly awful performance from the young lad, and one that should bury his season. Willock was anonymous. Elneny is a poor man’s Coquelin (and that’s not saying much).
Remarkably, the real heartbeat of the side was meant to be Alex Iwobi. Here is a player who is so over- rated, who is terrified of shooting, who cannot shoot, who is the exact opposite of a clean striker of the ball. When you have three players leading the attack who strike the ball so badly so often, you will have a bad day at the office.
Like Mark Hughes, Wenger should be sacked.
He made this happen by bringing no big guns, having no answers to the challenges posed by some hungry Forest players enjoying their day on international television.
This Arsenal performance was staggeringly bad. The senior players let the juniors down. They set no example. How can Walcott and Welbeck play for England?
How can Wenger still claim to be doing his job well when the league position, the defeats, his moaning and griping, and the contractual issues all show a man who is damaging the future of the club in the immediate aftermath of his inevitable departure?
It is a shame that this game might be remembered for controversy around a double kick on the penalty for their fourth goal. It was a double kick, and also a fair challenge by Debuchy in my view.
I quite like the FA Cup, and this isn’t right.
He will claim to have a great opportunity in the League Cup and the UEFA Cup, but is Arsenal really going to get to the final of either? Unlikely.
Wenger has made this team all about him. But he is struggling and no longer good at his job.
There is a culture of disbelief within the players, and the staff, that they aren’t better placed and more successful than they are. That says all you need to know about FC Hubris.