Wenger: Why I dropped Coquelin and Cech


Arsene Wenger does not believe that the altered line-up he named is what ensured the shock defeat to Dinamo Zagreb.

The Frenchman surprised many by making six changes to his starting eleven for the opening game of the Gunners’ Champions League campaign.

However a 2-1 defeat via below par displays from the likes of Olivier Giroud, Mathieu Debuchy and Mikel Arteta has questioned the effect of Wenger’s line-up changes.

Francis Coquelin and Theo Walcott came off the bench to produce inspiring cameos as Arsenal pulled a goal back against Zagreb, but the Arsenal manager insists that those who were standing in for the duo were not in bad form either.

According Wenger, the players he used for squad rotation on Wednesday were rather unlucky.

“I personally don’t believe that the players who came in had a bad game. It just didn’t work. We know we have to do that again. We were maybe a bit unlucky and maybe lacked cohesion or some competition in some situations.

“I have to analyse that. It’s very difficult to give you a definite answer straight after the game.” Wenger said

Wenger was forced into making three substitutions all at once after his ten men struggled to fight back

Another big change in the Arsenal team was in goal as David Ospina deputized for a rested Petr Cech.

The Colombian shot-stopper picked the ball out of his own net twice, but Wenger claims that playing Ospina on Wednesday night was a necessity.

“Ospina is a very, very good goalkeeper and he has shown that again tonight. Cech has not played a full season so I am trying to give him some rest mentally because for goalkeepers it’s the same as outfield players” he added.

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