Arsenal lost 4-1 to Manchester City in the Carabao Cup which puts heaps further misery on Mikel Arteta.
An injury to the returning Gabriel Martinelli summed up the luck after Arsenal continue their 51-day run without a win in domestic football.
An equaliser from Alexandre Lacazette was not enough to condemn further pain on Arteta after Gabriel Jesus, Riyad Mahrez, Phil Foden and Aymeric Laporte all celebrated goals at Emirates Stadium on Tuesday evening.
It was mixed emotions one hour before kick-off when the team sheets were released.
Arsenal fans were crying out for William Saliba to start the game after the poor performances throughout the squad. Yet, he was not selected and is yet to make a first team appearance for The Gunners.
Martinelli was back in the starting line-up after a long-suffered injury last season. He made his comeback off the bench against Everton but the Carabao Cup bout with Manchester City was his first start.
Almost one hour after the team sheets were brandished out on social media, Arsenal were 0-1 down inside two minutes of proceedings in North London.
Jesus nodded home a header after a Oleksandr Zincheko cross. Not an ideal start after the current turmoil and pressure on Arteta’s head.
The Brazilian striker beat Gunners number two goalkeeper Alex Runarsson to the ball, beating Shkodran Mustafi to the header in the process.
I guess you can’t give the Icelandic goalkeeper that much criticism, he cost £1million from Dijon in the summer. The real question lies with Arteta. Why isn’t Bernd Leno starting in a cup quarter-final?
30 minutes had gone, and it felt like a training session for the Cityzens. Despite the visitors dominating the encounter it was Arsenal that levelled things up.
The star boy, Martinelli, on his first start back, whipped in a delicious cross to find Lacazette who found the back of the net with a header.
This will bring severe joy for Arsenal fans. Despite the lack of celebration from the French number nine, the contribution of the Brazilian youngster is what Gooners have been missing throughout the whole season.
This is the confidence that Arteta and his side needed. Arsenal sit in the bottom half of the table for goals scored in the Premier League this season. The number 35 will help raise this embarrassing stat.
The most anxious wait from an Arsenal perspective at half-time was finding out the conclusion of Martinelli’s knock in the latter end of the first half.
The teenager was limping heavily and looked in severe pain. It seemed like he shook the injury off, but he was substituted two minutes into the second half.
This sums up the current luck of Arsenal Football Club. One of the brightest, technical and prospective players the club has, on his return to the side, was side-lined after a yet another injury.
This will hit hard, there is no luck right now. Nothing is going Arteta’s way. Only a few days before the Boxing Day showdown with Chelsea, it’s likely that the dazzling winger will miss out.
Nicolas Pepe came on in replace of Martinelli.
He has had a tough season, in all honestly, he hasn’t lived up to his £70million plus fee when he signed in the summer of 2019. His red card against Leeds a few weeks ago has put him under even more scrutiny to perform and show the five-star performances he produced at Lille.
Runarsson was involved again six minutes before the hour mark. Mahrez scored a free kick at the hands of a mistake from the goalkeeper.
What seemed like a routine stop, the number 13 let the ball slip through his hands, very reminiscent to dropping a bar of soap. This was further proof on why the gaffer did not select Leno in a late stage of a cup competition against one of the best teams in Europe.
Foden got in on the act for City shortly after and wrapped up the victory for his boyhood club. Fernandinho played in the ‘Stockport Iniesta’ who lifted it over Runarsson. Arsenal were on the verge of yet another defeat on what has been a dreadful season has been thus far.
City rubbed salt into the wounds when Laporte made it four after a cross from Foden.
This was becoming embarrassing. Arteta looked like a man out of ideas on the touchline.
It was hard not to feel sorry for him.
There is no issue with losing, but there is an issue when losing without effort and playing for the shirt.