Arsene Wenger issues urgent rallying cry to Arsenal players ahead of Chelsea clash
The Arsenal manager wants a response from his Gunners players against Chelsea in the League Cup on Wednesday night
Arsene Wenger has warned his Arsenal squad that the Gunners have to “turn up” against bitter rivals Chelsea in the first leg of their League Cup semi-final at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night.
The north London side have a point to prove ahead of their trip to the defending Premier League champions following a shock exit at the hands of Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup third round.
Indeed, the Gunners lost their first FA Cup game in over 12 months following a surprise 4-2 loss to Championship side Nottingham Forest to end their chances of winning the competition for the fourth time in five seasons.
Arsenal are 23 points adrift of runaway Premier League leaders Manchester City in the title race, while the Gunners are five points behind fourth-placed Liverpool FC in the hunt for a Champions League spot.
Wenger has warned his Arsenal players that they need to respond to their shock FA Cup exit with a positive performance in the first leg of the League Cup semi-final at Stamford Bridge.
“It hurts very much. I’m very, very disappointed because I love the cup competitions and unfortunately you jump out of the train now – you cannot come back on it and we have to focus on our next game,” Wenger said at his post-match media conference following Arsenal’s 4-2 loss to Nottingham Forest.
“It’s the semi-final of the League Cup and we have to absolutely turn up to it.”
Arsenal finished in fifth place in the Premier League table last term to miss out on a Champions League spot for the first time under French head coach Wenger.