Arsene Wenger says he had to make some last minute decisions regarding key players as they hadn’t quite recovered from knocks sustained in the Crystal Palace game.
The Gunners won 2-0 on Sunday before facing Bournemouth a little over 48 hours later. It took an injury time goal from Olivier Giroud to seal the comeback and a 3-3 draw, but the Arsenal manager believes his players didn’t have sufficient time to recover from the previous game.
“We had three or four players who we had to wait for the warm up to see if they could play,” he said.
“Bellerin had a knock, he was uncertain to play. That’s the problem when you have only 48 hours, you have to play some players who come out of a game like Crystal Palace.
“We had Koscielny, we had Gabriel that I didn’t start in the end because I was not in a position to, and then I did not start Oxlade-Chamberlain because I did not take a gamble with him.
“You cannot take the fresh player out, but then you cannot use the players who have played 48 hours before, you cannot take them out.”
“It complicates a lot, the job. But we have to shut up and cope with it.”
The Arsenal manager will have to wait and see regarding Koscielny who was taken off in the second half, as well as the seriousness of the hamstring injury suffered by Francis Coquelin which leaves him with just two fit central midfielders in Aaron Ramsey and Granit Xhaka.
With an FA Cup tie this weekend against Preston, before a vital Premier League game with Swansea on January 14th, it leaves Wenger with some serious thinking to do about his team selection.