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Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta blasts FA Cup flops and reveals why he took Nuno Tavares off after just 34 minutes

MIKEL ARTETA was left raging with his Arsenal side after they were dumped out of the FA Cup by Nottingham Forest on Sunday evening.

The Gunners were beaten 1-0 at the City Ground thanks to a late goal from substitute Lewis Grabban as the Championship outfit sensationally booked their place in the fourth round.

Arteta was incredibly disappointed with his side’s performance
The Arsenal manager replaced Tavares for Tierney after just 35 minutes of the match

Grabban netted a late winner for Forest to send them through to the fourth round

The 83rd-minute winner came after a poor display from Arsenal – which included Nuno Tavares being taken off for Kieran Tierney after just 35 minutes following a nightmare performance.

The left-back was visibly angry at being substituted and Arteta revealed in his post-match interview why he made the decision.

He told ITV: “I just did it to try to improve the performance of the team.

“I understand that but I have to make the decision to try to improve the performance of the team when it’s not going in any other direction.”

Arsenal are still in the Carabao Cup – where they face Liverpool in the first leg of their semi-final on Thursday.

But the FA Cup was the only other opportunity left for the Gunners to scoop some silverware this season – a chance that has now gone begging.

And Arteta, who won the FA Cup in his first season in charge in 2020, was forced to offer the supporters and apology after the match.

“They won, they scored a goal and we didn’t,” he added. “We were not good enough and we have to apologise for it.

“I don’t want to use excuses, I expect the team I put out to do better and when you don’t in the cup you are out.

“Today showed we were not capable of winning against Forest away from home and didn’t put in the level to win the game.

“It’s a collective issue and today we have not done it.”

ITV pundit Roy Keane was damning in his assessment of the Gunners at the City Ground.

He said: “It’s been rubbish. They look like Real Madrid but they’re playing like a pub team.

“There’s still a softness. We were watching live here thinking: ‘Arsenal are here for the taking’.


“They didn’t show any presence about them. Arsenal deserved everything they got today. That’s a big setback for them today.”

Arsenal now turn their attention towards their Carabao Cup first leg clash against Liverpool at Anfield on Thursday.

Arteta’s side then have just 72 hours to recover before they travel to North London rivals Tottenham in the Premier League.

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