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Arsenal 1-4 Manchester City | 5 Talking Points as lacklustre Gunners are ousted by Cityzens | 2020-21 Carabao Cup

ANALYST
Modified 23 Dec 2020
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#3 Shkodran Mustafi continues to be poor for Arsenal

Arsenal vs Manchester City - Carabao Cup Quarter-Final
Arsenal vs Manchester City - Carabao Cup Quarter-Final

Over the past few years, no player has cost Arsenal more points or goals than Shkodran Mustafi. The former World Cup winner is comfortably one of the worst signings Arsenal have ever made, and the club's fans can’t wait for his contract to run out, as Mustafi was at fault for two Manchester City goals.

For Arsenal fans, his performance must be tough viewing, but if a player has consistently proved he’s a liability, why would the manager start him against one of the best attacks in the world?

The decision to play Mustafi is even more baffling, as the German’s contract expires in the summer and the fact that he rejected an extension offer. Fans would much rather see William Saliba make a mistake than endure Mustafi make one for the 100th time.

If it was the last time Mustafi donned an Arsenal shirt, fans may heave a sigh of huge relief.


#2 Aymeric Laporte impresses for Manchester City

Arsenal vs Manchester City - Carabao Cup Quarter-Final
Arsenal vs Manchester City - Carabao Cup Quarter-Final
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Over the past few weeks, Aymeric Laporte has found himself on the bench for Manchester City.

Despite being the club’s best defender, Pep Guardiola has made it clear that he’s not happy with the Frenchman’s performances, opting to start John Stones ahead of him.

Against Arsenal, the 26-year-old got a chance to play his way back into the manager’s good books, and he did just that. In a commanding performance, Laporte made six clearances, won three duels, scored a goal and was not dribbled past once.


#1 Gabriel Martinelli makes a promising return to action

Arsenal vs Manchester City - Carabao Cup Quarter-Final
Arsenal vs Manchester City - Carabao Cup Quarter-Final

On Saturday, Ronaldo 2.0 made his return to first-team football with a substitute cameo at Goodison Park. Against Manchester City, Gabriel Martinelli made his first start in almost nine months.

In just 45 minutes, the Brazilian showed why Arsenal fans have been missing him so much. His energy was infectious, and his hunger to chase down loose balls inspired his teammates.

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Despite being only 19 years of age, Martinelli set an example on the pitch, as he kept on closing down Manchester City’s defenders, which forced Alexandre Lacazette to do the same.

His key contribution in the game was an assist for Arsenal’s equaliser, with Martinelli chipping in a beautiful cross for Lacazette's header. The Brazilian’s 45-minute cameo was the only positive for Arsenal to take out of a dismal team performance.

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Published 23 Dec 2020, 11:55 IST
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