Wenger blames lack of concentration for Arsenal’s loss

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Possession: Arsenal 70-30 Olympiacos.

Shots: Arsenal 18-9 Olympiacos.

Final score: Arsenal 2-3 Olympiacos.

The Gunners may have dominated the stat sheet in their Champions League match against Olympiacos, but the Greek visitors were still able to take all three points from their trip to the Emirates.

Arsenal has now dropped the first two matches of Champions League play for the first time in club history, and are yet to play Bayern Munich in Group F.

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After the loss to Olympiacos, Arsene Wenger believed his side lacked “quality defensive concentration,” and said the opposition got a bit lucky in the match.

Some aspects of our game were quite good but I thought we lacked quality defensive concentration and we played against Olympiacos who defended very well. I believe we had a bit of bad luck as well because they had four shots on target and scored three goals and that happens once in 100 Champions League games.

We feel guilty because we gave easy goals away.

It puts us in a bad position but we are still in it. We have to think we can deal with Zagreb and Olympiacos and we need a result in our next game away from home against Bayern Munich.

The lack of concentration Wenger is talking about was seen in Olympiacos’ third goal, the eventual game-winner, which came exactly 60 seconds after Alexis Sanchez had equalized for Arsenal.

After David Ospina handed Olympiacos a first half lead with his horrendous own-goal, Arsenal came out strong in the second half and knotted the score at two.

However, teams are often most vulnerable right after they score, and Olympiacos wasted no time making Arsenal pay for a quick lapse of focus. Straight from the kick-off, the visitors stormed up the field and regained the lead immediately, silencing the Emirates crowd.

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Wenger went on to say that Arsenal was exposed defensively because they were attacking and going forward, which is an unacceptable excuse at this level. Wenger prides himself on playing attractive, free-flowing football, but defensive mistakes have cost his sides year-in and year-out. This reasoning also doesn’t really make sense for today’s loss, as Olympiacos scored off two corner kicks and right after a restart following Alexis Sanchez’s goal.

Arsenal now needs to get a result against Bayern Munich, who are yet to lose this season. Wenger better hope there’s no lack of concentration against the German giants, as Bayern has nine wins from nine matches in all competitions, outscoring their opposition 31-3 in the process.