By PA Sport Staff
Mikel Arteta believes Arsenal’s shock FA Cup exit at Nottingham Forest proves where they need to improve.
The Gunners crashed out of the competition after Lewis Grabban’s late goal condemned them to a 1-0 third-round defeat at the Sky Bet Championship outfit.
Arteta was without Granit Xhaka and Folarin Balogun due to Covid-19 while Emile Smith Rowe was also out injured and the Spaniard knows they need to add to the squad in January.
“I can’t criticise the attitude because they were trying, but it’s the way we tried… it wasn’t good enough.”
Mikel Arteta's honest assessment of the @EmiratesFACup defeat at Nottingham Forest 👇
— Arsenal (@Arsenal) January 10, 2022
“I think it is clear where we need to strengthen but at the moment it is what we have and what we have, we have to play,” the Arsenal boss said.
“I want to try to get the best out of the players that we have. We have what we have (available) and we know we have issues in many different positions.
“But we try to put out the most competitive team that we could to try to win and it wasn’t good enough.
“We have the players to perform better than what they’ve done and we have the level to beat them if we are at our maximum and we didn’t have that.”
Arsenal failed to have a shot on target at the City Ground on Sunday with Forest setting up a fourth-round meeting with holders Leicester.
Steve Cooper gave Steve Cook his debut after the defender’s move from Bournemouth with Keinan Davis also starting following his loan switch from Aston Villa.
Cook told the club’s official site: “It was a little bit emotional to be honest, I haven’t really been involved in anything like this in the past, so it was special and I absolutely loved it.
“We fully deserved the win. Tactically, we were outstanding and the lads worked their socks off. Arsenal have some talented individuals, so to nullify that was brilliant.
“Everyone down to a tee nailed the way the manager wanted us to play.”