By Chris Harris

Laurent Koscielny has suffered more than Wojciech Szczesny from the incident that cost Arsenal the Carling Cup, according to Arsène Wenger.

The French centre back and his Polish team-mate were involved in the misunderstanding that handed Birmingham a 2-1 win at Wembley on Sunday. Koscielny went to clear a flick-on from Nikola Zigic only to hesitate at a crucial moment. The ball then bounced off Szczesny and into the path of Obafemi Martins, who rolled it into an empty net.

Wenger has observed his players carefully at the training ground since that fateful mix-up and feels that Koscielny is taking longer to digest the disappointment. However, he believes his compatriot will bounce back from Sunday’s low point.

"I have spoken [to them], not too much," he told Arsenal TV Online. "More to Laurent Koscielny because he suffered more.

"You have to be realistic, analyse in a realistic way what you did wrong. But, as well, Koscielny has been a great player for us since the start of the season so it’s important he keeps his confidence level well and that he gets encouragement.

"He takes everything on board and we do not want that his confidence drops because he made certainly a mistake, he is really angry about it. We have, as well, to show that we support him and that we believe he is a fantastic defender.

"Wojciech is alright, there was more a misunderstanding. Because in the last second, Koscielny didn’t follow through [with his clearance] because he thought he saw Wojciech coming out. Then he had a hesitation and that hesitation was fatal for us."

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1 Mar 2011