on the late goal...
I am bitterly disappointed, like the whole team. We had some problems to start the game, the number of games we played caught up a little bit on us. It took us a while to get into the rhythm and pace of the game. In the second half we were on top, unfortunately we couldn’t score the second goal and, in the end, we made a mistake that left us no time at all to respond. We were preparing to play extra time.

on Birmingham...
Congratulations to Birmingham, they took advantage of the mistake [and] they took the trophy which hurts us tremendously. We have to be proud of our attitude, continue with our belief, pick ourselves up and face the other challenges we have. The team is very disappointed and we will face a lot of questions after that mistake tonight but we have to be strong enough to stand up. It is a good opportunity to show that we have the mental strength to respond to the situation like that.

on his view of the winner…
It was a lack of communication, determination a little bit as well. Like always, when the ball is in no-man's land, someone has to take responsibility and go for it. What was amazing [was that] no-one was going for the ball from Birmingham.

on the mood in the dressing room…
Both of them [Koscielny and Szczesny] are destroyed. I don’t think it’s a good moment for me to add anything. We have to lift them up again and help them, that is what a team is about. That is part of the game, we had enough chances to kill the game off before. They could only be dangerous, in the end, on free kicks. Maybe we were a bit nervous on it as well.

on the penalty shout in the second minute...
I didn't feel that [Szczesny was lucky to stay on], I felt it was offside.

on how much defeat will affect his squad...
Exactly [it could affect us], we don't deny that. It is a massive disappointment for the team but we have massive challenges in front of us - the Carling Cup is four games, five games but a championship season is 38. We will not throw 38 games away because of one game.

on picking themselves up...
I am confident we have the character and this is a good opportunity to show it.

on Van Persie's injury...
He has a knee problem. Yes [he did it in scoring].

on the importance of the Carling Cup...
We came here today to win the game, we didn't want to lose the game. In the last 18 games we lost one at Ipswich in the first leg of the Carling Cup [Semi-Final] and we lost today in the last minute on a very special goal. What the team is overall achieving is absolutely tremendous - that's why we go for every single game to win it. We are on such a long run that it is difficult to take because we are used to winning.

on losing players to injury...
What is difficult for us to take at the moment is that we lose too many players. We lost Walcott and Fabregas on Wednesday. Birmingham played their reserve team against Sheffield Wednesday and they started stronger than us until we got into the pace of the game. Physically we had a disadvantage because of the repetition of the games we play.

on making defensive errors...
Making mistakes is not positive, of course.

Copyright 2014 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source 27 Feb 2011