'We are desperately, desperately gutted'

Arsenal Under-18s were eliminated at the third round stage of the FA Youth Cup at the hands of Blackburn Rovers on Friday evening.

Daniel Butterworth's strike in the 79th minute sealed a 1-0 win for the visitors, on an agonising evening for Kwame Ampadu's side.

Here's what our Under-18s coach had to say to ArsenalPlayer post-match:

on a tough night…
Yes, definitely. We felt the sending off was quite harsh considering what had gone on before that. But then the boys that stayed on the pitch worked extremely hard as a unit and created some opportunities but it didn’t quite fall for us. The boys are desperately, desperately gutted.

on his team's response to the red card…
I thought that the boys responded quite well to it. I thought that they got themselves together, got into two banks of four but what you can’t do in those situations is you can’t waste lots of energy chasing around after the ball. We were quite compact apart from one opportunity that they had from a cross.

on the importance of taking opportunities when you have 10 men…
As I said, we had a couple of opportunities that didn’t quite fall for us tonight.

on what he thought of Blackburn…
Strong, physical, hard-working, organised.

on what he said in the dressing room afterwards…
They have to learn from this. Perversely, this is part of their development. If they want to become top-class professional footballers they’re going to be going into cup situations quite a bit and it’s going to be win or lose. This is something that they have to learn to deal with and dust themselves down and go again.

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