‘They are strong enough not to need that’

We couldn’t sustain it for 90 minutes but there were times at the Etihad on Sunday when we matched - and even worried - Manchester City.

Early and late in the first half, and then after City’s second goal, we created chances and eventually clawed our way back into the game through Alex Lacazette.

City’s third goal put paid to our attempted comeback and the boss was left to rue a lack of cutting edge and a lack of luck.

“I felt that we started well and after the bad spell for 20 minutes in the first half, in the second half we came back,” he told “We were always in the game and I believe honestly we were really unlucky. City are strong enough not to need that [help] and it’s very difficult to swallow today. I’m very, very disappointed.

“We looked dangerous,” the boss went on. “In the first half every time we managed to get in their half we created dangerous situations and overall yes it’s disappointing… on top of that I felt that sometimes in our final ball we lacked a bit of touch or accuracy and we could not transform enough situations we had to score.

“We needed to be solid. We knew that we had to survive some moments where they had the ball and overall I felt that was alright, but we respected them a little bit too much maybe for 25 minutes in the first half and then the second half when we came out we looked always convincingly dangerous.”

Lacazette made an immediate impact and Wenger was full of praise for the France striker.

“Yes, he was superb and when he came on he gave us another option,” he said. “But even in the first half I felt that it was more a case of providing better support up front. That was our problem.”

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