It was pretty painful to watch as Arsene Wenger expressed his sadness at Arsenal’s Europa League exit to Atletico Madrid.
The Gunners went down 2-1 on aggregate to the La Liga outfit, meaning the Frenchman will say farewell to the club without any silverware.
Wenger cut a dejected figure as he reflected on his latest disappointment as the manager of Arsenal.
“It is very, very sad but unfortunately you have to go through this in our game,” Wenger said after the 1-0 defeat in Madrid on Thursday.
“It can be very cruel but sometimes it is nice. The suffering is very strong tonight.”
Diego Costa scored the only goal as Atleti recorded a 1-0 win at the Wanda Metropolitano stadium, setting up a meeting in the final against Marseille.
The former Chelsea striker was a thorn in Arsenal’s side before he made way for Fernando Torres in the 83rd minute.
Torres was making his 400th appearance for Atletico Madrid and, in his final season at his boyhood club, he would love nothing more than to say goodbye with a trophy in his hand.
One statistic concerning Torres did the rounds on social media after Thursday’s match and it sums up just how successful Atletico were at thwarting Arsenal.
Per Squawka, Torres managed as many shots on target in his eight minutes on the pitch – one – as Arsenal’s entire team did combined in 90 minutes.
It’s a pretty remarkable stat – even more so when you consider that Arsenal needed to score if they were to have any chance of progressing.
The damage was done in the first leg, when Arsenal were unable to capitalise on Atletico being down in 10 men for the majority of the game and conceded a late equaliser.
And Wenger rued his side’s inability to trouble Jan Oblak despite getting in some promising positions.
“It was a similar game to what we had in the first leg. The dangerous situations we created were there but we missed something in both boxes,” the 68-year-old added.
“We played a good team and good luck to them in the final but we feel we did enough to go through. We didn’t manage the important moments of either game well.
“We were 1-0 up with ten minutes to go at home, and then we conceded a stupid goal. Tonight we looked OK and then conceded on the counter attack.
“Atletico played with fear in the first half that if we score they could be out, but once they scored they played with a cushion. We lost possession and Diego Costa is one of the best strikers in the world.”