It was a game that Mikel Arteta’s side should really have been winning, and former Arsenal stalwart, Martin Keown, didn’t appear to be happy with aspects of the Gunners Champions League defeat against Lens.
If the result wasn’t bad enough, then the loss of Bukayo Saka to injury only added to his manager’s woes ahead of a Premier League epic next time out as Arsenal host table-topping Man City.
It isn’t clear exactly what the problem was or how long the England international will be out for, but on first impressions it didn’t look good.
Keown didn’t mince his words when talking about the match afterwards.
“Not a disaster but it couldn’t have gone much worse,” he said on TNT Sports, cited by the TNT Sports website.
“Disappointing performance, disappointing result, Saka getting injured. I think PSV-Sevilla only drawing the game is a plus point for them.
“[…] Didn’t get the ball enough into the wide positions they needed. All credit to Lens for winning the match.
“Difficult environment to go to for this young Arsenal team, but nevertheless you expect them to come away from there with at least a draw.”
Once Gabriel Jesus had given the north Londoners an early first-half lead, things looked set up nicely for Arsenal to ease through the gears in a match against a team that had already conceded 12 goals in their domestic season during 2023/24.
However, the expected caving in from the hosts never arrived and, indeed, their resolve and determination turned the tie on its head.
First of all, Adrien Thomasson equalised in the 22nd minute, before Elye Wahi scored what proved to be the winner in the 69th minute.
The reverse means that Arsenal have arguably got it all to do in their next couple of UCL games if they want to make it to the knockout stages.