Arsenal fans single out one player for heavy criticism following FA Cup loss

Posted Monday, January 08, 2018 by 101 GREAT GOALS

Arsenal fans single out one player for heavy criticism following FA Cup loss

Supporters of Arsenal have this evening taken to social media in their droves to slate defender Rob Holding, following his showing in their embarrassing 4-2 loss to Championship outfit Nottingham Forest.


The two sides went head to head at the City ground, with visitors Arsenal coming into proceedings on the back of a 9-match unbeaten run across all competitions.

Forest, meanwhile, had not managed a win from any of their last 5 outings, with their last result a 0-0 stalemate with Leeds United this past Monday.


Gunners boss Arsene Wenger opted for a heavily-weakened side, suggesting that his priorities did not lie with the FA Cup this season:

None of Alexis Sanchez, Mesut Ozil, Jack Wilshere, Laurent Koscielny, Petr Cech, Alexandre Lacazette or a number of other first-team regulars were even included in Arsenal's squad:

Nottingham Forest, meanwhile, opted for the following, with former Arsenal full-back Armand Traore included from the start:

Forest in front

Despite their heavily altered starting lineup, the visitors were still viewed as clear favourites coming into today's clash, with the experience of the likes of Per Mertesacker, Theo Walcott and Danny Welbeck expected to prove telling.

As such, it came as a surprise when it was the hosts who took the lead with 20 minutes on the clock, as right-back Eric Lichaj got on the end of a devilish whipped free-kick from Kieran Dowell to nod past the helpless David Ospina.

However, order was soon restored, with Per Mertesacker eventually providing the crucial touch following a goalmouth scramble in the Forest box.

The home side continued to look dangerous, though, and were rewarded for their endeavours on the stroke of half-time, when defender Lichaj sealed his brace in sensational fashion.

Standing just outside the Arsenal box, the American stopper calmly took the ball down on his chest with his first-touch, before unleashing a gorgeous dipping volley into the far-top corner of the visitors' goal.

Shock result

And, incredibly, things only got worse for the Gunners following the interval, as Rob Holding's mistimed challenge in his own box just past the hour mark saw referee Jon Moss rightly point to the spot, with Ben Brereton stepping up to coolly slot the resulting penalty past David Ospina.

Danny Welbeck did manage to pull one back for the visitors in fortuitous fashion in the 79th-minute, before Forest were incredibly handed their second penalty of the day, following Mathieu Debuchy's challenge on Armade Traore with 5 minutes to go.

It was Kieran Dowell who took responsibility this time, though the midfielder could count himself lucky that his effort found the net, after slipping in his run-up to the ball.

There was controversy regarding the awarding of the goal, as Arsenal's players seemed convinced that Dowell had kicked the ball from one foot onto the other, but it made little difference in the end, as Forest ran out comfortable winners by 4 goals to 2.

Singled out

Unsurprisingly, the Gunners' faithful have since taken to social media in their droves to vent their frustrations, with Arsene Wenger having been absolutely torn apart for his ‘disrespectful' team selection.

However, while criticism of the Frenchman is fully justified, he was not exactly helped by the senior contingent of players on show for the visitors this evening, with one player coming in for a particularly heavy slating online.

The player in question was defender Rob Holding, who has often been lauded for his solid showings in North London since his arrival from Bolton Wanderers in 2016.

Tonight was certainly not one of those nights, though, with the English stopper having looked clumsy and out of sorts throughout the clash, culminating in him needlessly giving away the crucial first penalty.

Check out some of the best reaction from Arsenal's furious fans below:

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