Manchester United legend Rio Ferdinand thought Arsenal “looked spineless” as The Gunners all but bowed out of the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday night.
The 38-year-old, who lifted the 2008 Champions League crown during his Red Devils career, admitted Arsene Wenger’s side were torn apart in the second-half as the Premier League side slumped to a devastating 5-1 Round of 16 first leg thrashing at the Allianz Arena to Bundesliga leaders FC Bayern Munich.
BT Sport’s football expert Ferdinand said, “Arsenal got dismantled in the second-half.
“They had Bayern on the ropes towards the end of the first-half and looked like the team that were going to go on and do something in this game and get a positive result, maybe come away from here with a draw, maximum 2-1 defeat.
“But I didn’t see 5-1 at half-time. They [Bayern] went into overdrive in the second-half and Arsenal just couldn’t deal with it.
“I think [Laurent] Koscielny going off was a huge, huge factor in that, As soon as he went off, two goals went in quickly.”
Thiago Alcantara scored twice, whilst further strikes from Arjen Robben, Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Muller rubbed salt in Arsenal’s wounds, despite being level at the interval thanks to Alexis Sanchez’s 30th minute equaliser.
“They looked spineless, that is the word for me. Spineless,” added Ferdinand.
“There is no fight. I didn’t see no aggression, I didn’t even see anyone giving anyone a rollicking in the game.
“You lose a couple of goals and you want to see someone with a little bit of fire in their belly to say, ‘Oi, look listen’, c’mon’.
“I just don’t see that in this team. That is the disheartening thing for me.”
The Gunners, who currently sit 10 points adrift of leaders Chelsea in the Premier League standings, face a momentous task if they are to progress into the quarter-finals of the Champions League early next month.
Wenger’s side have failed to reach the last-eight of the European Elite competition in each of their last six attempts, being knocked out twice by both Bayern and FC Barcelona previously, as well as AC Milan and AS Monaco.
Arsenal welcome Carlo Ancelotti’s Bayern to the Emirates Stadium on March 7 for the return leg.
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