Revealed - The last time Arsenal lost by three clear goals or more

Why the trip to Italy should hold concern for Arsene Wenger's men.

Arsenal learned last night that is this Champions League group, they cannot rely on favours, so hoping Marseille could beat Borussia Dortmund would be a real long shot.

It means the Gunners must avoid losing by three clear goals, away at Napoli, to ensure qualification to the knockout phase.

Could it happen? Sure Napoli are a dangerous team, and need to win by that margin to progress, so will be 'giving it everything.'

Arsenal will be confident, as losing by that sort of margin certainly does not happen very often. So when was the last time it actually did, in any competition?

The context of the answer may give a little concern to supporters, and bring back some unhappy memories.

Date: February 15, 2012, Location: San Siro. Guessed yet?

Yes it was the 4-0 loss to AC Milan at the San Siro. An away trip to an Italian side in the Champions League.

Several of Arsenal's team from that night still remain the same, some have moved on; Szczesny, Sagna, Koscielny, Vermaelen, Rosicky, Arteta, Walcott, Ramsey, Song, Van Persie, were included in the starting line-up. Thierry Henry even appeared as a second half substitute.

Mathieu Flamini's recent experiences of Italian football will make him a shoe-in to start, while Mesut Ozil, Per Mertesacker, Santi Cazorla, Jack Wilshere and Olivier Giroud are all likely changes on that side.

Still the experience is one the players that there that night will not have forgotten, and will be determined not to repeat.

The fact the Gunners bounced back with a 3-0 second leg win was to their credit, although fruitless. The difference is here that if they suffer a similar hammering by Napoli, their response will come in the Europa League instead.

image: © olaszmelo

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