Wenger - Loss could cost us

Gunners boss rues slow start versus Villa; injury setback for Fabregas

Wenger: Frustrated

Wenger: Frustrated

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Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is wary that his side's defeat against Aston Villa could result in the Gunners missing out on automatic qualification for the UEFA Champions League.

The Gunners slumped to a 2-1 loss at home to Villa on Sunday, meaning Manchester City can now leapfrog Arsenal into third if they beat Stoke on Tuesday.

Should Arsenal finish fourth then Wenger's men will have to play in the final qualifying round of the Champions League.

Wenger said: "It's very disappointing because we were caught on a very bad start. After that we became stronger as the game went on and we were a bit unlucky on top of that.

"So we come out of the game very disappointed. We dropped three points today which could cost us the automatic qualification for the Champions League.

Fabregas

Wenger rued his side's slow start to the Villa meeting, which saw Darren Bent score twice in the first 15 minutes.

He continued "We were punished because we went into the game too tentative. We were not dominant enough in anything we did and we were on the back foot at the start.

"After that we battled to get back into the game but we were a bit unlucky. I feel we had a penalty, a goal that I have not seen cancelled often away from home.

"Overall of course we are frustrated and I am frustrated by the performance."

Wenger also confirmed that Gunners captain Cesc Fabregas will miss the final match of the season against Fulham through injury.

He said: "Fabregas will not play again this season, he had a setback on his thigh injury. (Samir) Nasri has a little chance to face Fulham."