Manager was part of Arsène Wenger’s squad that lifted trophy at Wembley in 2014 and 2015 but failed to build on it afterwards

It was May 2015 and Arsenal’s prospects looked shinier than at any point in the previous five years. They had qualified directly for the Champions League group stage, a feat that had evaded them for two seasons, and now they had a chance to retain the FA Cup against Aston Villa. There was a sense the punishing tides that battered Arsène Wenger’s later years were turning and, speaking three days before the final, one of the senior players nudged those above him to make the final push.

“It’s up to the manager and the board to decide what is the missing ingredient,” he said. “Were we missing that final bit of quality to win [the league] or deepness in the squad? It’s up to them to analyse that.”

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