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Soccer-Arsenal must learn after Partey red card against Liverpool, says Arteta

(Reuters) – Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta was left to rue another red card in a big game as midfielder Thomas Partey was sent off in their 2-0 aggregate defeat by Liverpool in the League Cup semi-final on Thursday.

Partey, who returned from the Africa Cup of Nations this week following Ghana’s exit from the competition, picked up two yellow cards in a space of three minutes towards the end of the game as a Diogo Jota double powered Liverpool to victory.

“It is a big loss (Partey) and we have to learn from that. We have played the last three games with 10 men and against top sides you can’t do that because we are completely exposed,” Arteta said.

Midfielder Granit Xhaka saw red in the first leg last week but Arsenal survived with a 0-0 draw, while centre back Gabriel was dismissed in the 2-1 league defeat by champions Manchester City earlier this month.

“It worries me because it’s a massive favour… and we’ve seen that we have lost matches — when we played Man City here and tonight — and that’s a big reason for it,” added Arteta.

“So we have to eradicate it. We have to start to play consistently with 11 players and we have to learn big lessons from that. We can’t accept any excuses this time.”

Arteta has limited options in midfield for the home game against bottom side Burnley on Saturday, with Partey and Xhaka both suspended, and Mohamed Elneny away on international duty with Egypt.

Arsenal are sixth in the league standings with 35 points from 20 games, 24 points ahead of Burnley, who have three games in hand.

(Reporting by Dhruv Munjal in Bengaluru; editing by Richard Pullin)

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