Jack Wilshere missed Arsenal's second 3-0 defeat at the hands of Manchester City on Thursday, 1 March, after picking up a minor ankle injury during training ahead of the match.

The Gunners were coming into the game low on confidence after they were humbled by the same scoreline in the Carabao Cup final on Sunday, 25 February, by Pep Guardiola's men.

The England international was part of the squad that succumbed at Wembley Stadium, but despite training with the squad on Wednesday, 28 February, he did not make the matchday squad for the game against City.

Arsene Wenger has taken a cautious approach with Wilshere, who has had his fair share of injury troubles in recent seasons. The Gunners midfielder played in Arsenal's last three fixtures and the manager believes his fatigue levels were high due to which he was unable to train at 100%.

However, Wilshere's absence is unlikely to be long-term, with Wenger confirming that he will return for their trip to the south coast to take on Brighton and Hove Albion on Sunday, 4 March.

Speaking ahead of the game against City, Wenger said, as quoted by the Daily Mail, "He's not available tonight. But we'll be sure that he has a chance to be available for Sunday [against Brighton].

"It's a little pain in response. He played two games and gave a lot on Thursday and Sunday and he was a bit short yesterday [Wednesday] in training but he should be back on Sunday," the French coach added.

Arsenal, meanwhile, did put in a better performance than the one in Sunday's final. The Gunners started the game well and City goalkeeper Ederson was the busier of the two in the opening exchanges, but the soon-to-be-crowned Premier League champions showed why they are cruising at the top of the league with three well-taken goals in a space of 18 minutes in the first half.

Bernardo Silva, David Silva and Leroy Sane were the chief tormentors as Arsenal's defence struggled to deal with their pace and quick passing. Wenger's team did have their fair share of chances, however, which included Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang missing a penalty in the second half.

The Gunners' hopes of finishing in the Premier League's top four suffered yet another blow as they remain 10 points behind fourth-placed Tottenham Hotspur.

They could still secure Champions League football next season if they win the Europa League. However, the London club first has to negotiate a daunting fixture against another fallen European giant in AC Milan in the Round of 16 before entertaining any thoughts of reaching the final.

Jack Wilshere
Jack Wilshere missed Arsenal's loss to Manchester City in the Premier League on Thursday, 1 March, due to a minor injury Getty