(Cesar Azpilicueta 25, Juan Mata 66)
It was only the League Cup, it was only a skirmish between two weakened sides.
Arsenal fans can tell themselves that, if they think it will help.
The nagging truth, however, is that anyone looking for evidence of Arsenal's title credentials will have found little to satisfy them at the Emirates Stadium on Wednesday morning (Singapore time).
There is no question that Arsenal have a first 11 that can match anyone in the Premier League. The problem is what lies beneath.
In a battle of the fringe players, Arsenal's spare parts came a very distant second.
Even the late introduction of Mesut Oezil and Olivier Giroud had little effect. By that time, the game was already lost.
Much has been made of the return of Nicklas Bendtner, hasty conclusions derived from fleeting appearances from the bench.
Under deeper scrutiny, played from the start, the not-so-great Dane fell short again.
Carl Jenkinson, understudy to Bacary Sagna, was responsible for the first goal, carelessly dropping a header short of his goalkeeper and allowing Cesar Azpilicueta to open the scoring.
Jenkinson is a lifelong Arsenal fan whose commitment can never be questioned, but it remains to be seen if he is of the necessary calibre.