The ball was laid down on the roulette table and it landed on flat, deflated and well below the standard you expect of a team that should be challenging for honours. When it’s ability you lack, you can understand performances like yesterday to a degree. However, when you know the team has 7 goals in them against top opposition, well, you know it’s just down right laziness.
There seems to be no such thing as turning a corner for this Arsenal side. If the players fancy it, we’ll see a great performance, if they don’t, we’ll drop points. Do we have a group of players who aren’t up to consistent top level performances, or do we have management who don’t understand the basics of motivation? After 7 years of watching our players leave us and go to clubs where they sustain top level performances, I’m starting to think it’s management.
Well, that, and some very average players as well.
Yesterday’s tepid showing highlighted a few problems we’ve had this year. Firstly our inability to keep a clean sheet. God knows what Podolski was thinking when he put the back four under pressure with his horror show pass, followed up with a Sagna sliced clearance which met Puncheon, who played in Ramirez for the goal.
I’m not sure what’s going on with the Bacman… He’s certainly not focused and he’s struggling with his form. He needs to be pulled out the firing line for a couple of games based on what he’s producing on the pitch for us.
It didn’t take long for us to get back level, courtesy of an own goal. Theo Walcott slipped a cross into the box which was put into the back of the net by Guly. A welcome gift.
What frustrated me about the opening 45 minutes was the lack of effort applied to taking on Boruc. He was clearly a bagof nerves after dropping an early cross… so why weren’t the team peppering the goal? We’re supposed to be a team packed full of intelligent players, yet we rarely have the intuition during a game to pounce on an obvious chink in the armour.
The second half wasn’t much better. Theo Walcott is pretty unproductive unless he’s given acres of space and our two wide men were marked out the game by the Southampton fullbacks. Luke Shaw did his CV no harm…
Our keeper earned his wages with a few fine saves that kept us in the tie. Giroud came on the give is some height and presence, sadly, he couldn’t offer anything worth while. All in all, a very disappointing start to 2013. Even more so considering everyone else raced away from us. A particular worry being Spurs…
Arsene Wenger needs to earn his money this transfer window. This stuttery form isn’t a blip, it’s a main stay. Inconsistency is woven into the make up of this side. I’m not sure if new players can pull us out of this mess, I tend to think prematch preparation and how Wenger instructs his team is more of a problem. However, a box to box midfielder would be a great start along with an explosive striker who can cause trouble in games like yesterday.
Not a massive report today. I’ll be back at 9 tomorrow! Have a great day. See you in the comments.