I drank a lot of beer last night. I have more regrets than the guys and gals who booked a summer trip to the Costa del Caliphate last year. My drunk self is now so sophisticated, it will happily indulge itself in embarrassing mobile phone related antics in a highly efficient 20-minute burst in the Uber ride home, then delete the evidence so my sober self won’t know about the damage the next day.
Good to know a drunk dog can learn new tricks.
Right, onto some thrilling football commentary.
Tomorrow is a good chance to pull the season back onto the right path and make an impact on the performance aspect of our game. I know there’s a whole swath of fans who think that Tony Pulis levels of entertainment is fine if we’re racking the points up, but for me, I’d like to see some excitement on the pitch. A good performance shows that you’re progressing towards something and it shows that ideas are starting to settle.
There have been a lot of videos flying around showing what Emery football can look like, the common theme is generally any of the good moments have an Ozil or a Ramsey at core. We welcomed Mesut in from the naughty step and though it wasn’t a barnstorming performance, we still gave Xhaka and Matteo an outlet and he was certainly a reliable instigator of combination play.
The big question is what the manager does against Southampton. Ralph H is a very good organiser and he’s been raised on solid defence and aggressive pressing. We have a pretty exceptional record against The Saints at home but the form guide points towards a frustrating afternoon. They’ve taken 9 points from their last 6 and they’ve only lost once.
I failed to unmoderate this comment the other day, but I thought this was interesting from Just Another Customer:
‘With Southampton going all out defense might want to play 4-3-3 with 2 DMs anchoring or 1 DM + 2 box-to-box CMs when the fullbacks bomb forward so that we won’t get caught on the counter.
Expecting low IQ crab football from us if we don’t have laser-focused purposeful runs, movements, interchanges and passes in transition and build up. I’d say concede possession a bit let them play in non-threatening area to move their defensive line higher then double press or intercept then just catch them on surprise.
All in all just dominate the midfield so the fragile defense won’t be exposed.’
I am no good at the tactical stuff, but that’s above sounded logical. I’m very interested to see what the manager opts to do. Will he look to bring Ozil back into the fold, after his fuck up last time around in the away game? Or will he start with the high energy and attacking forcefulness Aaron brings? You feel he’s going to have to start one of them, otherwise, we might have a bland afternoon.
In other news, Sarri is starting to sound a bit like Mourinho
“I keep hearing people praise Arsenal’s season, but they are not in the EFL Cup final, they have the same points as us in the Premier League and reached the last 16 of the Europa League just like us,” he told Sky Sport Italia.
“I don’t understand why people act as if our season is so negative and Arsenal’s is impressive.
“It’s true there have been many ups and downs, including some deep lows, but considering it’s my first season in a new league and environment, I think that’s acceptable.
“I did take over a team that finished fifth, not one that won the championship.”
I don’t think there are many people saying that Arsenal are having a good season.
But to his point, we are very much in a fight with Chelsea and Manchester United. We certainly have the more favorable fixtures ahead, the main difference being they have players that have won titles. That said, his point about them finishing 5th last season is valid. It’s also worth remembering he’s making things even worse for himself by playing football his players don’t care for and putting players in positions they’re no good at.
Alex Lacazette’s ban sees him missing the next two Europa League games, which is less than ideal, but that’s what you get for dropping a silly elbow.
Ivan G has been raiding the corporate team at Arsenal, bringing James Murray over to Italy. Apparently, this was his JD.
“I run a team of in house strategy consultants for the commercial team at Arsenal.”
“We have a pretty broad remit around financial planning and strategy across retail, heavily involved in sponsorship. What it really boils down to is making Arsenal a compelling proposition internationally both for fans and sponsors.”
I mean, great for James, he’s had to sell Arsenal as a viable product during the banter years, now he’s drinking Barolo for breakfast, rocking oversized Persol sunglasses indoors, whilst sporting tight leather Brioni slacks. The good times, truly.
Hopefully Spurs get beaten by Burnley today, enjoy! x