All eyes on Emery’s tactics

by .

courtesy @allthatchas

The final hurrah of Nacho Monreal sadly will NOT be scoring a 32-yard screamer against Spurs tomorrow. The Spanish left back will instead be heading back to sunnier climes, choosing Real Sociedad to see out his career.

I think I speak for most Arsenal fans… no… ALL Arsenal fans, even you @BREXITGOONER1 (my dad), when I say: Bit of an odd one, this.

We’re banking on Kola learning how to defend, and we’re putting a lot of chips on Tierney  1) Adapting to the league like VVD 2) Breezing past his fitness challenges of the last year.

Still, it is what it is. Nacho is getting on a bit and his hamstrings and body parts will all be a touch more brittle than in the past. I’d imagine he’s at that age when you grunt when you pick up a slipper and he’s at that age when the slipper is probably his. He’s also probably wearing those slippers to the newspaper shop as well. Age is a bitch, but damn, we’ll do it in M&S levels of comfort.

I get the logic behind not having 3 left backs as well, we can’t keep pumping money into the ether. I just thought that if anyone set a great example for professionalism at the club, it was Nacho. He never let us down. He was a true warrior. He was an excellent player.

I remember about 5 years ago, Arsenal let a bunch of us interview him. His English was a bit broken and he was asked a question about what he thought we needed.

‘Someone who can score more than 20 goals a season regularly’, then his agent whispered something to him and he backtracked as hard as his words would allow. We went off the record so as not to cause a stir. But today, I’m causing a stir because Giroud is at Chelsea and who really cares this far out?

Manchester United drew with Southampton today. A great start to a big weekend for Arsenal. Only thing that’s bothering me there is that OGS is going to end up getting sacked before Christmas if he doesn’t pick things up a little. Would love him to have the whole season. Give him a chance, Ed.

The news coming out of the Spurs camp is delightful. Poch is unhappy. His team is disrupted. He has four players angling for an exit, names like Aurier, Eriksen, Vertonghen and Toby. Their squad is finally picking up injuries, there should be no Ndombele, Dier or right back tomorrow. The press were asking if he’d leave this week.

Spurs are there for the taking.

My hope is that Emery can avoid being timid in this game. I don’t want to see us lined up with a deep block on the edge of our box. I don’t want to see us persisting with playing out the back if it looks like Spurs have that sussed. I don’t want us playing for a quick counter-attack at home.

We have the tools in our squad to play to win. Spurs are in a bit of a hole, if we gift them too much respect, we’ll make it hard for ourselves. When confidence is shaken, strike hard and strike first. Test their collective resolve.

I talk like Spurs are totally shite, chances are they’ll turn up because of the magnitude of the game. I just hope we’re positive. Emery plays with too much fear and indecision in big games. I hope that’s just Liverpool jitters… because the fans are not going to gift him a 50/50 split on tomorrow regardless of what he does tactically. It’s a must-win against a team that finished 1 point ahead of us last season.

Win this, and we’re telling the league that we’re here for the top 3 this year, lose, and you’ll start to worry if Emery has the beans to push the squad forward this season.

Our underlying stats have been poor this season. You only have to take a cursory looks across the numbers sites to see that we’re not in great shape. This from Statsbomb.

‘It’s well known that shot rates tend to increase as matches progress, so even when you see a 30-plus shot beatdown, most of the time, the shots get racked up in the second half. And that’s true here. Only four times in 2018-19 did a team reach the half time point having allowed 15 or more shots.’

That number above is quite staggering to read when you’re setting up to stifle attempts at your goal. Add to that, Arsenal has turned the ball over in their own half more than any other team in the league, and you can see a problem brewing. I say brewing because Liverp0ol was a particularly bad execution of what could be passed off as a new strategy against a new rule (I am reaching so badly for the Emeryista here).

A pal in my ArsenalMensSupport chat groups pointed out, Arsenal’s lack of expenditure at the back this summer points to a club not taking defence particularly seriously. The statistics early on this season point, mapped against last, point to a manager not capable of creating a defensive structure that can serve an elite team.

I don’t know what the exact solve is, but my amateur thoughts have led me to this:

  1. Be less predictable. If you play out the back every time, you make it easy to set up against. Being dedicated to an idea is commendable, but if it’s not working, mix things up. It shouldn’t take 80mins for a keeper to go long once. Even mix up the variety of how you do it. You can play from the back and have a more vertical approach.
  2. Do it faster. If you are slow and methodical at moving it out the back, you let teams reset, which again, makes it easy to play against you.
  3. Stop playing staff that are prone to being targeted. Xhaka is well known to be awful when put under pressure. Stop playing him.

Let’s see what Emery has in store tomorrow. He’s a tactically flexible coach, he needs to think a little deeper about what he wants from his defence this year. Hopefully, there’s a simple solution he can adopt.

In other news, Elneny is off to Turkey. Nice guy, about as useful to the squad as a motivational bus driver. Mustafi did not leave, an absolutely disgraceful indictment on his passion for the game. I really hope Emery doesn’t start using him. Keep him frozen out. Mesut Ozil also didn’t leave, he’ll be a bit part this season until he moves on to DC. Say what you will about the German, he’s at least useful.

Finally, listen to our pre-Spurs pod.

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1,818 Responses to “All eyes on Emery’s tactics”

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  1. TBone

    The takeaway from this game is that there are a worrying number of players that are well below standard. I hope behind the scenes the club is working on getting rid of: Kola, Xhaka and Miki for starters.

  2. Leftsidesanch

    And where is our new youngster, or Nelson – they wouldn’t have done worse than Mikki. Emerys a clown to me.

  3. Valentin


    How can Emery call himself a headcoach and not realise that both Xhaka and Mhkitaryan should never be near the first team?
    Willock in place of Xhaka and in likelihood it would have been an Arsenal victory.

  4. MidwestGun

    Wow… hardest point we will ever earn.. Feel like if we had started Ceballos instead of Xhaka …played LT central maybe different outcome.. hindsight of course. Thank God didn’t lose to that mob though.. would have been unbearable.. bad enough with a draw to that lot.

  5. TheBayingMob

    Luiz is a disaster signing on a Silvestre level. I’m not seeing it in Pepe yet, he’s going to have to come to terms with the speed of the league. Spurs will be happy with that in the end.

  6. DaleDaGooner

    Too many useless players in Xhaka, Mkhitaryan, Kolasinac. Some terrible showings for Papa and AMN. AMN isn’t a right back and I doubt he’s a viable option in CM. Papas needs to be on the bench for a Holding or Saliba as things stands. I still think Luiz is decent because he knows what it feels like to win the big trophies. Laca was a beast..:..:when you outrun Xhaka to play defense, he ran himself into the ground. Pepe needs to quickly add goals and better decisions on the counter attack.

  7. Cesc Appeal

    I would have thrown Maritnelli on as well, not Mkhitaryan. Don’t rate Nelson, but Martinelli I certainly would have played.

    That has to be it for Xhaka now, he gave away a penalty and on another day could have been sent off, 7 fouls including a really bad penalty.

    Can blame thick fucking players but ultimately if Emery keeps selecting him then he needs to be blamed.

    Just have a go with Guendouzi, Torreira, Dani Ceballos for a while.

  8. azed


    Nobody likes Xhaka but you would complain about anything.

    Last week you were ” go 4-3-4″ this week we go 4-3-3 you complain about formation.

    No matter what Emery does, you would complain.

  9. China1

    The buck stops with the manager

    Guen and tor were both useful and xhaka was predictably dross, yet xhaka plays 90 and tor comes off early

    Meanwhile cabellos looks especially important to our offense yet he has to sit on the bench so that we can accommodate xhaka with two other DMs

    Emery has had a mare today and it was all his own making

    Play shit players, get shit results. Shock horror

  10. Boomslang

    We need to be ambitious next season. Get rid of Emery, and go all out for Allegri. Double his Juventus salary if that is what it will take.

  11. Un na naai

    Why did the ref call that there?
    Let the throw in go

    Mkhitaryan was an utter waste of a player on the left there
    Wasted chance after chance to nick a winner

    Pepe just twists himself up.
    Disappointed there. We had them at our mercy and just no finesse in the final third

    More attacking midfielders and strikers than sense but couldn’t create that important third chance
    I do not want to see Mkhitaryan anywhere near an arsenal team again
    Give me Nelson
    Give me Saka

    Don’t waste any more time on a guy that just wastes so many great opportunities to create a goal.

  12. Jamie

    A draw was bad enough.

    So much dross still stealing a living. Kola, Xkaha, Ozil, Mkhi, Mustafi.

    But we got decent money for a low-wage earner in Iwobi, so it’s all good.

  13. Marko

    Guendouzi was brilliant today. The improvement this season alone is why you keep faith with a promising 19/20 year old.

    Xhaka and Sokratis absolutely pointless players and dumb as fuck.

  14. Luteo Guenreira

    The introduction of Ceballos made an immediate difference, finally saw some prolonged possession in the opponent half. Starting midfield can’t really be explained.

    If Pepe doesn’t start producing end results he’s gonna get labeled a greedy bastard, he was quite wasteful today.

    Xhaka and Mkhi need no words.

  15. Paulinho

    Torreria made a couple of great runs at the start of the match. Twice in front of goal and twice not found.

    Hope he keeps trying.

  16. Un na naai


    Say what muthafucka??

    AMN has a good game
    Kolasinac was surprisingly ok too.

    Even xakha has a decent second half but he’s a liability and so is Mkhitaryan

    Done with the pair of them
    Both goals were fucking Christmas presents.

  17. raptora

    Emery’s fault today lost us 2 pts. You don’t play Xhaka unless you need to. I got the starting lineup minus that I had Ceballos starting instead of Xhaka. If we had done that things could have been different. Xhaka makes far too many dumb decisions and is not that great of a footballer to begin with. No brain, slow, not mobile, not even tough for his size…

    If Emery keeps starting him he will lose us points and this will be Emery’s last season with us.

    Holding can’t come soon enough so we ditch Sok.

    Same re Tierney and Kolasinac.

  18. Cesc Appeal


    It actually pisses me off.

    When someone tackled Sissoko at the end and it bounced off him 2 foot in the air and came down right in his running path so he didn’t even need to break stride I thought I bet they fucking score here.

    Or he miscues skies it, it hits a low flying pigeon and ends up going in.

    That’s 2-2 at the Etihad and 2-2 at the Emirates…neither of the games did they deserve to come out with anything at all. It’s literally ‘let Son lead the counter and then maybe he or the big tongued, slab headed twat will fall over and win us a set piece’.

  19. Ishola70

    There is no need to over-anaylize why Arsenal are not a real top team.

    It’s just as simple as they are not good enough defensively and don’t have the players to be good enough defensively and that’s even with a coach in Emery who doesn’t even promise to make the team better defensively.

    Papa Sokratis was pretty good at Dortmund many years ago. He was struggling defensively today at times.

    Xhaka the nightmare that he is off the ball pretends to sheild this defence.

    Arsenal added a CB who is more known for his 50 yard passes rather than really good defending although he had a decent enough match today Luiz that is.

    The team is not good enough defensively and when they are up against top attackers like Son and Kane it is simply too much for them to handle.

    Maybe this bullshit from like 99% of the posters that Arsenal will absolutely run away with third place will stop now though. Over-rating the side.

  20. Olumide

    The thing is I won’t even blame Xhaka for this. I’ll blame the coach who always find a way to shove him into the team.

  21. Alex James

    Still too many average players in the team, to enable us to challenge for honours. Xhaka, Mhika and Kola to name but three. The keeper has mistakes in him, and our new wizard from France looks overrated. Another Gervinho.

  22. China1

    Yeah the whole wenger squad excuses don’t add up today

    Mikki is shit and we have some subs who may be more useful but they don’t get used

    Xhaka is crap and we have Ceballos and willock on the bench but xhaka plays 90 anyway

    Guen was a real positive today. That was one of his best performances. He’s really growing in stature in this team

  23. WengerEagle

    Credit to come back from 2-0 down but fuck me, real opportunity lost there today. Spuds were there for the absolute taking and hanging on for dear life in the 2nd half.

    Thought Guendouzi was clear MOTM for us, lad was brilliant. Much more positive going forward and was unlucky not to score with Lloris pulling off a top save to deny him. Great assist for Auba and cleaned up very well off the ball all match.

    Pepe was shite, can see the potential but his touch was off all match and his finishing was wild. Definitely needs another few weeks to bed in, hopefully is up to speed when he returns from the break.

    Kola was good going forward to be fair to him, if he had a real football brain though he’d have held his run a step and we’d have won the match.

  24. Olumide

    Emery starts Ceballos and Arsenal most likely would have won the game. But Emery probably saw something else apart from common sense.

  25. TT

    New manager and still no improvement in defense. Emry needs to go and a manager brought in that realizes
    that one nil to the Arsenal is magic..

  26. Un na naai

    MarkoSeptember 1, 2019 18:31:54
    Guendouzi was brilliant today. The improvement this season alone is why you keep faith with a promising 19/20 year old.


    That’s rich!! You’re not wrong though this time marko
    He was imperious. Big day fornhim. Stepped up and now the bar is that much higher. Delighted for him. He was fantastic.

    Nothing nicer than seeing a young player step up and realise themselves

    Like Neo when he realises he’s the one
    But with a football

  27. DaleDaGooner

    Azed….please don’t make any excuses for Emery!! His formation is wrong again, his personnel selection atrocious again. Why did Xhaka play 95mins today??? Why is he even starting and not sold off?

  28. Cesc Appeal

    By the start of October we should be running Bellerin, Holding, Luiz, Tierney as our defence and Guendouzi, Torreira, Dani Ceballos as our midfield.

    We cannot keep playing Xhaka there is never and has never been a punishment for his fucking stupidity.

  29. Ishola70

    No idea why Guendouzi gets caned oh here so often by posters.

    Arsenal have a good midfielder there and considering his age it’s encouraging if he progresses in how good he could become for Arsenal.

    Valentin, Wenger Eagle, Nelson, Emirates Stroller to name a few all undervalue him quite badly.

  30. Marko

    I’d sack Emery tonight if it meant the glue factory for Xhaka. He’s our worst player by far. If Emery isn’t interested in binning him then consider someone else. It’s actually one of the reasons why I’d be behind Vieira. I can’t imagine him being a fan of the Swiss donkey

  31. Globalgunner

    How can any team carry so many useless players, Xhaka, Ozil, Mikhi and Kolasinac not far behind. AMN serves no purpose than to buy his Mom expensive handbags.

    Emery needs his head examined if he can see that Mustafi is a liability but not realise same in Xhaka, Awful player with only 1 attribute: the occasional long range shot. How bad was Mihki when he came on? Flunked every opportunity that came to him

  32. Cesc Appeal

    If Guendouzi can keep developing this year that is absolutely massive for us in a real problem area.

    See how Holding comes back, but if he’s doing well enough by January we need to look for a big, powerful, athletic CDM/CM to provide protection and a totally balanced midfield.

  33. azed

    “Willock in place of Xhaka and in likelihood it would have been an Arsenal victory.”

    Not remotely true… It’s your stock in trade to be revisionist.

    Last season you were all on Mavropranos, after he messed up against Crystal palace you went quiet.

    If Ceballos didn’t play last week, you would have said something about us loosing because he didn’t play.

  34. Ishola70

    Emery is only a symptom of why Arsenal don’t improve as a real top team.

    The club themselves and those that do the hiring have to get serious about making this team better defensively.

    They have to show that the Wenger days of being soft defensively are well and truly over.

    No signs of this just yet unfortunately.

  35. Zimmie2652

    I think once that first one finds the back of the net for Pepe, we will begin to see the best out of him. As we all know with that price tag comes certain amounts of expectations and pressures. Just netting that first goal should a long way to easing his mind.

    Otherwise, I am beginning to get sick of Emery’s tinkering and like the majority on here, I am not seeing any particular part of coaching that Emery is remotely competent at. Poor starting selections, poor subs etc… rather confusing all of it.

  36. azed


    4-3-3 is our best formation. Nobody is making excuses for Emery but you can’t say playing 4-3-3 is the right formation at Anfield and the wrong one at home.

  37. Alex James

    It took me nearly 20 years to lose confidence in Wenger. Less than two years for Emery. Get Jose in. I wouldn’t invite him for tea but he would sort this lot out. His problem at OT probably stems from AF treading the corridors.

  38. PieAFC

    Facts from the game.

    Defensively we’re still shocking.

    Xhaka offers absolutely fuck all for this game.

    Once Ceballos came on we improved in the middle, wanted the ball, pass and move. Even Guendouzi improved

    Lacazette I hope isn’t a serious one.

    Hard fought point. We need to improve. That first half was diabolical. Emery needs to get a system in place quickly!

  39. Cesc Appeal

    Pepe is a bit eager right now, just needs a goal.

    The potential is incredibly evidence, big, strong, fast, dribbles around players for fun and also has a great engine.

  40. China1

    James Mourinho would demand 300m investment and leave via the back door 2 years later

    New manager sure but ‘no way jose’

  41. Kamp

    The manager didn’t trust Ceballos to start. He has to now. The speed of the front three will pin most teams back. But they need the supply from Dani.

    Guenduzi was great and Torriera played well.
    Xhaka is done for us, surely.

    The best 11 is taking shape.
    Holding will walk back into this side, Sokaratis is a loose cannon.

  42. Un na naai


    It’s nit even funny now with Mkhitaryan
    How on earth can emery persist with him?

    He’s lost it all
    Touch, composure, vision, execution

  43. China1

    Yeah Pepe just looks like he hasn’t found his feet yet. I don’t doubt when he’s got a few more games under his belt and he’s nicked a goal or two he’ll relax and show some true form

  44. Marko

    Today was Guendouzi’s coming out party. Smart on the ball it practically stuck to his foot all game and he got an assist.

    We were all calling for Torreira to start today but he honestly didn’t do much. He gets a pass though because he wasn’t fouling people all game and costing us yet again.

  45. PieAFC

    And bringing Miki on, what a waste of a player.

    His first touch and he’s miles of the pace of the game.

    Telling me willock or anyone else can not offer more than him?

  46. S Asoa

    Thierney, Holding, Chambers et al might come.
    So long Emery is still around to perversely fuck up ,nothing matters.

  47. Upstate Gooner

    September 1, 2019 18:34:53
    The thing is I won’t even blame Xhaka for this. I’ll blame the coach who always find a way to shove him into the team.

    Comment of the day

  48. China1

    Yeah mikki is really really bad at football

    He looks like your standard 5 a side veteran but playing for arsenal

    He has no business at this level

    Utd got widely panned for mishandling mikki and him underachieving there but we’ve all seen enough to know now Utd didn’t mistreat him at all and that he just isn’t a good footballer period

  49. Un na naai

    China1September 1, 2019 18:45:13
    Yeah Pepe just looks like he hasn’t found his feet yet. I don’t doubt when he’s got a few more games under his belt and he’s nicked a goal or two he’ll relax and show some true form


    He turned so much it looked like he was searching for them
    Where are my feets?My feets. Guys, have you seen my feets

  50. Valentin


    I am complaining about everything, but about specific well known things. Before the game, about the followings before the game.
    + Xhaka being introduced instead of Ceballos.
    + Willock being dropped in favour of Torreira

    I was not the only one who saw those two moves as big mistakes before the game. A midfield of Willock-Ceballos-Guendouzi had enough brain and brawn to contain Spurs and still link up effectively with the front three.
    The introduction of Ceballos was part of the catalyst to our second half revival.

    During the game, introducing a past it Mhkitaryan was a mistake. Especially when he has a pure left winger on the bench in Nelson. Clearly Emery has no faith in Nelson. That may be warranted, but if he never play him we will never know.

  51. China1

    Tbf to tor he was playing as a fucking 10.



    Who can tell me why you would have Ceballos on the bench and tor at n10????

    Seriously LOL

  52. Leftsidesanch

    Graham on the mark here, Xhaka has shown zero progression in his time in England. Constantly making the same mistakes, constantly having a rush of blood to the head. When will the penny drop?

    He knows he’s guaranteed to get in the side if he’s fit.

  53. karim

    We’ve got more and more “emery out “ posters and it would have been the same had we won the game.

    Quite telling imo.

  54. azed

    No one is saying 4-3-3 isn’t right today, but Xhaka is zero in that midfield 3


    Everyone one agrees Xhaka is poor but he’s the only one that has any sort of physicality on our midfielder.

    As much as Ceballos-Torriera-Guendozi looks enticing, it’s extremely lightweight.

  55. Champagne charlie

    Just have to wonder at what point we look at how we defend with any sort of sincerity.

    Pure shambles every time we’re under attack.

  56. Ishola70


    This point you are trying to make about Willock being dropped is rubboish.

    The lad wasn’t even standout in the few matches he played.

    I know you have a mania for youth but let it go for god’s sake.

    There was no problem in midfield today apart from Granit Xhaka.

    And I hope you were humbled in relation to Guendouzi’s performance today. You have undervalued him badly.

  57. Sanmi


    Arsenal will actually be 3rd at season’s end. There’s no way this spurs can top arsenal. That’s theit best team out there. We av 2 defenders missing.
    Plus Chelsea is too weak, man utd is 10th at best.
    Against park the bus, I fancy our team than Chelsea, spurs or man utd.
    If we had been in spurs position today, you’d crucify us. Throw away a 2 goal lead?

  58. China1

    It’s his nature to go for those tight tricky manouvres

    What I hope to see him sharper at is his shooting and decision making.

    Like there’s no point playing those high crosses to auba who hasn’t scored a header in 500 years

    It’s gonna take a few more weeks for him to start to settle I think as he doesn’t seem to be a natural on Day 1 like Ceballos for example

  59. azed

    Emery not up to the mark lol
    What about Pochettino …

    Great question Red…..

    The same people who call Emery shit think Poch is a great coach….

    Let’s be consistent.

  60. Cesc Appeal


    That’s why I’m waiting before really going in on it, I detest Spurs, really fucking hate them, they are so incredibly lucky.

    But they’ve got their 2 best CBs and their only CAM soon to leave on a free and they look in an even worse state than us at full back because at least ours are yet to return.

    Emery seriously annoyed me today not playing Dani Ceballos. He was great when he came on and was instantly up to the intensity of the game shoving that chav c**t Alli which always gets you points from me.

  61. S Asoa

    Emery has been such a perversily persistent dusaster in team selection, we should stop making excuses for that mediocre coach.

  62. Ishola70

    Excellent from Don.

    One of the last few Granit Xhaka apologists on here now officially giving up on him.

    Just needs Charlie to throw the towel in on him and there is no time at all for Xhaka on here.

    Oh and of course Emery as well.

  63. Leftsidesanch

    One thing I can say is, last season we did well to beat Spurs at home and get a point away as there were clearly superior. That gap has well and truly been closed in my view. Not much, if anything between these sides quality wise.

    Not the level we need to be at but a step in the right direction.

  64. China1

    But xhaka isn’t winning duels in the middle. His defensive contributions are far fewer than guens

    The extent of xhaka’s Defensive contribution is to make regular little fouls. I’m not even exaggerating.

    And because that’s all he can do defensively, if he screws up a little it’s usually a penalty or whatever other horror story like we have seen so many many times

  65. Valentin


    Revisionism at his worst.
    I said before the Crystal Palace that introducing a young player who is coming back from a long term injury to a must win game was a bad decision.
    There were games before where we played with 3 at the back where he could have been slowly integrated.

    Emery does not trust some players and will not play them. Then because of injuries, out of desperation he plays them in must win games without having any adaptation time beforehand.

    Wenger was doing the same, overplaying his favourite players and then act surprised when they broke down and their replacement were not up to speed.

    Rotation is not a dirty concept.

  66. China1

    Btw the ref was a complete count for not punishing spurs dives

    How can you accuse spurs of going down too easy 3 times in one half and nobody gets a booking? Soft cunt

  67. Ishola70

    The jibe is only for posters that put Spurs up there with Liverpool and Man City.

    But Arsenal won’t be running away with third place in the league that so many posters on here have been implying for weeks now.

  68. Cesc Appeal

    We’ve got to look at a Partey, Sangare, Zakaria type player for the midfield.

    I don’t care what Emery sees in Xhaka, his possession ability, whatever it is, he cannot get around the pitch and he’s a liability in near every game he’s in.

    A brain dead moment against Brighton cost us UCL football, that was a needless penalty. He’s skidding into Son today in his own box to hand a penalty on a plate and with another referee he’s probably off way before the end having racked up another 6 fouls after that. His best performance today was only getting booked in the 91st minute.

  69. Sanmi

    Emery got the tactics spot on. But players selection was an issue. I understand why he persists with xhaka, but it’s no longer a valid point bcos ceballos can distribute as well.
    Sokratis cost us by handing spurs the lead.

  70. Receding Hairline

    We gifted them two goals annoying

    The thing about Xhaka is he will do that stuff again

    Ceballos did well when he came on but no one is pointing out that he needlessly lost the ball three times and that led to Spurs counters

    Mkhi is finished

    Guendouzi was superb, didn’t even notice Torreira in the second half, good first half. All in all this was a semi battering without the three points, telling that Emery picks the wrong team allegedly yet Poch can’t beat him. Klopp or Pep wrap this game up first half …Spurs are lucky to get a point

    Fantastic player Son though, simply fantastic

  71. Kamp

    Sami we have 3 defenders missing. Don’t forget holding.

    And that was easily Guendouzi’s best game for the club…spurs are no mugs remember. They contested the Champions league final last season. We were all over them all game.

  72. Thank you and goodnight.

    @Champagne Charlie

    I agree with you. It doesn’t matter who we play as I have no confidence in our shape when attacked or our defenders. That’s another reason I want Emery out, I’ve seen bugger all evidence of any improvements defensively.


    Ceballos is a real talent. Hope we can keep him all season. He’s really really impressed me in a big way.

  73. Un na naai

    Ishola70September 1, 2019 18:54:08
    Excellent from Don.One of the last few Granit Xhaka apologists on here now officially giving up on him.Just needs Charlie to throw the towel in on him and there is no time at all for Xhaka on here.


    It seems like you’ve got your heart set on an echo chamber.

  74. Zimmie2652

    With all due respect, Xhaka may be the most physical of the bunch and could be the second coming of Christ himself to Emery but it means fuck all when not used appropriately. I’d personally prefer the lighter, smarter combo of Tor,/Willock, Ceballos and Guen.

  75. Ishola70

    Xhaka actually started the game in the first five minutes pretty well. lol first 5 mins.

    He won two challenges in midfield and higher up as well.

    But all counts for nothing when the ticking time bomb explodes yet again in the match.

  76. Cesc Appeal


    The difference is their full back situation this year and the fact that 3 of their best players, including their starting CB pairing, are all walking on frees and could be signed on pre-contracts in January.

    I don’t see a lot of money being available either because they’ve pushed the cost of Le Celso to next year.

  77. azed

    I said before the Crystal Palace that introducing a young player who is coming back from a long term injury to a must win game was a bad decision.
    There were games before where we played with 3 at the back where he could have been slowly integrated.

    Mavropranos played about 15mins against City and 45 mins against Watford so what are you saying about throwing him in the deep?

    Talking about throwing someone in the deep, aren’t you the one who suggested playing Osei-Tutu against Chelsea in the final?

    There’s lots of people who criticize Emery and I won’t bad an eyelid but you always has something to say about Emery no matter the result.

  78. Redtruth

    Thank you and
    “I agree with you. It doesn’t matter who we play as I have no confidence in our shape when attacked or our defenders. That’s another reason I want Emery out, I’ve seen bugger all evidence of any improvements defensively.’

    Lol…..Get rid of Xhaka solves 50% of our problem.

  79. Valentin


    So you have enjoyed Xhaka’s performance. Clearly Willock would not have done worse than he played. Nelson would not have been worse than Mhkitaryan.

    I have been very complimentary of Guendouzi this season. I said that last season he was not ready and lacked defensive awareness. This season, he worked on this deficiencies. He admitted in his interview that he had to work on that side of his game. My beef last season was that he was put in the team despite those obvious flaws.
    I am all in favour of giving players a chance but if they are not ready, they should not be starting for Arsenal.

  80. Un na naai


    He was a bit indecisive too in good positions. (Ceballos) but he brought a rhythm to our play that we were sorely lacking until his introduction.

  81. Ishola70

    Receding Hairline
    “We gifted them two goals annoyingThe thing about Xhaka is he will do that stuff again”

    You are changing your tune Receding.

    You seemed ok with Xhaka. You told us that he is good enough 80% of the time on the pitch.

    Well you know what. It isn’t good enough.

    You can officially bin him today on here like Don has done if you want. Go on you can do it. Never mind if Emery keeps picking him. You can call them both twats if that’s the case.

  82. Cesc Appeal

    Once he has Holding, Bellerin and Tierney back people will expect more. If he keeps selecting Xhaka as well he’s going to heap pressure on himself unnecessarily.

    I do like that Dani Ceballos was apparently pissed off at not starting and he played like it.

  83. Champagne charlie


    There’s no evidence at all. What happens is different players are picked up each week for their defensive mistakes with absolutely no mind paid to fact they’re being exposed by no interest in getting the defensive side under wraps.

    Wenger did it but would weave more in attack until it finally caught up with him, now Emery is doing it time after time.

    Some players are clearly dispensable, but at what point do we have an inquest as to why we can’t limit a side to less than 10 shots in a game. We’re all over the place. 51 last season, 6 in 4 so far this term.

  84. Olumide

    I want to see what Emery can do by May. But it just doesn’t look like he has the ruthlessness to kick people while they’re down.
    One of the things I admire about Ferguson is that he’s ruthless in situations like this. Ferguson will win this type of games (9 out of 10 times).
    He would use Carrick and Fletcher (due to injury to defenders) in Central defense and still win 1-0 during a title run in.
    Emery should have gotten top 4 last season considering the advantage we had.
    Arsenal should have won today. Even with the squad available.

  85. Chris

    Emery’s starting line up all wrong today. Luckily we had enough drive, quality and perhaps a bit of ‘pashun’ to get a draw, and to the point where we probably should have won the game.

    There is no defending playing the walking disaster that is Xhaka, especially when a midfield made from some from Willock/Torreira/Guendouzi and Ceballos looks so appealing.

    Bring on Mkhi also a mistake, the guy is finished. At times he didn’t even look like he could run for the ball properly.

    Bittersweet ultimately, could have been worse but the problems were of our own making. Very poor individual errors and the wrong line up.

  86. Un na naai


    He also had a good second half and played some lovely early balls that really only he plays from our squad but it’s too much now. That tackle was fucking atrocious. He’s ok to rest the main men for now but he can’t be starting crunch games any more

  87. Kamp

    What’s wrong with these pundits?!

    If Kane is running forward in the box and then slows up steps across he defender and plants his feet:
    The defender will go straight into his back and is entitled to put his hands up.

  88. Chika

    Two points dropped.

    Why is Emery still persisting with Xhaka and Mhki? What a fucking timid coach!

    Nelson would have given Sanchez a tougher time. The introduction of Ceballos really gave us more drive. Big ups to Guen as well. Really can’t wait for Pepe to get going.

  89. Un na naai


    He is good 80% of the time. No doubt
    Like I said in the second half he finds passes no other arsenal player finds. But he was a liability going the their way and we ended a man down with 4 to go when we needed momentum on the box

    He killed the change to pepper their goal and allow them to regroup

  90. Cesc Appeal

    ‘What’s wrong with these pundits’

    I don’t know why anyone listens to pundits talk about Spurs.

    They attach socks to their knobs before starting off, you will never get an objective statement about Spurs out of them whether that’s about their play or transfer business.

  91. Ishola70


    You have a short memory about what you say like some others on here.

    You were far from complimentary about Guendouzi on here in a post leading up to this Spurs match.

    But it’s ok.

    We can agree now that really he should be seen as a positive at the club. And that’s even with errors from him now and again at 20 years of age.

  92. PieAFC

    Ceballos brought a simple pass and move fluidity to the game once he came on.

    Wanting and asking for the ball.

    One things clear, simple as it is. Xhaka is our captain, almost fool proof that he won’t be dropped. It has to been seen by Unai – unless injured or a red card he’s unfortunately going to start every game at the detriment to our team.

  93. Marko

    We’ve got to look at a Partey, Sangare, Zakaria type player for the midfield.

    No more Swiss players at Arsenal please

  94. Leftsidesanch

    As I’ve said today Chambers and Holding should be the choice but timid, safe Emery will never do so. Tierney back after the break and I’m desperate for him to hit the ground running. Kola is horrific.

    Ultimately its hard to be too excited when Xhaka will be shoehorned into this side at all costs.

  95. gazzap

    Fact is we let spurs off the hook today. Leno and Xhaka gave them 2-0 lead and so 2-2 is a half decent result in those circumstances.

  96. Un na naai


    Plenty of gooner pundits now though


    We have plenty of our own voices out there now

  97. Leedsgunner

    Honestly I do not know another team in the EPL that so regularly shoot themselves in the foot on a regular basis.

    Two points drops dropped rather a point gained as far as I’m concerned.. We should have won except for our unforced errors… unprofessional in the extreme to give away a penalty two games in a row due to stupid errors of judgement.

  98. TR7


    Yes, Holding is our best CB in my opinion so can’t wait to see him come back in to our team. I am not a big fan of Bellerin but he is not a bad player and will improve us and so will Tierney. I think even Chambers is better than Sokratis and should start for us until Holding comes back.

  99. TitsMcGee

    I’ve been on the fence with Emery but he’s not ever gonna be “that guy” for us.

    Where Wenger had no plan B, Emery is trying to force a “square peg” system into “round hole” players.

    He has no “higher level” if you will and there seems to be no “plan” for the system either. Whereas for example you could see what Klopp was trying to do from early on and you knew once he got the horses they’d be scary.

    There are still a few weeds in the squad but the concerning thing for me is there’s no progression, we are just as much a shambles defensively as we’ve been in years gone by.

  100. Un na naai


    I saidnit in the summer

    100% we need to be phasing those two in
    Thought Luiz was good though but like xakha and Mustafi has two many mistakes in him
    Two stand outs today
    Two last week
    One the week before

    That’s 5 in 3 games

  101. Cesc Appeal

    Again, as Pedro said last week isn’t it interesting that absolutely no one is talking about Ozil when discussing Mkhitaryan or the result today?

    The squad dynamic is changing drastically.

    But fuck me Emery really does need to stop selecting Xhaka. He’s done it with Mustafi, he’s done it with Ozil…why can he not do it with Xhaka?

  102. DaleDaGooner

    “Everyone one agrees Xhaka is poor but he’s the only one that has any sort of physicality on our midfielder.“

    Azed, what physicality??? Constantly drops like a sack of potatoes when a huge rat runs over it. Literally tumbled over during his amble shielding of the ball where he should be shrugging off players and making decisive passes on the counter. Did we also mention how players of the opposing team and Laca, our striker runs past him when being ghosted? At best he’ll be a donce and commit a stupid and unwarranted foul.

  103. WengerEagle

    Guendouzi and Ceballos in his cameo are the only midfielders to come out of todaywith any credit for me.

    Xhaka laughably bad, Miki and Toreirra offered next to nothing as well. Defence and Leno also had a mare in the 1st half.

    Thought that the front 3 were ok, Laca and Auba both grabbing important goals and Pepe was lively albeit looked wild for spells.

    Familiar to last season isn’t it? Can’t defend to save our bacon and get bailed out by Laca and Auba goals up top.

    Ceballos the big positive addition and Guendouzi if he can reproduce matches like today on the regular.

  104. Bob N16

    Just got back from the game. 2-0 down a draw is never bad.
    Granit ‘the liability’ Xhaka
    Guendozi- take a bow…..didn’t fade, 90 minutes full commitment- got more chants than any other player.
    Once we gel, eg Pepe 5% better, Ceballos bedded in, we’ll be winning 4-1, 5-1, regularly.
    Emery needs to settle on a consistent set up- his desire to change formations doesn’t help cohesion.
    Torreira, Guendozi, Ceballos should given a few games together.
    Quality strikers.
    Xhaka is a liability ( worth repeating)

    I think we’ll progress well this season and I believe this will be down to our acquisitions rather than Emery being a great coach.