Time for a performance

by .

It is a HUGE game today. All the usual suspects won their games… bar City, they lost in an embarrassing 2-3 thriller away at Norwich.

What a result for Premier League new boys. They were well worth it as well. Very organised. They ran their guts out. They took their opps when they were presented to them and they carved out one really awesome counter-attacking goal.

I loved reading the post-match commentary from the fans. Raheem Sterling is now average. Pep has finally been found out. Manchester City are certainly losing the league to Liverpool.

You couldn’t make it up.

In a post fan tv world, the only place to exist on the radical edge of everything.

For me, what is clear is this… Arsenal are winning the bloody league. Yes, fellas, Unai is bringing it home.

First up, we have to destroy Watford by 11 goals to climb second (from 7th). Be realistic, probably 12 or 13 because the chances of us keeping a clean sheet are pretty slim.

We’re in a post-Lacazette world for the next month. There’s a lot of fans getting their panties in a twist over the lack of an Eddie in the squad. I think people need to remind them of the troubles the young forward was having when he was getting game time with us.

I assume the thinking from Emery will likely be to have Auba as the lead striker, and if he needs a rest, we’ll slip Pepe in there. He’s very comfortable through the middle and offers all the same attributes as Auba… bar the unreal finishing (in England at least).

Also worth remembering Lacazette is not good away from home. His record is very poor, I think Tammy Abrahams has more goals this season than Laca had in the entirety of last year. He’s also not hugely prolific. He scored a Premier League goal every 192 last season. I know he does a lot for the team, he landed 10 assists, which is impressive for a striker.


I think where we’re going to see the innovation is out wide. The manager has quite a few players to choose from. We have a lot explosive pace this year, and starting your career out wide is a lot less stressful than through the middle. I think Reiss has a huge chance to lay claim to a first team spot. I think Saka has always looked very promising when offered a chance to stretch his legs, he also looks very ready from a mentality perspective, no fear in his eyes. Then we have wildcards like Gabriel, who IS the new Anelka… and potentially ESR who has a lot of versatility.

In short, I think Eddie is going to learn more out on loan this season with Leeds, versus playing a bit part role when his confidence was looking pretty touch and go.

We know what we’re going to get tomorrow. Bullied.

Watford are playing under Quique again, he’ll bring a lot of energy, he’ll make them work like dogs and I’ve no doubt we’re going to be penned into tight areas all game long much in the same way we were against Burnley.

I’ll keep on saying it, but I truly hope Emery has learned his lesson with three holding midfielders. We’re not built for deep blocks and I don’t think players care for the pragmatism. We’ve been porous all season. We shipped lots of shots against Spurs and Liverpool. The same happened against fu*king Burnley of all clubs.

The manager needs to take advantage of the technical superiority we have over Watford, that’s not going to come from attack-minded players shutting up shop.

Let’s stretch them, let’s play the beautiful game, let’s bring some excitement to the pitch… we need a performance. Chelsea looks great yesterday, there’s no reason we can’t offer up the same type of decisive output.

Right, just a short one today. I’ll see you in the comments where I shall eviscerate your challenges with word bullets.


1,329 Responses to “Time for a performance”

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  1. Drey

    Unai Emery’s annoying obsession with starting (and making captain) Xhaka will eventually be the catalyst for his downfall at Arsenal.
    Dude never learns!

  2. Leftsidesanch

    Not expecting much today.

    Watford have 5 wins from 16 games, since April Aubameyang has scored more goals than their team also.

    You can bet though they will turn it on this afternoon, and Emery won’t help himself with his decision making and our lineup. As we’ve said loads before his stubbornness and loyalty to players who keep letting us down will probably see him out of a job.

  3. Silverhawk

    As much as I like emery, I don’t think I like a coach who is mostly reacting to opponents. I’d rather we impose our game plan.

  4. Spanishdave

    We will struggle to get a result today.
    Emery’s muddled approach to these games ensures that we will make mistakes and leak goals.
    We have a descent squad but a poor manager.

  5. UK bubbler

    I am already bored of Emery. You never know what formation he is going to play constant tinkering. The reality is that he is average at best. His love affair with Khaka is beyond a joke. Need a big performance today. Over to you Emery

  6. Cesc Appeal

    I can imagine a £500 Million spend on defenders in January is incoming from Guardiola.

    Today I’d go with:
    AMN, Sokratis, Luiz, Kolasinac
    Torreira, Guendouzi
    Dani Ceballos
    Pepe, Aubameyang, Martinelli

    There’s certainly an argument for playing Chambers. The defence is still way below what you want but with Holding, Bellerin and Tierney all now in full training that shouldn’t be something we have to worry about this much soon.

    I’d have Martinelli as Nelson has done nothing to impress me so far and away from home we can’t have him being timid as he usually is. If he was scared at home to Burnley what’s he going to be like away against a side with a new manager and a dislike of Arsenal and the atmosphere to go with that?

    Even if Martinelli is young and might not be there physically I would argue he will be one of the fastest players on the pitch and he has work rate. It could be enough to scare the Watford RB and provide a slightly different option on the counter from the ST in Aubameyang and the more technical dribbler in Pepe. Just pure blistering pace to launch a ball into the channel for.

  7. Nelson

    ” I’d rather we impose our game plan.”

    After more than a year, I still don’t know what is Emery’s game plan.

    Anyway, losing Troy Deeney, Watford lost their heart and soul.

  8. Cesc Appeal

    I agree, you know Watford will raise their level massively for this. We should have more than enough to get the win though.

    Will we make it difficult for ourselves?


  9. Samesong

    My worry today is how we deal with set pieces. Watford are a fairly big side and like to impose their physicality.

    Deeney probably somewhere kicking at a door with his barefoot right now.

  10. zaco

    If teams like Norwich can play against City with a positive mindset, why should Emery set Arsenal up to defend against teams?, for all the Wenger’s failings you don’t see him with such negative mindset

  11. Cesc Appeal


    I can understand people wanting Chambers to play, wouldn’t mind it.

    I think Holding, Luiz will be our best pairing eventually.

    I would like to see Saka get more time as well, but with Europa League starting I think he will get a lot more time.

  12. bennydevito

    Morning Grovers,

    Good post Pedro. For me Norwich proved you don’t need to have a squad of WC transfer record players to be able to compete with the best, you just need a well drilled team who play to their strengths and never give up.

    If Emery sets up again in a negative fashion with 3 holding midfielders with Xhaka as the lynchpin then my patience which is already thin will be gone. If we lose to the bottom placed team with the players we now have it will be all on Emery.

    We need to be playing to our strengths and be looking to exploit their weaknesses, not play defensively looking to protect our own weaknesses. We need to play as we did against Spurs minus the cock ups.

  13. Sid

    Arsenal to win comfortably today, Norwich got lucky yesterday, if they are lucky to not get relegated they will be thereabouts.

  14. Brian Smith

    Hey Bennydevito I think you are over simplifying.
    Do you really think Norwich can play like that 38 times or even 20 times or maybe 10 times?
    My criticism of Emery’s style was that the players he has on roster cannot play the harassing on the ball in numbers for 90 plus minutes in 38 premiership matches plus all the extras including European travel.
    Finding 2 (or more) playing styles is imperative until he / we can afford a squad like others.
    Hopefully he learned EPL and Spanish and French leagues have way different demands – too many soft opponents there unlike EPL dogfights more often than not eg Watford bottom team deserve attention / respect as Mancs found out at Norwich

  15. Dissenter

    Today’s game will be very difficuly7
    Watsford have that mix of nastiness physicality and pace [ Sarr and Deulofeu]We simply have to get back to winning ways. The honeymoon phase of the season is over.
    If Emery persists with Xhaka as captain, then he should be moved out in the summer
    Keep Xhaka and fcuk off.

  16. Paulinho

    Going to be a slog of a match, at least in organised play. Hopefully Pepe steps up in key moments and makes it a bit easier.

    Our midfield is still utterly average, and there is still too much dysfunction there to unable us to pen Watford in their own half for sustained periods, so can see a lot of Watford counters as a result of trying to impose ourselves.

    Need Ceballos to shape up away from home, can’t be another that only shows for the ball effectively at home.

  17. Dissenter

    I agree with that comment about Pepe
    The honeymoon for him is running out quickly. He needs to step up
    Honestly one million pirouettes and nutmegs don’t replace a single goal.
    He has to start testing the goalie and scoring. His shooting has been subpar so far.

  18. China1

    Some nonsense from emery this morning about how xhaka was good against spurs apart from the penalty and that he’s focused on that one mistake on training to avoid making it again

    News flash, that ones a one off mistake. It’s a systematic mistake he’s been making regularly since he became a professional footballer. I seriously doubt at 26 years old he’s suddenly learned a life lesson.

    Secondly that some High level smoking to not notice xhaka was pants all match outside of the mistake. He committed something like 7 fouls. He’s supposed to win us the ball, shield the defense and kick start creative moves from deep. He didn’t do any of those things and was directly involved in healing more pressure and issues on his own defense

    Emery literally can’t see that xhaka sucks. It’s a wengeresque blindness

  19. China1

    People keep talking about the 3 DM option, but from memory emery has literally only ever tried this once and that was against a good spurs team

    There’s not yet any evidence that he wants to use it against lower mid table jobber teams so I think people are worried about something highly unlikely

    That said if he surprises me and uses it again today it will be an absolutely horrible piece of management

  20. China1

    If arsenal play to our offensive strengths we should be winning this game very comfortably. They’re not that good a team if we’re being serious

    The problem is entirely down to if emery shits the bed with his set up and tactics. That will decide this result far more than the average opposition

  21. China1

    Over the last 10 years, arsenal have an absolutely horrible habit of being scared of average teams and emery is no exception to this

    As long as we are frantically making horizontal passes around our own 6 yard box, the opposition will be allowed to look like a scary team. The moment we actually push the team up and try to play positively we will dominate

  22. shaun


    ,chambers, luis, soc,
    niles , toriea, ceballos, quen,kos
    pepe, auba

    be bold second half bring on ozil if it is looking iffe
    or even reverse the ceballos for ozil to start make ozil show us that talent
    then swap him out for ceballos who can make a big difference against tired legs , like most don’t want to see some defnsive minded bollocks against watford . be bold and destroy them with the obvious advange we have in quality , make those mofos run . if they insist on bullying and having to run like dogs then there done as they won’t be able to keep up there intensity we will have to watch Sarr though

  23. HighburyLegend

    “bar City, they lost in an embarrassing 2-3 thriller away at Norwich”
    With their two Masters in coaching in charge ?? lol

  24. HighburyLegend

    “For me, what is clear is this… Arsenal are winning the bloody league. Yes, fellas, Unai is bringing it home.”

    And of course, Pedro is annoyed that we are laughing at Pep senior & Pep junior, and so he can’t help himself for doing his traditional Anti-Emery bashing – with an “ironic” sense of humour.

    Pedro you can be really as pathetic as an Akb sometimes…

  25. London gunner

    I reckon xhaka though a retard on the pitch is a devious manipulator off if. The fact he has brainwashed two managers into having co.plete an utter faith in him and somehow prevented his own team mates from turning on him despite his litany of fuck ups.

    I have worked with people like that constant fuck ups but amazing salesman/spinmen who can twist and manipulate people around them.

  26. Wenker-Wanger

    I see we have the simplistic fall-back if we dont win by 2 or 3 goals….”ITS EMERYS FAULT”
    my kids were impatient but jeez didnt think so many adults were.
    Common sense at the base minimum tells you it takes time to build a team…..probably 2 full seasons. Emery inherited some quite piss poor players or good players that he wasted and sent backwards.
    Man city lost yesterday and drew with spuds… CRISIS?…and what do you reckon with PEP..? Sack the useless tosser?
    Think about it with a bit more analysis than just working off knee jerk reactions…cmon youre brighter than that……
    Give him time to assemble his best defense….bellerin tierney holding and ANOTHER…(who knows???)
    I agree with xhaka not being good enough…but would not embarass myself in calling for emerys head until its obvious he is screwing up…So far I dont see it…

  27. Wenker-Wanger

    The focus should be on Pepe…i dont think ive seen a more one-footed player….a striker needs an accurate foot and a serviceable semi swinger foot as a minimum….If you so favour one foot the word gets out…push him on his weaker foot…… Come on pepe….lets see a goal.
    Perhaps he should train right foot only for a few weeks…

  28. Champagne charlie

    Xhaka getting roasted before kickoff now? Utterly original afternoon ahead on Le Grove then.

    Arsenal have kept 9 clean sheets in 42 games under Emery in the prem. Two of those have come against Watford. Statzzz

  29. HighburyLegend

    “Give him time to assemble his best defense….”
    Lol, “give him time” ?? Pedro wants the PL title right now!!

  30. Spanishdave

    It’s amazing how many players are one footed.
    It’s easy to learn to use your left foot, I did it when I was an amateur.
    Why don’t coaches get these mega bucks players to do it?
    It’s easy to mark a one footed player.

  31. Paulinho


    That’s far too reasonable. We should be winning 4-0 and Guendouzi and Willock doing the caterpilla dance in between the goals.

  32. Spanishdave

    Xhaka is a totally unreliable player and has proved this over and over again.
    Poor love let’s give him another chance!
    He simply is not a EPL player.

  33. WengerEagle

    Together really could pan out either way, we’re fortunate that we’re playing Watford at a time when they’re in disarray and on their knees confidence wise. ]

    An early goal to kill off any steam built is crucial to avoid a chore of an afternoon.

    Would be very Welbeck to score against us.

  34. Wenker-Wanger

    Anything is possible in the prem…all games can be tough…unless youre liverpool. I think we will get a result today….2-1…..i thgink we have enough firepower and dani ceballos is one helluva player….he maybe the player of the season come may…..a real superbly balanced midfield player. We dont need ozil do we?

  35. Cesc Appeal

    ‘Would be very Welbeck to score against us’

    You can just see it can’t you.

    It will be some ridiculously clinical finish on his first chance as well.

  36. vickingz

    @china1, not sure spurs match was the first and only time emery used that midfield combo, he used it well last season and didn’t work

  37. China1

    CC I’m still waiting for you to tell us something xhaka is actually good at from a DM/CM point of view outside of that one pass.

  38. China1

    Lol if welbeck slams in a worldie with the only half chance he gets in the game I’m gonna throw my TV out the window because that would be next level ironic in the most irritating of ways

  39. China1

    Vickingz I don’t remember seeing 3 DMs on the pitch at the same time before (not including us trying to close out a tight lead for the final 10 mins or whatever)

    Which games do you have in mind?

  40. azed

    I know we all want to get rid of Xhaka but from a technical point of view, when it comes to moving the ball between the lines, he’s the best at the club.

    Now Guendozi has shown promise in that area but he’s still not as good as Xhaka.

  41. China1

    Xhaka isn’t good at moving it between the lines at all because he can’t easily beat a man and carry it past the first player to open up space, his one great diagonal long ball always comes when the opposition are already back defensively and organized so it’s normally harmless because he isn’t quick enough of mind to release players really quickly. He’s also bad under pressure so he’s not good at getting you out of right defensive spots to break between the lines

    He’s literally good at generally harmless long diagonal passes to wingers or full backs miles away from the opposition goal

  42. Distant legrover


    I don’t think it would matter if rival teams know he’s very left footed. They know what’s coming but won’t be able to stop it.

    Messi is very left footed too right ? Try planning for his left foot lol

  43. Dissenter

    “Nketiah doing well for Leeds, good to see.”

    A few disgruntled Wenger hold-outs believe he is better off on the bench at Arsenal.

  44. Receding Hairline

    How we set up today will be interesting, gives us an insight into where Emery thinks we are as a team.

    City’s loss yesterday didn’t surprise me that, individual his defenders are poor, they are just outrageously good on the ball.

  45. zaco

    “Doubt he’ll make it beyond a Championship player mind but we might get a nice fee for him if he keeps it up over the season.”

    the same way you guys doubted Abraham, look at what he is doing at Chelsea,

    you would have believed if only his name was Eduardo Nketiano, lol

  46. WengerEagle

    Abraham is different though, guy is only a year older than Nketiah and had already put up two separate 25+ goal seasons in the Championship and even scored 5 in a PL season as a teenager.

    Also is a pretty dramatic size difference, Abraham being 6 foot 3 and fast. Nketiah is 5”9.

  47. Champagne charlie


    I’m not interested in debating Xhaka frankly, even less so with someone who thinks there’s a footballer at the club only capable of a long diagonal pass.

    You’re welcome to your view, I’ll wait in anticipation as you berate his every move today willing his next error.

  48. Paulinho

    We could’ve done with Nketiah this season although the loan will be great for him, and maybe us in the longer term.

    This is why I said a few weeks back that it’s almost like the club are willing to take a hit again this season in terms of getting back into the ECL, because we’ve gotten rid of a lot of players leaving us with very little depth as a result. Emery by all accounts was unaware of Mikhi leaving until after Spurs match, so it seems as if the people above are making decisions that will help us long-term but could really fuck us over for this campaign.

  49. WengerEagle

    If Everton had any bottle for the so-called top 6 push they’d close this one out today.

    Bizarre how they fly under the radar having spent such crazy money for a midtable club.

    50m Richarlison, 45m Sigurdsson, 30m Moise Kean, 35m Iwobi, Andre Goes 25m, Gbamin 25m, Delph 10m, Yerry Mina 30m, Digne 20m, Keane 25m, Pickford 30m, Walcott 20m, Tosun 20m, Klaasen 25m, Vlasic 10m, Bolasie 30m, Schneiderlin 25m, Williams 15m, Lookman 10m, Gueye 10m.

    That’s literally 500m that they’ve spent in the last 3 years. Even factoring in sales [250m approx] they’ve had a net spend of 80m+ for 3 years now.

    And a pretty ordinary squad to show for it.

  50. WengerEagle


    I really don’t see us missing Mkhitaryan at all, I know he chipped in with a handful of goals/assists but his presence on the pitch was largely an ineffective and negative one.

    Can’t stand Ozil but think that even he offers more under the right circumstances.

    Don’t see scoring goals being a major issue for us so don’t think that Eddie’s loan will be much of a loss either. Pepe will get in the groove within these next couple of weeks, he’s getting closer to that goal I think he’s just feeling the burden of expectation a bit given the price tag and initial struggle to find the net.

  51. Paulinho

    WE – Mikhi was one of our best players against Spurs at Wembley last season,and had good movement in the final third, and one of those that can be awful in general play yet still keep going and continue to be a menace as the match wears on. Just look at his pace for Kolasinac for our disallowed goal against Spurs. Perfectly weighted, even if he was shite for the rest of the match. That’s a loss for this season. Mikhi was a regular for Dortmund in the Bundasliga, Nelson even now would be warming the bench for Hoffenheim.

    Neither Nelson or Martinelli haven’t shown anything to suggest they can come in and replicate even that quality Mikhi shows in spurts, never mind surpass it. Martinelli does look decent but he’s completely unproven at any level.

  52. WengerEagle


    He hindered us just as much as he help us, his end product was erratic even if he was capable of quality moments like at the Bridge vs the Chavs last season. And it’s not an understatement to say that he shocking in general play and offered nothing off the ball.

    I’d hope that we go in for somebody in January to take some of the creative load off of Ceballos. Doesn’t have to be a big name, just somebody with a bit of zip and energy about them that can pick a pass and put in a tackle.

  53. Paulinho

    In terms of Pepe, he’s a wide man, so he would be playing in and around Nketiah if Aubameyang was to go down with injury, not actually be a number nine. He was shite there for Lille.

  54. Silverhawk

    Nketiah will be elite. Watch this space.
    I’ve been championing Abraham for years now amongst my Chelsea supporting friends when they never even knew who he was.

    Nketiah doesn’t have to dribble or what not. He’s a finisher. Just like Auba. And he has raw speed. Imo he should just mould his game around Aubameyang’s game.

    Not to brag and all but The only player that I’ve championed so far and he failed me was Dan Crowley. I had big hopes for that fella.

  55. Paulinho

    WE – Yes, long term it’s completely the right decision, but I’m talking this season.

    Mikhi kept going against Spurs at Wembley last season and teed up Auba for the pen with a great run and pass. Nelson by contrast, would start that game this season, maybe look bright for ten minutes, then get hooked off after completely disappearing. So Mikhi brings a certain pedigree in that regard. Nelson brings zilch at this point bar tapping in rebounds as a sub.

  56. Paulinho

    WE – We still have the Europa, and at the moment they are both playing at the same time when fit, so chances of both getting injured go up exponentially.

    We just need Auba to get injured today and we are completely fucked.

  57. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Like you I’ve been championing for Eddie last few years,
    Wenger would have loved him the fox in the box…

  58. Marko

    Only Arsenal fans would lament the loss of someone like Nketiah as a third choice striker and surprisingly Mhikitaryan. That one is a strange one I must say given his time here. Imo if the likes of Nelson, Martinelli, Saka and say John Jules or maybe Balogan can’t step up in extreme circumstances and we end up pining for the likes of Mhiki, Eddie and Iwobi then what’s the point in having them.

  59. Micheal

    Leno, Maitland-Niles, Papastathopoulos, Luiz, Kolasinac, Xhaka, Guendouzi, Ceballos, Ozil, Pepe, Aubameyang.

    Subs: Torreira, Chambers, Nelson, Martinez, Willock, Martinelli, Saka.

  60. Paulinho

    Marko – What do you mean?

    They are youngsters, and completely unproven at that. You realise nearly all Chelsea’s talented young players have actually been playing on loan for at least two or three years?

  61. Paulinho

    Ceballos should help open up the game for Ozil to have some space to work in, something he’s not capable of doing for himself.

  62. Marko

    They are youngsters, and completely unproven at that. You realise nearly all Chelsea’s talented young players have actually been playing on loan for at least two or three years?

    You’re making a brilliant case for Nketiah going out on loan instead of sitting on his ass as third choice ST.

  63. Silverhawk

    My point with Nelson. He was majorly benched at the turn of the year. He’s no Sancho. Hopefully we get something good if we decide to sell him in few years time.

    Saka and Martinelli, if they don’t explode this season would most likely go on loan next year.

  64. azed

    “This is the attacking line-up many have wanted. Now deliver.”


    You must be new to Le Grove… People are going to ask why he went with an attacking players.

    I expect someone **cough cough Valentin* to come and tell us why the formation and personnel are all wrong.

  65. Cesc Appeal

    A chance for Ozil to show an improved attitude today.

    That team has more than enough to cause some real problems today, it has also enough to cause problems for us if players like Xhaka etc make bonehead decisions.

    Really with that side neither of Guendouzi or Xhaka need to be particularly risky or adventurous. It’s a game away from home just be steady.

  66. Paulinho

    Marko – I said the loan is great for him, and would be for us, if we weren’t ridiculously short in forward options, with one of number nines being worked like a dog on the left when all are fit.

  67. Marko

    ridiculously short in forward options, with one of number nines being worked like a dog on the left when all are fit.

    I too am not a fan of both playing unless in big games I’d prefer rotation more. But so many teams don’t shit the bed because the don’t have a third choice ST and we Shouldn’t either.

  68. Paulinho

    Marko – My wider point is we’ve left go of a lot of cargo, and we can’t complain too much if it comes back to bite us in the arse later in the season.

  69. azed

    About time for that lad to actually make a spot in the first XI his own surely.

    I’ll say Emery prefers Xhaka for now due to his size and range of passing for now.

  70. azed

    I will actually let Torriera go in January and get some like Darcoure.

    We can’t have Xhaka as out most physical **weeps** midfielder.

  71. Dissenter

    I honestly don’t think Xhaka’s penchant for bizarre mistakes and fcuk-ups are no different from Mustafi.
    We might as well just bring back Mustafi in.

  72. Leftsidesanch

    Mustafis not a teachers pet though so he will get the treatment while Xhaka doesn’t. Its becoming clear that Emery doesn’t fancy Torreira either.

  73. Dissenter

    “I will actually let Torriera go in January and get some like Darcour”

    I was hoping that Torreira would free his way out let summer because he couldn’t settle in England.
    I don’t even know I prefer him to Xhaka, …honestly I’m not so sure anymore.

  74. prvhc

    Torriera started well but has tapered off dramatically.It seems he’s unable to handle International duties and the Premier League.If he doesn’t step up this year we should seriously consider selling him in the summer before his stock plummets.
    Rebuilding the midfield should be THE priority next summer.

  75. TR7

    Emery should get some stick for sidelining Torreira instead people are digging out the player. He did reasonably well for a South American playing his first season in England. Emery should explain in what aspect of his game is Xhaka better than Torreira and deserves to start ahead of him.

  76. China1

    Is ozil on the left wing?

    Ozil + kolasinac doesn’t fill me with great confidence

    On the other hand ozil and xhaka in the center is just as worrying

  77. azed

    EPL managers must seriously dislike Arsenal as a club. We don’t do moderate at all.

    Wenger so predictable you knew his formation and players.
    Emery so unpredictable you have no clue what formation he’ll play and you know the only player sure of starting is Xhaka.

    Let’s hope the next manager is somewhere in the middle.

  78. azed

    TR7 and Paulinho

    Torreira started against Spurs… He just came back from South America with a knock.

    Give Emery some slack.

  79. Dissenter

    “Ozil + kolasinac doesn’t fill me with great confidence”

    I think it’s a winning combination, at least were know Kola will always back him up 🙂

  80. gazzap

    Ozil might lack goal threat and work rate, but at least he always has a good touch, finds space and has quality in his passes 99% of the time. cannot compare him with Xhaka who is a liability every minute he’s on the pitch and doesn’t bring anything to the team. did you see that Merson interview in the week where he said I dont know about 50 times when asked what are the positives Xhaka brings!! LOL.

  81. Leftsidesanch

    TR7 exactly my point. I said that Torreira will now be the whipping boy for reasons u known to me. I cannot think of any reason why he’s marginalising him but keeps persisting with Xhaka.

  82. azed


    He was substituted in the first game due to some muscular issues and sat at the second game.


    With Ozil and Ceballos starting, does that mean Emery now trusts them?

  83. Pierre

    “Emery should get some stick for sidelining Torreira instead people are digging out the player.”

    for fans to question Torreira shows a lack of understanding .
    Its difficult for the player to make an impact if he isn’t given a chance by the manager or is misused positionally.

    It’s too easy to put the blame on the player

  84. gazzap

    What I would say is this is an incredibly attacking team. Maybe too attacking. we have to blow them away. If we’re forced to defend you have to worry we’d concede easily.

  85. China1

    I don’t think we’re short of forward options

    We have auba laca Pepe and presumably Martinelli all capable of playing CF. They don’t necessarily all need to be on the pitch all the time for the whole season. With laca down we feel it but so does every team that loses one of its two best players. I’m not sure we need a 4th choice striker

  86. TR7


    It is not about the team selection for Watford game. I can not recall when was the last time Torr started 3 games on the trot ? He being sidelined for Xhaka is nothing new.

  87. DUIFG

    Us not making the most of torreira to play childlike xacka will be a big miss. Got a player there who adds bite and tidy in possession.

    What’s emerys game with Granit? It’s like he’s doing it to prove a point.

    Othwrwise a pretty standard set up today.