It’s Freddie time + The shortlist problem (Long Read)

by & filed under News Review.

The new temporary era of Freddie Ljungberg starts today and I have to be absolutely honest… I am VERY excited.

He’s making smart moves, Per Mertesacker is his assistant, he might be bringing Gilberto in for a helping hand, and he told the Arsenal.com team he was all about putting smiles back on the faces of players.

Freddie has gone on the record as saying he thinks players are happier when they’re playing exciting football, we know he was raised on some of most explosive attacking football the world has ever seen, so maybe we’re about to witness Wengerball 2.0.

He has the opportunity to make a claim for the job, to do well, he’s going to have thread the needle of some very tricky situations with the players and the football. Here are some items he’ll be looking to clarify.

The Xhaka thing:

There will be a blank slate for Granit Xhaka. It’ll be very interesting to see how a man with a more attacking vision sees the Swiss. A lot of the ‘he’s highly rated from within’ leaves me aghast. It doesn’t make sense that a player with so little discipline and so many errors in his game could be seen as this absolute essential to the team… but I guess we’ll find out. If he’s in the side, what is he doing and how are they going to protect the team against his bad habits?

Pressing:

Freddie likes high octane pressing. So did Wenger and Emery. No one can keep it going for longer than 3 games. How will Freddie discipline the team to press consistently, or at least in strategic moments during the game? There are big question marks as to whether his first-team forwards are even capable of this. Is Auba going to turn into that sort of player at 29? Does Lacazette have the stamina to do that? Or might the coach pull a wild card and start his younger players. He’s far more likely to get the sort of behaviour he wants our of Saka and Martinelli.

Pepe:

Our very one-footed wide man has looked pretty poor most of the season. It’s hard to move into a tough situation and perform and he certainly hasn’t managed to raise his game. He looks shot of all confidence, but maybe a new coach with a more exciting vision could spark something in him that we haven’t seen yet. He’s certainly not a bad player. If Conte could get Victor Moses firing, then there is hope for Pepe.

Transitions:

Our short game from the keeper has been slow, ineffective and quite frankly embarrassing. We struggle to transition out of defence most of the time, then if the ball makes into midfield, the gaps between the attack are monstrous. Freddie is going to have to get in the weeds with some real basics here, because we don’t move the ball through the phases with any sort of consistency. How is Freddie going to look at this problem, will he go more direct? Will he shorten the passing lanes? Will he bin the short passes out the back? I’m very interested to see how quickly he can impact the way we move the ball. I’m also hoping that we start playing through the middle again with some exciting one-touch combination passing.

The same in reverse. We often have no real shape when we’re hit on the counter-attack or even just under sustained pressure. Midfield is our biggest problem, the two deepest players, whoever they are, offer very little protection to the defence, either by taking up positions that are too deep, or just not being present in the right places. We do not defend as a unit, it’s a lot to expect in a few games, but it’d be nice to see some thinking go into action there.

It’s not really worth hitting you with the management stuff because it’s all very early stages, but I think one thing is clear from listening to Josh K, they will be overjoyed if Freddie can take things until the end of the season. Better choices will be on the market then and Edu, Huss, Raul and Vinnai can take their time over a decision.

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, there really is no plan on the manager and we’re accruing a shortlist now because no one was thinking about exiting Emery this season. A staggering oversight when you consider that a proper club would have booted Emery in the summer. The football was quite clearly going nowhere, all the data pointed to total regression, and behind the scenes things were just as dire. Zero control. The bus driver running team motivation talks perfectly captured the managers’ approach. My point here, even if you truly believed in miracles, you’d at least get a backup list of names just in case.

The more worrying point for me about the shortlist that’s emerging is there’s no rhyme or reason to the candidates that we’re looking at. Nuno is a counter-attacking specialist that doesn’t believe in pointless possession. Allegri is the ultimate ‘get the job done’ pragmatist that builds systems around the tools he has at his disposal. Brendan Rodgers is a high pressing possession-based practitioner. Arteta will be Manchester City like entertaining possession-based attacking football. There’s no theme here, which likely means Edu doesn’t have a plan that he’s executing against.

If the club doesn’t know what it wants to be, how are they judging candidates? Your strategy can’t be a manager, because if that’s the case, your costs are huge every time you hire in a new philosophy. Chelsea, up until lately, always had deeply pragmatic managers that played a certain way. AVB, Conte, Mourinho are all cut from the same cloth. Barcelona always hire in specialists in of attacking based possession football because that’s their DNA, but beyond that, those values Cruyff instilled give the club stability. Every layer of the club believes the same thing. Every coach plays the same way. The scouting network knows what they are looking for. The fitness coaches know how to plan.

There’s a lot of talk about The Arsenal Way and whether that exists. It doesn’t. Edu is supposed to define what that is so we can build out talent that maps to the vision. My view is we should be a youthful execution of high octane pressing and intelligent possession-based football. We should be the most exciting team to watch in the world. We will never compete at the higher levels for elite adult talent, so we’ll have to grow it, or attract players like Martinelli and Guendouzi and ask them to give the first part of their careers to Arsenal. Young players need minutes and elite coaching. If we set a clear vision, it’d give clear parameters on the type of coach we need. It wouldn also focus what you’re looking for.

  • Someone open to a longer-term project
  • A manager happy to work on a budget
  • Someone who can work with data analysts and support staff
  • A person that can galvanise, not divide a backroom and a squad
  • A clear communicator
  • Someone that loves coaching
  • Has a clear-eyed vision of where the game is going and how to keep up
  • Someone with patience, because they’d be working with younger kids
  • Someone with examples of how they’ve developed players
  • A vision of how to implement a pressing regime
  • A view of football that’s exciting

It would dictate the sort of fitness approach we’d need, it’d give the scouts a very clear brief for who and where they should be looking for talent, and it’d be a clear message to the fans… this project is not for now, we are building out Arsenal to be a Champions League final four outfit in 5 years. Bear with us, this is going to be spectacular.

The ‘cast the net wide’ and see what we like approach isn’t purposeful. When you don’t know what you’re looking for, you can be easily seduced by cheap Powerpoint presentations, great Wikipedia pages, and the sweet charms of Raul who can definitely vouch. We are better than that. I hope as the club push on in this process they get a little more specific about what they want, because a warm body won’t cut it. Not for the next hire.

One managerial story that I do find amusing is the Brendan Rodgers one. We all know he’d be desperate to move to a top club again. He’s doing a great job at Leicester, a club I feel is his level… but my point of raising this particular story is that he’s on the back page of one of the red tops with a headline alluding to Arsenal being his dream job. That is poor judgement to let anyone go off the record for you in such a blatant way. I wonder if that’ll impact the focus of his players, it looks very much like the mistake Marco Silva made when he was desperate for the Everton job despite being under contract at Watford. Didn’t end well there. Confidence is fragile at a football club, if the players think you’re purring over another job, things can go south very quickly.

Anyway, a huge day for Freddie, Per Mertesacker and the fans. I cannot wait to see what the sexiest man in management has to offer us.

Right, jump into our podcast before the game, it’s a cracker. We talk about Raul, managers, problems with Emery and our favourite targets. You can bypass the cost by giving it a 5* in iTunes.

See you in the comments!

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1,240 Responses to “It’s Freddie time + The shortlist problem (Long Read)”

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  1. Un na naai

    Dream10December 1, 2019 16:47:54
    UnYep. I was not happy with that Ceballos signing. Wish they’d cancel the loan in January.

    100% an Emery man. Just like Suarez
    Waste of time
    Laughable that he let Ramsey Wilshere and Cazorla leave and those two were his big bright replacements. Joker

  2. Dream10

    raptora

    I am Maddison fan but Grealish has been growing on me in recent weeks. Maddison has end product which is useful but he’s not involved in the building the play. I see why Rodgers uses him on the left or as a support striker rather than in midfield

  3. Un na naai

    shola70December 1, 2019 16:49:23
    How is Lacazette going to be “our Abraham”?It’s already been explained that his lacks physicality and that is one of the reasons he doesn’t shine in away matches where there is more counter attacking done.

    Ishola
    Because he doesn’t lack physicality. Firminho is hardly a power house is he? Lacazette has the tools required to perform that role and bring our wide forwards and hopefully midfield runners into the game. He’s got good feet, vision, can score, creates space well, works hard and his strong for a little bloke.

  4. Dissenter

    City have been somewhat lucky with transfers
    United have taken away crappy players from their grasp twice in recent years; Fred and Alexis Sanchez.

  5. Champagne charlie

    Grealish is excellent. All the tools to be a super #8 in the PL, and seems to be making the step up more and more.

  6. Nelson

    There was no chemistry among the defenders. I think Mustafi and Luiz played together for the first time. Against one striker, one CB should stay close to him and the other do the cover. For us, both CB’s dropped back allowing the striker free to shoot.

    Everton just scores.

  7. MidwestGun

    I don’t hate Pierre… he can’t help himself ..When he comments on tactical matters he is usually close to the truth. Unfortunately his AKB dna gets in his way. shame.

  8. Un na naai

    Lacazette also scores in big games

    Chelsea
    Spurs
    Athletico
    Liverpool
    United
    Napoli and Valencia

    Aubameyang doesn’t. He scores against the shite and odd his stats and goes missing when we need a game changer

  9. MGooner

    @ Marc

    If you think we can sort out this mess without spending money, you are very optimistic.

    As for Liverpool, they had a defence issue – so they went and bought VVD.

    No one can accuse Abramovich of not supporting hos club financially – up to the point of breaching FFP rules.

    Do not even mention City.

    Leicester, Tottenhamd and co – We fired Wenger because we were bored of top 4 and wanted only to fight for the PL. I am not interested in being only in the top 4. Our revenues are apparently so high we are in top 8. So they should spend and support us.

    How much of their own capital have the owners invested to buy players so far? Nothing! We know the self sustaining model does not work if you want to compete at the highest level – there is an ample list of LG articles demonstrating that in the past. 😉

  10. Olumide

    Un na naai
    I asked you to list the strikers Arsenal could buy who are as prolific as Aubameyang and have great hold up play. You’ve not answered that.
    How can Laca be our Firminho? Who is our Mane and Salah?

  11. bennydevito

    Pierre,

    You’re the biggest know nothing of all.

    Ozil had been nothing but absolute shit since his reintroduction yet you claimed we’d be much better with him back in the side.

    Where was I when we drew 2-2 with Southampton and lost to Frankfurt?

    On here saying Emery out just like everyone else.

    If you spent less time wiping your business off of Ozil’s posters on your wall you’d see that every person you mentioned have been on here saying Emery out.

  12. Paulinho

    Grealish is a better ball carrier than Maddison. Throw back type.

    Maddison more of a technical player, set-pieces, long shots.

    We’re more in need of a ball-carrier I’d say.

    Grealish is that age where he needs to step up and show he can perform at the higher echelons consistently and to be fair, he’s doing well. His performance at Spurs still annoys me though. Caught dawdling twice.

  13. Ishola70

    Un

    This is all in your imagination.

    There is a reason that Lacazette struggles in away matches in comprison to home games and physicality comes into play. Not being as good when there is more counter attacking football occuring.

    Anyway as some have said we could be losing both Auba and Laca with the club continuing to be floundering.

  14. Dream10

    Iwobi quality in the build up. He’s good at the pre assist stuff Hleb used to excel at.

    Firmino has a massive engine. Unbelievable work rate and physicality.
    He is well clear of Lacazette off the ball.
    Laca has always finished at a high rate, but he’s simply not capable of generating multiple shooting opportunities per game because of his lack of athleticism.
    At the top level, elite forwards generate multiple opportunities. He can’t

  15. Dissenter

    The time-tested way to build a team is to start from the back.
    I would give anything to have a team with quality [central and attacking] midfielders and central defenders. If it means selling our two strikers [whose contracts are running out anyway] then so be it.

  16. Un na naai

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=8qk6D3kdwnI

    Look at these goals from Lacazette
    These aren’t tap ins. He makes these goals through skill, finesse and will power
    He gets goals and assists out of nothing.
    Aubameyang is prolific but he only turns up when the pressure is off and only offers a tap in. He offers nothing else off the ball or on it. He doesnt trouble defenders
    He lets everyone else do the hard yards then turns up on the back post

  17. vickingz

    Freddie has been with these players since this season started, he knows them in and out, and despite being armed with this, he still selected shitty first 11, still waited for 70 min sub which offered us nothing, couldn’t be daring against Norwich,,,, he’s not any better than emery. A fraud he is

  18. Dissenter

    Can’t believe we are still having this Auba vs Laca argument.
    One of the reasons Emery failed was because he persisted with trying to play both together.

  19. Ishola70

    Un

    If you are making these claims and comparing Lacazette to Abrahams in regards hold up play and physicality you need to explain why Lacazette suffers away from home in comparison to home matches.

    The people want to know.

  20. Un na naai

    OlumideDecember 1, 2019 16:56:26
    Un na naai
    I asked you to list the strikers Arsenal could buy who are as prolific as Aubameyang and have great hold up play. You’ve not answered that.
    How can Laca be our Firminho? Who is our Mane and Salah?

    Look. I’m not saying he’s as good as Firminho I’m saying her can perform that role for us.
    We don’t need our forwards to be as good as Liverpool’s right now we need them good enough for top 4
    I think Martinelli Lacazette and Pepe are good enough to perform similar roles to their Liverpool counterparts albeit to a lesser standard
    Only an idiot would expect Liverpool type returns when we have been so pony for 12 months of emery.

  21. Marko

    Squad was capable of a top 4 challenge yet you dismissed that wholly. We were then challengers for top 4 in spite of Emery.That’s actually something you can’t argue with. So yea, some mess.

    Like I said disagree all you want but it was a mess. Capable of a top 4 challenge so long as United continue to United and Chelsea chop and change manager again. Again argue all you want but leaving a new manager in need of a new keeper, proper fullbacks, CB’s with braincells, midfielders with athleticsm and actual wingers is a literal mess.

  22. Cesc Appeal

    Yeah.

    Has to just start Aubameyang and bench Lacazette.

    Have Martinelli and Pepe making up the rest of the forward line.

    Ljungberg in one game recognised Ozil cannot be trust with CAM and so played him wide and Aubameyang was forced to go wide to accommodate Lacazette who offered little.

    Begin by thinking about balance, not names.

  23. bennydevito

    Before Villa got promoted I was on here saying we should sign Grealish but most of the posters now calling his name said he wasn’t good enough and wouldn’t be able to cut it in the Premier league.

    How wrong they were.

    CG agreed though.

    CG called it on Emery and said he’d be gone by November.

    CG said Emery would have us languishing around 8th or 9th place.

    Well said CG, I take it all back.

    I hope you’re not right about Pepe. I too have said he’s frighteningly one footed and so easy to defend against, and I also wanted us to sign Zaha instead.

    Not looking good is it when he can’t even get off the bench now.

  24. Un na naai

    UnIf you are making these claims and comparing Lacazette to Abrahams in regards hold up play and physicality you need to explain why Lacazette suffers away from home in comparison to home matches.The people want to know.

    Ishola
    I don’t think he does. I think
    He’s one of our best players away. The rest of the team suffers away under emery. We’ve been fucking atrocious away under him but you want Lacazette to turn into Lionel Messi when he’s getting pulled out wide, isolated, dropped or subbed early by an incompetent fool who has thankfully now been given the bullet.

  25. Olumide

    Un na naai
    You’re funny
    How many goals did Laca score today?
    How many goals has Laca scored in the Premier league this season? How many has Laca scored.
    And since you’re talking about tap ins, tell me Laca’s goals this season that are better than Aubameyang’s against Burnley, his first against Watford, and his second today.

  26. Danny

    Ernest Reed
    ————–
    True it’s not our money BUT because of Ozil getting that huge disgusting salary means there’s less money to buy/pay for 2 or 3 other players who probably would contribute more than what he did today etc

  27. Un na naai

    Olum

    So what. Where was Aubameyang last wknd? Look how many goals pepe scores last season and can’t get a look in. Drogba wasn’t prolific but he made Chelsea’s attack. He did all the hard work for robben, Lampard and duff to benefit. He got the ball down, occupied the defenders and made space for 3 other players

    Who does Aubameyang make space for? Anyway. He’ll be off soon and we will be better for it. He goes missing when we really need him. He’s not a big game player like Lacazette.

  28. Ishola70

    CA

    Are you having second thoughts aboyt Chambers?

    Again he was very dodgy looking agai today and he obviously lacks a turn of pace which can be a real killer at this level.

    I understand that he shows effort and this is appreciated but the guy looks obviously flawed.

    I ask because you seemed quite praise worthy of him before kick off in your comments.

  29. Ernest Reed

    Agreed Danny, but the point is that absolutely nothing will change with this club until they rid themselves of these ridiculous contracts. Doesn’t matter who manages this team, awful is awful and this team remains unbearably toxic.

  30. Ishola70

    Oh no Man Utd equalise.

    10th place beckons.

    Both Spurs and Man United could leap frog Arsenal in the space of a few days.

    Shit this is.

  31. Batistuta

    I mean not like the options on the bench were in super form but common, Mustafi and Xhaka in the same starting 11 was a recipe for disaster and it’s not like Freddie didn’t know of these players before…He’s seen them in training and in live games for months now yet he went with that formation and team that looked out of sorts. Criminal to have one of the leagues best players chasing up and down on the wings almost all game.

    What’s that now, 4 consecutive starts for Ozil in the league and absolutely nothing different from before he was benched.

    The subs also were also all wrong and late…Willock stunk the place out and should have been taken off earlier as did Laca and Ozil…

    Agree with others, wonder what Martinelli has to do to get more game time, he looks miles better than Saka and Nelson and whoever else on the wings…

    Have to say, the club have been very very horrible in recruitments the last couple of years, spent so much money and yet spent them wrongly in my opinion…

    Hope Edu and co fasten the whole new manager process because and maybe it may be too early, that wasn’t encouraging at all, against a better team and we’d lose that match by quite a lot…

    Doucoure and Delofleu from relegation bound Watford wouldn’t be such a bad idea in January to be honest and the better we’re rid of a good number of this squad, the better for us

  32. Nelson

    As for Chambers, what bugs me more is his crosses. For two games in a roll, he had so many chances. Done of his crosses reached a teammate.

  33. Cesc Appeal

    Ishola

    Not really, no.

    He’s done enough to deserve a go at CB particularly considering how bad our CBs have been. A lack of pace is obviously going to be apparent at RB…he isn’t a RB.

    I’d actually think about Chambers at CB and make Luiz a CDM for now if Ljungberg doesn’t like Torreira just as Emery didn’t.

    Bellerin, Chambers, Holding, Tierney with Luiz in front of them.

    Far from ideal but this team is honestly difficult to watch. That midfield is fucking atrocious.

  34. Un na naai

    4 this season
    20 last season when playing second fiddle or dropped
    20 season before when he was our for half the season……

    Ah yeah. Not a 20 goal a season striker eh! Many of which comes against he bug team in big matches. You get a couple of wide forwards buzzing around him and contributing similar numbers and we have ourselves a proper forward line.

    Aubameyang goes missing too often
    As I said last season, cunt may as well have his mug on a milk carton

  35. Olumide

    Un na naai
    Out of every Premier league player who has scored at least 30 goals, Lacazette is the one that has scores most at home (77%).
    We know our away form was awful under Emery. But Auba was playing under Emery too?

  36. Marko

    Unfortunately his AKB dna gets in his way. shame.

    It’s his Ozil DNA that has me worried. How did he manage to get in on the inside of his mouth and his anus is beyond me.

  37. Ishola70

    Batistuta

    “Willock stunk the place out ”

    Careful both Un and Pierre will hunt you down.

    He was very careless and lost possession that led to Norwich’s first goal.

    Naivety.

    Lots of learning for him to do.

    Shows some decent signs at times though.

  38. Ishola70

    CA

    That’s a horrible idea.

    Luiz would be a disaster at DM for any prolonged period and Chambers obvious lack of turn of pace will cost him at CB a well.

    This is why Luiz is so passive and drops deep all the time and is criticised by the pundits and fans. It’s because he doesn’t trust his pace one on one against opponents.

    It will be no different with Chambers over time if he is played continously at CB. He too will be dropping too deep because he knows he lacks pace.

  39. Champagne charlie

    Marko

    Don’t get it twisted, it’s your lack of comprehension that gets in the way. We finished 6th and played under a cloud for a good 6 months, so nobody was claiming we were buzzing and primed.

    That’s vastly different to being 10 years off a title and a complete shambles which was the chorus on here. We had the tools to challenge for top 4, yet that suggestion was dismissed time after time.

    Still gets dismissed despite the evidence. So spare me your half baked rehashing.

  40. Un na naai

    Olum

    Yeah and how many games did he start? Home vs away?

    Either way it doesn’t matter. I think it’s clear by now that it’s not his prolific scoring record that makes our focal point appealing but what they offer the team as an all rounder. Lacazette offers more in that respect and that’s why I want him as our no9 and not Aubameyang

    It will all be over soon anyway, Aubameyang is a goner
    Writing is on the wall

  41. Ishola70

    I’d love to see Charlie one day rate these current players one by one and give a little brief on them.

    What he thinks about them as individual players that will gel into a very good side.

  42. Un na naai

    Ishola70December 1, 2019 17:18:41
    Batistuta“Willock stunk the place out ”Careful both Un and Pierre will hunt you down.He was very careless and lost possession that led to Norwich’s first goal.Naivety.Lots of learning for him to do.Shows some decent signs at times though.

    Ishola

    Still infinitely better than Ceballos this season
    Highest scoring player who isn’t a striker with 4 goals

    What’s Ceballos done?

  43. Un na naai

    Ishola is still smarting from all of his half baked predictions blowing up in his face.

    Care to regale us on how wenger was forcing emery to play a certain way remotely Ishola? And you call AMN a puff head

  44. Ishola70

    What has Willock done?

    Scored in some second tier matches.

    I see signs of promise in him in some aspects but like others wouldn’t go overboard about him at this present time which you and Pierre seem to do.

  45. China1

    The positives:

    No stupid playing out from the bank when under pressure
    When torreira came on he stuck to DM and looked better
    We started okay

    The bad:
    Team selection
    Subs
    Lack of dynamism or creativity

    Freddie needs to build on those marginal gains and be more aggressive about the negatives next game. Like why bring in martinelli so late when we’re drawing and is pepe really that bad in training to warrant being dumped again to not even making a sub appearance in a game we’re chasing???

    It wasn’t all bad Freddie but you can do better

  46. Champagne charlie

    Ishola

    Could always just denigrate the players, offer no idea of my own view of who/what might work, and pick one for “special” attention so my fleshlight gets some use. Rinse, repeat for managers.

    Actually no, I’ll let you continue in that role.

  47. Ishola70

    Emery was obviously giving half baked nods to what Arsenal are meant to be Un. And we know in footballing terms this means what Arsene FC represented at least in his second period.

    What with this painful passing out from the back and playing Xhaka who is such a sweet passer of the ball in midfield.

    But overall it was a horrible mish mash from him.

  48. CG

    Fred L

    “””””But we need to work on the TRANSITIONS we dominated and they BREAK us too easily. In the beginning I saw a lot of things we worked on in training, but we need to score goals and take the lead. I want this club to do well,”””

    We all like Fred.

    but thats is just flannel: its emery speak but with a Swedish lilt.

    Another Transition and ‘break the lines’ proponent!!!!

    Brighton with an extra days rest on the horizon.

    we have 19 points
    they have 15 points.

    ( we didnt beat them last season)

    35- 40 keeps you up!

  49. Ernest Reed

    I see “FreddieOut” is already trending. Don’t know what is more frustrating, the teams continued lethargy or some of the worlds most horrible so-called supporters. Its one game for crying out loud!

  50. China1

    Yeah pushing Freddie out after one game as CARETAKER is a disgrace

    The guy is a legend and only interim. And that’s only his first game for fucks sake

    I feel for him. Let’s hope he can build on that next game

  51. Ishola70

    Charlie

    You hardly give appraisal of individual players. Hardly ever.

    It’s like as others have said before you think a coach is going to come in and sprinkle special magic dust all over the squad.

    Individual players make great teams.

    You do understand that right?

  52. Marko

    4 this season
    20 last season when playing second fiddle or dropped
    20 season before when he was our for half the season……

    What are you actually talking about it it was 19 and 17 ffs

  53. Champagne charlie

    Ishola

    You’re one of the dullest bulbs on here, I can’t be bothered lowering myself to you. Saw your embarrassing harping at Receding recently, away and invade a Xhaka fan page you whopper. My views are known by anyone with half a on here.

    Nobody could name your desired list of managers or players however, too busy reading your droning bollocks about who’s shit and how Xhaka threatens world peace.

  54. Thorough

    Wenger wasn’t good enough.
    Emery wasn’t good enough.
    If Ljunberg could pick that 11 of today, and not bring in Martinelli and Torreira at 60th minute mark, then I’m afraid he too is not good enough. Those 2 changes alone could have won us the game.
    Auba should be our striker and be played through the middle.
    Martinelli must be the first winger on the team list.
    Xhaka and Ozil should be history now.
    I’ll rather play 2 of Holding, Chambers and Mavropanos on central defence than Luiz and Sokratis whom have failed us time and again.
    And of course Torreira, the only DM in the team imo, has to start. From his little cameo we saw what he could do at both ends. Blocked a goal bound shot and nearly scored us the winner.
    Ljunberg feels like Steve Bould all over again.

  55. Marko

    That’s vastly different to being 10 years off a title and a complete shambles which was the chorus on here…Still gets dismissed despite the evidence. So spare me your half baked rehashing.

    I mean I think you’re having two separate arguments at the same time. Who’s bringing up title challenges except you? He left us in a mess that’s undeniable you tying yourself in knots trying to argue against that fact is weird. Again no champions league football for two seasons, a bloated wage bill and an utterly abject squad lacking balance and leadership. The whole not that bad capable of challenging point is moot when you find out that yet again we missed out on champions league football despite United, Spurs and Chelsea suffering in the league last season. I mean it could be worse obviously.

  56. Spanishdave

    Is Pedro very excited now!
    Allegri cannot speak English big problem.
    Ajax manager please, speaks English, trains ballers , the team is very mobile.
    The next manager has to one who can rebuild the squad.
    Freddie let himself down today, all talk no trousers.

  57. Ishola70

    lol Charlie

    You are the classic pretend football guru that just has a bit of jabber.

    Leicester are losing.

    They may slip back beyond 6th place now as you predicted.

    Just another of your amazing foresights on here.

  58. Un na naai

    Ishola70December 1, 2019 17:34:30
    Emery was obviously giving half baked nods to what Arsenal are meant to be Un. And we know in footballing terms this means what Arsene FC represented at least in his second period.

    Lol
    Ishola. Emery doesn’t have the slightest clue what arsenal are meant to be
    I’ll take Charlie’s stance and this and request you head off to a xakha fan page

  59. Champagne charlie

    “I mean I think you’re having two separate arguments at the same time. Who’s bringing up title challenges except you?“

    Numerous ‘Wenger left a mess’ commenters, hence the relevance to what’s being said.

    “He left us in a mess that’s undeniable you tying yourself in knots trying to argue against that fact is weird“

    No what’s weird is your third failed attempt to understand that’s not an argument I’ve made, but run with it you shall.

    “The whole not that bad capable of challenging point is moot when you find out that yet again we missed out on champions league football”

    Full-retard engaged. The squad being good enough for a top 4 challenge isn’t a point that becomes moot because the new manager fucks things up. Go have a lie down, or spark a debate with Ishola so some of us can have a laugh.

  60. CG

    Imagine Rambo and a Rampaging Willock together breaking them lines?

    Willok learning the ropes from Ramsey. The LineBreaker Specialist and his potential prodigy but no -The Spiv didnt want that.

    He wanted Cebola- a nice little earner in there.

    We are The Arsenal
    We don’t need this man.

  61. Champagne charlie

    “You are the classic pretend football guru that just has a bit of jabber.“

    Hahahaha haha says fucking you?

    Go on pal, stun the place with your 5 managerial candidates, how you would see us negotiate the next 2 years, and give a half dozen players we could realistically bring in with a clue of how and why you see them being worthy.

    Because you’ve never went near any of the above, just full of disregard for players and fans with opinions.

    “They may slip back beyond 6th place now as you predicted.Just another of your amazing foresights on here.“

    Yes, amazing foresight to claim Leicester aren’t in the same league as the top 6 clubs all things being equal.

  62. CG

    CG said:

    Norwich 2 Arsenal 2

    Wolves 1 Sheff Utd 2

    Leicester 1 Everton 1

    Man Utd 3 Villa 2

    I said- you wont be far too away.

    87% and climbing?

    I just have this thing with Watford,

  63. Un na naai

    I mean I think you’re having two separate arguments at the same time. Who’s bringing up title challenges except you? He left us in a mess that’s undeniable you tying yourself in knots trying to argue against that fact is weird

    Marko
    No. He didn’t leave us in a mess
    He left us with a squad that was 2 points off third and who had the beating of our rivals.
    As we keep hearing
    He also left us with £200m to spend after buying in Lacazette and Aubameyang the previous season.

    Hadley a mess.
    Had emery not shut his pants with 6 games to go we’d have been in the champions league now
    I’m glad he did though. Good fucking riddance

  64. Un na naai

    Because you’ve never went near any of the above, just full of disregard for players and fans with opinions.

    Charlie

    Not 100% accurate that. He laid his arse on the line for emery and Ceballos
    Hahahaha

  65. Marko

    Numerous ‘Wenger left a mess’ commenters, hence the relevance to what’s being said.

    I mean unless I said it it’s not relevant at all to us having a discussion. Doubt you could actually find someone who specifically brought up us not challenging in the next 10 years as an example of Wenger leaving Arsenal in a mess.
    __________________________________
    No what’s weird is your third failed attempt to understand that’s not an argument I’ve made, but run with it you shall.

    You’ve literally argued and argue against the idea that Wenger left us in a shambles.
    _________________________________

    Full-retard engaged. The squad being good enough for a top 4 challenge isn’t a point that becomes moot because the new manager fucks things up.

    I mean it is if it’s by and large the same group of players and idiotic individuals who have left the club down for 3 seasons on the trot.

    Honestly I don’t know why I bother engaging with you first off you go from zero to prick instantly and secondly you’ve gotten so much wrong over the years it’s embarrassing. Another one that’s gone under the radar is your recent calls for Mustafi to come back into the team over Sokratis. Fucking genius that one. Maybe he just needs more time to properly judge him

  66. Un na naai

    rollenDecember 1, 2019 17:55:40
    lol You guys are laughable. This team without Auba = relegtion battle

    Rollen

    Is thy right? Then how come we were in the champions league with Giroud podolski Theo and flamini with an apparent fraud of a coach and a porous defence?

    This should be fine, where are my cigarettes?

  67. Un na naai

    rollenDecember 1, 2019 17:55:40
    lol You guys are laughable. This team without Auba = relegtion battle

    Rollen

    Is thy right? Then how come we were in the champions league with Giroud podolski Theo and flamini with an apparent fraud of a coach and a porous defence?

    This should be fun, where are my cigarettes?

  68. Ishola70

    Well I could waffle on and say I want Allegri but he wouldn’t come to Arsenal at this stage.

    I could waffle and say I want Nagelsmann but again he isn’t going to leave RB Leipzig at this stage.

    You see it’s all waffle Charlie. You are familiar with waffle I know.

    Arsenal seem destined for Arteta.

    As for players why not raid Watford and get two EPL experienced players their best players in Doucoure and Deulofeu for starters.

    That’s enough waffle for now.

    To think that mere posters on a blog can chart Arsenal’s rise back to the top of football.

    Charlie thinks he can.

  69. Champagne charlie

    Marko

    “So much wrong”, you mean so much you don’t agree with. Not the same thing, and we all know your proclivity for a markoism.

    Idk why you bother trying to debate anything at all frankly, you almost never follow what’s being said and end up arguing against your own version of what the other poster is saying.

    If you want to never bother again I’ll grieve and then compose myself and soldier on. Should take a good 3 to 4 seconds, but I’ll get through it.

  70. Un na naai

    Pep has lined Van Bronkhorst up to replace Arteta
    How the fuck are we missing out on all these arsenal players as coaches? Keown, Vieira, Arteta, Bergkamp, Henry, now GVB. Christ

  71. Nelson

    The weakness of our current team is obvious in defense and then midfield.

    The defense needs to gel much more. The two CB’s didn’t communicate with each other. Chambers has no skill to center the ball.

    As for the midfield, we need to play a CDM who is aware of the defense requirement all the time.. He needs to help out the CB’s during a counter attack. Currently, all our CM’s lack coordination. When there are two CM’s supporting the attack, the last one should stay slightly back in case we loses the ball.

    In short, both the defense and midfield require much better coaching.

  72. Champagne charlie

    Ishola

    So as expected, you’re completely incapable of housing a view on what coach, which players, or what type of strategy the club should take as you see it.

    Instead you label it waffle, to no doubt hide the deficiencies in your assessment and remove the possibility of having your view scrutinised……..all this as you will inevitably go back to posting daily about Granit Xhaka hahaha

  73. Ishola70

    No Charlie

    I have said I expect that it will be Arteta that is appointed and have given two players for starters to buy.

    I will let you try to be too clever and inevitably trip up with your predictions and views.

  74. Marko

    In case anyone was wondering that’s the squad that was left when Wenger left technically speaking. Cazorla and Wilshere released and Per retired. Also factor in the wage bill which I believe was the 4th biggest and I think around the time I read it was bigger or comparable to Bayern Munich lol. Just a look through:

    No wingers.
    Poor options at CAM.
    Poor midfield options.
    Poor fullbacks.
    Braindead CB’s.
    In need of a starting keeper.

    Laurent Koscielny
    Mkhitaryan
    Aaron Ramsey
    Alexandre Lacazette
    Mesut Özil
    David Ospina
    Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
    Rob Holding
    Alex Iwobi
    Nacho Monreal
    Shkodran Mustafi
    Calum Chambers
    Danny Welbeck
    Héctor Bellerín
    Carl Jenkinson
    Emiliano Martínez
    Konstantinos Mavropanos
    Lucas Pérez
    Granit Xhaka
    Ainsley Maitland-Niles
    Sead Kolašinac
    Petr Čech
    Mohamed Elneny
    Joel Campbell

    A MESS really.

  75. Spanishdave

    When you watch teams above us it’s easy to see how far we have fallen behind.
    It’s more than just a new manager.
    New owners would be a start but that’s a dream.
    The club is a total mess .

  76. Ernest Reed

    How do you guys do it? You come on here every single day and insult the living heck out of each other. Amazing and yet, quite sad that a football club can bring the worst out of some.

  77. Champagne charlie

    Ishola

    You’re a coward, you give opinions on others opinions without offering your own.

    Claiming Arteta is the likely next manager isn’t giving your own view on the matter, it’s reading the newspaper you bellend. So your knowledge of players extends to Watford, move over Mislintat.

  78. Un na naai

    Ultimately though, it comes down to what happened on the pitch. When he took over, he was to ‘build on the platform created by Arsene Wenger’ (Stan Kroenke); and ‘play an exciting, progressive style of football that fits Arsenal perfectly’ (Ivan Gazidis); while Emery himself acknowledged ‘Arsenal is known and loved throughout the world for its style of play’.

    Yet nothing we saw ever lived up that. I don’t know that he ever understood what Arsenal is supposed to be about, at least in my mind. Of course there’s a balance to be found between attacking football and defensive solidity, but over time we learned that his primary focus was always the opposition,

    Ishola
    This is for you, from arseblog
    What was that about emery knowing what arsenal were meant to be….

  79. Marko

    “So much wrong”, you mean so much you don’t agree with.

    No I mean wrong. And not in a everyone’s entitled to their opinion agree to disagree with someone way I mean just wrong. You were wrong about Wenger, you were wrong about Lichtsteiner as a signing, you were wrong to suggest Antonio Valencia, you are wrong about Xhaka and just recently you were wrong to suggest that Mustafi should be brought back into the team. That’s off the top of my head. You have been right about some things I’ll give you that. Some pearlers though

  80. Ishola70

    Charlie

    I have given you two players that are realistic to get that have EPL experience.

    I have already said there is no point waffling on about managers that are not going to come to Arsenal at this present time so why not give Arteta a go looking at the other realistic options.

    I have given two players to buy so now you give two players that can be bought which you think are a good idea. And realistic ones

    I am waiting to be amazed at your two choices of players and the football acumen and knowledge that you are going to show in naming these two players.

    Jst for starters of course,

  81. Ishola70

    Don

    Are you trying to annoy in keep quoting that Irishman.

    He has a good sense of humour and has a good eye for self promotion . Overall a decent chappie.

    But you for some reason see him as a footballing oracle.

    He is a blog writer on the internet Don.

  82. Un na naai

    Ishola

    He’s a blog writer with a lot more footballing savvy than mystic meg, predicting emery and Ceballos to Rip it up and then when they do not, go on to claim wenger was forcing emery to pick certain players and go against his own footballing principles, whatever the hell they are.

  83. CG

    Spanish Dave

    “”””The club is a total mess “”””

    U know that Dave, I know that too:

    We are Sleepwalking all the way to a place -we never dreamed off we could ever stumble upon.

    twice now- we have had a change of manager post Wenger
    twice now- there was no bounce.

    Even the mediocre easy games on a paper look like climbing Everest
    eg, Brighton at home

    Like Forest- when Cloughie left.
    We just cant seem to top this slide.
    We look tired. I am tired too,

    the people in charge are inept , crooked or indifferent

    There is no way out.
    Its Over.

  84. Gunnernet

    Poor start grom FL imo. Same old mistakes. The trust that a 3d coach holds for both Mustafi and Xhaka sounds increasingly worrying.

    Not sure about Arteta. Pedro, on one hand you stress how we cannot afford a second bad coach in a row, yet you favor a promising ex player with zero experience. The latter sounds really risky to me. I remain conservative on this, i think i would go with either Rodgers or Carlo..

    Poch is out of reach so stop dreaming guys.

  85. Champagne charlie

    Ishola
    I don’t hide my opinions, I’ve shared numerous over the course.

    Gerard Deulofeu is your answer, to what I can only imagine… Because you’re unable to substantiate anything or provide context.

    You’re on here claiming there’s no point chewing the fat about Arsenal and football, which begs the question why you fucking bother frequenting an Arsenal football blog, Joe packed in giving out Tikka recipes months ago.

    Marko
    The irony of that post won’t be lost on those that follow the chat on here. You really are a prize 😂

  86. Un na naai

    You’ll also note ishola that arseblog was much more behind emery than Le Grove was so you can’t say “the Irishman” wasn’t fair with emery. Ultimately he and those who backed him were just wrong. Pure and simple.

    Even Pedro, the guy who pretty much started the Wenger out movement was so wrapped up in it that he couldn’t see what a bad appointment emery was.
    Yes there’s been some flip flopping but he was against emery from the off.

  87. Ishola70

    I’ve called tonnes on here Don and you know it.

    I called Emery’s eventual downfall on here before everybody else in detail.

    I told Charlie Wenger would be sacked at the end of that season and he didn’t believe me.

    This is just a few among numerous.

    You can pull me up on some of the ones that went awry. Some of the few.

    That’s ok.

  88. Ishola70

    I have given two players Charlie.

    Come on now you give out two players.

    We are waiting Charlie.

    We are waiting to be bowled over.

    Two more players than you.

    You have given out none.

    Come on Charlie. Walk the talk.

  89. Ernest Reed

    “Even Pedro, the guy who pretty much started the Wenger out movement was so wrapped up in it that he couldn’t see what a bad appointment emery was.”

    Actually, Pedro was anti-Emery pretty much from the second he was hired. The “Out” movements on Wenger and Emery is as toxic as they come, nothing to show pride over for certain, shameful without doubt.

  90. Champagne charlie

    Ishola

    My views are out there, on managers, direction, type of playing personnel, who I fancy and why. But deflect, deflect, deflect…

  91. Nelson

    We need a defensive coach, who understands the art of defending. It’s knowing where each player must be when off the ball, how to stop an attack from its conception, tracking off-the-ball runners, aggression, the role of a sweeper, communication, when and how to cover your team mate, how to identify the main opposition danger man and to stifle him, cutting passing lanes, professional fouls, etc…

  92. Spanishdave

    CG
    Yep we are in relegation mode.
    What manager wants our squad?
    What manager wants our shite directors and geriatric board.
    Who wants Raul and co buying dodgy players.
    Big hole small shovel .

  93. Un na naai

    Ernest Reed

    Is that your name or the estate agents you work for?
    I’m not showing pride over any movement. I wasn’t ever part of any “movement” Ernest. I simply felt that emery was the worst candidate linked with the job and therefore the worst possible hire last summer and am glad he’s gone. I never wanted to see him fail just as I’d hoped I was wrong on Ceballos, especially after the Burnley game when he really made me wonder.
    Alas I’m just the kind of guy who seems to, more often than not, call the right side of the coin

  94. Freddie Ljungberg

    “Alas I’m just the kind of guy who seems to, more often than not, call the right side of the coin”

    ahahahahha

    Oh Don, when you’re not busy being a racist cunt you can be pretty funny. Totally unintentionally I’m sure.

  95. Ernest Reed

    Never said you were, Un na naai. You should read before you comment.

    My comment is directed solely at Pedro, whose behaviour is anything but what one should expect from a true supporter.

    You should read first before you comment.

  96. Un na naai

    Ishola70December 1, 2019 18:49:30
    I’ve called tonnes on here Don and you know it.I called Emery’s eventual downfall on here before everybody else in detail.

    Ishola

    Really? How peculiar!! Because I recall 5 games into the season how you were claiming Wenger and kroenke were sabotaging Emery from afar or further still in the summer, crowing over Ceballos and Emery and how you had your arsenal back while myself, TR7, CC, Pierre and CG had nailed to the mast months before.

  97. Ernest Reed

    “Alas I’m just the kind of guy who seems to, more often than not, call the right side of the coin”

    Surely you are having a laugh, right?

  98. Un na naai

    Ernest ReedDecember 1, 2019 19:07:07
    Never said you were, Un na naai. You should read before you comment. My comment is directed solely at Pedro, whose behaviour is anything but what one should expect from a true supporter.

    Ernest
    Then my apologies. Still though, out of curiosity, why should any supporter not rail against what they consider to be bad for their club?
    I was one of, if not the last to turn on wenger and was quite disgusted by the abuse from “fans” but I understood their issue, I just disagreed with the spite and vitriol.

  99. Un na naai

    Ernest ReedDecember 1, 2019 19:11:37
    “Alas I’m just the kind of guy who seems to, more often than not, call the right side of the coin”Surely you are having a laugh, right?

    70/30

  100. Champagne charlie

    “Really? How peculiar!! Because I recall 5 games into the season how you were claiming Wenger and kroenke were sabotaging Emery from afar or further still in the summer”

    That was a very funny passage of Le Grove history, until you realise he was genuine about it