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. Elmo

    14 played. 7 points below top 4. 7 points above relegation.

    Our form suggests we’ll finish the season much closer to relegation (subtract the first two games of the season and our form is 14th best in the league: 13 points from 12 games). The new manager has to have an instant impact in reorganising and motivating the squad if we’re to be anywhere near to CL qualification.

  2. Un na naai

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

    Freddy. Glad I amuse you.
    Must be mixed emotions for you today. Your desperation to be proved correct on wenger leaving the squad in a state trumping your love for the real Freddie L?

  3. Ishola70

    Don

    You of all people should know a wind up when you see it.

    I’m on record as saying I didn’t expect much from Emery when he was first appointed and before a team under him kicked a ball in anger.

    Said the unbeaten run last season was over-rated = correct. It was a mirage.

    Said we would not see another unbeaten run like the last this season when the fixtures came out last summer = correct.

    Said the games starting from Crystal Palace at home, Wolves at home and Leicester away would be tough for Emery = correct. The points dropped at home to Wolves and Crystal Palace completely killed off Emery and led to that dreadful Southampton home game.

    Anything inbetween Don was mere winding up of the Wenger lovers on here who were hungry for Emery’s blood. I was never hungry for his blood even if I knew he really wasn’t the man.

  4. Un na naai

    Ishola70December 1, 2019 19:17:14
    DonYou of all people should know a wind up when you see it.

    Ish

    Don’t try that one son!!! You were on your soap box that night. It was no wind up. A little too much gin and juice perhaps but you aren’t convincing anyone here except yourself that was a wind up.
    Hope you aren’t a defence lawyer

  5. Graham62

    Omg!!

    Some posters on here are actually slating Freddie Ljungberg already.

    Here we have a group of players who have been brain fed boring predictable football for nigh on 18 months and, after just one game in charge, Freddie is already being ridiculed.

    Norwich deserved to win based on their second half chances but if Arsenal had been more alert they could have been two up before Norwich scored. Torreira almost won it at the end.

    David Luiz is a massive liability, I’m sorry but he is and our defenders inabilities to cut down the spaces and move the ball quickly is something we all hope Freddie can work on.

    Do we really expect to finish top 4? Probably not. The thing is, when you have players whose natural instincts have been nullified for so long, it’s not going to be a quick fix.

    Would have liked to see Pepe given a run out.

  6. Un na naai

    Said the games starting from Crystal Palace at home, Wolves at home and Leicester away would be tough for Emery = correct. The points dropped at home to Wolves and Crystal Palace completely killed off Emery and led to that dreadful Southampton home game.

    Ish
    You were laying the ground work to absolve him. We’d already beaten those teams earlier in the season. We should have won at least one of those games. We got sparked in two and mugged by palace

  7. Ishola70

    Come on

    Pedro put a post up about Emery being a chameleon coach months and months ago.

    I put up in response a youtube video of Gary Numan singing Music For Fucking Chameleons and championing him.

    It was a bubble weren’t it.

  8. Un na naai

    Graham

    Some fucking sense!! I do not want Freddie long term by any stretch but for God’s sake give the man a chance. He’s inherited the most emotionally broken squad we’ve had in my life time and people were expecting what exactly?

    Also, I thought xakha had a very good first half.
    Should have started Torreira and Pepe in their best positions though
    Pepe scores to fucking worldies in the Europa a few weeks back and was pretty much dropped straight away when his confidence would have been sky high. What a way to crush a player’s self belief man. He must be asking if that doesn’t get him back into THIS team then what the fuck is he doing here?

  9. Valentin

    What the game proved two things:

    1) David Luiz can’t defend on 1v1 against pacy/tricky defenders.

    2) we need a proper defensive midfielder a la Gilberto Silva.

    Our 3 in midfield meant that We were more solid today than under Emery, but we were caught regularly on the counter-attack.
    David Luiz was bamboozled by zigzag runs by one attacker. Leaving too much space for Pukki to shoot or pass. Unless Mavrapanos can stay fit and rediscover his initial form, a better left footed CB is a must during the winter TW.

    Also we need a better defensive midfielder. Willock and Guendouzi need a chaperone who can cover their current defensive lapses. Especially if we intend to use both fullback as offensive weapons.
    For Norwich two goals, both fullbacks are too far ahead, but instead of dropping off and help out Xhaka was also ahead of the play. He did try to get back into position, but it was too late.
    Torreira tried to press and retrieved the ball higher up the pitch, but in a game where Arsenal dominates possession, having player who know when to drop off is more important.

    A player a la Fernandinho, Gilberto Silva would have known when to drop between the two CBs and help out.

    Xhaka did not have a bad game, but it is clear that he can’t do what is required for this team to thrive. Same thing about Torreira. Those are not bad players, just not suited to the EPL (Xhaka) or to a team who dominate possession (Torreira).

    Looks like Pepe is behind both Saka and Martinelli in Freddie’s opinion. So the question is why did we spend that amount of money on a player when we had two positions that required urgent attention.

  10. Ishola70

    Graham62

    “David Luiz is a massive liability”

    Here! Here!

    Did you see how easily Pukki drifted away from him with a simple run that allowed him the time and space to hit that shot that put them one up. Awful signing.

    But let’s put him in as DM.

    Sounds a great idea to me.

    Desperation time and with Luiz at DM will quickly turn into catastrophe time.

  11. Un na naai

    Val

    Literally echoed my sentiments in the above post

    Better yet why after he score the 2 free kicks in EL was he benched again? That was the perfect time to let him loose on defences in the league

  12. Champagne charlie

    Un

    Ishola was also dead against Emery being sacked after one season, claiming it’d be entering the lunatics asylum territory to do such a thing.

    Notice how that little number was left off his self-high-five list hahaha

  13. Wenker-wanger

    Give Freddie a chance is correct. Only a complete and utter lunatic would criticize a man after one game!!!
    I think today shows that as bad as emery was, this squad isn’t good enough to achieve anything except mid table , maybe 8th.
    It’s a squad that hasn’t a defense or dynamic powerful midfield.
    There was a definite improvement in spirit…so a real plus for me.
    Don’t expect miracles…just a slow and steady improvement.

  14. Vintage Gun

    “We need to buy some EPL experience I think for the central midfield. Players who instantly understand the pace and physicality of the league.Players like Ndidi, Doucoure, Grealish, McGinn etc.”

    Friggin hell Cesc have you been bugging my phone? I honestly mentioned the same four players two days ago to my Villa supporting mate.

    Strange but true

  15. Marc

    ” Unless Mavrapanos can stay fit and rediscover his initial form”

    Initial form – fuck me I don’t think you can call 15 minutes form.

  16. Gbat

    I didn’t like the starting lineup but I thought we started pretty well going forward. But we are awful without the ball. We look so slow and weak.

    How about Arne Slot from AZ Alkmaar as manager?

  17. Graham62

    For months now Arsenal’s passing tempo has been slow and ponderous.

    Most passes have little or no pace. The time it takes to pass the ball between two players is probably the slowest in the league.

    Leno has to also release the ball far more quickly( hand and feet). Although he made several key saves in the second half his slow release policy often puts us under unnecessary pressure.

  18. Ishola70

    Charlie

    “claiming it’d be entering the lunatics asylum territory to do such a thing.”

    Yeah and if you remember I put up another youtube video of The Fun Boy Three singing The Lunatics Are Taking Over The Fucking Asylum.

    Bubble weren’t it.

  19. Champagne charlie

    My oh my….

    Brenda Rodgers just went there. Mentioned a release clause in his contract during a Sky interview…

    If that’s not giving Arsenal one whole cheek to look at idk what is.

  20. Un na naai

    WW

    No today does not show that.
    It shows that xakha is not the man to sit at the base of any midfield alone in this league
    It shows our defence needs to be coached and drilled, not Norwich’s shape today compared to ours. They do not have better players or even players on or so why did they draw with arsenal?

    Luiz and Mustafi while not top class for me are certainly good enough to hold out the Norwich’s and Watfords of this world. That comes through repetitive drills. Between them they’ve won it all.

  21. Un na naai

    Charlie

    I remember hairline and Freddie and marko taking that view but to be honest ishola was never really on my radar until he started wading into the the Ceballos/Willock debate in July

  22. Marc

    Wenker

    Ljungberg will be given a chance by the fans purely because of his history. What he can’t do is keep making team selections like today. Xhaka and Mustafi must not appear for us again. He can’t leave a £70 million winger on the bench for a still green kid when making substitutes .

  23. Wenker-wanger

    Never rated Luiz….for me he isn’t a defender or a midfielder….I couldn’t put him in the side….cannot understand how he is always selected. Conversely I like chambers…not the most mobile but a reasonably solid defender.
    Pepe?…. I’m afraid I don’t think he’s worth £20 million….so for me I think we were totally ripped off. (Why can’t we understand the simple fact that star quality French league players do not become star quality players in the premier league…so many examples). I hope I’m wrong about Pepe….but a one-footed lightweight has a lot missing to start with.

  24. gnarleygeorge9

    Move over Barnum & Bailey, there is a new circus in town Kroenke & Son.

    Emery & his aids get apparently a payout of £15million. I wouldn’t be surprised if he was making dumb substitutions & team selections to get sacked. What a circus The Arsenal has become, & you are all ‘buying’ it!

  25. Un na naai

    If that’s not giving Arsenal one whole cheek to look at idk what is.

    That gave me a Boner haha
    Why was the context? Did they ask him about the arsenal job or he dropped it in unprompted?

  26. Wenker-wanger

    I agree, Freddie’s selection wasn’t great….what do we have at the back that’s much better? Sokratis? Jeez…
    Maybe Tierney for kslisinac….? It’s not a clear cut argument.
    Xhaka for torreira?…
    Let’s see what Freddie does over a few games…..

  27. Valentin

    Marko,

    I know it is a new concept for you, but players can show lots of promises and after some serious injuries having problem to rediscover their initial form.
    Initial form is the reason why Wenger changed his mind and decided against loaning him to get experience.
    Initial form is the reason why we were all raving about the gem found after his first appearances.

    However like I said if he can’t recover that initial form, we need that left footed CB in January, because Luiz can’t cope on his own against pacy tricky attacker. Sokratis is not a CB, but a wrestler playing football. He is eager to get into scrap, but in situation like today he would have conceded two penalties or being sent off. Remember how he got sent off against Rennes after he grappled Sarr to stop his run.

  28. Vintage Gun

    Rodgers is gagging for the job. The other day he was showing us a flash of thigh and calf. (Leaking to the press about release clause)

    Now,just incase Raul doesn’t read the press Rodgers has gone full blown Sharon Stone on us (Telling Sky T.V about his release clause)

  29. MidwestGun

    Omg!!
    Some posters on here are actually slating Freddie Ljungberg already.
    _______
    Omg no they aren’t.. Fake news.. somebody said # Freddie out was trending on twitter.. which big deal .. twitter is a cesspit.

    People on here where saying Freddie needs to do better with team selection, not playing like Wenger of 2017 and most likely will not last if he continues to do so.

    Nobody was slagging him off… just the normal criticism after getting a draw against the second worst team in the Premier.

    Swear y’all like to argue about things that didn’t happen.

  30. Cesc Appeal

    Vintage Gun

    I would have an entirely new midfield 3 for next season. My preference would be Ndidi, Zakaria, Grealish for our midfield.

    I’d sell Xhaka, Torreira, AMN and Lacazette to fund that.

    With Saliba arriving I’d also sell Mustafi and Sokratis. Look for an EPL experienced CB that is a name that most fans wouldn’t usually want.

    I’ve said it before but I like a method of building a team that sees an attacking staple with a hard working, athletic, physical core.

    So the staple shape is your RB, RW, ST, LW, LB around the team and the attacking front and then the core is your CBs, CDM and CMs.

    That is how I would build.

    Bellerin, Pepe, Aubameyang, Martinelli, Tierney as your attacking staple and then a new core to the team.

  31. Wenker-wanger

    Let’s take a comparitive assessment of our defenders doing mainly defending.
    At today’s prices….koladinac 7m, sokratis 5m luiz 2m, chambers 5m…Dixon 30m Bould 40,,m , Adams 90m, winterburn 40m keown 30m..sol Campbell 60m.
    Personal opinion, but I believe the difference in quality is astronomical.

  32. Champagne charlie

    https://www.skysports.com/football/leicester-vs-everton/408113

    Down the page for Rodgers interview with Geoff Shreeves.

    Is asked to clarify if there’s a clause in his contract that if met would allow him to go: Rodgers then gets a bit twitchy and rambling, but just about emerges without dropping himself right in it.

    My feeling is he’d not turn us down. Which I’ll admit makes me laugh a bit and will it to happen, have a party over that one Vardy you moonfaced cunt.

  33. Thorough

    People holding brief for Ljunberg really don’t get it. We, ordinary fans watching, could see what Emery was doing wrong, how come Freddie couldn’t? There was nothing bold about his lineup. It was vomiti-nducing. And it absolutely was no surprise the game ended the way it did. He’s not here to continue the shots how that got Emery fired. He’s here to correct the blindingly obvious flaws that Emery kept making. He’s already shit. Unto the next abeg.

  34. MidwestGun

    WW-
    Depends on how you look at it .. I suppose. All I know is they have won 3 and lost 9. 2 draws and second bottom of table.. and they have given up 30 goals. in 14 games so they aren’t great.

  35. Wenker-wanger

    One game…one fcking game and already Freddie is shit…..emery mk 2….
    Look at the quality of the players….anyone telling me they are so much better than Norwich’s?…
    Our defense is shocking….who bought Mustafa, luiz, sokratis? Not Freddie was it!!!!
    You try and make a shit sandwich edible!

  36. Wenker-wanger

    @ Midwest..j agree with your stats….but like I said they have something good about them to beat city and everton. They have good players and the man of the match was Aarons….in my opinion.

  37. MidwestGun

    WW_
    Again nobody said he was shit. I don’t think..maybe somebody on here did but I don’t remember it. he can do better though. How you make a shit sandwich better is not put shit on your sandwich.in the first place I assume nobody was forcing him to play the likes of Mustafi, Xhaka, Kola and Luiz.

    I want him to succeed, so I hope this was a learning lesson. You know grasping at straws really. Have to put an end to this downward spiral it’s depressing.

  38. Thorough

    WW.
    It’s not about one game. It’s about Freddie refusing to be bold. Resurrecting the career of Mustafi. Playing without an identifiable DM when defence was topmost on the areas we need to improve.
    Refusing to use a single winger and going central.
    Keeping Auba on the wings still.
    Generally just refusing anything that indicates he has a mind of his own.
    At the pub today we had to ask ourselves if Emery picked the team before he left. That’s what we’re sad about. Absence of a personal imprint. Refusing to deviate from the system that’s failed Emery over and again.

  39. Marc

    Valentin

    Are you really so thick that you can’t tell the difference between Marc and Marko?

    As for Mavropanos – what initial form? It was only a couple of matches that included a red card.

    I don’t think anyone would argue that we don’t need new / better defenders but to say that Mavropanos might be the answer means only one thing – you’re desperately looking for a way to say Sven was great and Sanllehi fucked up in getting rid of him.

  40. Wenker-wanger

    @ thorough…yes I can see your point…I was disappointed in his selection….I think it was brave, ironically to play Xhaka and luiz….I certainly don’t get the luiz inclusion.
    Maybe he felt that he could get a different performance out of them…I don’t know.

  41. HighburyLegend

    Freddie had all the cards in hand today to send a strong message.
    But once you had see that Mustardi, Granité, Ozil and Co were on the pitch, you already know he fucked up.

    The young Gunners must he even more disapointed than us.

  42. Wenker-wanger

    Let’s revisit this after a few more games….yeah we are starved of that “arsenal proud feeling”…..we have had one hell of a nightmare 3 seasons…….
    We need a rebuild with players that are talented but have that determination and spirit like we had in the adams Vieira he Freddie era.

  43. Marc

    Highbury

    Ljungberg was restricted in his choice of full backs but if he’d have gone with Torreira in midfield at the expense of Xhaka, picked anyone other than Mustafi at CD and started Pepe instead of Laca or Ozil I think people would have been far more forgiving.

  44. InsideRight

    Got to agree with some of the criticism of Freddie today. Here he had the chance to make a statement and show there was a different way of doing things. We didn’t see anything different in the line up. We didn’t see anything different in the approach. Freddie will have been acutely aware of the things the players weren’t happy with under Emery and he had a few days to sweep those away and begin with a reset. He didn’t do it. All we got was Emery without hair and the players making the same mistakes and playing in the same negative, identity-free, soporific manner. We need to broom the entire senior back room. There is a malaise there that I don’t think can be turned around. We need a new manager in right now.

  45. Nelson

    Anyone knows what happens to Holding. Why Pepe is not selected? Why Saka is selected before Martinelli? I understand why FL selected Kola. Tierney played already 90 mins last Thursday. Bellerin is injured. PapaSok was very bad the last two games

    I am sure that FL and Per will study this game and try to correct some mistakes. I still hope that we’ll play Martinelli, Auba and Pepe as our front three. And Pepe should not try to cut inside every time he has the ball. The defense and midfield need to be function as a team. Right now, we have no choice but hope for the best.

  46. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Look the turbulence in the season is not over, unless Freddie has read the riot act on certain players this season is over.
    Changes need to happen higher up in the board.

    The club is collapsing before Our very eyes.

    Needs a very strong personality .
    Either
    Rodgers, Allegri , Simone but the lack of queens from the last two makes i5 a one horse race.

  47. Emiratesstroller

    I think that we have seen today that Arsenal’s current problems are more profound than the Head Coach.

    We have a defence and midfield which is clearly not fit for purpose. That was blindingly obvious by the way that the team conceded two goals and more
    importantly looked so brittle throughout the game.

    We have a defence which is frankly “useless”. Frankly I think that they would
    struggle against teams 2 divisions below us.

    The midfield is equally lightweight and frankly not fit for purpose. I am not personally a fan of Guendouzi, but I recognise that both he and Willock are
    raw youngsters.

    That is the problem we lack control in our midfield and that is reflected in
    almost every game we play.

    The only positive I gained from today’s game was Leno’s performance. Without him we would have lost the game, but more importantly he stopped
    producing short goal kicks and passes and was more positive in kicking the
    ball upfield.

    Frankly I don’t know what the solution is to our current demise. The playing
    personnel is frankly not fit for purpose.

  48. Spanishdave

    ES
    Wenger has really damaged the club.
    We have so much dross and it’s one hell of a job to fix it.
    It’s going to take a few seasons and a major overhaul throughout the club.
    I have never seen such a disjointed team.

  49. Champagne charlie

    Stroller

    Yea mate, Emery tanked after 18 months because of the players, and now Freddie has taken that one training session and we’re no better its abundantly clear it’s the players after all.

    Let’s get Emery back in, that was a clear mistake to get rid.

    “Frankly I don’t know what the solution is to our current demise. “

    Might I be so bold to suggest a competent football manager? We’ve had flailing Arsene and blundering Emery for the past half decade.

    Some of you are losing touch with reality I swear.

  50. Guns of SF

    I love how everyone panics after Freddies one game.
    Give me a break… he has had 2 days to try and rid the place of Emery stench/ Wenger stench.

    Give the man at least a week for crying out loud!

    I think todays game was also enough reason for FL to drop Luiz, Mustafi. They had their chances- now time to sit.

    Get Tierney in, Holding and Chambers
    We need to also give more minutes to Martinelli- he always comes on when we are chasing the game. Id like to see him influence the game from the start.

    Auba needs a rest- so perhaps start Laca and Martinelli this week

  51. CG

    Cha Cha

    “””””Might I be so bold to suggest a competent football manager?”””

    they don’t want a competent manager: they want their flawed system and process.

    We have a head of football operations (haha)
    a teck deck (haha)
    the contracts man (haha)
    vinny ( beyond haha)
    Josh the Playboy

    why would they employ a competent manager ?
    its the last thing they want.

  52. Dissenter

    Rodgers will listen to us if we approach him in the summer.
    We will sell our project to him and then he will decide whether Leicester or Arsenal offer the best chance for him to succeed.
    He will decide whether the current Arsenal squad with the wage distortions that restricts how quickly it can be turned around or the present Leicester squad gives him a better substrate.
    He will decide whether Arsenal’s backroom is better than Leicester.
    I expect the typical loyalist gooners will remind us that Arsenal are the bigger club which is 100% true but there’s no indication he will choose to leave Leicester.
    I did notice the he fudged the question of the contractual clause today.

  53. Cesc Appeal

    Dissenter

    I think any manager worth anything is going to be looking at Arsenal and thinking I don’t really want anyone in that midfield and I don’t really want anyone in that defence.

    Having said that, how much money am I going to get, what are the wage restrictions and given those two issues how easy is it going to be to sell what I don’t want.

    Arsenal are a big club, but the squad is not good at all. Just watching Leicester it would hit Rodgers hard leaving a balanced side and walking into this mess. A midfield that doesn’t do anything, a slow, unathletic side with a lack of well rounded players and with several poor attitudes.

  54. Champagne charlie

    Kolo Toure one of Rodgers chief coaches, I can get on board with Brenda.

    Tbh the very uproar it’d give Leicester would bring me a bit of joy after they denied us Mahrez and Vardy ghosted us.

  55. wattsy

    I’m a complete and utter lunatic who needs a rant. After one game its clear Freddie is not up to the job, awful team selection, we are in dire neec of a win so he picks Mustafi and Xhaka
    Maybe i expected too much, just thought we would put some pace on the flanks and move the out quicker, if he found some positives then boy did they pass me by. Freddie is Son of Uni and we cannot wait to appoint a new coach/ manager. Ok I know he only had a couple of days, but there was nothing different at all. Someone explain to me the allure of Xhaka that makes him put on the pitch.
    When we needed a goal he put on a midfielder, when we had Martinelli and Pepe on the bench.
    Mustafi is just chicken, when we needed him to put his body on the line, he turned his back, disgraceful.
    Thursday will be more of the same, followed by more the following Monday.
    All I wznt is a modicum of hope, a small chink of light showing above the shit heap.

  56. R.S.P.C.Arsenal

    Stroller

    We need to take two steps back for three steps forward.

    The club board are all over 70 except for josh.

    Something needs to give,
    As a playing squad we are shot.

    Club needs a bonding session as well as a board change.

    But agree with us over Leno…

    Bayern will be back in for him soon.

  57. Un na naai

    How the fuck can anyone say we don’t have the players available to beat Watford, Norwich and Southampton is ludicrous.

    Stroller, you ought to know better
    We had a World Cup winner and a man who’s won the prem and the CL at the centre of defence. Yes I’m no Luiz fan but under the right man in the right set up he’s a CL and prem winning cb.
    Kolasinac was bundesliga left back of the year.
    Leno is a 25m gk
    The whole midfield has been changed and upgraded.

    This lot can beat Norwich. No they should beat Norwich. We should be rolling over them. What we need is someone, like Rodgers, like allegri, like poch to see the players, develop the system and give this team the framework and confidence to win. Emery had us beating spurs, Chelsea and United last season for fucks sake but now we aren’t fit for purpose against bloody Norwich
    They’ve won 1 drew 1 and lost 6 of their last 8

    Do me a favour

  58. Un na naai

    Cc

    I did call Rodgers a couple of years ago. Always thought he had a bit of Arsenal about him
    One thing is for sure he would bring back our beloved attacking football. Hopefully he will bring that giant Turk with him as well

  59. Marko

    Are you really so thick that you can’t tell the difference between Marc and Marko?

    I don’t think he can tell the difference. I wonder if he knows which one thinks he’s an awful liar. Trick question everyone does.

  60. Danialtos

    How comes strikers with barren runs always find the net against us?Or teams with barren runs come alive when its Arsenal?Everytime before a game I hear a commentator say stuff like ‘Norwich have only beaten Arsenal once in the last 15 years’ then I know how it will turn out …or ‘Ashley Barnes hasn’t score in 7 matches’ then you know he will score against us ffs. Shane Long,Ashley Barnes,Danny Ings, Wesley Moraes,heck even Luis Mousset the other day have all got confident boosters when it comes to facing Arsenal

  61. bennydevito

    Be interesting to hear what Pedro has to say about it all in his next post, probably tomorrow 9am sharp I’d imagine.

    We were all excited for Freddie at the wheel after an abysmal 18 months of Emery. Coupled with the romance and nostalgia of having an invincible running the ship and the fact we all assumed him being the former u23 manager, we assumed he would sweep the decks and reinstate the youngsters from the cup sides and the bench into the first team, but he didn’t. It was an amalgamation of a Wenger and Emery team, a Wengemery merged into a Wengemerfreddie.

    I was totally aghast to see Xhaka starting, but to then see that compounded with Mustafi, Kolasinac and Ozil just beggared belief.

    No real width with Pepe, Martinelli and Saka on the bench compounded with no pace in the middle with a 3 of Xhaka, Ozil and Slowdozy, with Lacazette linking things up, we got overran and harried into mistakes of which were all too familiar and had no pace or mobility to recover.

    I know it’s only Freddie’s first game, but he’s been here long enough to see what we the fans see surely, and to see him going with that lineup is very worrying for his caretaker role going forward.

    We need to make a move on Arteta now and make it quick. If not, maybe go for Rogers but I can’t see him leaving Leicester at this point of the season, but then again neither could the Celtic fans so you never know.

  62. Marko

    Anyone who thinks they would snap out of it after just one game under Freddie, are deluded.

    I mean let’s be fair here aren’t you one of those idiots who claimed anyone and everyone would do a better job than Emery? You even went as far as waxing your pole at the thought of Freddie taking charge on a temporary basis. Temporary meaning you thought you would see some form of improvement quickly. To be fair I don’t see anyone going overboard on today that was left to anyone who thought Freddie was good enough to get the job until the end of the season. He did get duly and rightfully criticized for the starting 11 he picked and the subs he made which was really fucking bad in a really obvious way too. I mean Mustafi, Xhaka and Özil lining up one in front of the other like chickens is pretty much shooting yourself in the foot

  63. Thanos

    Graham 62 totally agree how some internet trolls on here can slate Freddie after one game is absolutely ridiculous. They should be banned from posting on any site and know nothing about football

    Absolute twats.this is why People ridicule our fanbase

  64. bennydevito

    ThanosDecember 1, 2019    22:36:20

    Graham 62 totally agree how some internet trolls on here can slate Freddie after one game is absolutely ridiculous. They should be banned from posting on any site and know nothing about football

    Absolute twats.this is why People ridicule our fanbase

    >>>>>

    The only twat is you little boy.

    That lineup was abysmal and if he had left Xhaka, Mustafi and Ozil out for starters and played Torreira and Martinelli I dare say we’d have played much better.

  65. CG

    UN

    “”””How the fuck can anyone say we don’t have the players available to beat Watford, Norwich and Southampton is ludicrous.”””””

    But we have not.

    They are smashing us to smithereens. See stats.

    Watford ( now on their 3rd manager ) go to Norwich City and beat them 2 zero.

    we go there with a new coach and look like Stockport County on Spice.

    there is no fight or belief – which exacerbates things but

    Every game I watch: I see teams more mobile, more physical and more robust.

    We are so damn pedestrian.

    No wonder why we got the coach to Norfolk today -post match the players would not have been able to climb the stairs on the aeroplane.

    So Slow. So Broken. So mentally shredded.

    I am telling you- without out x 2 £50 million centre forwards and excellent keeper Leno- we are easily bottom 3 material. If Leno or PEA got seriously injured- I doubt we would win 2 more games this season.

    We are in the deep Brown Stuff.

  66. Un na naai

    MarkoDecember 1, 2019 22:29:37
    Anyone who thinks they would snap out of it after just one game under Freddie, are deluded.I mean let’s be fair here aren’t you one of those idiots who claimed anyone and everyone would do a better job than Emery?

    Marko

    He is already doing better than emery
    Emery lost his first two games
    Already has more points in one.

  67. Un na naai

    CG

    Just because we didn’t doesnt mean we can’t.

    What are you saying here then? The olbly reason we were able to beat better teams last year was emery’s wonderful management?

  68. Un na naai

    CG

    Just because we didn’t doesnt mean we can’t.

    What are you saying here then? The only reason we were able to beat better teams last year was emery’s wonderful management?

  69. Un na naai

    HighburyLegendDecember 1, 2019 22:32:19
    Poch apparently think that he deserve better than Arsenal for his next job. Fuck off, Spice Poch.

    HL

    He does. He’s out of our league. Anyone with any sense knew that ages ago. To be fair so are most of the names we are being linked with. We are mid table now.

  70. Valentin

    Marc,

    Sven is gone, you are the one who keep bringing him back because you can’t handle the fact that Raul messed thing up.
    Same thing with Marko who could not handle that Emery was out of his depth so had to blame the players.

    I have been repeating the same thing since last season. The four positions that needed to be addressed were central midfield, left CB, left fullback and goalkeeper in that order.

    BTW wanting a player to be successful does not mean that it was not a mistake to bring him to the club.

  71. Un na naai

    eemed in the jaws of contact: dainty tackles, squeamish blocks, toes tentatively offered in the general direction of the ball. Arsenal players defend like every part of their body is their face.

    Ain’t this the truth
    Made me chuckle that one.

  72. Marc

    Valentin

    Tell me in detail about Mavropanos’s form in a minute by minute breakdown you mentioned earlier.

    It should only take about 30 seconds.

  73. Thanos

    They need to bring winners into the coaching side like Gilberto pires keown
    The change has to happen from the training pitch
    Mentality and winning starts from there they have to repeat and drill the basics

  74. Marko

    I would not called people liar after you claim that Nagelmann could not speak English.

    At the time of posting that to the best of my knowledge and ability to find out I couldn’t find anywhere where he spoke English. I would say that it was more an honest mistake instead of a lie. You’ll notice in spite of the evidence I’m still not trying to worm my way out of what I said I own it I got it wrong. You Valentin on the other hand are a lying little shit who to this day has never owned up to the numerous lies, falsehoods and outright bullshit that you have spewed. Still waiting on that evidence that Steve Rowley was back at Arsenal post Mislintat/pre Edu. Still waiting on that HIV test for Eboue. Less said about the time Carlos Vela held you up in traffic at 4 am in Hempstead Heath having a block party the better. Oh yeah he also handed out champagne just to add some realism to the tale.

  75. Danialtos

    A while back,I think a year or two here someone suggested we should buy Jonny Evans when he was at West Brom and got roasted here and laughed off. How we need a defender like him right now. He seems to have got better with age for some weird reason

  76. Marc

    Valentin

    Whilst you can argue that any position can always be improved / strengthened Leno is not a bad keeper.

    We have other positions that need urgent attention and wasting money on a new keeper would be irresponsible.

  77. Mr Serge

    Having been an arsenal fan since the 70 s i am almost as old as Graham I watch those Muppets at arsenal fan TV after the home games and have to wonder what the new breed of fan is leaving me in dismay

  78. Mr Serge

    It’s like they want instant success and if we let in a goal they lose their shit
    This is going to take 3 or 4 windows to fix with good coaching and shifting the 6 or 7 crap first team players

  79. Marc

    Serge

    You shouldn’t confuse a handful of “fans” who are all keen for attention on Youtube with the majority of fans who attend matches.

  80. Un na naai

    Dani altos
    It was a good shout and we were actually linked with him for a while under wenger.

    The problem is that he wouldn’t have been this good under wenger and certainly not emery who’s even more clueless with defending.
    Doesn’t matter who we sign of our best coach can’t do the business

  81. Un na naai

    Dani altos
    It was a good shout and we were actually linked with him for a while under wenger.

    The problem is that he wouldn’t have been this good under wenger and certainly not emery who’s even more clueless with defending.
    Doesn’t matter who we sign of our NEXT coach can’t do the business

  82. Valentin

    If Brendon Rodgers had any sense he would stay away from Arsenal unless he get specific guarantee on the arrival of players who he likes.
    No more I want a tall powerful lanky defensive midfielder like Nzonzi and get pocket rocket Torreira. Or I want a tricky winger a la Ivan Perisic and here is Denis Suarez.

    Leicester can play forward because they know that they a powerful defensive player who will stop any counter-attacks.
    Arsenal does not have anybody in the Wilfred Ndidi mould. Even in the youth team Arsenal defensive midfielders are on the small side and not very powerful.

  83. Guns of sf

    Come on fellas

    Reading into the team selection:

    All the misfits he chose were alienated by emery
    Mustafi
    Xhaka recently
    Ozil
    Kola to some extent

    Perhaps he was trying to bring them back into the fold and into believing in the team again. I just have a feeling there is more to it than just picking imbeciles.

    These are the older heads and veteran players

    So what is he trying to do? Only Freddie knows but perhaps there is more to it

  84. CG

    UN

    “”””What are you saying here then? The only reason we were able to beat better teams last year was emery’s wonderful management?””””

    no far from it.

    The moment Raul came aboard- this club has nose dived.
    And it will continue to do so.

    Its not about striving for footballing excellence anymore ( even if we do it badly)- but now about enriching a few spivs. That saps the soul- especially for a club like ours.

    the day he leaves the club – the quicker this club heals,

    He is the reason why we will sink.

    Trust me on this.

    CG knows the damage what Cockroaches can do.

  85. bennydevito

    Un na naaiDecember 1, 2019    22:51:32

    Woooo
    Benny took that one to heart. Benny’s a grown up. He has over 2000 best Facebook friends from Syria as he proudly proclaims regularly.

    >>>>>

    Lol!

    Not quite. It’s more around 600 and I’ve mentioned it once or twice to Assad genocide deniers.

    Back to football eh?

  86. Mr Serge

    Marc I attend the matches it’s the guys around them after the match and the majority of People on the blogs that are just mad
    They react like a baying mob

    The fans that go to the game in the whole are very knowledgeable and support the team well
    We have no right with this team to expect anything but mediocrity

  87. Mr Serge

    Guns of SF I think he played them to show that he is going to give them a chance and now they have screwded up again he can say sorry lads you let me down
    I bet he does not play Xhaka or luiz in the game on Thursday

  88. Marc

    Serge

    I know I’m one of those who go! It take’s quite a lot for the fans in the stadium to turn on someone. We all have players etc we like or dislike but for the most part if a player is seen putting in the effort the fans will appreciate it.

  89. Marc

    “No more I want a tall powerful lanky defensive midfielder like Nzonzi and get pocket rocket Torreira”

    Wasn’t Torreira a Sven signing? You know scouted using modern data applied methods.

  90. Marko

    Marc sorry Marko you know the drill good signings Sven bad signings I suppose Raul solely now that Emery is gone. Of course Sven wanted Nzonzi only to be told by Unai or Raul that Torreira was the guy. Doesn’t explain why Unai was never keen…huh

  91. Mr Serge

    Marc I know you go too and agree we don’t turn on individuals even when Xhaka did the unthinkable last month a lot of people around me thought it was out of order we boo our player
    Personally I think he deserved it

  92. Guns of sf

    Mr Serge I agree
    My point was that Norwich away was a lifeline for some of them. Now he can wean them out perhaps

    I think there is more going on

  93. bennydevito

    I really, really hope Freddie was chucking all the shite in together to see if it sinks or swims.

    Hopefully at home he goes with a much more younger and dynamic lineup, otherwise it really is Wengemerfreddie.

  94. Mr Serge

    Yeah Marc that’s exactly why the booed him but Xhaka knows he is shit and thought that’s why he was booed narcissistic tendancies on show lol

  95. Moray

    What is most concerning about yesterday is how disrespectful that team selection was to the fans. Bringing back Mustafi and fan favourite Xhaka, you had better be collecting the three points.

    Most urgently, I hope there is some consensus about the players who should be leaving the club in Jan.

    If we can find a DM with some leadership skills then I suggest we go all out to secure them.

    If Mertesacker is going to be drilling the defence then let’s hope he has watched some good defenders as our back line has been poor since Long before he joined the club.

  96. China1

    Well there is a case for Freddie to pick those players to give them rope with which to save or hang themselves though it has come at a cost of 2 points against a shit team

    I just hope Freddie does what needs to be done. For me that’s torreira as DM, torrent LB, martinelli and Pepe to start.

    Other changes I am less bothered by for now but I really think those changes will make us 15% better and good enough to be winning some of these games we’re currently not

  97. China1

    If Pepe still isn’t playing next game you have to seriously wonder what’s going on in training

    Can he really be doing THAT badly? Lol

  98. Moray

    China, I think Xhaka, Mustafa and maybe Ozil have been committing auto erotic asphyxiation for Long enough. I doubt a disaster show against Norwich was needed.

    Rather use that platform as an indicator that you plan to shake things up, trust in kids or whatever.

    Our senior players bring little more than an inflated sense of their own worth.

    If the dressing room is clamouring for nice guy Xhaka back then sack them all. All of them.

  99. Moray

    I doubt we did our due diligence on Pepe.

    Most probably he is lazy and entitled. Just to add that to our woes.

    Though we should conflate hard work with ability.

  100. Guns of SF

    Also gents

    The team was training for this game … why change any plan with just 2 days in charge? I’m assuming emery had picked this team- could be wrong

    I think now that emery stench is out let’s see what Freddie serves up this week on his own

  101. Spudnik

    Pedro,

    You were right about Emery. I didn’t believe so at the time, but, I was wrong. So credit where credit is due.

    You keep harping on about Arteta being the man to bring Arsenal forward. With Raul in charge, how do you see Arteta change the culture at Arsenal if he was to become the manager?

    In case you think I have an agenda, honestly mate, I do. Raul is bad news mate and unless there’s a change in that position, there can be no project manager that can bring us forward.

    So, to be simple, Arteta won’t work with Raul in charge. Tell me I’m wrong,

  102. Leedsgunner

    Missed the game due to family commitments. Objective reflections anyone? Positives and negatives?

    Brave quizzical line up to have Xhaka and Mustafi starting, but I guess Freddie decided to give everyone a clean slate… where did Torreira play when he came on?

    Disappointed with a draw obviously but not surprised… considering the mess Freddie has been left with. I hope he wins the next game because the pressure is immense already.

    Did the players play for him? Were they up for it?

  103. Guns of SF

    Same defensive mistakes
    More determination overall
    Freddie said he will work on transitions moving forward
    Clear that we are pushed too far up in attack and get counter attacked
    Happened today again for there goals

  104. China1

    Leeds

    +
    Started ok. Didn’t play out from the back when under pressure or pass wasn’t on. Reasonable effort on display. Torreira came on as a DM and looked useful


    All the wieners were in the starting lineup. Ozil was desperately poor. Willock didn’t get into the game. We lacked any creativity and our DM position looked dubious as usual until torr came on – by which time we’d already conceded two and were at risk of another on the break as we chased a third. No Pepe despite chasing a win. Subs were not logically timed. Martinelli came on with 3 mins left. Willock ozil and xhaka should’ve been off on 65 mins imo

  105. China1

    all the subs felt predetermined and extremely wengeresque with no real connection to what was happening which was concerning

    I miss the subs emery made in his first 5 months.

    I hope we’re not back to the wenger way to picking subs and timings before the game then closing our eyes during the match and just assuming the original plan is still suitable entirely regardless of what’s unfolding in the game

  106. Tony

    After seeing the team line up yesterday I wondered if Raul and Edu had influenced or dictated Freddie’s thinking, especially after limited training time before the game.

    Could be a few reasons for the team selection but not the late substitutions.

    One thing for sure Freddie has made a clear and concise point that Ozil, Mustafi, Kola, Chambers & Xhaka need to be sold at the earliest opportunity to Raul, Josh & Edu.

    None are fit to continue wearing the shirt; however, this leaves the squad short if the players were to be axed from the squad.

    Rogers is my pick to succeed Emery, but could he or any other manager right now improve our defence and midfield with the current squad?

    Luxury players have no place in PL teams today, which means ozil needs to go to a slower league – probably meaning China or MLS, as I’m not convinced his work rate, tackling and off the ball movement is even good enough for Italy.

    Freddie looked seriously pissed off on the touchline at Norwich. Not clueless like Emery did, but I think he felt let down by the aforementioned players.

    I like the idea of Kolo Toure coming in with Rogers because after all he did send Wenger high in the air with a flying crunching tackle during his trial according to Parlour in his Romford Pele book.

    Between now and January end Josh & co seriously need to get their act together and support Freddie with sales and new acquisitions or just bite the bullet and pay Roger’s buy-out clause.

    Let Rogers at least bring Ndidi, Söyüncü, Mount and Pereira with him and we would be in a far better place than we are now.

    Problem is Rual and co are too busy with their agendas to do what’s best for our club and Josh is still a long way from really understand English soccer.

    Had they not been then Emery would have been gone last Summer after overseeing a the season’s end total collapse.

    All wishful thinking, of course, but not rocket science.

  107. Guns of SF

    We need a dynamic midfield. Right now its so disjointed.
    Players coming and going… no consistency and no off the ball movement-
    Our attack and defending suffer as we just watch the person with the ball- give a simple pass, or on Defense, all herd mentality and 3 players are running after the man with the ball… kinda like my sons 9 year old team. Pack mentality

  108. Tony

    Sorry meant to say Maddison not Mason Mount.

    Obviously Rogers brining 4 players with him is fanciful at best, but how does Leicester find such solid PL players and Arsenal can’t?

    Maybe Rogers should just bring Leicester’s head of scouting and Ndidi to replace Mustafi.

    Ndidi and Saliba would initially sort out our CBs.

  109. Moray

    Guns, a manager failing so badly towards the end of last year and we throw our future transfer Budget at him. And then fail to have in place a plan B once it all goes tits up. This is all on Raul, if we consider the Kroenkes to be mostly absent and clueless.

  110. Moray

    I’d really love to know what drove Freddie’s team selection.

    It’s not only illogical but high risk. If it comes off you look okay, but if it fails, you immediately have the fans thinking the worst.

    Maybe these guys train well and are popular in the dressing room, but they are liabilities on the pitch, which we have seen time and time again.

    I also wonder where Freddie sees the leadership on the pitch coming from. This is an area Wenger and Emery both downplayed, and if you ask me the results are evident.

  111. Leedsgunner

    Thank you to all for your responses to my query.

    Will the powers that be tell Freddie to “suck it up in January“ and refuse to give him funds to strengthen or will they provide him with something to shore up the leaky defence?

    For the Brighton game at home we need to be positive and focus on going on the attack, especially at home… why not try something like…

    Leno

    Bellerin – Holding – Luiz – Tierney

    Torreira

    Pepe —- Willock —- Özil —- Martinelli

    Aubameyang — Lacazette

    Subs

    Chambers
    Kolasinac
    Xhaka
    Guendouzi
    Matt Smith
    Saka
    Martinez

    If I can I would restrict Mustafi to cup and Europa games… sounds like he was completely undone versus Norwich.

    I’ve seen enough of Sokratis also not use him in League games.

  112. SUGA3

    We watched the game with my mate and we were like why do they just follow the opposition’s runner without any attempt to interfere. In a perfect formation, no less, four of them fuckers just allowing the opposition player to run in a straight line for about 30 yards.

    I mean, what the actual fuck.

  113. Nelson

    That’s because they are lack of coordination. Everyone expected the other to do the tackle. You can see that a system/identity needs to be established and the defense and midfield needs to be trained based on this system. Each position will have an assignment. They will then play together as a team. Currently, our defenders are just a collection of players coming together.

  114. peanuts&monkeys

    Willock should have been subbed at HT. He was losing the ball far too often.

    Almost all of those goals Arsenal has been conceding from opp counters are due to giving away the ball around the centre circle.

  115. Nelson

    Just checked the stats.

    Calum Chambers lost possession 29 times. Most of those were down to terrible passes. He completed just 68% of his overall passes (54/79).

    Auba lost possession 19 times and only completed 58% of his passes (25/41). I always said that Auba is a star striker inside the box but isn’t cut out for build-up play from wide. That’s especially the case when his wide teammate is Chambers.

  116. peanuts&monkeys

    “Auba lost possession 19 times and only completed 58% of his passes (25/41). ”

    Assuming most of the 16 times Auba lost possession were at the final third, the stat is not as unacceptable as Chambers’.

  117. DivineSherlock

    So many dumb comments on here on Legrove . Freddie just had his first match , the players he selected were perfectly capable of beating Norwich. we have 3 matches in a week. I am sure Pepe plays next one at home to Brighton . Freddie will rotate players I think. Anyone who watched the match last night knows we played better than Norwich , we deserved to win. its only because our two CBs . We need consistent selections there. CBs require partnership , Look at Leicester Evans and Soyuncu. Liverpool VanDijk and Matip/Gomes. Man City are suffering defensively
    since Laporte got injured. We have been consistently changing our CBs since Wenger left.