Arsenal shedding centre backs

by & filed under News Review.

Mikel Arteta has an entire week with his players, the longest gap of time between games since he joined the club. That means more recovery time for the players, more time to spend talking through ideas, and plenty of practice for whatever the plan is against Chris Wilders excellent Sheffield United outfit this weekend.

One of the main challenges the coaching staff will be dealing with is the loss of Auba, our most lethal player. Overall, one of the issues we’ve had for a while is the lack of shared responsibilities when it comes to goal-scoring duties. This was Arteta.

“They now have to make a step forward now he is not able to contribute to the team with goals.

“Someone else has to do it and I want to see that reaction too.”

My hope is that as we move closer to the vision of the new regime, goals will start to be more evenly distributed.

There are a few players I’d love to see step up to the plate, one of them is Gabriel Martinelli. He has a monstrous opportunity ahead of him. He’s Arsenal’s Gabriel Jesus, so I’m intrigued to see what the manager does to the structure of the team to unleash him. My guess is he’ll slip into the left of the front three and just replace Auba. He’s more of a natural presser though, so maybe the temptation might be to have him lead through the middle.

Another player who should start offering up more goals is Nicolas Pepe. We’ve seen flashes of what he’s capable of, but he really needs to double down and focus on more consistent delivery. He can be a bit ponderous at times. His casual nature can come across like he’s not bothered, I’m hoping a bit more urgency in his game and the added responsibility over the next 3 games will see him rise to the occasion.

When it comes to our midfield, it’s hard to see where the goals will come from. Torreira finds good positions sometimes, but when he’s too far forward he struggles to make up ground, he’s thrived playing in a smaller area of the pitch. Same can be said of Xhaka, though it has been noted that he’s powered through on the overlap twice in two games. Matteo and Ceballos both have limited productivity, and Ozil has rarely shown much of a gift for goal scoring.

It seems I have talked myself out of this, let’s just hope the front three can offer something otherwise we’re in trouble.

In defence, there appears to be movement. Mavrapanos has been sent out on loan. Sven Mislintat came back in for the player, but Nurnberg appears to have won the race for the Greek defender. Everyone loved him when he joined, but he’s been well off the pace since. Hopefully, a stint in Germany can help with his fitness and confidence.

The player we’re all desperate to see the back of is Mustafi. Sport is a brutal job, but he’s quite simply not good enough and no amount of coaching is going to save a player that stopped being hungry. He’s certainly a lesson in what £90k a week contract can do to a persons appetite for success. Galatasaray, regularly a saving grace for persona non grata in the Premier League, are rumoured to be interested in reinvigorating his career. Good luck to them.

The worry I have with exiting these defenders is we’re left very short through the middle. We’ll be relying on two 30+ centre backs, and the fitness of Rob Holding. Feels very, very risky… which is why I suspect there will be some sort of cover on loan. I just hope it’s not Jerome Boateng, who is hilariously being courted by Ivan Gazidis.

ESPN ran some analysis on bad reffing this season, it had Arsenal down 9 points.

I DON’T WANT TO BE A VICTIM BUT COME ON FEEL SORRY FOR US.

The reffing was pretty bad at the Palace game and it was atrocious at the Chelsea game. I don’t understand how they run the associations. What are they looking at? Who is bringing them patterns of bad behaviour that go on? Like, how can this tactical fouling thing still be an issue? Shouldn’t the refs make a statement to clubs and say that they’ll be dropping red cards as a deterrent. If we’re using VAR, can’t someone update a live iWatch table that tells refs how many tactical fouls a player or a team have dropped in a game? These problems we have in the game seem fairly simple to solve, but when the problem is given to Mike Riley, he comes up with the most bizarre ways of fixing them.

I still maintain the refs should be accountable to press. I also think we should hear them justify decisions. It works in the NFL, it brings the fans into the decisions.

Right, that’s the blog done, jump on board for the latest podcast with Alex who occasionally blogs on here. I bought a new mic, the sound is pretty damn crisp. Let me know what you think in the comments!

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439 Responses to “Arsenal shedding centre backs”

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  1. CazOnARola

    As much as ppl hate untold arsenal, but it has absolutely not evened out for us over the last 15 years so. Especially when it comes to the games that matter. Some appalling decisions in games against the top 6 part the last 15 years.

    We are going to struggle to score in the next 3 games. We can expect at least one goal from a Kolasinac cut back /cross but that’s about it.

    We are gonna have rely on luiz and Sokratis or some sort of a set piece to score the other 2 goals to get something from the next 3 games including the FA cup.

  2. Aussie Gooner

    Milan interested in Boateng TFFT! Oh dear we miss out on him! Time to look eslewhere. We have no cover at CB now that everone is injured/not good enough/out on loan – we have to spend on a quality young CB with prospects (and potential re-sale value if it doesn’t work out) not loaning another dinosaur with a huge wage package.

    Goals will come with Pepe and Martinelli but more goals will be conceded with out adequate CB coverage.

  3. Tom

    Goal and assists productivity from our four midfield starters has been the main reason we are where we are in the tables.
    People like to talk about the Emery effect and how he’s destroyed players’ confidence( he did), but the fact is other clubs have been through similar upheavals yet still their midfielders have been pulling their weight.

    Pogba and Mc Tominay , both injured now, have scored and assisted more in 2000 minutes of PL play( 3 goals and 3assists) than Guen, LT , Xhaka and Ozil in 5000 minutes ( I goal , 4 assists)

    Tottenham fired their manager and are barely 2 points better off but their four midfielders in Alli, Moura, Eriksen and Ndembele have kicked in with 14 goals and 6 assists.

    Chelsea’s midfield four of Kante, Kovacic, Jorginho andWillian – 11 goals and 9 assists.

    People thinking our midfield four are on par with other top PL clubs are dreaming.

  4. RGG

    Pepe and Marti are doing OK.

    Laca and Ozil need to step forward!

    One gets paid 350k a week and cant hit a barn door, the other, supposedly our CF, has scored six away (league) goals since he joined in 2017.

    Drop Lacashite…play Saka left, Pepe right and Marti in the middle. Fuck Ozil, give DaniC a go in behind them.

  5. Wasi

    If we are also going to sell Mustafi this window then Im pretty confidence we’ll be looking to get at least one defender in. Edu’s choice will surely be someone young and talented but considering our current situation a short term loan for someone like Boateng does not seem too outlandish. Top 5 defender in his prime . Looks to have lost his pace due to consistent injuries but if he is coming in on a 6 month loan to provide cover if our top defensive targets arent available in this window I’ll take it.
    As Demiral is out of our reach now. What about Rugani on a loan with option to buy. Has fallen behind Demiral in the pecking order and is the 5th choice at Juventus now. Highly rated 2 years ago but never got his career going at Juventus.
    If it was between Boateng and Rugani id go Rugani as he has got more time to grow and will be hungry for playing time. Maybe even a place at Euros?.
    On the other Boateng is more likely going to be thinking about a retirement plan with his next contract.
    Any other good defenders available right now that we could maybe target loans for?

  6. Emiratesstroller

    There are a multitude of issues with the current squad.

    Pedro highlights the lack of goalscoring options in absence of Aubameyang. That has been crystal clear all season.

    Aubameyang has scored 50% of all goals in EPL so his absence for three games
    is going to be a serious hole to fill. Lacazette has underperformed all season if
    compared with last two seasons and frankly he needs to raise his game.

    The midfield as I have highlighted all season has made minimal impact both in goals scored and also in assists. They have managed just one goal in EPL in
    the whole season.

    The collective performance of Messrs Ozil, Ceballos, Guendouzi and Willock
    when they have played in EPL is frankly pitiful. They have not scored a single
    goal. Only Torreira has managed one and he was not recruited because of his
    creativity or goalscoring potential.

    Whereas I do believe that our front line has potential I do not hold the same
    view about our midfield or defence.

    We need a dynamic, mobile and creative player in midfield. Realistically Ozil
    is a talented player but can no longer deliver the consistency and creativity that he once did. Ceballos is lightweight and I don’t consider Guendouzi or
    Willock to be good enough to be starters in first team particularly at EPL level.
    At best they are squad players.

    The defence on current evidence is very average and not trophy winning standard. They make too many mistakes and lack the concentration levels to
    play at the required level. The nine points deficit referred to by Pedro is not
    just down to VAR or referee error. It is down to the players as we saw on Saturday when we conceded a silly and unnecessary goal first because of the
    free kick and then the poor marking.

    Personally I don’t think that we need to make wholesale changes, but we need
    to recruit at least three “quality” players in defence and midfield over next two
    transfer windows.

  7. Pierre

    Although we dominated the play against palace in the first 35 minutes , a lot of our passing in the midfield area was negative.

    The very good goal Arsenal scored was a consequence of Luiz being positive in his passing and finding Ozil ,who in turn laid it off to Lacazette who passed to Aubameyang to score.

    Torreira and Xhaka were very negative in their passing between the lines whereas Luiz was prepared to take the risk and try and take out palace’s midfield.

    It is pointless playing Ozil if they don’t pass the ball to him , they may as well bring Guendouzi or willock in and play 3 across the middle.

    Sokratis, AMN or Torreira were not confident enough in their ability to play what looked to me like fairly easy balls to Ozil who was in space numerous times .

    There was nothing wrong with Ozil’s play when he was on the ball , the problem is that he relies on other players to bring him into the game.

    As I said , leave him out the team until the defenders or midfield players are prepared to trust themselves to find him between the lines .

  8. Left testicle

    Boo-hoo. It’s all the nasty referees fault.
    It’s got nothing at all with us being bang average with a striker (Lacazette) who can’t score, an ‘assist machine’ (Ozil) who can’t assist and a midfielder (Xhaka) who can’t dominate.

  9. Emiratesstroller

    Pierre

    Ozil is a very talented footballer, but the problem is that he does not take responsibility in both goal assist or scoring department. If you are going to
    start with him that element needs to improve.

    Frankly I doubt that he has got it within him to do so.

  10. Cesc Appeal

    I agree that Martinelli has done really well and to be honest Pepe has actually done okay if you cut through the ‘flop’ noise. We will want a lot more but he actually hasn’t done that badly given the circumstances.

    As RGG said above really Lacazette and Ozil need to contribute more. Both have been awful for the most of the season and Arteta has given them a fresh start. They need to contribute a lot more if they continue to get starts.

    All feels a bit pointless though. With this squad (particularly midfield) you can only achieve so much. The rest of the season is about seeing how Martinelli develops, seeing if Torreira can continue to grow into the role of Arsenal’s CDM, seeing how Tierney comes back from injury and seeing if Holding can pull out of this career nosedive.

    Other than it is then all about the summer and massive squad changes. If Arsenal try to sell the ‘stability’ or ‘limited funds’ line then next season becomes pointless in June.

  11. Zoran

    Pedro, you mentioned almost all of our attaching Power.
    But, what about Laca? Wasn’t he brought to score goals, or am I mistaken?

  12. Emiratesstroller

    Focussing on midfield we have four players in the squad who play either in
    central or attacking midfield.

    Combined Ceballos [2], Guendouzi [1], Ozil [1] and Willock [0] have managed 4
    assists and collectively they have not managed a single goal.

    That dearth of contribution does not merit first team selection and explains why we are struggling in most of our games.

  13. Graham62

    ES

    I personally feel that having Aubamayang out of the team could help us.

    Lacazette and Martinelli will offer a different threat and maybe Pepe will start to take more responsibility.

    As for Ozil……….I don’t think so.

  14. Freddie Ljungberg

    ES

    What about Xhaka? Isn’t he a CM? He sure as hell isn’t a defensive midfielder that’s for sure.

    He does have a nice floated ball to the left wing on occasion though.

    Our midfield is relegation level. Our Cam has 1 assist and 0 goals in 12 games this season, if there’s any other starting Cam in the league that’s performing worse than that he should be ashamed of himself.

    People (some) only rate them because of their name or because they play for Arsenal, doubt there’s many other teams in the prem who would even consider taking any of our senior MFs outside Torreira even on a free.

    Same goes for CBs and we’re now down to 3 of them.

    Since Upa seems a pipe dream now I would like to see us revive the interest in Gabriel from Lille, tall athletic, fast CB ,22 years old with excellent distribution from the back. Should be a lot cheaper than Upa too.

  15. Paulinho

    “When it comes to our midfield, it’s hard to see where the goals will come from”

    And yet somehow people didn’t see this as a huge problem at the start of the season.

    I warned fans on here for at least two years how fucked we would be without Ramsey, because we had literally no one to score goals from deeper positions or make off the ball runs, and everyone was so blase about it. Even being injury prone look at his stats the last few years. We could do with them now, and next year as well.

    We need to nail the recruitment aspect pronto because we will be in huge trouble unless we don’t.

  16. Daniel Altos

    ManCity are out to destroy Henry’s records…up next the all time assist record if 20…KDB is on track to absolutely smash it

  17. Cesc Appeal

    Kind of shocking that ‘flop-contacts-transfer’ Ceballos still has the most contribution from our midfield given he’s regarded as being disappointing, has appeared sporadically, it was his first season in the EPL, as a loan and he’s been injured for a while now.

    Not a defence of Ceballos, more highlighting the shocking nature of our ‘Top 4 quality’ midfield.

  18. shaun

    Arteta must see the issue in midfield .all it would take is one player who can go past players and open up the middle , we don’t have that athlete the middle of the park is more of an issue than the defence. We do not have a goal threat from the middle of the park, historically we have always had goal scoring midfielders as it is a must pires ,younberg ,viera petit ,cesc and Ramsey would give you 4-10 goals a season each and some of those players would get you 12-14 goals each and they would all carry a goal threat, the current midfield has zero goal threat and is defensively weak also and that is currently being masked by pushing the defence up to close the cap in the middle and reduce the space but our midfield requires investment .We are missing dare i say it the Ramsey effect , we don;t have that anymore as none of our midfielders make intelligent runs into the box and they don’t even think about it either .ESR is the only type we have and should defo get more game time

  19. Paulinho

    As was the case in the summer, the only hope of building some depth to our passing game is just playing Ceballos game in game out, and hoping he can forge some understanding with Pepe, so we can get Pepe on the ball more in those areas just outside the box.

  20. TitsMcGee

    Sport is a brutal job, but he’s quite simply not good enough and no amount of coaching is going to save a player that stopped being hungry. He’s certainly a lesson in what £90k a week contract can do to a persons appetite for success”

    To be fair he’s always been mediocre. People way overinflated his ability because he was associated with the German NT the year they won the WC even though he hardly featured.

    He also came from a league with a much different style than the EPL. We paid more for him than Bayern paid for Hummels(which was nuts).

  21. Pierre

    Scoring goals hasn’t been our problem over the last few years, conceding goals has been.

    Arteta is addressing the areas that need addressing, one goal conceded in 3 games is confirmation of this.

    To do this he has the team playing risk free football,
    At the moment the balance isn’t right but it is the right way to go as the amount of chances we were conceding was a serious problem.

    If we only score on average one goal per game and concede 0.5 a game until the end of the season, that’ll do for me .

    Fans are getting hung up about not scoring, not creating , midfielders not scoring but they need to make up their mind what they want .

    If they want us to concede less chances/goals then they have to accept that we are not going to go hung ho when we are attacking , hence less chances created and less goals scored .

    As I said , if Ozil isn’t getting on the ball because our midfielders are being told to play risk free football to eliminate mistakes , then dont play him in certain games .

  22. Freddie Ljungberg

    Pierre

    “Fans are getting hung up about not scoring, not creating , midfielders not scoring but they need to make up their mind what they want .If they want us to concede less chances/goals then they have to accept that we are not going to go hung ho when we are attacking , hence less chances created and less goals scored .As I said , if Ozil isn’t getting on the ball because our midfielders are being told to play risk free football to eliminate mistakes , then dont play him in certain games .”

    Why do you think people want Xhaka and Ozil out who both can only do one side of their job and are crap at that to boot? Get some players in with some athleticism and actual quality and we can expect both less goals conceded and more scored. It really is that simple.

  23. shaun

    Pepe does it from the wing and causes havoc when he beats say two players and most of our dangerous play is currently being generated by him as he can beat the press .if we had say a PEPE in the middle it would open up Laca and free more space for him and he would no doubt start scoring , currently other teams no we have no goal threat from the middle .Our midfielders rarely if ever advance into the opponents box and none of our midfielders can shoot or be dangerous from just outside the box meaning we have no weapons that can change the shape of the defending team in the middle and that has to change

  24. shaun

    “Fans are getting hung up about not scoring, not creating , midfielders not scoring but they need to make up their mind what they want .” and rightly so as we need to buy the players who can do both ,the current options can not do this , it is clearly not about risk free football , it is about not having the players with the right attributes to be able to play risk free football and penetrate offensively

  25. Batistuta

    Yes guys, the ball has to be passed to our CAM, he doesn’t need to go for it or request for it and make something happen, he has to be given the ball to shine…

    Or

    We’re hung up on scoring and assisting because the manager is rectifying the defensive issues so no need to expect much from our attacking players, not like other trams don’t do the two at the same time

  26. Majesticgooner

    Shaun I agree with you, we do not have that dynamic midfielder who can beat players and drive forward, hence the sideways passing , another thing we as fans have got to be honest, if we had the opportunity to have KDB, any of the silvas, maddison, grealish, instead of our own ozil, would not take it. He still has flashes of brilliance but not consistent enough, and one thing he lacks in the modern game is energy and it’s not an age thing because messi and Ronaldo are both older but still have the energy and zest to influence games. For the time being until we get the players needed maybe I suggest we player 424 with orthodox singers and the 2 in midfield just sit and win the ball and let the front 4 work on the offensive side of things.

  27. Aussie Gooner

    We need to get Ceballos firing on all cylinders to provide some thrust from midfield.

    I can barely watch old Arsenal clips of Overmars, Pires, Cesc, Ljungberg, Hleb, Vierra, Parlour, Rocky, Chippy, Geordie, Brady etc surging forward, creating havoc for the opposition and creating/taking chances – too depressing!

  28. Freddie Ljungberg

    I mean I like what Arteta is doing in getting us to be more compact and structurally more sound but his is where the limitations of the players set in.

    Slow CBs and slow midfielders with no engine (apart from Torreira but he’s still not great at covering large spaces) and no striker we can just lump it long to means that we have to sacrifice too much of our transition play just to not concede 30 shots on goal.

    As soon as our opponents stop giving us space to let Luiz play it out from the back we’re useless, Sok is crap on the ball and Xhaka has the press resistance of a single sheet of tescos own.

  29. Batistuta

    Alex

    From the previous post,

    As much as the Kroenkes are the worst owners in the league after Mike Ashley, we have spent quite a lot on transfers for a couple of years now but it’s been on totally shit or not fit for purpose tyoe of players

    Perez
    Mustafi
    Xhaka
    Chambers

    This was summer 2015 i think, over 100 million blown on absolute average players and therein lies the problem, those in charge of transfers have made dumb decision after dumb decision with regards incomings… Same can be said of last summer, rather than fix the defence, we went and got another luxury player whom while showing good signs, wasn’t exactly what we needed.. Our problem has been rooted in our player recruitments, it’s been bad

  30. Batistuta

    We got Koscienly in 2010 if I’m not mistaken and he’s been the best defender we’ve had since and even he wasn’t that great..We’ve not had a good enough defender in more than a decade and that tells you something about our recruitment….And that’s before we talk about our non existent midfield

  31. Pierre

    Paulinho
    “I warned fans on here for at least two years how fucked we would be without Ramsey, because we had literally no one to score goals from deeper positions or make off the ball runs”

    The last thing Arsenal have needed for the last 2 years is a central midfielder who spends half the time in the opposition box .

    Arteta is at long last rectifying this ongoing lack of midfield discipline that wenger and Emery allowed to the detriment of the team.

    Arteta hasn’t got the balance right as yet but he is going the right way about it.

  32. Wasi

    Batistua
    How is Chambers still a ‘not a fit for purpose player’ after watching the exploits of this season.
    Been our 3rd best player this season.
    Talk about stubbornness.

  33. Freddie Ljungberg

    Wasi

    Well he’s injured for the next 6-9 months for starters.

    Shouldn’t be a starter for a serious team competing for top 4 or better anyway, fine as a backup though when fit.

  34. Pierre

    Batistuta
    “We’re hung up on scoring and assisting because the manager is rectifying the defensive issues so no need to expect much from our attacking players, not like other teams don’t do the two at the same time”

    Other teams didn’t concede 30 chances to a bottom of the league side or 20/25 chances at home to teams like palace , wolves, Southampton and Brighton.

    Arteta is doing what Emery should have done 18 months ago and addressed our defensive issues , instead Emery doubled our problems in those areas.

  35. Sid

    Play Ceballos or Dozi(as a sub) to replace ozil it will instantly change the dynamics of the team for the better, they can move with the ball and
    pressure the opponent from the front(with ozil the opponent knows he wont be tackling so they run with the ball)

    Im telling you this for free!

  36. Left testicle

    I’m willing Arteta to be a success but it’s hard to look past the ‘lets build a team around Xhaka and Ozil.’

  37. Pierre

    Fred
    ” Get some players in with some athleticism and actual quality and we can expect both less goals conceded and more scored. It really is that simple.”

    200 spent plus 2 loan deals for midfielders, what’s gone wrong then Fred .

    Why haven’t Raul, vinaii and Edu addressed this” lack of athleticism and quality. ”

    Last season Emery decided that Ramsey wasn’t t that player as he benched him continuously and decided that Torreira was the box to box player we needed.

  38. Paulinho

    Pierre – Dear lord, you’re so dense. Can’t see the forest for the trees.

    Paul Scholes spent half his time in the opposition box at his peak. Again, you’re making the daft mistake most made over the years of assuming every space left on the counter is punished, when it isn’t if you attack with conviction and quality.

    We’ve been dragged time and time again this season because this pitiful lot keep losing the ball in advanced areas and we get countered. Arteta making us play risk free is because we don’t have players like Ramsey that consistently attack with quality and have the opposition in distress mode, to the point where they can’t even counter even if you leave acres of free space.

    Arteta will never get the balance right until we buy better players. Get it?

  39. Sid

    Arsenal need a minimum of 2 technical players to retain the ball and create chances(to keep teams from running at us) it solves a big part of the defensive issues.

  40. peanuts&monkeys

    Pepe and Kola are struggling to take the ball to the final third through the flanks. The ball possession at the flanks around the centre line is markedly clumsy this season. There seems to be no respite from the frustrating display of possession-loss in these areas.

    High balls to them from MF and CBs are too few.

    Even if there is one, Pepe and Auba invariably screws up near the corner post. Surprisingly, Kola is marginally cleaner around this area. This is a tough problem to sort out because improvement in this involves individual ball-play.

    Rather, chances of pushing crosses from flanks of final third to the box have to be taken. This is possible if the wingers get long balls from MF/CB.

    LT11 hardly sends long balls there. Xhaka? Attempts but fails. Luiz: does quite cleanly, but has to step up 5x numbers in this department.

  41. Paulinho

    “Marko
    Yes we have possession , but to turn them into clear cut chances the players have to take risks .To take risks means you leave spaces behind, and I think Arteta is more concerned with not leaving spaces behind to leave us open to the counter .”

    Seems you like agree with me here Pierre.

  42. Pierre

    Paulinho
    You’re rewriting history regarding Ramsey.

    To think that he never gave the ball away or we didn’t leave massive holes through midfield when he made his 20/ 30 runs into the box per game is laughable.

    Our best midfield over the most recent period was coquelin and cazorla because they were not rampaging forward , Ramsey was played on the right for a reason .

  43. Micheal

    None of us needs to be a £5m a year coach to recognise the basic weaknesses of our two key midfielders.
    Ozil is technically gifted but singularly unmotivated and lacking commitment. He plays about one game in five where he leaves a mark and for the remainder, he is a disnterested and peripheral influence. He does not score goals.
    Xhaka is not good enough for the Premier League – he cannot tackle, cannot mark, lacks moblity and spatial awareness and his passing is weak and ineffective. He does not score goals.
    Pedro rightly says football is a brutal game. Maybe it’s not brutal enough for Ozil and Xhaka. Building the centre of a team around two fundamentally weak and ineffective players is a recipe for disaster. It will never work.

  44. Paulinho

    Pierre – Again you are missing the bigger picture.

    Who gives a shit if you have to deal with a counter every now and then. If overall you have the opposition on the back foot, hanging on, creating chances, you win the game. The idea top sides go out with this ridiculous ‘oh, we can’t countered, let’s sit back’ is laughable.

    Putting Cazorla as an example of some sort of defensive protection is beyond dumb. Ramsey was played right midfield specifically to add defensive steel to that lightweight duo.

  45. Champagne charlie

    “I’m willing Arteta to be a success but it’s hard to look past the ‘lets build a team around Xhaka and Ozil.’“

    I mean I’d look past it given it’s never been stated, and in fact the opposite has been. That being there second someone doesn’t give what’s required they’re out the side’.

  46. Pierre

    Paulinho
    “Seems you like agree with me here Pierre”

    I was the making point that Arteta is addressing our problems , the last thing he would want at this present time is for one of our central midfielders to go glory hunting as Ramsey was inclined to do.

  47. Champagne charlie

    Paulinho

    Our world didn’t end because your idol Ramsey left, he wasn’t fit enough to play for the club like numerous others previously. The poor choice was drafting in Ceballos to fill his boots, apples replacing oranges.

  48. peanuts&monkeys

    “chances of pushing crosses from flanks of final third to the box have to be taken. This is possible if the wingers get long balls from MF/CB.”

    This season is screwed anyways playing from the back. Why not mandate the CBs, DMs and CMs play 5 long balls to flanks every game?

  49. shaun

    The last two years we have had mangers who do not have a clue about defensive shape or the requirement of defensive shape required in the Prem .As much as Ozil is talented and he is and is really trying at the moment , he still has flashes of brilliance , but how many times have we sat there and thought go on Ozil beat that player and that team is opened up only for him to be brushed off the ball . the purest game now requires a physicality Ozil does not process and it does not help that he is now older , put Ozil brain and talent in the body of say Sissoko and you would have a solution .There is no way Arteta would allow the defensive indiscipline seen by wenger or the confusion instilled by Emery That’s why most fans are a little frustrated as we believe in Arteta but he needs options he currently does not have .He would have been pissed with the result on Saturday as that was definitely two points dropped if he had a player like say Ramsey available that game would have been won 3-1 why do you think the fans are crying out for a player like Soumare .Excluding Torriea as he has a very specific job none of Xhaka , Guend,willock ceballos and Ozil provide what we need in the middle and there is a common attribute missing in all of those players …Ozil can pick a pass , football brain but does not have the athletic ability to hold off a challenge or surge forward and is easily bullied .Guend can surge forward but does not have the athletic ability to hold off a challenge and is easily bullied. willock .can surge forward but does not have the athletic ability to hold off a challenge and is easily bullied. ceballos can pick a pass , football brain but does not have the athletic ability to hold off a challenge or surge forward and is easily bullied .Xhaka is just not my cup of tea for anything sorry. Atrteta knows whats missing as most of us do and investment is required

  50. Paulinho

    Charlie – And buying your idol Xhaka, and giving your idol Ozil a new contract, and giving too much playing time to player you think we should build our team around, Guendouzi.

    Everything I said about Ramsey in relation to our squad has been spot on. Deal with it.

  51. Pierre

    Paulinho
    “Pierre – Again you are missing the bigger picture.Who gives a shit if you have to deal with a counter every now and then. If overall you have the opposition on the back foot, hanging on, creating chances, you win the game. The idea top sides go out with this ridiculous ‘oh, we can’t countered, let’s sit back’ is laughable.”

    “A counter every now and then” is not what was happening was it .
    What was happening for the last 4 years since cazorla and coquelin were split up is we were leaving a massive hole in central midfield and that is what Arteta is addressing .

    By next season Arteta will have us playing more expansive football but at this present time he is doing what he has to do to get the team back on track.

    He will bring in the players he needs and dispose of players that are surplus to requirements.

  52. Champagne charlie

    Paulinho

    I don’t have an idol in the squad, difference being you’ve continually painted murals of the sun shining out Ramsey’s arse.

    Everything you’ve said has been spot on? What? That selling a goal getting midfielder would leave us without a……goal getting midfielder? You really put the full beams on that one.

    Ramsey leaving wasn’t an issue, his replacement has been. Deal with that instead of trying to retell the story as a ‘woes without Rambo’.

  53. Spanishdave

    Our goal scoring is abysmal.
    Now the only scorer has got himself red carded we are in a right mess.
    Laca goals isn’t scoring and Pepe want one touch too many.
    We will struggle to win the next three games.
    Sorry state we are in.
    Meanwhile the board pass the biscuits around.

  54. HighburyLegend

    “I’m willing Arteta to be a success but it’s hard to look past the ‘lets build a team around Xhaka and Ozil.”

    @Left, please, you need to put a little bit more faith in (Pedro’s) the Chosen One, thanks.

  55. Paulinho

    “He will bring in the players he needs and dispose of players that are surplus to requirements.”

    So it’s all to do with player personnel, and you agree we don’t have any one in midfield that can impact the game enough going forward to any meaningful level.

    What happens when we try and to be expansive next season and start conceding chances and goals. These new players have to actually be good enough to make opening up a viable tactic long term.

  56. Paulinho

    “That selling a goal getting midfielder would leave us without a……goal getting midfielder? ”

    Yeah, because it’s so easy isn’t it buying a goal scoring midfielder. It’s not like they are rare or anything. It’s not as if factoring how difficult it actually is to buy those players came into my thinking when coming to the conclusion we were fucked without Ramsey for the foreseeable.

  57. Freddie Ljungberg

    Pierre

    “200 spent plus 2 loan deals for midfielders, what’s gone wrong then Fred .

    Why haven’t Raul, vinaii and Edu addressed this” lack of athleticism and quality.

    ”Last season Emery decided that Ramsey wasn’t t that player as he benched him continuously and decided that Torreira was the box to box player we needed”

    Pierre, when you have a whole squad to rebuild 200m doesn’t get you very far.

    Doesn’t help when you have a Cam raking in 18m a year doing nothing and refusing to leave, doesn’t help when many of your senior players are paid so much over their ability that the best we can do is shift them on loan to weaker leagues and hope they show enough to be taken off our hands for 10m.

    We obviously didn’t have money to address everything last summer and maybe they felt that the midfield was going to manage for another season until Ozil was down to his last year and could be moved on, that was the wrong move. Should have at least tried to sell Xhaka and raise funds for a replacement. Again maybe they felt that would upset the squad too much and leave too few senior players in the squad. Still the wrong move.

    “2 loans” wow, you have very low expectations all of a sudden when you think 2 loan signings should outshine the glorious Ozil.

    It was always going to be a 3-4 years rebuild job even if we got everything right, that’s why it’s important we keep going for younger players, we’re about halfway there now and bought at least 6 future starters so we’re right on track in my book. A couple of those players have barely played for us (Tierney, Saliba) and some are still finding their feet or are too young to be an automatic starter right now (Pepe, Martinelli) We also have 1 or 2 from the academy who might make it as starters which will of course help.

  58. Champagne charlie

    Paulinho

    Happen to disagree there, you think it would’ve been a real difficult task to replace Ramsey’s 900 minutes he’s managed this season in a league half as quick?

    You’ve done this as long as I’ve been reading, totally overrate the input and claim him a rare bird.

    Who is the “Ramsey” in the other top clubs in the prem?

  59. Pierre

    Paulinho
    “What happens when we try and to be expansive next season and start conceding chances and goals. .”

    We wont , because Arteta is devising a system where we wont be open to the counter , like bringing in the full backs to supplement the midfield or pushing a central defender into midfield.

    It’s in it’s infancy at the moment , it doesnt just happen after a month on charge without a pre season .

    You would have to be pretty stupid to expect us to be more solid defensively and playing open attacking expansive football, all within 4 weeks.

  60. Paulinho

    “Who is the “Ramsey” in the other top clubs in the prem?”

    You said the mistake we made was not replacing him with a goal scoring midfielder and now you’re downplaying the importance of a goal-scoring midfielder.

    Make your mind up.

  61. Champagne charlie

    Paulinho

    No I’m not downplaying the importance, I’m dismissing the notion Ramsey is a rare bird in the game. You keep up.

    Keep up and answer the question of who is “Ramsey” in the other top clubs in the league?

  62. Pierre

    Fred
    “Pierre, when you have a whole squad to rebuild 200m doesn’t get you very far.”

    It can buy you 2 quality and athletic midfielders and a couple of central defenders .

    We have spent the money in areas that wasn’t a priority.

  63. Jim Lahey

    Aaron Rmasey: 64 goals in 11 seasons at Arsenal (369 games).

    Roughly 6 goals a season, banging them in so he was..

  64. Champagne charlie

    Paulinho

    I’ve tied no knots at all, you’re just trying to back away from what I’ve said because it unpicks your hero worship.

    There’s no Ramsey in other sides, but we’re fucked for not having him anymore? And he’s really hard to replace?

    Makes loads of sense.

  65. Champagne charlie

    Paulinho

    Because our goal scoring options, particularly in midfield, diminished. Fairly straightforward.

    How can you for-tell is being fucked when Ramsey leaves, then claim no other side has a Ramsey, and claim him a hard replacement. Makes no sense.

    If the other sides don’t have a Ramsey, then what do they have? The answer to that is how you replace Ramsey…..which is apparently really hard.

  66. Freddie Ljungberg

    Pierre

    It depends on who is available no?

    Maybe they felt we got better deals in other positions and that we could manage with Xhaka, who is in his prime and apparently captain material and Ozil because we couldn’t shift him.

    We bought a couple of CBs, completely wrong profile and we went cheap and old instead of investing in the future. We have Saliba coming in the summer and he has all the qualities we’re looking for there so small steps.

    We also significantly lowered our wage bill last summer which was absolutely vital.

    I’m not saying our transfer dealings have been flawless in any way but we’re finally trying to address our issues, maybe not fast enough or in the order we want but something is getting done now instead of twiddling our thumbs, miss out on everyone and just increase a contract for an underperforming injury riddled player and call it a new signing. That’s progress right there.

  67. Paulinho

    Charlie – Your argument is daft, as per, because City have elite technical play-makers that can score and Liverpool have three elite hard-working forwards and midfielders that can go box to box.

    You said Ceballos was mistake because he wasn’t like for like then contradict yourself saying there are different ways to skin a cat.

  68. Jim Lahey

    @Paulinho –

    11/12: Games – 44 Goals – 3
    12/13: Games – 47 Goals – 2
    13/14: Games – 34 Goals – 16
    14/15: Games – 41 Goals – 10
    15/16: Games – 40 Goals – 6
    16/17: Games – 32 Goals – 4
    17/18: Games 32 Goals – 11
    18/19: Games 40 Goals – 6

    3 decent seasons in 8. And those seasons were decent nothing special.

  69. Paulinho

    “Because our goal scoring options, particularly in midfield, diminished. Fairly straightforward.”

    So straightforward, yet had problems with recognising the importance of it, then recognised the importance of it, and then dismissed the importance of it.

  70. Champagne charlie

    Paulinho

    Frail argument when you’ve got to resort to a ‘look at them’ of the two best sides in the league who are levels above the rest – they’re stacked with players? You don’t say.

    How about the actual rivals?

    Spurs, United, Chelsea….Leicester even. How do they skin the cat without Aaron Ramsey? Answers on a postcard.

  71. Pierre

    “Roughly 6 goals a season, banging them in so he was..”

    When you consider the amount of time Ramsey spent in the opposition box , that is a very poor return .

    Players like Lampard and Gerrard knew when to go and when to stay and were very rarely caught out of position.

    Ramsey didn’t give a toss whether we needed to protect a lead or not , he would often be seen trying to get on the scoresheet in the last 5 minutes when we should have been protecting a lead .

  72. Jim Lahey

    Look Paulinho you are bias to anything Aaron Ramsey and have been for years on here, its pretty obvious to any frequent poster, just admit it and move on.

  73. Paulinho

    Jim – The fact you are putting it down to bias rather than actual stating reality is, well, something, considering how shit we are in midfield in terms of being any sort of threat to the opposition.

  74. Pierre

    Ramsey premier league
    Played 262
    Scored 40
    At a rate of a goal every 6.7 games

    Mesut Ozil premier league
    Played 178
    Scored 32
    At a rate of a goal every 5.5 games.

    Looks like the shot shy Ozil is more prolific in front of goal despite Ramsey’s continuous presence in the opposition box.

    Strange that .

    Not exactly prolific admittedly.

  75. Champagne charlie

    Paulinho

    I’m well aware of that, the question was posed to you because again it’s you making out the dire situation of being Ramsey-less come what may.

    If we’d had opted for someone that had an end product this summer the entire debate would be moot because signing X would have 6/7 goals which would’ve made the difference.

    We didn’t, but you’re using that as an opportunity to value Ramsey above and beyond once again.

  76. Paulinho

    Charlie – Well my entire point – and always has been – our squad is shit without him. I’m the only one who has always maintained last year’s squad is better than this years.

    It’s just not the goals. It’s the whole package. You might get a goal-scorer that can score the odd goal, but can you task him with shutting down a Jorginho? It’s not just type, it’s quality.

    We brought in Pepe so our shape changed, so with Ceballos the idea is where have more sitting midfielders, but one more out and out forward to get the goals we’re not getting from midfield. Hasn’t worked, unsurprisingly, for a few reasons.

  77. Pierre

    Paulinho
    Its strange because Ozil is is talked about as this shot shy player ,whereas Ramsey is perceived( by you) as the second coming of Frank Lampard.

    One would have thought that Ramsey, who I think it’s fair to say has an insatiable appetite to get into the opposition box , would have a much better goals per game record that the shot shy Ozil.

  78. Paulinho

    Pierre – Not really. Unlike that lightweight flange Ozil, Ramsey actually does other stuff. Hence no one being interested in Ozil for about eight years. Even when we signed him no one else wanted the tit.

  79. Paulinho

    Pierre – Still waiting for Willock to come in and be the goal-scoring replacement with discipline. You’ve back-tracked on that one sharpish.

  80. Pierre

    Paulinho
    ” – our squad is shit without him. I’m the only one who has always maintained last year’s squad is better than this years.”

    Ramsey started ,I think it was, 14 premier league games last season so I’m not sure whether those very limited amount of games would make any sufficient impact on the quality of the team’s performance, good or bad.

  81. Nelson

    I find Palace is one of the most dirty team. Their players kept kicking the legs of our players. The Ref. didn’t hand out yellow card. I have more respect for the Watford team. They just bully the opponent players.

  82. Paulinho

    Pierre – We’ve had this convo about ten times. Next you will mention his central midfield performances where played with ‘never seen before’ discipline after I remind of how much of a role he did play.

  83. G8

    Pierre, Arteta 1 goal conceded in 3 games!
    I think 4 goals conceded in 5 games is a better stat .
    You said in the past that Emery was too negative playing 3 central midfielders and cried because he didn’t play ozil enough

    Now you admit ozil is not functioning with the current squad and tactics, because they are not willing to take risks to find him in spaces ! isn’t that the definition of negative football!?
    Is it ozil fault or is it tactical problem?
    And what do you think the Art should do in the summer ?
    Get rid of ozil or replace most of the squad?
    I know most of people here would say both.

  84. Pierre

    Paulinho
    I will not judge any player who has had to play their football under Emery

    unless I’m mistaken willock has scored 4 goals this season in the limited amount of games he’s played

    He may even reach the average of Ramsey’s 6 goals a season.

  85. HighburyLegend

    Aguero has beaten TH14’s goal record.
    Soon Liverpool will become the new invincibles… while we become the new Liverpool.
    2020, a year to remember, quite obviously. lol

  86. Graham62

    Willock concerns me.

    What is he exactly?

    Needs to beef up.

    Needs to man up.

    Needs to show some desire.

    Otherwise will be joining that special Arsenal club of not being quite good enough.

    What a starting XI that would be.

  87. Micheal

    Aliko Dangote, who is said tobe Africa’s richest man, has given an interview today claiming that he wants to launch a take-over bid for for AFC. He’s big in cement, apparently.

  88. Graham62

    Accommodating Mesut Ozil is like trying to fit a square peg in a round hole.

    Problem is we have to try and do it until there’s another solution.

  89. Micheal

    “Michael – Stan will not sell his asset, no matter who wishes to invest.”

    Delighted to hear that you have inside knowledge on what Stan is thinking.

    However as a general rule, everyone has a price. This African guy is immensely rich. Personally I’d expect Stan to issue a flat denial that the club is for sale and then see what jhappens. I have no idea if he will sell or not. But everyone has a price.

  90. Dissenter

    Paulinho
    Honestly…stop this Ramsey hero worship. The lad is gone and is not exactly lighting up Serie A either.
    There was nothing “rare” about Ramsey. He was a good midfielder who craved the Hollywood moment more than applying himself for the team.
    He was not even as good as say …Madison at Leicester who’s going to get even better if he finds his way to a bigger stage.

  91. Graham62

    So Dangote is “big in cement”

    Are we supposed to read into that?

    Suddenly remembering that scene in Beverly Hills Cops 2 when that guy was killed off by being covered in cement at the construction site.

    Could Dangote arrange a similar fate for Stan?

  92. DigitalBob

    Michael – no everyone doesn’t have a price. Some would rather keep their assets than sell them especially if they are under no financial pressure to do so. His son also reaffirmed his commitment to the club in the summer. I don’t like it any more than the majority of arsenal fans but there it is.

  93. Paulinho

    Dissenter – Maddison is complete number ten. Could never play him in central midfield against United at home and have him run 13k, win the most tackles, and win the man of the match award mostly on the basis of combativeness. Which Ramsey did last season.

    You’ve changed your tune again I see. When Ramsey got injured at the end of last season you were full of praise for him, and denouncing your earlier criticism of his ability and importance to the team.

  94. Nelson

    If the team keeps losing money for a few years, it may change Kroenke’s mind. Currently, Arteta’s hands are tied. The club has spent a lot in the last TW. There is no money available to sign good players now. He’ll have to do the best with the available players.

  95. CG

    Another great read from PedRo- many thanks.

    Bizarre what has happened to the young Greek center back…Mav

    Played exceptionally when he first arrived.
    Especially a game at OT.( ironically under Wenger)

    Shows you – always have to be careful with ones appraisal of young players.

    Eg. Genduzi when he first arrived – we thought we had found a little gem.

    12 months later- he looks absolutely atrocious. He dont score,assist and even seems to have given up running around anymore.

    Like wise Martinelli. Stop with the adulation.

    1 goal in 15( not starts,obviously) and folk are raving about him- because he presses.

    He is a good squad player, no more.

    As for Saliba. Physically he has the raw materials.- but so do many modern day defenders – but has he got the concentration and can he read the game properly?
    No one knows.- yet we have shelled £30 million for him.

    The defensive acquisition Arsenal should be trying to sign is J. Stones.

    Every thing about Stones coming to Arsenal makes sense.

    But I doubt Edu and Raul even know who the player is.

  96. Micheal

    “Michael – no everyone doesn’t have a price. Some would rather keep their assets than sell them especially if they are under no financial pressure to do so. His son also reaffirmed his commitment to the club in the summer. I don’t like it any more than the majority of arsenal fans but there it is.”

    An interesting philosophical point. However the evidence from hundreds of years of people in business is that, eventually, everyone has a price. I totally accept that Stan is under no pressure and has shown no inclination of selling. But I would not accept the word of Josh K as a commitment on any subject, at any time. A vaccuous man who does as he is told by Daddy.

    I fully agree that Stan is unlikely to sell and that we are saddled with this wretched man. But in my oppinion, it is wrong to believe that he does not have a price.

  97. Unai

    Can’t believe anyone is clamouring for Ramsey, a total crock who lacked discipline.

    Add to the fact he tried to bend us over a barrel ala Ozil says all you need to know, better off without paying him the wages of 2 players for half a season playing time.

  98. Zacharse

    Regarding bad refs,
    I’ve always assumed they structure the games the way they do in american sports, but more so because football doesnt have commercials every 3 fkn minutes, which is to say they want to make the games as appealing as possible to the neutrals. Imo that means allowing the mid and low table clubs a lot of leniency when playing against a team like arsenal to add a brute dimension. I don’t pretend to watch every game as i’m on the west coast and that often means 430am kickoffs, but i’ve watched quite a lot of games over the last 15 or so years and I may be wrong but i’ve always thought this trend was pretty much agreed upon by the FA, nevermind the RVP red card in Camp nou… arsenal has been THAT TEAM for quite a while, the team that doesnt like to battle and would prefer lukewarm possession tactics. Bad news for viewership. In american football there are multiple fouls on basically every play which means the refs are in charge of what gets called, excepting the new rules on spear hits re: head injuries. In basketball, the refs can easily control the flow of the 4th quarter which means they have sizable influence on who wins. In baseball, balls and strikes are quite subjective and refs tend to give ‘make up calls’ which are when they miscall a close pitch and make up for it by reversing the call on the next close pitch. My point is that while there are not large scale conspiracies, there are absolutely, and have always been, clear ways that refs knowingly control how the game flows and there most likely are directions coming from the FA hierarchy whether explicit or not as to how this should work. The best example of this in the current season is liverpool. They are getting the breaks left and right because they are attracting more fans and viewers globally (at least here in the us) and they are building up a legend in the EPL. Man city imo did not get the same backing due to their ownership and all that goes along with that. No one can deny the MO of the webb days of M Utd…
    our players, if they dont already, need to be more cognizant of this. They need to show more consistent offensive flair if they are not going to be making rugby tackles. Thats just the way it is. As they say, you aren’t just playing against the team in front of you, you’re playing against the refs as well

  99. Unai

    Also… Dangote is just click bait for under nourished fans who pissed all over Usmanov in favour of Kronke.

    Ironically we could be looking at Everton in 5 years wondering what might have been.

    Sad times.

  100. CG

    Unai

    “””Can’t believe anyone is clamouring for Ramsey, a total crock who lacked discipline.”””

    Thats fine to have that opinion

    Where you and your ilk come unstuck though is:

    You support the new regime in spending £30 million on Tierney

    Who is even more injury prone and never played a proper competitive match( barring a few CL matches ) in his sorry career.

    But then again- your not as bright as myself as Paulinho – who know the importance of Ramsey to Arsenal.

  101. Jamie

    “You’ve changed your tune again I see. When Ramsey got injured at the end of last season you were full of praise for him, and denouncing your earlier criticism of his ability and importance to the team.”

    Glad someone remembered.

  102. Unai

    CG, Tierney isn’t being paid 250k per week so kinda pisses on them particular chips.

    He’s not in the limelight of his career either so plenty of time to recoup that investment.

    At least the current regime is investing, rather that than some indistinguisable waffle about values, handbreaks and Sanogo the new £50m superstar.

  103. Daniel Altos

    “When it comes to our midfield, it’s hard to see where the goals will come from”And yet somehow people didn’t see this as a huge problem at the start of the season.I warned fans on here for at least two years how fucked we would be without Ramsey, because we had literally no one to score goals from deeper positions or make off the ball runs, and everyone was so blase about it. Even being injury prone look at his stats the last few years. We could do with them now, and next year as well. We need to nail the recruitment aspect pronto because we will be in huge trouble unless we don’t.

    Lol Paulinho.I remember too…only to be met with ‘we have excellent youngsters’…’willock can contribute goals too’…we have an apalling midfield.

  104. Rambo

    Ramsey came in as a 16 year old player to Arsenal. Ozil? An established 25 year old.

    Utterly embarrassing the numbnuts that cite years at the club or some other comparison.

  105. Unai

    Tierney’s injury was a major setback however.

    I’m kinda split on it though, if Bellerin and Tierney were fit all season, Emery could still be in a job.

    Silver linings and all that.

  106. CG

    Unai

    “”””At least the current regime is investing, rather that than some indistinguisable waffle about values, handbreaks and Sanogo the new £50m superstar.””””

    Yes they sure can invest alright
    (Anyone can invest- when it ain’t their money )

    Investing in overrated,over paid, injury prone, one footed ,overhyped garbage.

    They are masters at it.
    That’s why we are mid table- for the first time in 40 years.

    Arsenal FC the only club in the world who
    Invested 1/4 of a billion of players and went backwards and dropped 5 places.

    That’s some achievement

  107. Rambo

    Ramsey was a proper big game player. Brought drive and energy to the team everytime he played. Right now all we have in midfield are listless nancies.

  108. Globalgunner

    There is no way you can improve this Arsenal team without improving the players. Our keeper is on par. Of our defence only Luiz could be graded as average, the others are too poor for any other team in this league and that would include anyof the current bottom 6. The only reason we are above that lot is that we have a better striker than them.
    Midfiled is another poor collection of players. Any tea that has the lethargic, monolithic Xhaka as the crux of its team is going to struggle. He is completely unsuited to this ;league. Ozil is a busted flush, doesnt care about anything anymore. The guy will hold his head up high after a 4-0 Arsenal defeat if he thinks he made 2 killer passes in that game. Useless, no ambition waster. Guendouzi shouldn’t be a starter. Not good enough, too light, too flaky, no drive or ambition. Look at the United and Chelsea kids and see what we have instead. Of our juniors only Martinelli has elite promise, the rest are fairly average to poor. I doubt if coaching can fix our ills.

  109. Emiratesstroller

    Freddie Ljungberg

    Xhaka is not designated by any figment of imagination as a “creative ” midfielder.
    His main attributes are “breakdown” of opponents play.

    Pierre

    In recent years there was far more concern about our defence rather than attack. However, this season our attack has underperformed.

    We are not scoring enough goals to compensate for deficiencies of our defence.

  110. Unai

    For the record i liked Ramsey, great player at times but.

    Inconsistent, injury prone and his wage expectations were ridiculous last summer.

    Ironically CG, if Wenger & Ivan had done there jobs right, Ramsey would still be on the books at an affordable wage.

    Remember the ideal situation of players being in the last year of their contracts? Classic that one.

  111. CG

    Unai

    “”I’m confused, are you referring to Ramsey here?”””

    Yes
    The shrewdest club around have invested in him Juventus
    (The one that has Ronaldo playing for them)
    Didn’t see Juventus come in for Pepe and Tierney for £100 000 000 combined though.

    They do smart business.
    We do Dopey business.
    We have a Spiv in charge.
    They have expertise and experience in charge.

    And I have no idea- you defend it.
    Because its indefendable

  112. Unai

    If your looking for someone to blame CG, blame the people who let Ramsey’s contract situation stagnate in the first place.

    We couldn’t have afforded him if we had wanted to at the end.