Arteta having a classic Wenger-week-in-Feb

by .


This week is a bit of a lol right? It’s like a typical February post-2007. We’d be in every competition, performances might be creeking, but you’d be confident that THIS was the year. Then three games would creep up on us and we’d be out the league, Champions League and FA Cup in one week.

Arteta looks like he’s picking up a bit of that magic from his old boss. We lost the North London Derby, we’re about to get a light/heavy spanking from Liverpool, then we go to Wembley for an improbable semi-final.

It is what it is.

He seemed pretty upbeat in the press conference. Maybe he’s not reading the NO IMPROVEMENT merchants and he saw this comment from CC in the comments.

Here’s a a quick snippet of goals FOR and AGAINST we’ve seen throughout the season at different points….

Week 13 – Emery’s last game: 18, 19
Week 18 – Freddie’s last game: 24, 27
Week 35 – now: 51, 44

Which breaks down as…

Emery: 18, 19 (-1)
Freddie: 6, 8 (-2)
Arteta: 27, 17 (+7)


Emery: 1.38 goals per game, 1.46 goals against per game
Freddie: 1.2 goals per game, 1.6 goals against per game
Arteta: 1.59 goals per game, 1 goal against per game.

It’s late so sue me for any inaccuracies, but its pretty evident we’re scoring more and conceding less PER GAME with Arteta. Otherwise coined as ‘no improvement’.

Core themes in the presser remained that we played well but allowed mistakes to kill us. I think the fact we didn’t get battered and largely controlled the game is his solace, though tactically, it’s hard not to think that Mourinho giving you ball and waiting for mistakes is him controlling the game.

His other theme was about progressing the club forward. He’s very careful with his words, but he keeps reminding everyone that the reason Liverpool are where they are is they made consistently good decisions on players. They were strategic, smart, and they pushed the club forward.

‘Yeah. What they have done is phenomenal, obviously the first two years it took them some time to rebuild the squad and to create a new culture, a new philosophy and a game model that suited the coach. Then they started to recruit every single player in relation to what they needed and that’s where I think they were really smart. They bought with specificity for every position that was required. Financially they had a big backing and made some big signings which completely changed the club in my opinion.’

I think it’s fair to say that the first transfer window can be written off as a hangover from yesteryear. David Luiz and Cedric Soares weren’t my kind of deals, but you can rationalise why they happened because of the state of the squad and the lack of options. Moving into this summer, we can’t be topping up our squad with more players like that. We have to be strategic about who we sign and what the path forward is.

We don’t just want Champions League qualification, we want a squad that can grow into that competition and win it. I know that sounds mad, but you have to shoot for the stars. That means signing players that ‘might’ drag you over the top 4 line is a losing game (it’s also a game we’ve played for 3 years and it hasn’t worked). If this current squad gets us into the top 4 next season with the addition of Willian and some other players looking for a retirement fund, what happens next? They can’t sustain it. We can’t sell them. Our squad is worse off for it. That’s why the better bet would be to sign up players that have the pedigree to make Champions League, but could grow when we make it there.

The big dollars, if we have any, must go on the core this summer. We need a ball-playing centre-back, we need a #6 like Partey, and we need an #8 that is ready to roll. Then we need to upgrade with players that fit the Arteta mold.

We’re being linked with Marc Roca, I’m not shocked. Technical, creative and quick thinker. Our midfield doesn’t create without players like that. We don’t just need one player like that, we need to start building a conveyor belt of them.

Supporting Emery came at a great cost. We brought in someone without understanding what he wanted to do on the pitch, and because his hire wasn’t on merit, no one paid attention to what he wanted. Now we have a coach with a much clearer articulation of what he wants to do. I suspect he has more sway with the staff. He’s Edu’s hire. Hopefully that means something because another incoherent summer and we’re in big trouble. This is more on Klopp.

I know how many decisions have to be right and how much support you need from the club and the people around, and how much connection you to have to generate from your fans to have the full package, and afterwards it’s football. The context right now is different to what it was as well four years ago and the abilities for a club to rebuild something is more limited, but it’s certainly something we have to look at and how they did it because it’s a great example. But we have to know that we have to do it our way with our resources and have it in mind that the content right now is different, but we are heading to be the best and this is my only objective with this club. We have to find a way to do it.

The ambition is to be the best. Not Europa League winners. Not top 4. To get back to the very top. It’s an ambition right for Arsenal, the question is, can it be supported? We’ll find out.

To start, we have to navigate Liverpool at home who are on the charge for the Premier League points record. He was asked if he’d rest players so we had a better chance at the weekend.

I believe that it’s very important to have energy and momentum going into important matches, and in order to do that you have to go game by game. Today and tomorrow we will asses the players and how they are, and obviously they’ve been hit and a lot of them have played some crazy minutes up until now and again we’re going to have games every two and a half days. We will try to put the strongest team out as possible here and as well on Saturday, and to do that we need to know how everyone recovers from the game.

I think he’s desperate to turnover Liverpool. He needs a restart statement win and I’m not sure Wolves quite counts in his mind. I think the idea of Arsenal keeping their concentration for 90 minutes is quite hard to fathom, but we’ve seen crazier things. The weekend game is where it’s at, City have had plenty of bad days this season and their away record isn’t great. Making an FA Cup final would be a different kind of statement.

Let’s see what happens, have a great day.

P.S. Arteta’s opinions on City and FFP were factual but missed the point. City are where they are because they pump a nation’s cash into the project. That result was the final nail in the coffin for Fairplay in football. It also makes a mockery of Ivan G and Wenger telling us for 10 years that when the rules kicked in, we’d be positioned to take advantage.

Now it’s clear. You either have a sugar daddy, or you don’t. I think it’s bad for the game. Bayern don’t have a sugar daddy, but they are financially dominant and just won the league for the 8th year in a row. The Spanish League is fairly locked. Juventus always win in Italy. Paris will always win unless they rehire Emery. The only saving grace our league has is it’s basically 8 mega-rich owners slugging it out. Football isn’t fair and it’s getting more and more unfair. In the end, people will get bored if there isn’t a competition. We’re a way off that but it isn’t beyond the realms that people could lose interest.

1,449 Responses to “Arteta having a classic Wenger-week-in-Feb”

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  1. DigitalBob

    Great post match interview from Arteta there, very honest. He is maximising the limited players we have in the squad but give him some money this summer and we can really push on.

    Laca, solid gold, great great performance. Holding, and Tierney great at the back as well.

  2. Guns of SF


    Pepe is not as good. He is one dimensional, lightweight, and seems to be confused most of the time. I fail to see what others see in him. Trust me, he keeps this up, and he will be sitting with Kola and Ozil and Sok on the bench.

    Nelson is a natural on the right side and a stronger player.

    Sure play Pepe against shit teams, maybe his confidence will go up.

    Against teams like this, I prefer stronger players like Nelson, who are naturally right footed on the right side.

    Good for Arteta for putting Nelson in.

    I am also liking Laca lately,…. his harrasing style is great- seems to be playing with more confidence. Im actually more worried about Auba now.

    His game in the last few has been really lacking. He needs the ball more when he is making runs into the center… not as a pure winger…

  3. Receding Hairline

    Martinez had more touches and more forward passes than any Arsenal player according to the stats.

    Great result for the record books and that’s just it.

    Don’t know what else anyone is expected to say

    We can laugh at Liverpool for failing to meet records they were eyeing and also for punishing their arrogance in the first half.

    That’s just about it.

  4. Freddie Ljungberg

    I’ve seen a lot of posters wanting us to buy a left winger. Why though?
    We have Saka there who’s been racking up the assists this season and is only going to get better by playing.
    Martinelli is not likely to get too many starts as CF so will need playing time on the left too, Nelson can play there in a pinch.

    2 CMs and a Cam far more important, then CB and RB, LW is low on the list imo.

  5. salparadisenyc

    “He’s great in the dressing room Sal.”

    So’s my ex girlfriend but she didn’t get the ring.

  6. Guns of SF

    Make no mistake,

    Arteta needs to understand that we need to sell some of these fellas. Not get sentimental and tell the board / Raul etc that despite this win, we actually do need upgrades. In other words, dont get fooled by this win today!

  7. Marc


    “Marc, tbh, it thought we had 3 prem games left.”

    We did but you made that comment after tonights match where we had 2 PL matches and an FA Cup Semi final – win the cup match and we have 4 matches remaining.

    I assume you’d prefer not to lose in the final!

  8. Words on a Blog

    Mourinhoesque tactics, results and performance from Arteta’s men.

    Arsenalesque performance from Liverpool’s defenders.

    Love it.

  9. Pedro

    Guns, this idea that Arteta doesn’t know exactly what this squad needs is silly. He is fully aware of what has to happen. He has been very pointed about recruitment, he’s challenging the owners, and he has been clear with the club what he wants.

    He is currently making the most of what he has.

  10. azed

    Mikel Arteta: “At the end of the day everything that has to come through our door has to be top, top quality


    How does the sauce say this after extending the contract of Luiz and signing Mari and Cedric?

  11. Marc


    Kolas is a wing back who can’t really play at LB – why would anyone think he’d be a good option at CB?

    Holding whilst playing in some mixed company has always been OK or better and came into us with 20 minutes first team experience.

    If Arteta is about improving players Holding should be one to be at least given a chance.

  12. Leftside

    Holding, and Chambers are no worse than the regular clowns we play with at the back. I like that Arteta is making it crystal clear that we have to invest to have any designs of doing anything meaningful next season.

  13. Guns of SF

    Pedro, I hope so man.

    CM, CAM, b2b.

    all need new starters. Can go back to 4231…. and start killing teams

  14. Sanmi

    One thing I’m impressed with is the variation in arteta’s formation. Lacazette is asked to sit on opposition’s DM and the 2 wingers play as CFs.

  15. Dennis the Menace

    I was talking to a Reading fan before Leno got injured. He says that Martinez kept Reading up a few seasons ago when on loan there and wondered why Arsenal hadn’t given him a chance yet i.e. he thought he was much better than Leno. Obviously, playing in front of a large crowd (once COVID goes away) is a bit different to playing in a lower league where the stadiums often aren’t full, but it’s still pressure and Martinez handled it well there. Are there other players on our books we’re failing to make the most of or even use? Holding might be one, but he needs a strong character next to him as his confidence can get knocked. I am looking forward to Chambers coming back from injury. How’s Mavropanos doing during his loan spell?

  16. Pedro

    Azed, both signings of situation. I think the fact that he’s talking top top quality now tells you what he thinks

  17. Ishola70

    “Like I’ve always said, xhaka is not our top 2 problems, we need a left winger and an AM. With Saliba hopefully Luiz remains a back up.”

    And what are you basing that on, tonight?

    I presume so because you started your sentence with like I aways said.

    Anyone with a nous of football knowledge knows that it is not sustainable how Arsenal played tonight and yes certain players can look better defensively when they are playing in a low block for virtually the whole match.

    I don’t think the contionous low block defending was pre-planned before the game. It was just that for most of that match Arsenal right from the first half were being suffocated and could hardly get out of their own half.

  18. Ishola70

    “Mikel Arteta: “At the end of the day everything that has to come through our door has to be top, top quality”

    Is Wenger back in charge?

    That usually meant in code no significant signings.

    In fact I find that comment from Arteta distasteful.

    Does he takes us for mugs?

    Only top, top quality can get in this current side?

    Bullshit of the highest order from Arteta there.

    Straight out of the Wenger book that one.

  19. Pedro

    Ish, weird that you’d find it distasteful for a manager of a football club to insist on top quality.

    Feel like that’s the sort of thing you could only get away with on the internet.

  20. Sanmi

    With an AM like Fabregas, we would have had plenty of opportunities tonight, we just needed composure in the middle and a quick release to one of the wide men who will then be on a foot race with Gomez or Dijk. That’s how we beat Barca 2-1

  21. TheLegendaryDB10

    July 15, 2020 21:48:34

    On a serious note, you and your big ears 🙂 , have you heard this from within the club?
    I am asking, because I serioulsly hope that you are right that Mikel will do his all to get the important pieces needed for this team.

    This midfield needs a serious revamp. He must make clear how serious this is.

  22. Marc

    “Like I’ve always said, xhaka is not our top 2 problems, we need a left winger and an AM. ”

    Precisely what half witted retarded fuckwit said that?

    Left Winger? Saka and Martinelli. Xhaka is the biggest problem we have – our CM is an abomination, Ceballos has looked decent lately but we need at least 1 new CM and Xhaka’s body never to be found.

  23. LeMassiveCoq

    Martinez > Leno.
    Better in the air, better distribution, doesn’t insist on playing out from the back when it might invite unnecessary pressure.
    Sell Leno, buy a decent CM

  24. Sanmi

    Some times, only one addition makes the difference. We dont need total revamp. A Bruno Fernandez made man utd into a different animal. A creative AM makes you appear to have more than 11 men. Barca is currently suffering since iniesta left.

  25. Ishola70


    Who does Arteta think he is fooling stating that only top, top quality can come in.

    Absolute twaddle.

    Anyone would think we have just won the league with bullshit talk like that.

    This team is miles away from the top of the table so talk of only top, top quality takes people for fools.

    As said horribly like a late period Wenger quote.

  26. luke

    Receding HairlineJuly 15, 2020 21:45:48
    Martinez had more touches and more forward passes than any Arsenal player according to the stats.
    He can’t exactly pass it backwards now can he?

  27. Nelson

    That mistake really changed Holding. He is suddenly free and strong in the challenge.

    I find Pepe is lazy and timid. Reiss Nelson covered much more ground than him. But Pepe can draw fault from the opponents.

    I like how Tierney covered Salah. Mane had a lot more freedom with the ball. Defensively, AMN is better than Soares.

  28. Pierre

    Someone said that Aubameyang shouldn’t play v city ….are they mad.

    If we are to have any chance v City , Aubameyang will have to start and play well.

  29. Receding Hairline

    We can’t afford top top quality so why talk about them? This isn’t City.

    We couldn’t string passes together for long stretches of this game, we have struggled with possession since the restart.

    Many teams play pleasing football and even they don’t have top top quality.

  30. Sanmi

    We do not have the right left winger. They cant best their man, we are having to wait for combination plays to beat defenders, that means one man short in defense or middle when we lose the ball. Rashford, martial, sterling and Mane, when isolated 1v1 ,the run at the defender and beat him, thereby having other players in their position. We are having to wait for overlaps or one of the midfielders draw close to the winger to deliver a ball to 18, when we lose in such scenario, we are exposed, that’s how Mustafi has been made to face wingers alone

  31. Emiratesstroller

    Great Result,but not exactly a classic.

    This game reminds me of Arsenal’s FA Cup Final against Man Utd when we were under the cosh for 120 minutes, but went on to win the game against the run of play.

    Some of the critics of Arteta need to listen to him in the after match conference. He articulates very clearly the status of the club and the huge gulf in quality between the two teams.

    However, he has at least developed a system to make us more difficult to beat.
    Nevertheless our defence and midfield is devoid of genuine quality and unless
    we have a decent budget and can buy players this summer nothing will change.

  32. Marc


    Why would you play a guy who won the Golden Boot last season and is 2nd in the competition this season in a huge match?

    It’s that type of thinking that’s mad I tell you!

  33. Pedro

    RH, pretty sure you spent a lot of time telling me that the pleasing football of the Brighton manager was pointless and that points were all that mattered.

    We just get 3 points against Liverpool, a team gunning for league records, now you want to talk aesthetics?

  34. Ishola70


    I hope you are not taking anything of substance in regards Arsenal tonight.

    There would be riots if Arsenal played in that manner for a month let alone a whole seson.

    The win is nice but it is not a game to take anything significant from.

  35. Receding Hairline

    I really didn’t see this system that made us difficult to beat Emirates. We rode our luck and considering the opposition nothing to be ashamed of. Riding your luck isn’t a game plan.

    Good win but that’s just that. If it serves as a launch pad to at least get us into the European places then we can look back at it as a great win.

  36. Marc


    Your comment at face value looks reasonable unless of course you’ve actually watched Arsenal recently and then of course would be aware that Mustafi has played on the right side of out defence not the left so a left winger would make zero difference to what he’s done.

  37. Champagne Charlie

    Receding going full Stevie Wonder when it suits, melt of the highest order.

    Klopp has been a manager nearly 20 years and has never beaten Arteta. Think that says it all.

  38. Receding Hairline

    Pedro stringing two passes in football isn’t exactly pleasing football… Just basics.

    My comment has to with the belief only top top quality is good enough to improve this team, it’s absurd considering some of our starters aren’t even average quality.

  39. Andy1886

    Sanmi, what has a new left winger got to do with Mustafi getting exposed? Mustafi plays on the right side and Tierney on the left has done just fine.

  40. The Backpass

    Its good to have two quality goalkeeper on the squad.. Leno remains number 1 for me.

    We reallly need to do something about that midfield next season. I can even stomach 2CM’s and 1 AM with a little bit of willian on free transfer, and by 2021 we go all out for top class defenders.

    That’s how to build a team. Partey, Willian, ceballos? and grealish.

  41. TheLegendaryDB10


    I total agree with you.

    I am no scout, but if i can be an idealist I really would like a skillful and commanding mildfielder that can dominate his area and lead this team by their scruff of their neck.

    If I am being a realist, what we need right now is a very skilllful midfielder, who by his talent can pull this team to up their game. A player like Partey.

  42. Ishola70


    The term folks like to use now is shithouse.

    Arsenal shithoused a result tonight.

    But anything regarding shit and on Liverpool is ok.

    But only for very, very occasional games. Very occasional.

  43. Words on a Blog


    When you’re playing against a team that’s smashed the league and smashed you more than a few times straight after you’ve been the victim of (i) your own defensive mistakes and (ii) a smash and grab from Mourinho you change personnel in defence, play conservatively, and hope to ride your luck.

    Tonight the plan worked.

  44. Matt

    Arteta comments about top quality signings are interesting. He must have seen the shortcomings of the squad when he took the job and again you would assume that was addressed at the time where he would
    Have either been told you have to work with what you got and sell before you buy, or he would have been given assurances about funds being available to address the shortcomings. If it was the former then surely these comments would ruffle some feathers within the powers that be so I can only assume the latter??

  45. Pedro

    RH, that you are gunning for aesthetics after a victory… and spent 18 months blind to the shit served up under Emery says a lot about where your head is at right now.

  46. Guns of SF

    In the first half we went after and pressed VVD.
    He does not like that.
    He is a casual defender on the ball, and guess what ? It paid off.

    Laca and Reiss kept him pushed back when we had the ball.

    Someone said Laca sits on their DM…. if that is a tactic, its working… brilliant

    laca is all hustle – liking his last few games

  47. Emiratesstroller

    Receding Hairline

    Arsenal are a very poor team. Before Xmas and the sacking of Emery we were
    in real danger of sliding into the relegation zone.

    Despite RT’s usual negative comments about Arteta the team has become more difficult to beat.

    Since beginning of January we have beaten Man Utd, Liverpool and Wolves
    and drew against Chelsea and Leicester in EPL. We have also beaten Sheffield
    Utd away from home in FA Cup.

    Also the defeats against Chelsea and Spurs could easily have gone the other
    way. We were within 10 minutes of beating Chelsea until we ran out of steam.

    So in the final analysis Arteta has probably got the best out of this team considering its quality.

  48. Ishola70

    “It’s actually both highly amusing and ironic that we robbed the Scousers!”

    It was the Great Train Robbery and the Brink’s Mat rolled into one.

    Mugged them off.

  49. Graham62

    Guys, come on, get real.

    That was not a proper game tonight, on so many fronts.

    No pressure, no cohesion, no crowd, no feel, no nothing.

    For one month now we’ve been over-hyping something that just doesn’t do it for the average fan.

    I know this is the present norm but, let’s be honest, how many of you felt genuine excitement tonight?

    I didn’t.

    I know it’s better than nothing but…………………you know what I mean.

  50. Receding Hairline

    Can’t take you seriously when you keep on with this 18 months of shit thing Pedro…really can’t.

    Our 1-1 draw with Liverpool was a far more controlled and planned performance, you could actually see us playing.

    @ Words

    Hope isn’t a plan

  51. Marc


    Scouse pride can get off it’s lazy fat arse have a wash get a job cease claiming benefits and stop robbing my fucking house.

    Cunts all of them.

  52. Ishola70

    Words On A Blog

    As said before I’m not sure the plan was to be as conservative tonight before the match.

    Sure conservative to some extent but not as much as panned out.

    I just think in that first half Liverpool were suffocating us so much and robbing the ball of us in our own half so much that ultra conservative just became the order of the day.

  53. Pedro

    RH, you spent 18 months blind to anything, making excuses all over… now you can’t enjoy a win against Liverpool and you have high standards when it comes to aesthetics… despite rounding on me because I like the job Potter has done at Brighton.

    The only through thread right now is you are desperate for Arteta to fail.

  54. Emiratesstroller

    Graham 62

    No it was a training game, but listening to Van Dijk and Klopp the result still
    hurt them.

    Had we been thumped in this game it would not have augured well for our
    Cup Semi Final against Man City this weekend.

    So as Arteta said it was at least a morale booster. In Cup games anything can

  55. Pedro

    RH, Arteta has a better record than Klopp over his first 18 games. Has more points, more goals and has conceded less goals than Emery.

    Amazing that only a few hours ago you were celebrating a post that suggested goals scored and goals conceded weren’t important factors for a football manager… but now, shots against are.

    They don’t record shots against in the league table my friend.

  56. Ishola70

    Of course you don’t need to be able to press to good effect to be a top team in 2020 according to the Wenger muppets on here.

  57. Bojangles

    “The win is nice but it is not a game to take anything significant from.”

    Three points is all the significance I need thanks.

  58. Emiratesstroller


    People used to complain when we controlled games for 70 minutes, but still
    lost games.

    The number of shots on target is I agree a concern, but as Sol Campbell said
    after the game Arsenal need to improve our spine and that has been blindingly obvious for three years.

  59. Frost

    “We just get 3 points against Liverpool, a team gunning for league records, now you want to talk aesthetics?”

    You were all about aesthetics during emery’s unbeaten run pedders, it’s sort of important.

    But yeah context here, looking at both squads. Getting a win against that Liverpool side, considering how bad we are is a minor miracle.

  60. Words on a Blog


    I agree that calling the fact that we ceded possession a “plan” is probably a bit excessive, but I’m pretty sure that Arteta expected us to come under severe pressure for extended periods of the game.

    At least to me, it just felt that the players were prepped to put in a defensive shift/look to “steal a win” in the way a Dyche or Mourinho team expects to be.

  61. Ishola70


    “Three points is all the significance I need thanks.”

    Well you are blind then and can’t see the bigger picture.

  62. Bojangles

    “you are desperate for Arteta to fail.”

    That applies to at least 50% of your commenters here Pedro.

  63. Marc

    “calling the fact that we ceded possession a “plan””

    You say tomato I say couldn’t keep the ball or get close to winning it back!

  64. Receding Hairline

    Shots against was more or less your Bible a few months ago Pedro. So was xG and xGA, they miss you.

    I am not desperate for Arteta to fail, I am desperate for real sustained change. I’m not seeing that yet, this is just same old Arsenal. End of.

  65. Ishola70


    “considering how bad we are is a minor miracle.”

    Was it a miracle?

    They could only draw with Burnley at home the game prior.

    Their pressing was impressive in the first half especially and they went through their usual build up routine play but for all their domination they didn’t create that many clear cut chances.

    Perhaps their offense has gone a bit off the boil now.

    This added to Arsenal defending pretty well and very deep of course.

  66. Sanmi

    Because we lack a dribbling left winger, the opposition only has to double up on pepe since he is the only one that can dribble. That now means to beat players we have to commit men forward therefore exposing our center backs out of which Mustafi is the least comfortable in a 1v1 situation. Mou deliberately exploited that, he was constantly telling celso to keep attempting that pass to son so he can face Mustafi when Bellerin was committed forward already

  67. Marc

    “Shots against was more or less your Bible a few months ago Pedro. So was xG and xGA, they miss you.”

    Yeah you’re such a whore Pedro – putting it about with different stats and then just running off and leaving them.

  68. Ishola70

    Pepe was a bit of a pussy again btw

    I’m getting a bit fed up with him throwing himself to the floor in matches.

    He needs to buck up that boy.

  69. Frost

    Yeah they sort of not firing on all cylinders atm BUT comon, it’s Liverpool. They’ve basically walked the league this year.

    Bit of a miracle.

  70. Receding Hairline

    Emirates every team gets a result every now and then, nothing new there.

    What exactly is the significance of today’s result to our long term future? That we can occasionally defend a lead when playing deep? Not a new discovery, we have won FA cups doing just that. Gotten to a champions league final after getting pummeled by Villarreal. This game didn’t mean a lot to the opposition, you can’t deny that.

    Its a good win but that’s just it. It didn’t give us any insight into our future as a football club. The manner of the win less so.

  71. Marc


    The problem is not a lack of a left winger who can go past people. If it was an issue we’d see it on both sides of the pitch when Pepe doesn’t play.

    Our issue is not having a midfield that can control and influence the match. Fix that and then we can start perfecting other areas.

  72. GunnerDNA

    MIkel Arteta,

    ‘I have done nothing yet and have everything to do. We need support, we need belief and we need to go in the direction.’

    Listening to MIkel, I feel sorry fo the dude. He has no experience and the tools he has to work with is inadequate. The talk that some of these players are coach able is bs.

  73. RodneyKing

    I long for the day that “top, top quality” will play for Arsenal. It hasn’t happened since we landed Sanchez (although someone like Paulinho would disagree with that opinion).

    Arteta’s fooling no one with his sound bites. And unless the club support him and are willing to give him time, I’m afraid we’d remain a top 8 club for the foreseeable future… grinding out wins and draws like Burnley.

  74. Ishola70


    ” He articulates very clearly the status of the club and the huge gulf in quality between the two teams.”

    Well that’s nice and all but he couldn’t say anything else really could he. It’s obvious isn’t it.

    If he said anything other than that they would be shouting at him in the presser liar, liar, pants on fire.

  75. Bojangles


    The big picture is getting three points from as many games as can. Sometimes you play well and lose, sometimes you play not so well and win, that’s football. ATM winning is significant since not only does it allow us a glimmer of hope of top 7 but it is a small morale boost for our game against Citeh on Saturday.

    Just hope our players don’t have your negativity.

  76. NJ Gooner

    Like many things in life, confidence is half the job.

    The win today wasn’t pretty. But it will increase the confidence of the squad that they can win against a top-6 team. Arteta is obviously trying to build that in the players that he has. That doesn’t mean that he thinks they are the best. And trying to parse out the meaning of each word he speaks is banal. He is trying to move the team to the next level. Then he wants better players to move us up a level beyond that. It’s simple.

    Those that criticize him, looking for a deeper meaning, are the same philosophers who found something extraordinary in Ozil’s mundane stats.

    It was an astonishing win. Not pretty but, as he said, it showed commitment. Enjoy the product!

  77. Words on a Blog


    It is exceptionally rare that a single result can be deemed to be significant for a team’s long term future.

    Tonight Arteta attempted to do “a Mourinho”.

    It worked.

    Really the only conclusion you can draw is that Arteta is (unlike Wenger, but quite like Emery) is a a tactically flexible realist.

    I would have thought that you of all people would have bought into that.

  78. Samesong

    I’m chuffed if we had lost I could see Liverpool breaking that record. Not much to play for but win is a win. Liverpool would of expected 3 points today.

  79. Receding Hairline

    Words I have no problem with the win. Embarrassing we haven’t beaten them for a few years and that stat is out of the way.

    I don’t think this was a tactical masterclass though, not for one minute.

  80. Ishola70


    “I don’t think this was a tactical masterclass though, not for one minute.”

    Who said it was?

  81. salpardisenyc

    I’ve a hard time imagining supporting something and being as joyless as Receding Hairline. We just pulled off the improbable and took down the champions with a fair bit of luck… something this sides been short of recently.

  82. Batistuta

    Like that Martinez has been good so far but how everyone is suddenly calling for him to be number one over who before his injury was obviously our player of the season is baffling really. Leno should reclaim his number 1 spot the minute he’s back and rightly so, jeez what is it with you Arsenal fans and knee jerk over the top reactions

  83. RodneyKing

    We can beat City. Bournemouth gave them a bit of a scare tonight.

    It’s all down to Arteta really. How much does he want to beat Pep?

  84. Batistuta

    Good result, not so good performance but not sure anyone cares at this point really.

    Agree with what Pierre wrote though, that 2nd half especially was so hard to watch, a whole 45 mins of just pinging the ball back to the opposition, rinse and repeat.

    I love Kieran Tierney, kept Salah quiet, Good game from Martinez and Rob Holding and that’s that about that really. Not a lot of meaning to be read from that game.

    P.s. How has Firminho gone so long without a goal by the way? Almost criminal he hasn’t scored in such a long time

  85. Champagne Charlie

    Just to get the spoon out…

    Emery (13 games):
    1.38 GF, 1.46 GA,
    1.39 points per game = 53 points over 38 games

    Arteta (18 games):
    1.61 GF, 1 GA
    1.67 points per game = 63 points over 38 games

    Also, for fun…win our two remaining league games and our PPG under Arteta for the season would see us return 68 over a whole season.

    No preseason or summer window yet:
    Improved goals per game ✔️
    Improved goals conceded per game ✔️
    Improved points per game ✔️
    Menopausal reaction from some ✔️

    …..hate to see it.

  86. salpardisenyc


    I just can’t see any progression though, I don’t feel it and it really doesn’t speak to me in any specific voice. At night when I look across to Unai’s statue only then am I truly at peace.

  87. Kay

    If Arteta is the ball playing version/second coming of Simeone, I am in.

    That is what the Arsenal post invincibles era needed.. like always..

    It’s all up to him.
    Persist with the shitfucks and he will get the sack like Emery and Big Weng.

    Hoping he is smart enough.

  88. MidwestGun

    No… I am keeping my Pepe avatar… and I’m gonna rock it like I did my Giroud classic, tongue out , avatar, or my Ozil eyeball avatar. Ironic avatar’s are my thing.

  89. salpardisenyc


    At least you’ll own it, I do recall you having a Pedro aviii as well.
    You love the below the liners.

  90. Champagne Charlie



    Yea, Pepe is a concern. Talented as you like but application issues are a real buzzkill, and career killer sometimes. Has happened to the best. He’s giving Adel Taraabt vibes to me and that’s worrying.

    Seen a pic on Twitter at a drinks break where all the guys around Arteta were engaged and staring at him while taking things onboard; meanwhile Pepe is head down counting blades of grass. Could easily be reading into nothings like that but it’s hard to deny a bit of a pattern is emerging with him.

    Fleeting is how I’d describe him in one.

  91. salparadisenyc

    I can confirm that Pedro is not going bald…. on top.


    He’s for lack of a better word weak, had hoped for more direct play from him as he definitely got the ability to take players on with skill but inevitably ends up on the pitch. On face looks like a confidence thing but as time grinds on the signals point deeper.

    Makes me miss Pires watching Pepe play. All heart, never quit.

  92. Guns of SF

    Pepe seems out of it… like unhappy out of it.
    I can understand being the man at Lille, and then going to shit in England.

    Got to have a stronger will. Got to get more physically strong and diversify his game or he will be assed out.

    Just how it is

    We dont have time for a project in this team…. an expensive one I understand, but some of the Pepe excuses are getting OTT

  93. CaliGooner

    Massive. You only need to look at the difference between the two teams today. The gap is enormous. The gap in many areas we cannot improve it in two months. But the gap between the accountability, the energy, the commitment, the fight of the two team is now equal. Before it wasn’t like this. I’m very proud of that. The rest will take some time. But at least that, we’ve got it now. My message to the players is with that we can create something.

    Pretty honest assessment from Arteta I’d say.

  94. Pedro

    Midwest, that is a LIE, unless someone told you and I am yet to find out because I haven’t looked at the back of my… *runs to bathroom*

  95. luke

    Just rewatched the highlights. What on earth was Cedric doing for their goal? He doesnt run back after losing the header he just stands there watching

  96. luke

    @Cali – I think that’s probably the clearest I’ve heard anyone articulate the difference between us under Arteta vs. Emery this year.

  97. Guns of SF

    Looked like he took a knock and let play go on…. cannot have that.
    I know he broke his nose recently, so maybe that was in his mind. ?

  98. Tee

    My question for those complaining about the performance is did you expect us to stand to -to – toe with Liverpool considering their arrays of fire power?

    I read a stat on BBC that reads the last time we beat Liverpool in the league was 2015 (4-1).

    When Arteta started, it was the points that matter but now it is the performance that’s according to some posters here.

    If we had been beaten tonight, the moral of the team would have been dead on arrival to Wembley but this win we go a long way to motivate them to believe they can do it against man City. Before the usual suspects shite their undies, I will like to let them know that cup game is different from league game – anything can happen.

    Pepe’s case is a conundrum. He is just too raw but it’s never to late for him.

  99. MidwestGun


    I thought Soares and Luiz along with Pepe were all a bit shit today.. definitely for their goal, I thought Soares and Luiz made a mess of it. And I thought the sub of AMN actually stabilized that wing. Mane was running riot all day… and if not for Holding and Martinez probably would have scored again.

    Mid, I’ll go full-on Roger Stone if it happens.
    I thought you were gonna say full on Wayne Rooney for a second. hahaha

  100. luke

    I thought he may have had the wind knocked out of him or something but it just looks like he’s pulling up his socks or something. Anyway, got the 3 points. It’s triggering seeing arsenal players not tracking back know that we’re shit.

  101. luke

    AMN is a bit of a curious case. First he doesn’t want to play right back so he’s outcasted by Arteta. Then he gives a nice interview saying he’ll play anywhere. Than a few days later stories break about him wanting to leave. I think everytime he’s played under Arteta he’s proven that he’s at least a better option than Bellerin. Our midfield is so weak right now, it seems like it could be worth a punt to have him in there. I wonder if Arteta and him just don’t get on.

  102. salparadisenyc

    In the end Pepe is the 5th highest transfer to a premier league club, behind VVD. Slowly becoming the elephant in room, at this point can’t see remotely that value.

    Lets just hope Arteta can expose the sauce we all hoped for.

  103. Guns of SF

    Clearly AMN does not get along with him. I see Arteta for all his positives to take the role of the tough teacher. This is what happens when you have a young experienced coach.

    They target the young players and want to mold and fix them and discipline them to their liking.

    AMN sees what his happening with Guen and he likely does not want to be in that boat. Not to mention the lack of game time

    Arty would not do such a thing with Auba etc.

    I think AMN is a great athlete. His strength is his versatility and also his downfall.

    He can never make one position “his”

  104. Guns of SF

    Now im seeing the quotes of Arteta and needing funding to compete.
    Good for him… and I am sure this was strategic timing. No doubt he has asked about funding behind the scenes

    A veiled message to Kroenke…
    Pay to play… need the $ to compete.

    Unlike Emery or Wenger, good for him to come out and state this…. check plus Arteta!

  105. luke

    So many positions need strengthening it’s hard to know where to begin. I’d say the only three positions that dont need improving are GK, LB (maybe a backup to replace Kolasinac), and ST. Everywhere else, bar maybe LW with Saka, needs improvement.

  106. Frost

    “Frost, how many times did Emery beat Liverpool in the league with an ugly performance?”

    Since we doing comparisons. Can turnaround & ask if sauce has had a 12 game winning streak. Talkless of 22 pedro. With the same squad too.

    3 points aside, which is terrific mind, I’m not sure how beating liv with the worst performance under arteta is being celebrated.

  107. Pedro

    Frost, we just beat Liverpool and you want to relitigate Emery, a total bum, and diminish the result. What is wrong with you?