Crazy Premier League stat Arsenal fans should focus on (long read)

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Sorry, I missed a post yesterday because I’ve been sucked into the International Break Boretex.

Let’s start with Auba. Toni faaacking Kroos having a pop about his celebration masks? How dare he. What a joyless curmudgeon. I hope he apologises. Bagging on a fellow pro like that isn’t cool, especially as the celebration is for his kids.

Onto more pressing matters…

It’s been an absolute pleasure reading through all the comments telling me I’m a double melt on toast because of Arteta. I find the noise quite incredible if I’m honest. We’ve had rough start to the season… but, I have a stat for you… we are 6 points off first in November. You would think the season is over judging by some of the hit pieces out.

I’ve seen ‘ARTETA LOST THE PLOT ON X DATE’, I’ve seen people listing out new managers they like, and I’ve seen the reemergence of the Emeryrista crying about how badly he was treated.

People, form is temporary. Just because we’ve had a rough run of games, it doesn’t mean that is our season forever. Just because we’re not creating now, it doesn’t mean that is our lot this year. This is football my friends and everything can be fixed if you have good energy, elite thinking, and a bit of patience.

Who remembers 1997-98? We lost 4 games in 6 in November/December. We were out of the title race. Then the team had a legendary meeting where the senior players laid down the law. Then we went on a magical run and won the league. However, it wasn’t easy, we were 12 points off United in FEBRUARY. Can you imagine the bet-wetters on Twitter back then?

‘Arsene WHO? Should go back in for Bobby Robson’




‘Can you beleive we sold John Hartson? Anelka is a wasteman’

Arteta has big problems, no doubt, but he’s had them all year. The crux of his issues for me centre on one fatal flaw of his early tenure: too much trust in senior players.

Willian looks like a bad investment. Arteta thought he was signing a 32-year-old who’d give him 3 years at the top. So far, it looks like we’ve made another fatal error and brought in someone on a Kia retirement deal. That can change though and I hope it will.

Lacazette was kept at Arsenal despite a sizeable offer from Roma in the summer. That, without doubt, has been the biggest mistake of Arteta’s Arsenal career so far. Someone was actually willing to pick up his huge salary and pay a fee, and we passed, presumably because we didn’t think reinvesting that in someone like Daka or Edouard was smart. BIG error. Even bigger that we put him through the middle. If you have Auba picking up his chances, we’re not 6 points from top, we’re maybe 3. That mistake needs to be rectified.

Also, Granit Xhaka. He was the go-to, but now, it seems like that error has probably been sorted long term.

Mikel needs to move things forward. He needs to position Auba where he’ll land chances. He needs to make sure his wide players are picking up the ball quickly and in areas where they can run at teams. He needs to explore what it is the play through the middle.

We need to be a provocative team. That requires confidence, the right players, and a new attitude going into the next three games.

Beat Wolves, Leeds and Spurs and we’re popping out the Birra Morretti’s and Paprika Pringles.

Arseblog nailed it yesterday in his piece about the moment and how fans deal with not knowing everything. I am game to speculate, always, but doubling down on every decision with things like NONSENSICAL or BAFFLING when you have most of the information is a bit dramatic and weird. Even if you don’t have all the information, trust that the decision was made in good faith, especially if there’s no evidence to suggest there’s something nefarious going on.

Mesut Ozil was his teammate, if he’s out the squad, it’s for the best. You don’t pick players based on Youtube videos. If we sold Emi, it was based on evidence in training and a small sample size. I didn’t like it, but the decision was made for the right reasons. If Pepe isn’t getting a run, there’s a thought behind it, have we learned nothing after we bullied Emery into showing us why managers should make decisions, not fans (that is me taking the blame here)?

Take Saliba as an example. Arsenal fans are spitting feathers that a 19-year-old isn’t in the squad. The manager in so many words has said his body isn’t ready, he’s not mentally available after the death of his mother (Kike Marin says he has now lost both parents), and he doesn’t speak English.

Arsenal fans won’t have it. @GiantGooner on Twitter laid out the reality with teenage centre backs. Before Fofana, only one teenage centre back had managed more than 300 minutes of Premier League football in 4 seasons. In Ligue One, 9 U20 centre backs managed over 600 minutes. Why? Because the league is less competitive. That’s why they grow more players, because it’s easier to land minutes younger. Is it fair to criticise that we didn’t find him a club? Yes. That seems like a pretty bad miss. Saliba started preseason early. It’s very odd that we didn’t do a deal and a bit sloppy.

Back to the player.

Arteta is protecting Saliba, not punishing him. Arsenal think there’s a future, which is why we didn’t sell him to Milan (another slow league). He’ll play in our first team. But butchering him during his formative years isn’t what he needs right now. A totally sensible decision flayed in the Twitter Townsquare.

Most decisions Arteta makes have a logical thought behind them. This isn’t Emery playing Torreira at #10 here. He plays his more experienced players because he assumes that experience equates to ‘better’ in decisive moments in a fine margins setup. Guess what, Jose does EXACTLY the same things and he’s won a lot of trophies doing it that way. Arteta plays Auba out wide because he isn’t great holding the ball up. He picks Rob Holding over Saliba because one is 24 and has won 2 FA Cups, the other has barely 17 appearances in a slow league. He doesn’t play Pepe because he’s been shite.

Everyone seems to have the answers. Even for replacement managers. Allegri is my absolute fave. Some Arsenal fans think a defensive-minded manager is going to come to this club and unlock elite attacking football with these same players. A coach that has been at Milan and Juve. Someone that would cost £15m a year . A manager deemed too arrogant. A guy who would want £150m to spend. A manager NO club has been near.

We do not have the money for any of those agenda items. We cannot afford Poch, we cannot afford Nagelsmann, and we don’t have the players for any of them.

A few weeks ago everyone was calling Frank Lampard a fraud because he has struggled to organise a defence, now he’s kept 5 clean sheets in 6 with 5 victories in a row and no one is calling him a wide boy amateur. Where has his £250m landed him in the league? 2 points ahead of Arsenal.

Keeping the faith is all we have.

Arteta is here for the longterm. He won an FA Cup in his first season. He has gone a long way to fixing our defence. He’s made some pretty decent signings. He broke our 6 year away record against top 6 sides. He has made us competitive against ALL top sides. He won the Community Shield. He is SIX points off top in November.

The season is long my friends. We’ll have moments that aren’t ideal. There will be bumps in the road, but we’ll make it back to the top.

David Ornstein says the summer planning process is underway. The dross we have accrued over the last 10 years will finally exit the club and we should have a BIG fucking party when it happens. We’ll sell players that have let us down because Arteta will learn his lesson this season. The market will also open up because fans will be back next season. Aouar. Dom Szoboszlai. Our young players will get better and better, we might even meet some new one’s (Möller, please be good). Gabriel will come back and give us a new flavour. Players out of form will find it. The process will power to the next phase: balance.

Form is temporary my friends, so now let’s see if we can find that Arsenal class we know is permanent.

534 Responses to “Crazy Premier League stat Arsenal fans should focus on (long read)”

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  1. Marko

    We also had this earlier in the season with Gabriel who was man of the match against Fulham and then dropped away to Liverpool with Kolasinac replacing him and the excuse offered up was Mikel was protecting him and playing away to Liverpool could have destroyed his fragile confidence or some shite. Bar the Liverpool game he’s been an ever presence and been voted player of the month 3 months in a row. Mikel just balls it up and we’re seeing the same pattern. It’s just bad decisions masked in hipster bullshit

  2. Northbanker

    Pedro – great post and thank fuck someone on here has some common sense and perspective. I don’t view this site after every defeat – partly because I’m too depressed to think football at all and i just remind myself there are other things in life (that only lasts a couple of days though!) and partly because of the spanners who post on here all of their doom and gloom. The nonsense and negativity is something else.

    That said i do think Arteta has made some massive mistakes – not selling Laca and selling Emi and backing Calamity Leno were huge mistakes

    Interesting you mentioned 97/98 because my mind was going back to Blackburn at home that season (November I think?) where we lost 3-1 and it felt very much like the Villa game does now. The world was coming to an end that night too but it became a turning point for our season. Vieira and Petit worked on giving better cover for the defence (as demanded by Adams) and the rest is history

  3. Marc


    No we’re 8 games down the line and lost 4 of them – that is not good enough.

    This season is top 4 or bust – we miss out and it’ll cause us all sorts of issues down the line. In the most screwed up season since Leicester won the league we’re throwing points away we shouldn’t.

    Last 10 PL home results against Leicester have seen 8 wins, 1 draw and 1 loss. Guess who got the draw and the loss?

    Come back with a “I told you so” when we’ve picked up 9 points in our next three matches but don’t tell me it ain’t that bad – that in itself should tell you it’s not good enough.

  4. Le Sauce

    Mikel has made mistakes (as expected for someone literally learning on the job), the important issue is IF he is a fast learner. If not, then he won’t last
    His management skills are questionable, his coaching skills are good enough and one can only hope he irons out his mistakes and get better over time.

  5. Northbanker

    And also when we were held 2-2 by Wimbledon in Spring 1989 which blew our title hopes against a bunch of clodhoppers. The only way we could redeem ourselves and win the title would be by going to Anfield and beating Liverpool by two goals – a quite ridiculous notion and not even worth contemplating.

  6. Chris

    The post does bring back memories of 97-98, it was the game against Blackburn that was the catalyst for the players meeting. We went 1-0 up in the first half but fell apart in the second, I was in the North Bank that day and a lot of the crowd were spitting blood.

    It was a heck of a turn around and nice memories but things are very different now. It all comes down to the lack of creativity in our current side, or perhaps more, the creativity we do have not being harnessed.

    Hoping for a change in approach after the Interdull, I am confident we will see it.

  7. Marc


    People disagree on here – that’s what makes it an interesting place.

    I’m happy to debate an argument I enjoy it that dickhead just likes to mouth off at people. It’s why so few engage with him.

  8. Marko

    Marc I believe so. Point being whether it’s Mikel trying to be too cute for his own good or literally not having a clue sometimes it’s getting things wrong and sometimes quite a lot regularly. And it’s okay to admit that and talk about it but to pretend that bad decisions and mistakes he’s making aren’t that to try to pull the wool over people’s eyes is pretty bad honestly.

  9. Marc

    Le Sauce

    I think we all know who the talent is and who the journeyman is. That being said don’t hold it against Marko he’s not a bad guy and tries his hardest!

  10. CazOnARola

    Not really sure why we are talking about selling laca this season. If the onus was on you as a manager, you will have to plan for injuries over a season.
    What if Aubameyang gets injuries ,suspensions etc? Laca had scored 3 in 3 games and has a lot of experience. If he signs a new striker who has to fill in for Auba’s injuries and is not experienced and it back fires, it will again be his neck on the line. Martinelli was injured so his only option were Lacazette and Nketiah. He was asked about Laca’s contract after Laca had scored in the opening few games and he completely side stepped it without even mentioning “of course we want him to extend”. This also above the fact that he considers Auba as an inside forward and wants Laca to do the dirty work. And if your answer is why do thr dirty work, why not just slide in throughballs and rip teams through the middle. Please, where are the players that can actually do that?

    AMN is a utility player in the John Oshea mode. Why would you sell him when he can cover 3/4 positions? And why are ppl moaning about AMN not starting? He is a squad player FFS and a very good one and excellent at taking penalties in cups.

    Holding was supposed to head out on loan /sold by after the injuries to other CBs, we had no cover with Mari, Mustafi and Chambers all out at the start of the season. What was the guarantee that Gabriel would settle in so quickly? It made sense to keep holding for 3 months or so with packed fixtures and only 3 months between the start of the season and the next transfer window.

    I agree about including Saliba in both the squads. Don’t understand that bit at all.
    Willian on prima facie looked like a good deal for the player, but I was expecting him to be useless only in his final year. Was expecting him to do well for at least for 1.5 seasons. But frankly he is completely isolated with Bellerin on the right and laca (who is midcontrolling) in the middle. Still expected much more from Willian as he generally distributes the ball well and he did do so in the first 2 games.
    I would still play Willian left /Half spaces and Pepe right,.
    Also saka is not playing as WB against teams like Villa etc at home. He is camped high up the pitch most of the time and Auba spends most of his time near the opposition right sided CB without having to do the dirty work that Laca does (albeit badly).
    In fact in most games, both Tierney and Saka are high up the pitch with the exception of Villa where Tierney was playing deeper (where we generally had Xhaka), probably due to Villa s threat on the counter attack.

    Saka, Tierney and Auba have not made the most of the overloads on the left. Saka’s crossing especially been poor for the free role he is given, but he is a kid, so what do you expect?

  11. Le Sauce

    Your guess is as good as mine then…
    Although as you guys haven’t been able to make Pedro change is mind on Arteta, pardon me to think that pairing needs an Aouar type for a midfield 3.. Who might that be.. CG?

  12. Pedro

    Chris, we had a goal scoring start to the season like this in 98/99 season as well.

    Marko, same coaching staff that won an FA cup and beat Liverpool in community shield.

    Not sure ‘haven’t been up for it’ works for any game bar Villa.

  13. SuperRob

    ‘Pedro is clearly struggling to understand but Mikel is failing this squad big time at the moment. He’s getting his teams wrong he’s getting his tactics wrong he’s getting his formation wrong and he’s getting his in game management wrong. ‘

    The oracle that is Marko…

  14. Marc


    The criticism of not selling Laca is down to a few simple facts.

    He hasn’t been playing well for some time now, he’s down to 2 years on his deal so this summer his value will plummet, he’s on £180k per week so there won’t be many clubs willing to match and he isn’t the type of striker Arteta clearly wants leading the line.

    No one has said we should of sold and kept the money but we should’ve sold him and used the money to buy the striker Arteta needs to get the system working.

  15. Danny+S

    It’s probably a crazy idea, but when Xhaka pushed up vs Molde I think, he started to make things happen a bit.

    Having him in an advanced position where he can play with his crazy abandon and not hurt the defence and spray a few balls about might work in the interim at least.

  16. Ernest Reed

    “All I’ve seen is Arteta say he doesn’t think Saliba is ready – I haven’t seen anything to say it’s the medical staff influencing the decision.”

    And why should it matter what the medical staff have to say, Marc? The decision lies with Arteta alone and if he says that Saliba is not ready, then that is good enough for me.

    The pure and unadulterated fact that NONE of us know what goes on behind the scenes staggers the mind in consideration that many of you are such managerial experts by trade!

  17. Marko

    So like I said Pedro you’re making excuses for bad decisions and continued mistakes by bringing up an FA Cup win and how we’re 6 points off the top. Like that explains away the dogshit offensive performances and misuse of players that we’re seeing consistently. Oh Pedro you flopper

  18. shad

    Nice positive post but while we are 6pts off 1st, we are equally 6 pts off 16th. But the damning statistic is we have a negative goal difference, with our mercurial striker shunted out wide left who only has 1 goal from open play 8 games in.

    I’d love to borrow your rose-tinted glasses Pedro but if it were any other coach, there’d be burning his effigy and tossing a swine’s head in his living room.

  19. SpanishDave

    I have no confidence that we will win the next three games.
    Arteta is struggling with his preferred set up, our forwards are not performing, and the midfield is scrappy.
    Our young forwards are no good enough for a top four team, and Laca should not start games.
    Teams know our weaknesses and we don’t have plan B.
    Dark clouds coming

  20. Marc

    Le Sauce

    I don’t want Arteta sacked – we do that and we’re heading down the same path as ManU when we don’t have the finance to do that.

    I want Arteta to get his head out of his arse, cut out the stupid mistakes and start showing me why he’s a “generational coach”

  21. SuperRob


    I come here laugh at people like you, Marko and Graham with your hysterical posts not befitting of teenage girls.

    I will say there are some other posters that make it a worthwhile task scrolling through negative and delusional posts just to get to the good stuff that’s measured and objective.

    Try the prozac??

  22. Marko

    he says that Saliba is not ready, then that is good enough for me

    Yeah but it shouldn’t be. He’s getting a lot wrong alot wrong at the moment and we should just disregard that? You know part of being a football fan isn’t just blindly supporting what’s happening you get that right?

  23. Marc


    Strangely I couldn’t give a fuck what you think about anything when your response to a differing point of view is your a cunt who doesn’t know anything and I know everything.

    Try putting forward a counter argument – if you’re capable.

  24. China1

    The stats on fifa are bs. In fifa 20 I just saw AMN has a composure stat of 77. Anything less than 99 is clearly unrealistic

  25. Le Sauce

    Lacazette should have been sold with a replacement like Edourd lined up. Right now his value would keep depreciating and we might not be able to move him on for much
    AMN should have been sold as well as recent times has shown that Arteta can do without him (when last did he start?) The fee realized on his sale might have helped in the Aouar pursuit
    Holding isn’t good enough plain and simple, Grealish tore him to shreds effortlessly and that clearly indicates he doesn’t have the requisite quality to play for Arsenal let alone start. Gabriel is new to the league and is only 22 but we can all see he is a proper defender. For some reason, Arteta doesn’t seem to rate Saliba more (for reasons best known to him), he has laid his bed with holding and must lie on it (that’s apparently a shitbed)
    Arteta has made some poor choices and has needlessly made some players comfortable enough to stay.
    Hopefully he has seen the light that these guys aren’t reliable and would move them on she the next opportunity arises

  26. Marc


    I have it from reliable sources that players have to ask permission for a bathroom break.

    It’s like fucking Shawshank – and we’ve still got 19 years left before the redemption.

  27. SpanishDave

    Yes my treatment started yesterday and it went ok.
    The hospital is fairly busy but doesn’t have many COVID patients as Cambridge is a low infected area.
    Thanks for remembering, only 18 more sessions to go!

  28. raptora

    I would argue that our team improves without Laca in it without even spending the money.

    Auba, Nketiah, Martinelli would have been enough of a cover in the CF position and then we’d always have the alternatives in Balogun and Pepe. Auba would have scored more than Laca’s 3 goals in 7 games.

    If we were to spend, Laca’s money would have helped us secure one of Aouar, Nkunku or Dominik S and we’d instantly improve.

    It’s not personnel problem though. Mostly it’s our manager deciding against using Auba as a CF. And our manager deciding to hoard average players like Laca, Xhaka, Mustafi.

  29. Ernest Reed

    You forgot to add the rest of my statement, Marko.

    “The pure and unadulterated fact that NONE of us know what goes on behind the scenes staggers the mind in consideration that many of you are such managerial experts by trade!”

    Again palm out, plant face firmly in it!!!

  30. SpanishDave

    I have little faith in the manager at present, the team’s confidence is shot, and with no time between the international break and the next game I can’t be that positive.
    Arteta said in an early press conference that he needed to be ruthless, so far he hasn’t been even close

  31. SuperRob

    In football terms you’d be right I do know more than you quite clearly.

    Marc I can guarantee you’re that loud wanker, that is your worst nightmare if they’re sat in front of you at games constantly spouting emotional garbage that is a) wrong and b) embarrassingly clueless that just leaves you shaking your head all game that these people actually exist.

    They’ve got a season ticket but they still don’t get that football thing but it wont stop you constantly chatting shit about it.

  32. Le Sauce

    No SANE fan wants Arteta sacked. This is the time where we see if he is truly a “generational coach” like Pedro calls him or an average Joe..
    He has to go back to the drawing board and come up with something fast.. He’s literally fighting to save his job because if we don’t get anything tangible from the the next three games and lose the NLD (we lost the first one he took charge of) then the knives would be well and truly out and he would lose a lot of goodwill from the fans

  33. Marko

    How’s that a face palm moment earnest? That we don’t know what goes on behind the scenes isn’t an excuse that fits all for things. Teams playing shit yeah but we don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes…players being played out of position yeah but we don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes…

  34. Marc


    You are a fucking moron of epic proportions – you haven’t made a single comment on football, players or Arsenal today.

    You are clearly a troll and I’ll treat you as such.

  35. G8

    1994 last time we lost 2 consecutive pl home games
    We won 13 games, only 6 at home
    We lost 17 games and drew 12
    We finished 12th
    Defensive structure can only take you that far

    For an elite sauce, Arteta is not a fast learner
    He is overcomplicating the football
    He is dithering and making bizzare decisions
    Auba golden boots winner and runner up has only 2 goals, including a penalty!
    The players know it, and majority of fans know it
    Hope I am wrong, but not optimistic at all!

  36. Ernest Reed

    “Arteta said in an early press conference that he needed to be ruthless, so far he hasn’t been even close”

    I think you will find he has been Dave, some of his personnel decisions have been just that. Sometimes you have to make some difficult decisions in order to establish direction. For many these decisions appear bombastic in their presentation, but ultimately i would like to believe that in each of you, you would agree that they had to be done for the greater purpose.

    Its no secret that the current incarnation of Arsenal are not particularly good at the moment- thats because many of the players are not particularly good to begin with. One might say its all going according to plan and the hope is that in time the method to the perceived madness will bear fruit.

  37. Ernest Reed

    Perhaps some perspective is what is needed Marko. You are approaching this from an emotional point of view, which is understandable, but take a step back and regain some perspective on the bigger picture. Thats all that i am saying, patience please.

  38. Champagne charlie


    That’s it in a nutshell.

    Everyone is value for an opinion, but Jesus Christ the state of some is unreal – and I don’t mean the views themselves. Goes way beyond opinion and there’s an arrogance to it as if we have a few guys who spend 5 days a week at Colney and are privy to details the rest are not.

    But no, that’s the manager and the coaching staff at Arsenal, not any ten pence wanker on an online blog.

  39. Le Sauce

    It’s a given that Kane or Son would score.. They almost always do against us. I just hope we find our rhythm in attack else we’re toast. I still trust the process though, I am willing to see if he would take the fucking handbrake off and put some fear in some of these teams again. Nobody fears us at the moment and I won’t be surprised to see teams from the lower leagues come to the emirates and play us off the park only to be rescued by an instinctive Nketiah goal or a Pepe goal (while he’s played shit all game)

  40. Marko

    Earnest I think you’re the one in need of perspective if you think it’s worth calling for patience. It’s not about jumping to any sort of conclusions or being unreasonable I think what most level headed people want is an improvement in certain areas that are frankly within our abilities to do so. As in offence (which we’ve seen the previous season) and in a basic understanding of where your better players should be played. It’s that simple and we shouldn’t have to wait for Mikel for example to know that Lacazette is playing shite and Aubameyang should be played centrally. It’s not that big of a secret

  41. SpanishDave

    We simply don’t have a creative midfielder.
    Last season the midfield hardly scored any goals.
    We hav’nt addressed that problem and our only playmaker is on gardening leave.
    What other club is doing this?
    We are not on the right path which ever way you look at it, or dress it up.
    It’s disappointing but we are going down the ladder.

  42. Marc


    The problem with the “patience” view is we look like we’re regressing and it’s not a one off. Outside of a few nutjobs everyone on here wants the same thing – Arsenal to win and do well.

    Pedro wants that and Arteta’s babies – just glad I’m not the one who’s going to have to explain to him that he hasn’t got a womb.

  43. Chris


    Also I recall us going goal crazy at the end of 98/99, after we lost the semi final replay to Utd, the 5-1 at home to Wimbledon I think we had something like 34 attempts on goal, then the following weekend Kanu did rhe back heel against Boro, what a team that was.

    The Boro fans were applauding us off the field that day if I remember right

    Also that year our defence only conceded a miserly 17 goals I think. However top scorers in the division were Man Utd with about 80 goals? Times have indeed changed.

  44. Marc

    ” End international football”

    I like the summer tournaments but the rest of it is bullshit – and could someone please tell me why when in the middle of a global pandemic when the friendly we had arranged was cancelled they set up an alternative?

  45. Marko

    But no, that’s the manager and the coaching staff at Arsenal, not any ten pence wanker on an online blog.

    That’s fair enough charles so the next time you have a thick ignorant opinion on things I’m assuming it’s going to be okay to trot out how you’re not privy to the goings on at Arsenal and thus it’ll completely dismiss what you’re saying. I wish we knew about this cheat code under Emery’s reign. Emery is dogshit and needs to be sacked… yeah but you’re not privy to what’s going on at Arsenal so why should we listen to you.

    I don’t need to have phones tapped and drones out at Arsenal to see that Mikel is getting the formation and tactics of the team wrong consistently or that he’s not getting the best out of the offence by any stretch of the imagination.

  46. Pierre

    If this season tells us anything, it is that there are some very strange results happening on a regular basis..

    Villa 7-2 liverpool
    City 2-5 leicester
    United 1-6Tottenham
    Arsenal 0-3 villa
    To name but a few..

    Pedro is right in that 3 victories could give a different perspective on the season.
    Leeds and wolves are beatable, their form is poor, and we should be able to be competitive against them.

    It is not too late to rescue the season if changes are made …

    Last season we drew too many games , this season is different, it’s either win or lose , so to beat leeds and wolves and lose to Tottenham is an acceptable outcome.

    6 points from 9 will put us close to the top 6 and then hopefully Arteta can

  47. Champagne charlie

    That’s fair, didn’t account for exchange rates…

    Unsurprisingly you pounce on someone pointing out the arrogant views being perpetuated as fact……before preempting someone else’s “thick” view according to you.

    You really don’t get it. Good thing the internet is about for people like you, you don’t amount to much in the real world with attitudes like that.

  48. Marko

    Of course the season isn’t over. Target is still top 4 is still attainable providing that improvement is made sooner rather than later and will likely need some kind of reinforcement(s) in January.

  49. China1

    I’ve always assumed international games mid season were only created to give fans of lower division and non-league teams something to get excited about

    Like imagine if you’re a scunthorpe Utd fan. They’re so shit my phone doesn’t even have autocorrect for their name. For fans like that to be able to say their team has PL talent must be genuinely exciting.

    Because it’s sure as hell not for any PL fan

  50. Marko

    Unsurprisingly you pounce on someone pointing out the arrogant views being perpetuated as fact

    ??? You’ll have to explain that one. Unless you don’t think that it’s a fact that we’re struggling in offence and making mistakes with our tactics and formation? Really?

  51. Marko

    Also weren’t you getting hormonal yesterday about me apparently dismissing your alternative pov and yet here you are dismissing 10 pence wankers on the internet cause they’re not privy to what’s happening at the club. Like I said before you’re consistent

  52. Marc

    ” Salah has just tested positive with Egypt”

    Scouser’s are dropping like flies this season – VVD, Gomez now Salah going to miss for a couple of weeks.

    We should really be looking to take advantage of whats going on.

  53. Marc

    “Guess who is going to have to replace him at CM then 😄


  54. raptora

    “Good thing the internet is about for people like you, you don’t amount to much in the real world with attitudes like that.”

    Is it Donald J. Trump or Joe Biden speaking? Asking for a friend.

  55. Marko

    I’m explaining fuck all to you.

    Sounds like your views on football alright. I see where it’s heading maybe we should still to our lanes. Our lanes being not happy with what we’re seeing from Arsenal under Arteta and being scared shitless to criticize him in fear of looking like a hypocrite.

  56. China1

    Guys chill out. It’s Friday ffs. This place needs more whisky

    Does anyone here have fifa 20 on ps4? I challenge anyone who does to a game

  57. Marc


    Someone needs to figure out if Pedro is the People’s front of Arteta or the Artetan Peoples Front.

    Once we’ve sorted that out it’ll all be alright.

  58. Champagne charlie


    I’m dismissing nobody, that’s yourself and the “thick” and “dim” tags you have for other people’s opinions because they differ to yours.

    I stated above:
    “Everyone is value for an opinion, but Jesus Christ the state of some is unreal – and I don’t mean the views themselves“

    The irony that your ears pricked up to it. You’re the most intolerant poster on here, everything you say is spot on and the rest are “thick” and “ignorant” and the like because they don’t share your view – and it is that, there’s no understanding and simple disagreement.

    Like I say, you’re made for the internet because you’re a waste of actual space.

  59. raptora

    The Athletic: “Arsenal have a problem in attack. By manager Mikel Arteta’s own admission, “To become a top team, you have to score 90 or 100 goals”. At their current rate of scoring, his side are on course to record less than half that tally.
    The Gunners’ name feels inappropriate for a side who are decidedly shot-shy. Arsenal are taking just nine shots per game on average, which sees them ranked 15th in the Premier League this season.”

    Do the Athletic journalists spend 5 days a week at Colney? Or have they made 50000 substitutions? Big questions right there.

    If answers to both is Yes, only then are they allowed to comment on Arsenal!

  60. englandsbest

    This ‘top four or bust’ stuff is kinda comical,.Financially, playing in CL is not going to help much unless you win the title or come very close, And coming 2nd, 3rd or 4th in PL is not the same as winning something. And how many times did Wenger qualify for CL to no avail? All I remember of that is losing the final to Barca, along with other defeats, notably against Bayern Munich. Not a patch on the Invincible run, the Cups and Titles won.

    I don’t give a stuff for the CL unless we can genuinely compete for the title. The important question is: will we reach this level by next season? If we can compete by then, then qualifying this season matters. Otherwise, it doesn’t.

  61. Up 4 grabs now

    We need the champions league for the money, means we can attract better players easily.
    Although most are more interested in the money. Which we don’t have unless we get champions league football.
    Catch 22

    Also Pedro if we win the next three games, and get nine points.
    Leeds and wolves are possible. Doubt it against that shitshow from up the road though.
    But since we were supposed to beat Leicester and villa at home how are Leeds and wolves such easy games?

  62. Marc


    How about the extra £50 – £60 million it’d give us to spend on players? How about making it easier to attract better players?

    Both of those are part of building the title challenging team you talk about. If we are going to follow Klopp’s model the first thing he did was get top 4.

  63. Up 4 grabs now


    I’d love to win the league or qualify for the champions league and win it.
    But it won’t happen with this team or squad.
    We need money and better players.

    Like Marc said that’s how klopp did it.

  64. Ernest Reed

    “Like I say, you’re made for the internet because you’re a waste of actual space.”

    Friggen hell Charlie, I really didn’t need to inhale my coffee like that! LOL

  65. Marko

    I’m dismissing nobody, that’s yourself and the “thick” and “dim” tags you have for other people’s opinions because they differ to yours.

    You literally called me a prick yesterday and today people 10 pence wankers. Like I said consistent

  66. Valentin

    The high number of young players being given a chance in Ligue 1 has nothing to do with competitiveness. It has to do with resources and mindset.

    Big clubs want assurances and ready made players. So instead of taking a punt on a cheap upcoming 19 years old player, they would rather wait and pay top price for that same player at 23 years.

    When clubs are not rich, they have to stretch their resources. So they concentrate on a few well paid stars and complement them with young upcoming free or cheap academy players. Compare that to a club like Burnley who basically rely on journeymen. Same with Norwich or Bournemouth who was buying at inflated price Liverpool’s reject.

    That lack of resources means that the cost of an academy is proportionally higher in France, so there is more pressure to make full use of it. Also a lot of club business model is based on generating a profit on players sale. Maximising the price of players is primordial, which can only be achieved if the academy players are given an opportunity to shine. So academy are full of proper academy coaches rather than PE teachers and former players doing their FA and UEFA coaching badges.

    Lille, Rennes, Marseille, Lyon, Bordeaux may not have the quality of the top 4, but I would say that they are good side. Facing them on a regular basis is a lot more challenging tactically than the bottom half of the EPL.

    If the French formation were so bad, you would not see big European teams fight over young French players.

  67. Up 4 grabs now


    Didn’t the French completely reboot clarefontaine in the mid late nineties.
    This has helped with the quality of players coming through as well.

    St George’s park which was to be our equivalent, isn’t that where the England team go to hide from covid.

  68. Champagne charlie

    Yea I call you that for how you behave and speak to people for having different views, not because of the actual views you have. Massive difference.

    Yesterday clear example. I disagreed with your assertion that Szoboszlai is the answer to matter this Jan, I’d prefer another and I reasoned why, though I get the appeal of Szoboszlai. Your response to that? My view is “dim witted” and the like. If you can’t work out the difference I pity you even more

    Sorry mate, cup of Java on me haha

  69. Ernest Reed

    Concerning that in past you would worry that players would return from international duty injury free, now its worse because you can add COVID to the mix. All the more reason to not play internationals until things improve. To be honest, I’m surprised that clubs are not calling this out?

  70. Marc

    First person to spot a comment by SuperRob that actually contains something about Arsenal rather than trolling another poster wins the chance to see Arsenal take a shot on goal.

  71. Marc


    I’ve already asked that – apparently we had a friend;y lined up against New Zealand that was cancelled – did the powers that be say not a bad thing, no they arranged another match.

  72. Champagne charlie


    I don’t care for international football at the best of times, friendlies even less so.

    International friendlies during a pandemic involving the migration of players throughout Europe? Well….what a fucking flag football is flying with that one.

  73. Marc


    As Ernest says I’m surprised the clubs aren’t screaming blue murder. Let’s say Kane picked it up and then had to miss a couple of matches – the Spud’s would rightly do mental.

  74. Champagne charlie


    Just find the whole thing ignorant and the wrong choice from whatever angle you consider it. There’s no point at the best of times, and these aren’t even the best of times.

    Salah confirmed with Covid now hasn’t he? Hate to see it for Liverpool 😂

  75. Jego R Armstrong

    First about Saliba. He’s been at the club since July 1. It’s a shambles that Arteta and the club didn’t prepare a development plan for him ahead of the season, instead of just having him play under 23s. There isn’t a player for the our u23s that would get into Saint Etienne’s bench, never mind being a crucial defender for a team that qualified for the Europa league 18 months ago.

    Second, I’ve heard enough excuses about Pepe and Auba. Pepe is shit, and Auba can’t hold the ball up. Whatever you think of them, they are your best options to put the ball in the back of the net. It is contingent on the manager to put them in the best position to do that, not keep trying to plug them into a square hole.

    The excuses for Arteta are endless. I can only assume that Arsenal fans are having a wet dream over a former player leading us back to glory, but we might have to wake up and realize this might be the best he has to offer. We might have to accept that there’s no rub off from Pep or Wenger, and he’s just a defensive-minded coach.

  76. Champagne charlie


    You’d have to imagine Klopp will have a few things to say on the matter. That, and the introduction of 5 subs once again because it’s becoming a bit farcical.

    Ajax had 13 players missing for a European game last week or something, Liverpool are losing players to injury and Covid playing nothing games. It’s just not a bright framework we have in place from a protective POV.

    They’ll be spending in Jan you’d have to think, although idk the state of their finances for a proper move. Imperative we make the most of this messy season, it’s such a chaotic league right now.

  77. Marc


    There’s no defensible argument for continuing with pointless matches. My guess is the true reason is FIFA / UEFA are more concerned with keeping National Football at the forefront than the health and well being of the players.

  78. Marc

    “it’s such a chaotic league right now.”

    That’s the reason I’ve been so frustrated with what we’re doing. Any team that can get it together could win the league this season.

  79. Thorough

    I love when people say we don’t have a creative midfielder as if it exonerate Arteta. Which players has he tried there ffs? Or has he even really bothered about making the playmaker role an integral part of this team? When you play Ceballos, Xhaka and Partey do you remember to tell them not to play in a straight line?

    The only game it looked like we tried playing with a playmaker was against Shefiield and it yielded 2 goals. I’m not even saying he must stick to Willian, who probably had his best game for Arsenal in that role, but he should actively try to play with one.
    Saka and Ceballos are other options. Why Ceballos has to play defensive midfield or deeplying playmaker when we have Partey, Elneny and Xhaka, I dont understand?

    The fears about Arteta are real. He gloriously won 2 trophies yet we’ve added Partey and Willains and we look worse than we did last seasons ending.

    He should start making groundbreaking changes like playing Auba centrally and Saka left wing. Maybe hell then be able to shame us thats too basic to have any endproduct.

  80. Valentin


    You are correct.
    Whoever is the French National Technical Director has a lot of impact, because its vision guide the kind of coaching that then filter down to the club.
    Gerard Houiller was the technical director and had a very good relationship with Aimee Jacquet the French coach during 1998.

    The problem in UK is that the National Director has few impact on the coaching, it stems from the fact that youth team coaching is not viewed as a job in itself. People see that as a path to proper coaching i.e. senior football coaching.

    Look at how people leaves the U21 National Team headcoach job as soon as any lower league opportunity is given to them. That does not happen like that in France. The decent salary and the guarantee of 4 years job help with regard to the low turnover.

    France minimum requirements for being allowed to coach youth teams are more stringent than in the UK. Better coaching result in better players on average.
    So most talented UK footballers emerge despite the national setup instead of because of it.

  81. JayJay

    . Guess what, Jose does EXACTLY the same things and he’s won a lot of trophies doing it that way.
    So now you want arteta to follow Jose’s path? You are very strange lad pedro

  82. Ernest Reed

    “Imperative we make the most of this messy season, it’s such a chaotic league right now.”

    Have a feeling that January may not pan out for anyone given current trending. All of football may be shut down again if people as a whole don’t smarten up on Covid precautions.

  83. Marko

    Yea I call you that for how you behave and speak to people for having different views, not because of the actual views you have. Massive difference.

    Just a huge hypocrite

  84. Marc


    Football in the PL seems to be dealing with COVID pretty well – at worst I think European competitions might get postponed / cancelled but I don’t think it’ll happen with the PL.

    As for getting fans back in the grounds? All depends on the vaccines.

  85. Ernest Reed

    “As for getting fans back in the grounds? All depends on the vaccines.”

    Some promising work being done on that front – too late for me in one sense, but massive for all humanity. In the end there are some harsh lessons to be learned in all of this. Its a matter of trust in my view.

  86. Marc


    ” In the end there are some harsh lessons to be learned in all of this.”

    Problem is how long will those lessons be remembered? If this is a once in a century event imagine where technology will be in 100 years – compare to the technology available during the Spanish Flu pandemic in 1920.

    If it’s going to become a more regular thing god knows where we end up.

  87. Nelson


    In the past, I like Blizzard games,: starcraft, Warcraft, Diablo and all the extensions. For first person shooting game, I play mainly Unreal Tournament.,

  88. izzo

    Another shut up and support the manager post. Wonder how your tune will change when you see Laca and Willian start every game until the end of season and we finish in 12th. I guarantee Auba will never play central as long as Arteta is here and Laca/Nketiah will play there. Keep bleating about form all you like Arteta isn’t changing shit or doing what ‘he needs to do’. The way Villa beasted us I can’t imagine our next three opponents not doing exactly the same. Sure we might defend better in some games but we’ll still get beat and fail to score goals needed to win matches. Our attack is relegation fodder level yet you keep talking about form. Smh… this is getting boring.

  89. Ernest Reed

    “Problem is how long will those lessons be remembered?”

    A very fair statement Marc, thoughtful and likely very true.

    For me, it has altered my life permanently and it would be a flat out lie if I said that i don’t have any animosity or bitterness towards people in general. There are truly some terrific people out there, but in truth I have lost a lot of faith in humanity as a whole – We are a selfish society.

    But you are right, if history teaches us one thing its that we will for certain make the same mistakes again, its in our nature.

  90. raptora

    Agreed. It’s not like Arteta has made it clear that he wants to play with creative midfielders. His idea has been Luiz and Xhaka long passes and playing through the wings. He has purposely decided to sack the midfield area for whatever reason.

    He isn’t even using our attackers in their preferred positions. Auba is a winger, Pepe is a touchline hugger, Martinelli was a bench warmer, Willian is playing the worst football in his career, even Laca looks far worse than I even imagined.

    I have patience for managers. I gave time to Emery and I’m willing to give time to Arteta. I need to see him learn though. I need to see him fixing his mistakes. I’ve been banging the drum that our attack has been horrendous, now look where Arteta sitting on his hands and changing literally 0 things has lead us to.

    No goals from open play in 6 and a half hours.
    3rd worst season goal wise in 37 years.
    Last time we were bottom half at round 8, was in 1994/95.

    Tell me again how I’m throwing my toys prematurely. Or should I wait to lose more games before my worry becomes a reality?

    It’s exactly the type of stuff that was tolerated under Wenger and what made us sink this low. From laughing at spuds to everyone laughing at us. We became a Europa League level club. And we are breaking negative records. Yes, we beat Manure but I wish we didn’t lose at home to Leicester for the first time in 47 years. Or that Auba had 0 shots in a Premier League game for the first time since he arrived vs Villa.

    We could talk about it the way it is. Or we could laugh it out and say that it’s all doom and gloom.

    But it’s facts.

  91. MD-Gunner

    “We’ll sell players that have let us down because Arteta will learn his lesson this season. The market will also open up because fans will be back next season. Aouar. Dom Szoboszlai. Our young players will get better and better, we might even meet some new one’s (Möller, please be good). Gabriel will come back and give us a new flavour. Players out of form will find it. The process will power to the next phase: balance.”

    Expresses the sentiment of many here this season is already toast after 8 games only to be confirmed after the next 3 games. Over on Arseblog in their podcast the hopes were to finish with 11 of 15 points of 5 games, well that is only possible if the remaining 3 games are won. However that does not change AFC’s predicament nor their finish this season.

  92. Pedro

    izzo, another ‘imagine if we lost all our games, what would you say’ nonsense. That’s not analysis, it’s conjecture.

  93. Pedro

    MD, again, the season isn’t decided in December. Never has been, never will be.

    Arteta needs a reaction, but the doom is misplaced.

  94. Marc


    “izzo, another ‘imagine if we lost all our games, what would you say’ nonsense. That’s not analysis, it’s conjecture.”

    But what if it’s prophetic?

  95. Champagne charlie

    Lucas Torreira on why he failed to adapt to life in England: “ [In Spain] I have two Uruguayan colleagues, a Uruguayan teacher, an Argentine coaching staff, and language is an important factor, too. I was in England for two years and that issue cost me [as I didn’t have it].”

    LaNGuaGe/CoMmUniCatiOn iSnT ImPoRtANt

  96. SpanishDave

    What can Arteta do up front?
    No Laca for starters, Pepe has a good left foot shot we have to create cut backs for him and he needs to work with somebody.
    Saka doesn’t have a settled position again he needs to settle down.
    We really don’t have a lot of options.
    That’s the problem

  97. MD-Gunner

    “the season isn’t decided in December. Never has been, never will be.”

    That is a fact and true statement however just as the pundits make an educated guess long before the season is over who will be relegated so the “experts” here look at the past and present underlying structure, deals, personnel, tactics and management and make an educated guess of where AFC will finish. Not reaching top 4 means for many the season is over.