ARTETA CONTINUES TO BURN FAN CAPITAL ON WILLIAN

by .

Arsenal lost to a very solid Aston Villa team on a frustrating afternoon that was defined by 3 players that cost about £650k a week. Cedric Soares had his worst afternoon in an Arsenal shirt, gifting Villa an opening inside 2 minutes. I can live with the mistake as he’s been good lately, but that’s a £100k a week player there.

The real eyesore came in the second half. We played some sensational stuff at times, the young players were taking the game by the scruff of the neck, Villa fans were texting me sensing a goal, we looked ever so close to breaking the back of the game. The sub of Soares for Odegaard, with Saka dropping into left-back was a crafty move and it opened the game up… Auba slotted into the forward line for Lacazette, then horror struck as Arteta replaced Partey with Willian.

This sort of political move needs to stop. Willian is the worst signing of the decade. He can’t move, he has no concentration because he doesn’t care, he can’t even beat the front post with a corner. His play is all about slowing things down, he can’t beat a man, he makes ponderous decisions, he looks like he’s trying to sabotage the team.

Why does Arteta keep doing it to himself? Look at what is working for Arsenal at the moment. Young players. Motivated talent that is additive to the side. Players that can move. Willian does not fit into the vision.

Say it quietly, but we’re also moving into the same territory with Auba. I know he might not be mentally there at the moment. But even before his absence, did his game look like it suited this new short passing game we’re developing? He’s a bystander. He came on, tried to look like he was involved in the game, but he had zero impact. Was anyone excited about his introduction? Lacazette is better in our starting 11, he makes things tick, he brings out the best in the young players. Auba doesn’t have the game… but he’s here, on Mesut Ozil money.

The move in the summer was probably Suarez, someone elite in tight situations, great a passing around corners, an aggressive monster, a battler. If we’d planned our squad better, someone might have stepped in and asked deeper questions about the two contracts we had on the table. I can stomach Auba, he’s been excellent for us, but it was still based on emotion over suitability. Willian? There’s no world in which I can have that he was the right move. How often has he changed a game over the past 5 years? How was he suited to our system? What made us unlock £220k a week?

Everyone makes mistakes, the issue here is that we can’t admit it. Mikel Arteta needs to get real. He has something very exciting brewing at Arsenal. We’re close to having a break out moment with this squad. A bit of confidence, the right players, and some luck… it’s there. But it’s up to the manager… is he going to keep making decisions based on salary band, or is he going to assess the reality… the players keeping this going are the £40k a week crowd.

£500k a week on the books that isn’t suited to our style of play is a terrible look for Arsenal leadership… but we cannot will these players to be what they aren’t capable of.

Let’s look at the positives. This week has been deeply frustrating because individual errors have crept back into our game. Villa scored because of a massive fuck up. Wolves weren’t in the game until David Luiz stepped into the fold. We’ll get a grip on those things.

Then what do you have? There’s some really exciting football brewing. When Saka dropped into the left back role, we were sublime. The whole game opened up. Odegaard looks incredibly sharp, we need him on the pitch, he’s decisive, he’s the level we need. Saka and Pepe were causing all sorts of issues between them. Smith Rowe didn’t have his best game, but he was much better in the second half.

If Arteta brings on Gabriel M on for Partey, the outcome might have been different, and the mood amongst the fans certainly would be.

We are now a midtable side this season. There’s no chasing anything. This week cost it all.

Arteta needs to use the rest of the season to get to grips with the players he has in the squad. He needs to spend time trying to cultivate young talent, versus rehabbing old players that don’t care.

Who else do we have in the youth ranks that could make a difference? If Thomas Partey is out again, let’s not go another 5 games with Mo Elneny in the side, let’s try something new. Let’s continue to evolve our game, because I’m telling you, there’s something brewing and we’re not far away

The frustration I have is the details. The politics. The small things that could make a big difference.

Arteta needs to flush out these PR disasters his levelling on himself. If he ignores Martinelli for Willian in the stadium, the anger won’t be directed at the Brazilian, it’ll go towards him. If he continues to give young players the chance to flourish, if he nutures the exciting green shoots we’re seeing, then the fans will be on his side and we’ll move forward together.

See you in the comments.

P.S. Well played Mat Ryan, a truly excellent debut.

705 Responses to “ARTETA CONTINUES TO BURN FAN CAPITAL ON WILLIAN”

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  1. Cheney10

    I think VAR is an issue for all clubs but it does feel like we are on the wrong end of it at the mo. I think back to the goal against Leicester that was ruled out, which could have dramatically change the course of that game, as well as Wolves and yesterday… We could potentially be 7 points better off had VAR intervened correctly. I believe there is a reluctance to undermine the on field ref, which stops them speaking up. The obvious error wording also gives them a get out clause to not intervene , as most decisions are subjective; however, I feel VAR should direct Refs to the monitor more often saying ‘we have a different angle to you and think they may have been an infringement’. This could be employed for goal related incidents ie penalties etc.

  2. Pierre

    The red card by Dean yesterday for a west ham elbow was farcical

    He spent 2 minutes looking at it pitch side and still came to the wrong decision…

    No doubt it will be overturned …

  3. peanuts&monkeys

    Let this not be anyone’s folly: even without the Willian circus Arteta couldn’t have finished above 11th.

    The article shd instead read ‘ edu risks fan capital by sticking on to Arteta blunder’

  4. Nelson

    Blaming the Ref. is always weak sauce. The reality was that our opponent has analyse our 4 2 3 1 and their defense was fully prepared to stop it. They target/foul Saka right from the get go. Pepe was facing Cash, who is 2x of a defender than Bellerin. Once our short passing game/cutback was stopped, Arteta’s plan B was long high crosses from the touch line. We have all seen that before.

  5. Guns of Hackney

    Well the mighty and correct 97.8% of the time, Guns of Hackney called this when the rumours of:

    A) signing an old duffer from Chelsea on a monster deal.
    B) re signing an old duffer who can’t score against a good side on a monster deal.
    C) playing said players.

    Arsenal are an anti football club. Arteta is a fucking moron.

  6. Nelson

    I like what I saw from Martin Ødegaard. He has a defense splitting pass and a hammer of a shot. He can be our Plan B, once he is fully integrated with the team.

  7. Winthorpe

    I wasn’t aware that Emery had managed Manchester City? They are certainly the biggest spenders in World Football. Most sources have PSG around 5th (I’m assuming that you were refering to PSG).

    Andy
    I said the richest. Not the highest spending
    Either way wenger went further in the champions league with an inferior squad on several different occasions

  8. The Godfather

    Dunno how many of ya watched Bayern vs Hertha yesterday but I love the term the commentator used to describe Guenduozi … “Ubiquitous”!!!!

    The lad was virtually all over the field, tackling, showing for the ball, and initiating attacks.

    On thing I love about the kid is that he is fearless and doesn’t lack for confidence. Pair this lad with Partey and you’d see a Thomas that isn’t frequently breaking down with muscular issues Cuz he has to cover for a limited partner.

  9. englandsbest

    I don’t how much influence Arteta had in the signing of Willian: a lot, I fear. Or in keeping Auba at a ridiculous wage. Again, a lot, I suspect. Both bad deals. It may be that they come good. Even so, bad deals because of the length of their contracts and size of salary.

    I wanted Auba sold in the summer. Not because I thought he would flop this season but I thought it wiser to cash in and buy a young replacement. The signing of Willian disappointed me – again not because I thought he would be totally useless, but because for me the future lies with the young and vigorous.

    Let’s remind ourselves: for the most part people on here cheered when Auba was kept and Willian signed.

    Arteta’s greatest fault is too much respect for the elderly. Auba and Willian together cost the CLub in wages more than Ozil. It’s damn hard not to play them. But at any rate he has learned to keep them on the bench.

  10. Terraloon

    Who was the golfer who said in response to being called lucky something along the lines the more I practiced the luckier people said I become

  11. Guns of Hackney

    Any decent business knows when an asset is no longer profitable or viable. Arsenal do not. Ergo, they are a shitty run cowboy outfit.

  12. Thorough

    Godfather.
    Said exactly the same the other day, the Arteta camp shouted me down.

    Even for now I’ll love to see Partey alongside Ceballos, though it seems Tets has decided its him and Xhaka, even though he’s only looked his best for one game alongside Elneny.

  13. andy1886

    “I said the richest. Not the highest spending”

    Kinda irrelevent then isn’t it if they don’t actually spend as much as some other clubs. Can’t blame that on Emery.

    On a related subject one of the worst (crooked) refereeing performances was that Barca comeback against PSG (and I can’t stand PSG or any big money club). Suarez’s diving was pitiful but nonetheless they couldn’t wait to give decisions to Barca.

  14. Graham

    David Smith – thanks for your comments and I get where you are coming from but i think you are falling into the trap of picking a narrative and alleging a bias that doesn’t fit the facts

    “It is possible some in power in the football world want cash cows like Utd always in the top four and go to lengths to ensure this.”

    Well they did not do a very good job – Utd were 5-7 four of the six years after Fergie left. And while fear of Fergie might have helped tip them to winning the league some years they hardly needed ref help to finish in the top 4 for those 23 years.

    So what lengths and in what years and how did they do it and who was involved?

  15. Graham

    Another genuine question – lots of players have moved to other clubs from Arsenal or vice versa over the years.

    Which of them have said they realise completely different ref standards apply to them at Arsenal?

  16. andy1886

    EB, Auba signing was welcomed with good reason. Willian? Not true, I’d say 90% of fans were very much opposed to it, ‘another Chelsea pensioner’ was one of the politer comments.

  17. Samesong

    I never bought into this idea that Guen is a poisonous player in the squad. Pure agenda driven.
    A bit facety maybe. But so what

  18. Marc

    Samesong

    He may be a problem or arrogant but a good manager will deal with that. If he’s that difficult you quietly move him out without wrecking his value.

    Arteta’s fucked up with Guendozi, he’s fucked up with Saliba, he’s in the process of fucking up with Balogun and Martinelli will be next of his list.

    The only poison around Arsenal at the moment is the manager.

  19. Marc

    Quick everyone let’s laugh at the Spud’s.

    After all they’re only 5 points in front of us with a game in hand and a goal difference that is 10 better than ours.

  20. Matt

    Marc

    Exactly. Pedro should be fucking embarrassed by that post the other day as should all the goons rejoicing in it.

  21. Shaun

    12 points lost against wolves and villa says enough for me had a feeling we would loose against villa and was proved right not sure how anyone can say we are improving Arteta will take another three years to learn how to manage properly they had the whole game to change the outcome And the introduction of willian was spectacular coaching and completely killed any advantage we had but strangely our manager thought we controlled the game and will probably tell us we had an 80% chance of winning

  22. Billp79

    If the player has no respect for the coach or team there is no place for them
    If a player can’t believe that their time will come or there time is up then this is not the proper fit for them and should move on
    sometimes when contracts are made which don’t benifit BOTH sides it becomes contentious
    You should ignore the chatter until it subsides

  23. Terraloon

    Andy

    Do you remember that Barca game when they played Chelsea in the CL semi final

    Norwegian official Tom Henning Ovrebo denied Chelsea not just one penalty but several. That has to be up there in terms of the worse ever display by an official as opposed to one off mistakes.

    One myth worth putting to bed was the fact there wasn’t an English ref at the last World Cup because none were the quality required.
    The list of officials was put together a year or more before the tournament. The English rep on the list was Mark Clattenburg but because he decided to re locate to Saudi he had to be removed from the list. There were a couple of other English refs that were classified by FIFA as elite but FIFA wouldn’t allow a replacement.

  24. Winthorpe

    SamesongFebruary 7, 2021 13:15:00
    I never bought into this idea that Guen is a poisonous player in the squad. Pure agenda driven.
    A bit facety maybe. But so what

    Samesong
    Facety? 😂 haven’t heard that word since the early 90s
    Showing your age there son

  25. Anonymous Commentator

    Arteta cannot set up the team to score against our former gk.
    Wonder why he was sold, perhaps demoralising our strikers too often in training.

  26. andy1886

    Terra, yes I remember that game well. But isn’t it only Arsenal that have decisions given against them? I’m pretty sure that they would include last season’s cup final in any discussion about biased officials too.

  27. Leftside

    Spurs apparently in crisis though, theyre 4 points off a CL. We’re 9 though but we have to trust the process because Arteta has mastered the art of speaking well. His results would be acceptable if he was managing Crystal Palace perhaps.

    Mind you, thats about our level under his watch. Chump of a manager with a thing for older washed up players and will only play youth if his hand is forced.

  28. Valentin

    Terraloon,

    The reason why no replacement were authorised is

    1) the FA removed him out of spite and could have keep him as other FA had referee who retired after the tournament. The relation between PGMoL and Mark Clattenburg had broken down.

    2) the other England referees were not deemed good enough. France had once a referee who got injured just before a tournament and he was replaced by the next inline deemed good enough.

  29. Graham

    Andy 1886 – or the last time we played them in the Cup Final. – – Sanchez’s goal was not blatant handball (with a side serving of offside from Ramsey)

    And of course every fan – and most of the managers and players – of a non top 6 team takes it as gospel that there has been clear bias in favour of the big teams (including Arsenal) for years and years.

  30. Dissenter

    If you were unsure about Arteta’s tactical competent enough
    Look no further that the Wolves game on Tuesday when we we down to 10 mean – he subbed Aubameyang.

    Putting in Auba meant we were playing 8 outfield players against Wolves 10 outfield players.
    Then we lost Leno and it was 7 outfield players [and Auba] against Wolves 10 outfield players

    Aubameyang is the first player to sacrifice if we ever go one man down but Arteta ball subbed him in when we needed industry above all.

    I’ think Arteta is just faking it and hoping he’ll make it along the way.

  31. Nelson

    If Tierney is not ready, I prefer to play Saka as the LB and play Ødegaard as the RW. Arteta should build up chemistry berween Ødegaard, ESR and Laca. No more Auba in the middle. Try Martinelli instead.

  32. Winthorpe

    Val

    Yeah that’s my concern. If he can’t see where and when to use Aubameyang when his limitations are obvious to both you and me then I fear he isn’t as astute as previously thought

  33. Dissenter

    Pierre
    Is there a referee bias against West Ham too?
    VARis just highlighting the incompetence of the officials. They can no longer use the “I only had one second to view it” excuse.
    We’ve benefited from refereeing incompetence too; Xhaka dived twice in the FA cup final to get Kovacic sent off, I didn’t recall you complaining then

  34. Marc

    “Howard Webb was the only decent referee I’ve seen in the premier league
    That’s the benchmark
    Firm but fair”

    Wasn’t he the ref who had the fans of every other PL club sing “Fergie’s rentboy” at him every match?

  35. Marc

    Matt

    I’ve no problem with having a conversation about Mourinho being toxic and the level of toxicity getting worse. He was not a good option for us and I’m glad we didn’t go down that road but right now we are in no position to point fingers and laugh at anyone.

  36. Ash79

    Saw William’s fuckin face when site loaded. Threw phone against the wall.

    Need new phone

    Fuck you Edu and Mikel … You owe me a new phone

  37. Matt

    Marc

    Agreed. I wanted nothing to do worth mourinho, I think very few on here did. But the gloating from Pedro, apart from being mistimed was embarrassing and showed how desperate he is to deflect the attention from our own problems, of which there are many.

  38. Terraloon

    Valentin
    1) Clattenburg retired from the PGMOL and took up a job in Saudi. It wasn’t the FA or PGMOL that removed him from the long list it was FIFA. He did indeed fall out with PGMOL.

    2) The 2016 long list was the source of all officials that participated in the tournament. All of the 99 officials that were on the final 2018 list featured on the 2016 list. All those that went to Russia had to have attended the 2 year training that led up to the WC. Michael Oliver is on the long list for 2022 and has started the two year training programme

    3) Of the 36 refs because of the inclusive nature of FIFA only 9 were from Europe.

    All the refs featured were at that point on the FIFA elite list . There were two other English refs that were of the elite list Andre Marriner and Martin Atkinson both were discounted not because of their ratings but because they were too old

  39. Terraloon

    Graham
    I was at that cup final. At the time I thought it was top quality not call the offside but the handball from Sanchez should have been seen
    As for last seasons cup final two incorrect decisions from the ref but because VAR can’t get involved in yellows no chance of correcting. Another flaw in how FIFA say VAR has to be used

  40. SpanishDave

    Why won’t the club sack him?
    It just prolongs the process of improvement. The longer we piss about the hard it becomes to get improvement going forward.
    Arteta is lucky as there’s no fan pressure .The club is dormant

  41. Marc

    Dave

    Agree it just means the next guy has more ground to make up, it’s bad enough that other teams are improving but with us regressing it just makes it even worse.

  42. Winthorpe

    Marc

    Fans of other clubs claim scousers eat dead rats for a laugh and that Adebayor’s mum was a whore. And that Wenger was a pedo.

    I wouldn’t really go off of rival fan’s banter as the determining factor on any topic

  43. SpanishDave

    Look a the table there’s a gap appearing between us and the next place of 4pts
    This will grow and we will be unable to get above 10th.
    We are drifting backwards and he’s still in a job.
    Terrible

  44. Socrates

    We could go to the 13th if the teams below us win their game/s in hand…

    It’s getting to the point where we are going to have to chase Arteta out of the club. At the moment he’s covid safe.

  45. Marc

    Dave

    “Look a the table there’s a gap appearing between us and the next place of 4pts”

    Our next 3 PL matches:

    Leeds H – We should win this but the concern is how will Arteta set up with the EL match mid week. He could easily cock it up.

    City H – Will just fucking destroy us and 3 nil will feel like we got off lightly.

    Leicester A – Will lose this as well.

    What will go in Arteta’s favour is over this period several of our supposed rivals have tough matches. March isn’t easy either with Burnley A, Spud’s H and West Ham A, on current form you wouldn’t bet on us picking a a decent points tally in those matches.

  46. SpanishDave

    Yep Marc 8-10 th is about the best we can do.
    So let’s go another year with him.
    He’s a great tactician they say. Let’s cross the ball to our make pretend heading maestro.
    Oh wait a minute is that allowed now.

  47. Mark

    @Pedro
    “Arteta needs to flush out these PR disasters his levelling on himself. If he ignores Martinelli for Willian”

    Why is this a PR disaster and noan indication of shit judgement???
    That He’s unable to see what is best for the team, when everyone else can is what I (people) have been saying about him.

    We need a goal and you ignore Martinelli to bring on Willian. This is more than a PR disaster, it’s incompetence!!, and he’s been constantly doing it throughout his tenure.
    With Martinez, Saliba, Balogun , Martinelli, ESR yes ESR too it’s obvious that it wasn’t a conscious decision to play him. Regardless of how you’ve tried to spin it.
    Man with cans of peaches… As it was pointed out, doesn’t look that clever if he waits until half the family are dead B4 bringing out the peaches.

    Apparently if you’re good enough you’re old enough is no longer true. Cos not many teams play 19yr olds in defence….

    Why persuade Xhaka to stay instead of selling and buying better. Imagine we could have got someone like Bissouma, anguisa , Soumare with the money and had change. But no keep him and make him ever present in your lineup. SHIT Judgement.

    Yet you’re quick to project that onto the fans who highlight this trait in your boy Arteta.

    He’s is taking this club backwards with his arrogance, stubbornness and even worse lack of ability to recognise and nurture real talent. An absolute disgrace, unable to do what’s best for the club, it’s all about him.

    Real fans are hurting, I’m sick of seeing us unable to come back from a goal down. Even worse the manager consistently makes substitutions that take away any chance of winning or even drawing.

    For all you trust the process and get behind the team Muppets, you deserve what’s being served up. I’ve detached myself emotionally, it’s the only way to deal with this Shit show. It’s far easier now to just sit back and watch while we continue on this path, cos he doesn’t learn from his mistakes, and is delusional to keep saying we were the better team, every time we lose.

  48. Marc

    Dave

    Sid made a worrying point yesterday – if we go out of the EL the players might give up on the season. Between nothing to play for and the Euro’s still scheduled for the Summer it could really happen and that 8th – 10th could easily turn into 10th – 12th.

    How anyone can tell me with a straight face that that isn’t gross misconduct and a sackable offense is beyond me.

  49. Marc

    Mark

    Pedro is deflecting – nearly everything he writes now is wrapped round an agenda of “Arteta will come good”.

    He’d still be saying it as we were preparing to kick off our first match in the Championship. Emery was rightly fired but his level of performance never got this bad.

  50. SpanishDave

    Yes Marc soon heads will drop when it’s clear that there’s nothing to play for.
    Agents will start to see if they can shift players on when the future is bleak.
    How can Arteta keep pretending his worth when the shit show continues.
    We need a proven manager not a make pretend one

  51. Marc

    “Agents will start to see if they can shift players on when the future is bleak.”

    But fucking Xhaka will still be stinking the place out and will still be Arteta’s first name on the team sheet.

  52. Tony 2

    Jerry bulivant over at footballfixed just posted on Twitter the follow stats…Like all market analyst’s we monitor for biases for and against premier league teams. According to our data over the last 5 seasons where 1st most favoured and 20 least here’s ARSENAL ‘s positions. 20/21 20th, 19/20 20th, 18/19 19th, 17/18 15th, 16/17 16th. Something is not normal

  53. Habesha Gooner

    If we finish below 10th and we don’t win the Europa league there is no argument to keep arteta. There have been some flashes of good things but he hasn’t got enough results for us to continue to trust him. He would have to be the unluckiest manager to finish below 10th for us to keep him based on great football. But there hasn’t been enough great football so far. He has had 3 windows. He chose some players ahead of others so this is more or less his squad now. So we need to see something. Pedro lowering the bar won’t make us lower ours. We fired Emery for being shit after a season finishing 5th and a Europa league final. If arteta is shit aswell we need to fire him.

  54. Marc

    Dave

    Hopefully it’ll be a great match but often these games don’t live up to the billing. I don’t think even a draw is good enough for Liverpool.

  55. Olis

    My word don’t the cockroaches come out of the woodwork after a couple of defeats?

    We played well and broke centrally through the midfield very well. What let us down on numerous time was the final ball. We’re getting into excellent positions and it is fine margins that are fucking us.

    Yes we were caught on the counter a couple of times but was to be expected pushing for a goal and villa are a very good counter attacking side.

  56. Leftside

    I can’t see us winning EL and climbing up the table looks an ask now, there is no real need to keep a manager with a ceiling of 8th place and a blind spot for has beens who can’t perform.

  57. Zacharse

    I remember maybe 2010 or so Gambon repeatedly calling wenger a paedo etc and this kind of ugly bullshit is still pervading. Back then I thought if a PV replacement got into the team and we bought a real GK we could easily win the league. But he never made
    Those buys and aw shoulda been sacked a lot sooner.
    Arsenal was always expected to struggle after wenger left, same way utd did, same l’pool did for years. Juve actually getting a challenge this year which is laughable.
    I honestly dont care at this point whether arteta is right or not, whether hes sacked in the next month or not. Ive seen enough at this point to get what hes trying to do in the same way pedro describes it. Its certainly not gonna propel us to the top of the league and honestly no manager will without a HUGE spend in the summer and cutting out the equivalent of LG posters in the team like willian and auba. What does it matter if pedro or I or anyone here said or thought something different a month ago and changed our mind? It makes losing to mid table team after mid table team a lot worse when the play isnt bad by any means but the players are simply not good enough or not reaching the heights they shoudl be due to a combo of age, pace of the league and empty stadiums. I really look forward to things changing w the young talent. I still think we could use a few more david luiz’ in the locker room but its hard to defend when the vets like bellerin auba willian and laca are constant let downs

  58. Leftside

    And, I’d be amazed if Emery was this low in the table with this record and this set of players. I do not like Xhaka in the slightest but he is certainly more useful than the likes of Willian. Willian offers nothing.

  59. Uwot?

    My my my….the usual backstabbers are out in force today.Sharpen those knives Boyz.For your next manager.It won’t matter who it is of course.That’s irrelevant as long he can play wonderful football & fix all our problems in half a dozen matches & get rid of all the deadwood straight away.Get him in…& then start sharpening..Groundhog day.Rinse & repeat……

  60. Time Up

    Arteta says Willian doesn’t know why he is off form.

    Maybe because his real age is actually 38?

    Partey started to have injuries issue.

    Maybe because he’s real age 36?

    Do you know officially Diego Costa is still 32 and when he is payed at Chelsea, people thought he was Oscar’s father.

  61. Winthorpe

    Henry19February 7, 2021 16:19:01
    Fans warned the longer Wenger remains the harder it will be for Arsenal to play catch up and so it’s proven.

    Lol
    We’ve spent 270m in 3 years. Well enough to build a side to reach the top 4. The squad was top 4 quality. Still is. All it needed was some creativity after emery gave it all away
    It’s only since January that we’ve had a couple of creative players in the middle and the difference is quite clear already

  62. Time Up

    I was about to type …

    Goundogan was underrated and twice the player Thiago is, he goes hit row Z with a pen lol.

  63. Mark

    @Tony
    “Speaks volumes about Arteta’s generational ability to assess players’ ability and how to improve them.”

    I said this is likely to be the case once we get to see Saliba for ourselves. No way was the decision to ostracise him from our squads football based. Anyone with eyes could see there is so much to work with that it would have been beneficial to the team to integrate him asap.

    A work colleague (another gooner) said too me months ago about how Arteta took Bellerin under his wing when he came to England and they were really close etc.
    Part of me is now wondering whether or not the immediate dismissal of Saliba as not ready and him not being given any chance to improve before being omitted from all squads , was done to protect Bellerin!!

    Think about it Saliba comes in impresses showing obvious potential, good enough to use now ( ala Fofana ) but where does that leave Hector? Who Arteta sees as a little brother.

    Doesn’t seem so far fetched seeing the loyalty he shows the underperforming seniors. Although I put some of that down to stubbornness and not being able to admit he’s ever wrong. But Hector, he’s is boy.
    🤔

  64. Northbanker

    Very few want to post on here after a defeat Matt / Marc and no reason why Pedro should feel any different. He puts ip a daily post and it is a fairly honest assessment of where we are. There is no reason he has to be on here every minute – he has a day job to do.

    Most don’t post because:
    Firstly because most of us are too gutted to feel any joy in participating in inane dribble.

    Secondly because the doom and gloom merchants are so busy ensuring everyone wallows in their brand of misery that it is best avoided.