We’re going with a short post today, I’ve had time to think on what we’re seeing at Arsenal, and clearly, it’s not good enough.
If I’m going to be consistent, then I have to hold Arteta to the same standards I’ve held the previous two managers. My view is you need to see progress. Whatever the vision, at some point, you need to see it consistently. At 18 months, I want to see an identity, even if it fails. I want some 5-0 wins even if its at the expense of some bad losses.
Football is about performances.
Winning ugly only matters if you’ve shown the world you are capable of winning with beauty.
Arteta hasn’t found the formula. It’s mostly rigid and ugly. Good managers work with the tools they have, our guy is not doing that.
We rarely win with glory.
We often lose with pain.
At some point, bum mistakes need to be levelled at the person in charge.
Villareal, regardless of what the Spanish tell you, are not a good side. We had the players to do something interesting and we fucked it up.
Our squad didn’t show up. Good players, well rested, with only one thing on their agenda. There’s no excuse.
The tactics were poor. The team selection was average. The performance was absolutely awful.
We came away with hope because one of our stars won an extremely dubious penalty.
Arsenal are now at the stage where we might win the game in the second leg inspite of Arteta, not because of him.
The energy was low, the performance was bland, the team selection was bad galaxy brain in the worst of ways.
Arteta chose to play Xhaka at left back, despite giving Cedric a 4 year deal. He chose to play Chambers over Bellerin despite having zero pace in his back 4. He thought the best option was to leave Martinelli on the bench.
Those were awful decisions.
We’re at the point where his approach doesn’t even have a nuanced excuse. It’s just pure terribleness an amateur could fix.
Thomas Partey was awful, he’s been here 10 months, you can’t hide behind ‘adaptation’ away in Spain. He’s been there for 8 years, this was his moment.
Every Arsenal fan KNEW Ceballos was going to be sent off because he’s shite and lacks maturity. Earlier in the season, he was mean to the kids in training, which caused a fight between him and David Luiz, because the exChelsea man wouldn’t tolerate it. Arteta knew he was a dick, but he was given the game.
Chambers played right back again when Hector was fit. The Spaniard might be off, but he’s a pro and he can at least run. Chambers is a centre back. Why did he start, he was awful?
Xhaka has done a good job, but he’s not a left back. Cedric is a good full back, certainly capable of playing against Villareal. Why didn’t he start? We gave him a 4 year deal. We need Xhaka as a centre mid in big games, even his detractors can see that.
There’s no identity.
There’s limited effort.
We are shocking, even with good players starting.
It’s time to questions the process.
We’re now at the point where it’s fair to ask if this project is worth the juice, because rookie mistakes aren’t one offs now, they’re now part of the deal.
Does a Europa win change the mess? It wouldn’t have for Emery. Now I’m worried it won’t for Arteta.
Arsenal are woeful. There’s no peak. The best we can hope for is bumming our way to the final… then what?
Arteta picked the slowest defence in Europe. He chose to bench Martinelli. He tried a front 4 we had now clue about. Emery beat him tactically.
It was miserable.
There’s still 90 minutes to rectify this, my concern now is what happens if he does sort it? What does next season bring? Are we extending the inevitable?
I’m pissed. Arteta didn’t make a minor error, he dropped a major. Where do we go from here?
What do you think? Let us now in the comments.
P.S. It’s just me an Johnny on the podcast. Take a listen. x