COLIN LEWIN EXCLUSIVE

by .

Am I going to advertise a friend’s start-up in the first paragraph? Yes I am.

Alfred, early Arsenal Opinion co-host, and also one of my best people, has an app called Anyone. You can call elite people for advice. It’s very cool. Anyway, he’s come up with an ‘of the internet’ idea for ThanksGiving called Thanxiety.

Anxious about Thanksgiving chat -> Thanxiety

You go to this website when the conversation is running low because Grandma is struggling with the nuance of xG over Thanksgiving and it gives you a whole bunch of questions fielded by smart people to help you. I absolutely LOVE it. It has humour, good insight, and it looks great.

Onto the next point.

Honestly, the xG conversation has been SO painful. Data in the hands of learners is such a weapon.

It’s staggering to me how many people are like: ‘But didn’t you have a different opinion on xG 3 years ago’

YES.

With a totally different situation. xG is a great tool, but not always.

‘But Unai’

Oh my word, let’s cover this off with a great comment from Leedsgunner in the LG comments last night.

Context + Eye Test

For those belittling Pedro for not backing Emery when he was stalling around 5th, may I suggest a measure of introspection is needed.

Emery needed to go after he lost the UEFA Europa League Final to Chelsea (no, let me rephrase that he was humiliated by Chelsea). For whatever reason, only known to the board, Emery was kept on until the following December.

He needed to go because he had no plan and no vision. The players looked like they were going through the motions. We looked like we were treading water.

Was he treated unfairly? Maybe. Could the board backed him and showed him patience… sure. Plus, it could be argued that Arteta should have been fired when he lost to Emery last season in the Europa semi finals… but the board didn’t.

Still doesn’t change the fact, under Emery, we looked like an abandoned ship without a captain.

What has Arteta given us?

An identity.

Yes, he has made plenty of mistakes but at least now we have a vision we can understand. The momentum has shifted back in our favour. It looks like he is learning from the mistakes. We are again, a ship with a captain- who goes where he wants to go.

In the end, I think it all worked for the best.

Emery is clearly happier in Spain and we are in the fight again… and I’m excited to see where this new project youth leads us. More importantly it looks like the players, his players back him.

Emery, never seemed to convince his players fully to back his vision…

Emery’s xG was shocking AND it qualified what the eyes were seeing.

xG is an agenda tool. Did I have an agenda against Emery? I did. Why? Because I knew what was going on at Arsenal. It wasn’t a guess. Players didn’t rate him. He communications skills were terrible. People at the clubs said ‘it just isn’t Arsenal’ when he was there. Those issues were always going to manifest on the pitch.

But ultimately, xG is ALWAYS an agenda tool.

If results look lucky, xG can qualify (Emery)

If they look unlucky, xG can qualify (Potter / Klopp @ Dortmund)

When an xG statement is made, a coach has two options, ignore it, or rectify it so the correction doesn’t fuck them.

What did Unai do? Nothing.

Did he ever recover? No.

Did Arsenal pull his deal in the summer because they probably looked at an Understat table or watched a game? Maybe.

This Mikel Arteta issue is VERY different.

Firstly, we have data flexing from December 26th to now. We have accrued the 3rd most points in the league. What does that tell you? That this run of 10 is nice, but it isn’t a blip, it’s just part of a longer pattern of unspectacular consistency.

Secondly, our xG has been soiled by some shocking results that aren’t par the course. Remember, even with that Liverpool loss, our defence since it has been rebuilt is still the 3rd best over 9 games.

Thirdly, the new team that has been built is only 9 games in. Scott over at CrabStats is an awesome analyst. He has the data you don’t get from mainstream sites. Check out this game state xG he has.

xG difference at even game state and no man advantage.

Arsenal is 3rd best when we are level with the oppo. We are a club that scores early. So this means our data is skewed because if you score early, the game changes if you sit back, which we do. Are we secretly the 3rd best team in the league? NO. But this is a prime example of why xG saying we are worse than Notts County might be flawed.

Scott’s data basically says, this season is a messy bitch, and it’s really hard to ascertain how good we are right now.

AMEN! This is a new team. They are young. We don’t have a large enough sample to be drawing DEFACTO conclusions from. EXACTLY where things should be… except? We have the 5th most points in the league to keep us feeling like we’re at least kind of on a decent path.

I spent too much time trying to explain to people that don’t know how to open a PDF that not all data is equal, not all situations are comparable, and the power of stats changes depending on what the situation is.

If you watched Leicester and Spurs and you thought we deserved to lose, then you are an analyst that doesn’t understand the eye test. If you think we should have pure consistency with the youngest team in the league, you don’t understand context in football and you have to sit these conversations out. If you think we’re about to have a 14 game stretch like we did at the start of last season, you clearly aren’t keyed into why that happened.

That guides me in nicely to our chat with Colin Lewin. I interviewed him with Johnny yesterday and it was excellent times. He’s an incredibly humble guy considering all the amazing things he’s achieved in the game. He called it perfectly: ‘We’re not as good as you think when we are on a great run, and we’re not as bad as you think we are after a loss.’

Outside that pearler:

  • We discussed some of the harder injury issues he had to deal with (Jack, Abou, and Aaron Ramsey)
  • We spoke about the role of a Chief Physio and how that integrates with a wider system of performance
  • We talked about building out a high-performance center
  • We talked about what a ‘deadline day medical’ means
  • We also talked about his LewinClinic.co.uk practice and what it does for elite-level athletes (me) and weekend warriors (you)

Big thanks to Colin and my brother-in-law Lee for messing up his ACL and getting paired with Colin to fix it (Lee is a BIG Arsenal fan, so it was his dream way to get injured. He loved it so much, he injured himself again (true)). If you’ve messed yourself up and you need elite talent to help fix yourself, remember, go to the LewinClinic.co.uk first.

Ok, let us know what you thought of the pod and I’ll see you in the comments.

 

137 Responses to “COLIN LEWIN EXCLUSIVE”

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  1. Arsnil

    At last. Trophy. I wish to thank my family and my followers for supporting me over these many many years as I tried to gain the coveted trophy for the first time. It has been worth all the blood sweat and tears. To those that didn’t make it there is always …… tomorrow.
    Here’s to the two in a row attempt.

  2. Thank you and goodnight

    @Pedro

    You posted yesterday that a youngster if he’s not given a chance is because usually there is a better option. How can that be true in regards to Martinelli game time? You yourself have said how awful Aubu has been. Laca hasnt been too prolific in front of goal thses last 2 seasons has he? Even you’ve alluded to as well. So how can we then say Martinelli isn’t given game time because there’s better options while then agreeing Aubu and laca have been poor. I love you for this blog but it seems to me you’d do anything to protect Arteta, almost untold like in your devotion to Arteta.

  3. Leedsgunner

    Our injury situation has been a lot better these season than for years.

    I suspect it’s more because we are not in Europe though.

    If we are going to progress we need to sort the reason for our constant injuries when we are back in Europe.

  4. AFC Forever

    Pedro

    I have to say that was a brilliant write-up. Content is getting better. I always go blurry-eyed when people start throwing stats they like in the air without and context behind them. If you don’t ‘weight’ the stats they are just a worthless number. Anyone who works in business knows this. I have no idea why some people don’t trust their eyes, perhaps that’s because they don’t see what others do?

    Leedsgunner, respect mate you nailed it perfectly. I said the same, that humiliation in the ELF was awful Chelsea should have scored eight!

  5. Ashwin Gunner

    Pedro

    Statistics is for you to slice and dice and show it in a way which is conducive to your agenda and the audience. thats the reality. you can twist it in anyway you want.

    now two things:
    1) We never thought we will win at Liverpool. 4-0 had some brain fart moments. I think 2 – 1 was fair. This team is too inexperienced to come back from a 2 goal deficit. We will be better if we keep building the way we have been for that past 11 months.

    2) We are the youngest team in the league. our start players are 19 and 21. that is too much reliance on young players. The good thing with this is, all the players will mature faster. While doing that, we will have some big losses. We should ignore it as we are sure to get over these losses in a longer run.

    Lets not read too much into statistics. Lets understand the reality;.

  6. China1

    Pedro you’ve dedicated multiple blogs in a very short space of time to xG. THE LADY DOTH PROTEST TOO MUCH. Almost sounds like after the liverpool game you might have tinkled in your Pampers dry nights whilst scrambling to justify it. Don’t worry those nappies won’t leave a rash. I speak from experience on that

    MEANWHILE I for one think Spurs deserved to beat us 5-0!

  7. S Asoa

    Saying our players are inadequate is off. When we see them , against not so smart teams , the quality is obvious.
    Lessons to be learnt looking at how teams like Chelsea, Leeds, City, Brighton, Bayern , etc ( in no particular order ) are set out. Their players seem to be in proper place most of the time to intercept a pass. Arsenal used to be set up in that manner last year , but too rigid and probably instructed not to challenge ,so being dummies on the board, Arsenal could be run around. Apparently Arteta learnt the book at Pep’s but does not have the intelligence to improvise to a circumstance.
    I digress , coming back, have to reiterate that last window we bought well and have a squad capable of going a slot above 4th too, with luck.
    If only

  8. Mr Serge

    Johnny going off on one about the worst left back in our history Andre Santos on the pod priceless.Pedro telling him off lols,I would argue Gus Ceaser was worse though

  9. Pierre

    In all honesty , i don’t see a lot of difference results and performance wise regarding Arteta and Emery.

    Their style of play is different, Emery more offensive, pretty clueless on setting us up defensively, Arteta more defensive , pretty clueless setting us up offensively.

    Other than that , both managers have produced the odd good performance , but mostly have been average to poor.
    Arteta’s team has improved on the abysmal performances a year ago, the problem is it always seems we are at the crossroads and swimming agaist the tide and playing catch up.

    I’m not quite in the camp that the Europa league final was a total humiliation..
    Sometimes games go that way.

    We actually had more chances than Chelsea on the night but chesea were more ruthless in front of goal and had the rub of the green with the penalty decisions.

    0-0 at half time, and we probably were the better team, xhaka hit the bar and we certainly could have had a penalty in the first half when Lacazette rounded the keeper and was clipped by kepa …a 50/50 decision that went for chelsea as was the chelsea pen, a 50/50 that went in favour of chelsea…..game changers.that should be recognised whether Emery or Arteta was the manager

    Shit happens, i think failing to qualify for the champions league after looking a dead cert was more of a problem

    Arteta was fortunate to keep his job last christmas, he should be thankful that it wasn’t him that followed wenger as we were very quick to dismiss Emery despite the fact that the results were not as poor as Arteta’s 12 months ago….Arteta is a lucky man that our youth , smith rowe and Martinelli saved our season against chelsea last christmas..

  10. Leedsgunner

    Honestly, take a bow for that podcast.

    It was fantastic and genuinely fascinating… and I almost was going to give it a miss… but I’m glad I didn’t. One of the best episodes of any Arsenal podcasts I’ve listened to… including Arsecast and Arsenal Vision podcast.

    Well worth it!

    Excellent and thanks.

  11. Dissenter

    We had some dismal performances under Emery
    We’ve had some dismal performers under Arteta. We’ve played some big teams with mediocrity. We have had too many games that are better forgotten.

    This xG bust-up has nothing to with Arteta.
    He’s a young manager learning his trade in a big club and gets rightly criticized when he gets it wrong. There have been improvements this season< let’s hope it ends well for Arsenal’s sake.

    Pedro did a rapid fire Arteta defense post to muddy xG Un defense of Arteta and now she’s flailing around trying to justify himself.
    This is all about Pedro’s crusade to prove that some of his long term readers have the memories of gold fishes. We do remember how you weaponized xG against the other Spaniard in charge at a time when we were on a run that took us to a EL final and a C*nt’s hair of 4th place.

    It really doesn’t matter at the end of the day. It’s your blog so you’re always going to get the megaphone. You get the first and last word so let’s just call you the winner so that we can get back to Arsenal.

  12. China1

    Emery after a very good start got progressively worse

    The end was absolutely miserable stuff – really dark times. Even when we were 5th it was some horrible stuff. 50 shots against let game vs average teams. Absolutely shocking stuff

    I don’t come here to defend Emery, but I do defend his good start because it was just that. Good. Everything post that was progressively crap.

    That winning run was fun tho. I very much enjoyed those battling wins

  13. China1

    Watching Sokratis literally throw a burn key player off the pitch and Sean Dyche crying like a baby in the post match press conference about us man handling them was one of those genuinely enjoyable moments that made my heart happy

  14. TR7

    Newcastle, bottom of the league, have scored more goals than Arsenal.

    As bad as Emery was, Arteta so far has been only marginally better. Unless he proves that he can improve both our defense and attack, the jury is out on him as far as I am concerned.

  15. Tom

    Pretty bored with the ongoing Emery saga two years on tbh, especially when his Villarreal are sitting 12th in La Liga.
    Proving Pedro’s bias on the subject is like shooting fish in a barrel with a twelve gage, but once he’s admitted to it himself ( bias) , the subject is closed for me.

    I’d be more concerned with his low expectations for Arsenal going forward than him fudging the data to show the team’s progress.
    In essence he’s giving Arteta four years to make top four, having previously compared him to Klopp who gave himself four years to win the league.

  16. Guns of Brixton

    Newcastle, bottom of the league, have scored more goals than Arsenal.As bad as Emery was, Arteta so far has been only marginally better. Unless he proves that he can improve both our defense and attack, the jury is out on him as far as I am concerned.

    Bro, have you been missing for the last 2 posts?

  17. Rich

    The way it ended for Emery, probably said more about the players in the squad and their professionalism, than it did about Emery

    Arteta almost got downed last December by largely the same group of players

    Managers come + go, but hopefully the club has learnt its lesson, stop stockpiling dross

    We don’t need 9 centre backs, 4 right backs, no fit or registered attacking midfielders, and then loaning out our second choice left back, leaving us with only 1 injury prone left back

    Playing 3 months with Runarsson as our second choice keeper, was gross negligence

    Our non existent squad planning, our oversized + unbalanced squad, and having multiple inactive players around the training ground, plotting against the manager, has been more of a problem, than poor coaching or tactics in recent years

  18. andy1886

    Context. Let’s look at our Europa League Final side:

    Petr Čech – Well past his best
    Sokratis – Toilet, let’s be honest
    Koscielny – In decline and looking to leave
    Monreal – Past his prime, released the following August
    Ainsley Maitland-Niles – Bit part player under MA
    Torreira – Loaned out as MA doesn’t rate him
    Xhaka – Mediocre under Emery, mediocre under MA
    Sead Kolašinac – Sorry, just garbage
    Ozil – Retired as a pro footballer by this time
    Lacazette – So good that MA is prepared to let him walk this summer
    Aubameyang – Actually I still rate the guy but according to many on here he’s useless

    So, if you’re lucky there’s maybe two players that a majority of us would actually rate. In fact it’s something of a miracle that we made the final at all with a side like that.

    Difficult to compare a team like that with the side 30 months later when we’ve spent £226m on new talent.

  19. Dissenter

    Rich
    “The way it ended for Emery, probably said more about the players in the squad and their professionalism, than it did about Emery. Arteta almost got downed last December by largely the same group of players”

    Thanks for your honesty, it’s much needed around here.
    The idea that Emery lost the dressing room because of poor communication has always been garbage because the same players who openly derided him did the same thing to his successor..

  20. youdamn

    Auba is a huge problem for us at the minute (and has been for ages)
    He just cannot start on Saturday again being totally ineffective. He doesn’t even get subbed.
    Surely it’s Eddie or Martinelli’s time ?

  21. Tom

    Andy, add to that Arsenal’s record in Europe ( lost four European finals in a row I believe) and Chelsea’s recent record in Europe, and the whole “humiliation” claimed by some maybe viewed in a different light.

    Not to mention Hazard who was easily Europe’s third best player that season with 38 g/a to his name, with RM paying 140m to get him with one year left on his contract.
    Meanwhile Arsenal couldn’t give our players away without subsidizing their wages.

  22. Pierre

    I think that when you look at Tuchel’s chelsea compared to Lampard’s chelsea , it was Lampard’s refusal to see the qualities of Jorginho and Rudiger that partly led to his demise.

    Tuchel immediately rectified this by reinstating Jorginho and Rudiger and they are now integral to Chelsea’s fortunes improving over the last 12 months.

    Jorginho was a player that we should have snatched from Chelsea 16 months ago, lampard would have been more than happy to see him leave the club.

    Instead we brought in Willian and we all know how that ended up.
    A good percentage on Le grove don’t or didn’t rate jorginho, similar to the way they didn’t rate Ozil , but what it shows is how a manager can make the wrong call and how it can have a negative effect on the team and performances..

    That is why it is important not to write any player off just because a manager doesn’t fancy them..

    If you look at Aubamayang under Emery and wenger and Aubamayang under Arteta , it’s like chalk and cheese..
    I don’t believe it is an age thing, it is more about not understanding a player’s capabilities and playing to their strengths.

    If a manager isn’t going to play to a player’s strengths then the player should be sold, not given a new contract as what happened to Aubamayang.

    Arteta was fooled into thinking that Aubamayang had become a Thierry Henry type player wbo scored all types of goals after his escapades during the fa cup winning run., so he offered him a lucrative contract but Aubamayang is basically a one touch finish tap in merchant that needs the right service and the service has dried up.

  23. Rich

    Andy

    I made the same point the other day, the Europa League final team was one largely in regression

    I debated with Pedro and many others in the summer of 2019, that in site of spending £140 million, we’d actually gone backwards, and decreased the quality of our squad in the immediate, rather than increasing it

    I could spot the rot setting in a mile off, and wasn’t in the least bit surprised we delivered back to back 8th place finishes

    Monreal- Tierney, Monreal was one of our better players, Tierney was injured, had no pre-season, and wasn’t available until December, which left Kolasinac, while this was the right move, it weakened us in the immediate

    Saliba – decent medium- longer term punt, but we loaned him out, so no immediate impact

    Koscielny – Luiz, one ageing past it centre back, in exchange for another

    Iwobi – Saka, this was the right move, but Saka was 17-18, there was always going to be an initial offset

    Pepe – Mkhitaryan, Pepe was an exciting signing, but you could see straight away he was incredibly raw, so real movement here

    Ceballos – Ramsey, was a slight downgrade

    Martinelli – Welbeck, we swapped a talented 18yr old, for an injury prone experienced PL winner, this was always a change that’s need time to come into fruition

    The idea we’d won the transfer window, and had a squad that should be finishing 3rd, stood up to no real type of scrutiny

  24. Pierre

    Rich
    “Arteta almost got downed last December by largely the same group of players”

    Says he who keeps harping on about the importance of experience…

  25. Rich

    Pierre

    We need the right type of experience, particularly in central midfield + central defence

    Our experienced players haven’t been good enough, and our talented youngsters lack experience

    Talented youngsters can beat experienced teams of inferior quality

    But a team full of talented youngsters, tend to come unstuck against experienced teams, full of superior or similar quality, because experience wins through

    We’re at the beginning of a new cycle, we’re trying to educate a group of young players together, and build a cohesive unit with a talented foundation of young players

    What we lack are 3-4 top class 26-30 year olds to help guide the younger players, and provide a bit more tactical nous + leadership on the pitch

    You don’t see that as an issue, in spite of the fact that the teams who win have a average age of 27-28, many top managers are on record as saying this is the balance they try to strike

    But you think you know better, and we can just throw 11 under 23 players on the pitch, some with very little experience, and still compete in the most competitive league in the world

    You’re entitled to your opinion, but some of the nonsense you spout, stands up to no real type of scrutiny

  26. Zacharse

    Just gonna repost this….

    “ “Villarreal, managed by ex-Arsenal boss Unai Emery, are 12th in La Liga, having only won three of 13 domestic league matches, but were the better side in the first half and start of the second.“”

  27. Champagne Charlie

    Unsurprisingly the usual posters want to make superficial arguments about xG because it serves to make a simple criticism of Arteta 12 games into the season.

    These are the same posters who dismissed data from last season and wanted to do the ‘it’s about where we are in the table’ dance – that happens to no longer apply now we’re where we want to be this season so far.

    You can tell a lot about a person by their willingness to dismiss context and additional info when drawing an apparent ‘objective’ conclusion.

    In simple terms you have people trying to argue that conceding 1 goal in 5 consecutive matches is the same as conceding 5 in one match and keeping 4 clean sheets. Just isn’t honest commentary at all.

    Emery was basketball football against everyone, Arteta isn’t close to that same lack of control. The false equivalence is painful to read.

  28. Champagne Charlie

    Rich

    I think we need 3 established players between 24-27.

    My personal choices would be at CM, CF, and wide forward.
    – We need a player that can create from CM
    – We need a reliable established outlet wide who can penetrate, combine, and score goals.
    – We need a CF capable of occupying centre halves and giving the supporting players a foothold in advanced areas.

    Of the names continually linked I think Neves, Sterling, and Jovic would be a compelling trio.

  29. TR7

    31 clean sheets in 50 games and now champagne football against Leicester and Juventus after international break – Tuchel is doing something quite extraordinary.

  30. Zacharse

    CC
    Talk About the table justification stuff… imagine if dortmund hadnt fired klopp and instead did what we did w arteta…
    Or some of the posters yer referring to conveniently forgetting señor olé finishing above tuchels chelsea AND klopps liverpool in the table last season. Table doesnt lie just leaves out mitigating factors. And thats not to say mitigating factors are the only thing left out, doesnt leave out the literal negative points we began emerys 2nd season with after the EL defeat

  31. Zacharse

    CC
    Good calls in team additions. Perhaps im over-hopeful but i have a feeling we’ll come away from jan window w 2/3 of that. Maybe not in the 24-27 range, but in the leadership mode of ramsdale/white scouting certainly. Thinking/hoping the kroenkes want to invest asap as we certainly need it and they probably want to get as many big ticket purchases squared before this crazy NFL suit heats up even more. Perhaps im naive in this.

    Think the CF should be the priority at the moment. Esr and Saka need someone to ease the weight Of pressure immediately they are too young to be carrying us the way they are.

  32. Zacharse

    I think auba still has plenty do here and could pop in 10-15 goals 2nd half alone

    IF
    we sign another attacker who’s the real deal and ready for battle. Preferably someone who has acclimated to the league. Imagine zaha coming and esr moving to thw center. Then auba scores A LOT more no?

  33. Dissenter

    Mb
    That Conte interview shows why many decent big clubs would never consider him in charge as manager.

    He’s one angry dude. No one can tolerate him past 2-3 seasons, at best.

  34. bacaryisgod

    Pedro

    The season is 12 games old not 9. Please stop with the 9 game table. What makes you think that a healthy, rested squad that lost to Liverpool 4-0 would have fared any better against Man City and Chelsea in games 2 and 3?

  35. Pierre

    Rich
    “You don’t see that as an issue, in spite of the fact that the teams who win have a average age of 27-28, many top managers are on record as saying this is the balance they try to strikeBut you think you know better, and we can just throw 11 under 23 players on the pitch, some with very little experience, and still compete in the most competitive league in the world”

    Of course it would be perfect to bring in top quality experienced players but I’m a realist , it ain’t going to happen.

    So you can harp on about bringing in the best experienced players all you want but i just can’t see the club paying 2 or 3 experienced players 2/3 hundred grand a week plus transfer fees, because that is what we will have to pay player’s like sterling.

    Personally, i would love to see highly technical players like jorginho, Sterling , Bernado silva come into the side to replace our experienced players Aubamayang, Lacazette, elneny, xhaka , but i believe we will replace these players with another group of youngish players with potential..

    The fact is, we have a number of experienced players in the squad
    Mari
    Elneny
    Xhaka
    Leno
    Cedric
    Aubamayang
    Lacazette
    kolasinac
    Partey

    HOW MANY MORE DO YOU WANT…

    At present , our less experienced players are performing better than our more experienced players, hence why i prefer going with youth and want to see youth leading the line ..it’s pretty simple to understand..

    Maybe the club will surprise me and will go out and buy top class experienced players and pay them top wages, to add to the NINE experienced players already at the club

  36. Dissenter

    Tom
    It wasn’t enjoyable seeing him talk down players who has won him a FA cup and a league title in two years.
    That was unnecessary.

  37. Mb

    Yeah, that’s probably why Manure stayed away, even when they got a bag full of money for any manager.

    I stumbled upon that video and though to pass on the laugh :))

  38. Mb

    It was though, when he mentions Spu*s winning fuck all.

    Diss,

    His anger was towards the Russian billionaire. And frankly, Willian and Luiz were sh*t.

  39. Mb

    Not than anyone’s interested, but I’m Sober for 45 days now. Feels good man, better sleep, improvement in concentration and less anger.

    I do occasionally have a fag or two in the evening but I’m not doing it at home – so I can’t have it all the time..

  40. Dissenter

    TR7
    “That Conte video is fake for God sake”

    I sure hope that it’s fake because it makes him look like a lunatic

  41. Chris

    Mb

    Congrats on your sobriety. Keep going! Christmas 19 was my last alcoholic drink. I think I am lucky here but I don’t really miss it or think about it anymore, even at the football.

  42. andy1886

    Zacharse – But who is picking up what part of the tab? As I understand it the city of St. Louis was claiming against Kroenke, The LA Rams, and the NFL. And there was some dispute within the NFL regards who would pay what part of any settlement.

  43. Pierre

    Bacaryisgod
    “Pierre
    Your ability to sneak Ozil into your comments is borderline genius.”

    I dont know what you mean ..

    In saying that, Rich seems to think that i don’t think experienced players are useful in a fiotball team..

    The fool has forgotten that Ozil is experienced as they come and we still haven’t replaced his intelligence, composure, creativy and of course his experience..

  44. Pierre

    Bacaryisgod

    I could post Ozil’s goal at the weekend with a run(yes he can still run) from the halfway line to beat the keeper with a rasping shot into the roof of the net with his weaker foot .

    Thats 5 goals in 7 starts by the way

  45. Rich

    Pierre

    You’re so confused, the other day you were predicting a title challenge, you’re completely delusional

    One minute an inexperienced team with an average age of 24, and no top class senior players to their peak, isn’t the reason we lost at Anfield

    Then above you acknowledge how quality, senior professionals at their peak, would help us…

    Which is it? You change your mind one day unto the next…

    The only consistency you have is with your weird Ozil obsession, stick to knocking 20 out a day over that 💦

    You must have the strongest wrist in North London

  46. Champagne Charlie

    “Think the CF should be the priority at the moment. Esr and Saka need someone to ease the weight Of pressure immediately they are too young to be carrying us the way they are.“

    My thoughts exactly Zach, been in that camp since Auba was renewing his contract. That was the moment to realise he was a glass half full (being kind). Tammy was a huge miss in the summer, and the right CF is the single biggest improvement we could make to our starting XI in Jan.

    Imo we need a player to go both ways, cover the ball, and create chaos for the supporting trio to find that extra yard. Auba pretends to offer a threat in behind but his pace is questionable and his ability to repeat sprints is naturally on the wane – least said about his hold up play the better.

    If I could ask for a prime striker then get me Benzema, he’s the perfect CF for our team.

  47. Zacharse

    If I could ask for a prime striker then get me Benzema, he’s the perfect CF for our team.

    🙏🙏🙏
    Would settle for toney/watkins/etc someone ready to fight hard w more than enough gas in the tank to fight brutal for a few years

    I do think the way we’ve handled auba, his contract and his fits n starts professionally is to be admired. Nows not the time to be cutthroat w our leaders Nd respected figures in the dressing room

  48. Zacharse

    andy1886November 24, 2021 19:22:34
    Zacharse – But who is picking up what part of the tab? As I understand it the city of St. Louis was claiming against Kroenke, The LA Rams, and the NFL. And there was some dispute within the NFL regards who would pay what part of any settlement.

    Yup. Looks like st louis filed against kse as well as the nfl. Dont take my word, but it looks as though by kse settling the suit will be retracted or whatever the correct term, against the league. That said 800m is a big payout…

  49. Pierre

    Rich
    “One minute an inexperienced team with an average age of 24, and no top class senior players to their peak, isn’t the reason we lost at Anfield

    Then above you acknowledge how quality, senior professionals at their peak, would help us”

    Correct.

    And I also said i am a realist and we won’t be buying top quality experienced players because we won’t pay sky high wages, so whether .me , you or anyone else wants quality experienced players , it ain’t going to happen.

    Also, we lost at Anfield because they are a better football team than us, the way an experienced Juventus team lost to chelsea 4-0 because chelsea are a better football team…

    It’s quite simple really .
    .

  50. Champagne Charlie

    Zach

    Disagree a bit on Auba. I think quietly Arteta will be lamenting that extension given he got the armband on top of it. Always thought if you were extending him or Laca then the choice was obvious.

    My issue is with Auba, Laca, Pepe, I’ve said it a million times. That said, important you get the right ingredients in to replace them – mentality being right up there in importance.

    I like Watkins and Toney, but have my reservations they’re the ‘leaders’ type. Think you mentioned Zaha previously, that’s the sort of outgoing personality we could benefit from in the attack to encourage our young, nice players to develop an edge.

  51. Zacharse

    With you on that Charlie. You saying tho that we shoulda extended laca and gave him the captainship instead of auba? I think im the least likely to defend laca even w the ‘resurgence’ of late, always said here he was the last nail in wengys coffin. Just was never going to be an epl fit imo.

  52. Pierre

    Rich

    Maybe wè should buy Benzema
    Maybe we should buy Verrati
    Maybe we should buy Bannuci
    And why we are at it , put in an offer for Neymar..

    Nice bit of quality experience there , I’m sure kronke will be more than happy to finance it..

  53. Champagne Charlie

    Zach

    Physically he’s not offering you a threat in behind, but he’s got a lot more in the locker than Auba to play CF for us and I think dropping Auba for him is our ‘best’ XI. I’m saying if the decision was to keep on one of the two, it should’ve been Laca – a player idolised by the youngsters at Colney too don’t forget.

    But overall? I was in favour of selling both and starting over. Have always said we gave ourselves a headache when buying Auba on top of Laca (should’ve been a Mahrez/Zaha).

  54. Zacharse

    Ya agreed. Thought auba was the more influential one tho… oh well, i dont really give a shit i suppose and agree the sooner theyve both been replaced competently the better. Would be nice to see them have a proper swan song bringing us back to CL
    I also dont envy the scouting dept trying to replace the other half Of our team the next season!

  55. Zacharse

    Nice day hanging in here. Hope yalls are good too. Now that my GF is outta the emergency room back to real life ✌🏻

  56. Rich

    Pierre

    1 minute you’re saying it was poor tactics from Arteta

    Today you hit the nail on the head with Liverpool are better

    The other day you claim that a good balance of experience + youth isn’t important

    Today it’s important, but it might not be…

    Before Liverpool your predicting a title challenge…

    You’re so confused, you’re all over the place, you still think Ozil should be playing for Arsenal,…. It’s Nov 2021

    Give it a break, get back to your Ozil poster collection, at least you’ll have a really strong wrist…

  57. Rich

    So what?

    It’s kind of relevant….

    Manager inherits healthy squad, has 5 years to work, spends £1.1 billion

    Manager inherits a mess during a global pandemic, club struggles to offload overpaid dross

    Spends £80million in his first 18 months, and is only 8-12 games into the £150 million of his spend, which was spent solely on young players

    But yeah, comparing Arsenal + City is a very fair comparison

  58. Batistuta

    And we’re still rolling with “inherited a mess” two years into it too I see. I mean yea sure there’s been some progress but doesn’t mean the bad stuff doesn’t exist without it being attributed to some external factor

  59. Globalgunner

    Anything to excuse Arteta. Next season it will be more of the same.. “Well he’s only been here 3 seasons. So what if Moyes is playing in the CL with West Ham”

  60. Rich

    Newcastle might be scoring goals, but they’re bottom of the league, and haven’t won a league game this season….

    We’re sitting in 5th

  61. Pierre

    Rich
    “Pierre
    1 minute you’re saying it was poor tactics from Arteta
    Today you hit the nail on the head with Liverpool are better”

    Here is my comment from yesterday , quite balanced and emphasising the point how difficult it is to get a result at Anfield..

    “I think it’s fair to say that not many were criticising Arteta’s team selection up until about the 35th minute when he made the mistake of falling for klopp’s tricks, and from then on the tempo and intensity of the game changed.

    .Maybe our tactics should have been slightly different at the start of the 2nd half as liverpool’s tails were up,, to continue to try and play through the press at that stage of the game was suicidal as we were conceding possession every 30 seconds in and around our own area for a 5 minute spell before the mistake was made for the 2nd goal…
    For a 20 minute period in the 2nd half we were under seige and it is very difficult for a manager to turn the tide once liverpool are in full flight, always better to stop the tide before it starts, sadly this wasn’t the case and we continued losing possession , 17 turnovers in a game is the highest in the league this season shows the futility of trying to play through the press
    ..most of the turnovers were in that 20 minute period in the 2nd half i would imagine

    .Even pep and city have suffered the same fate at anfield as have the top clubs across Europe, so no need to despair but hope that Arteta treats it as a learning curve.”

  62. Pierre

    Rich
    “The other day you claim that a good balance of experience + youth isn’t important”

    Still making things up Richard…

    My comment the other day

    “As i said yesterday, I’m all for experience if the players are right.
    At present , our experience players are xhaka, Aubamayang, Elneny, cedric, Mari, Lacazette and Partey.

    Partey will probably be the only experienced player starting for Arsenal next season , which tells you everything.”

  63. Rich

    “Maybe our tactics should have been slightly different”

    Pierre, if our tactics were different, and we went longer, and still lost 4-0, with Liverpool coming straight back at us, as VVD + Matip continually destroy Auba in the air

    You’d still be saying “maybe our tactics should have been slightly different”

    We lost to a superior team, every time we drop points you could claim we should have done something different, and you probably will…

    Captain hindsight

  64. Tom

    “Guardiola has spent north of £1.1 billion since 2016, after inheriting the most expensively assembled squad in history“

    Rich , is it relevant how expensively assembled the City squad was if Pep proceeded to replace all the players he inherited?

    When you talk about Arteta’s squad, are you doing the same thing or skipping that part all together and going straight to emphasizing just the new players and their cost?

  65. Tom

    Actually, disregard that.
    Pep took over at City in 2016-17 and not the same year as Klopp , which was what I thought for some reason.
    He did inherit some top players he kept then.

  66. englandsbest

    Stan Kroenke and NFL settled the case Missouri brought against them for moving the Rams to LA out of court. The cost? Seven hundred and ninety million bucks. A couple of years ago I’d have thrown my hat in the air and cheered. Now I am not so sure.

    How much of the $790 mill Stan will pay I don’t know. But it’s likely to be the lion’s share. Will he stop investing in Arsenal, will he sell up? No idea.

  67. Rich

    PierreNovember 16, 2021 11:10:08
    Rich
    “Whether we finish 5th-6th, fall into 7th or 8th, or just edge into 4th, won’t be decided for a long time yet, it’ll likely be tight and go to the wire”

    This shows a lack of confidence in the management and players..
    We are 2 points behind liverpool
    3 points behind city
    6 points behind chelsea .

    Who’s to say that this present side can’t maintain this run of form, the players are only jist starting to gel and as yet, we haven’t totally clicked in the final third, though there are signs that we are getting there .If one goes back to 1997/98 double winning season for Arsenal , at Christmas we were sitting in 6th , 12 points behind united , 7 points behind Blackburn, 5 points behind chelsea, 3 points behind liverpool and 2 points behind leeds, and yet we won the league with 2 games to spare..Some bookies actually paid out on United winning the league

    .All the teams above us atm are in Europe , chelsea , liverpool and west ham are still in the league cup so there will be a massive fixture pile up for these clubs, which ultimately will result in injuries and fatigue.What i will say is let’s wait until after our next 4 league fixtures before wrting us off.

    Liverpool are having a little blip .
    Newcastle home, they are there for the taking.
    United and Everton away should hold no fears for this present team , in fact i would imagine that united and Everton have more to worry about facing Arsenal.

    Those 4 games couldn’t come at a better time for Arsenal, none of those teams are close to hitting form.Chelsea are not as good as some think , let’s wait and see how they react when their luck turns and they start dropping points..Could we do what leicester did a few years back , i wouldn’t write us off just yet”

    Pierre here’s your post on a title tilt, you claimed yesterday they were my words, not yours

    But I’ll let others decide.

    I can’t be bothered to go through older posts, but you’ve definitely made arguments against needing a good balance of youth + experience, but now spun in a different direction

    You’re delusional, all over the place

  68. Tom

    Rich, obviously I wasn’t comparing City talent to pre Arteta Arsenal talent, but rather to PSG’s as of today, since that’s what your original comment was replying to.
    Still not valid though, since Sterling and KDB were in the City squad already when Pep arrived hence why retracted it.

  69. Pierre

    Richard

    Thanks for reposting my comment, it clears things up perfectly

    My comment “What i will say is let’s wait until after our next 4 league fixtures before wrting us off.”….doesn’t translate to we will win the league…

    It translates to , mess up the next 4 games and forget about it .
    Win 3 of the next 4 and continue on a run similar to our last unbeaten run and we may be in the mix as we are not in Europe…

    So come back after the Everton away game and the picture will be clearer…

    .

  70. Goobergooner

    Pedro, I love this line. I cannot argue with that haha

    “That this run of 10 is nice, but it isn’t a blip, it’s just part of a longer pattern of unspectacular consistency.”

  71. Pedro

    Rich, think it’s unlikely we’ll keep this form up. But one thing is for sure, we’ll get better with the season. Suspect it’ll be steep peaks and troughs.

  72. Leedsgunner

    Leeds and Brighton will be looking for a new striker come January.

    Pull the trigger this time Arsenal.

    £5m to £8m for Eddie Nketiah would be a fair deal for us and for Leeds and Brighton given his age and experience… if he’s not going to sign his extension, cash in!

    Then for the next 4-5 months let’s see what Balogun and Martinelli can do.

  73. Mb

    Loan out Balogun, replace Laca with Eddie and buy Auba’s replacement.

    Ramsdale
    Tomi..White..Gabriel..Tierney/Tavares
    Partey..Lokonga
    Saka..ESR..Eddie
    *New CF*

    Loan out Martinelli if Pepe’s not sold.

  74. Mb

    Now whoever said being out of Europa was a blessing in disguise, think about it.

    Europa meant game time for – Martinelli, Balogun, Patino, Kido and others, one of whom could have gone to become next Saka or ESR.

  75. Time Up

    How long would Pedro keep patching up this horrible style of play with out an attack.

    We have to to deny our eyes and football knowledge while watching this painful type of football. Football that, as soon as we move past the halfway line, we look clueless. And, after 100 game our average manger can still not work it out.

    It pains me to say donkey Moyes with less resources and inferior players at WH playing the better football. Both hired at the same time.

  76. Pedro

    Time Up, that average manager is 3 points from top 4 and has Arsenal fans who go to games loving life at The Emirates.

    West Ham were shite against Wolves last week. Though I think a more cultured football fan would veer away from calling David Moyes a donkey in 2021. He’s one of the best performing managers in the league.

    You’re a bit out of touch, aren’t you?

  77. Pedro

    Going to have to remember all these folk desperate for Europa next year when they are downgrading it as beneath them next season if we’re in it.

  78. kjelli

    Why is that when Liverpool or Man.city field young players, they immediately make an
    impact and seem ready to play at a high level.. but not our players ? We need a player like
    Gundogan in our middle.. in jan.

  79. Terraloon

    Kjelli

    It’s quite simple really.

    1) The players have vastly experienced and elite players alongside them. The get proper on field tuition.

    2) Most of them have had a decent apprenticeship in that they have hardened up in lower league EFL matches

    3) Other clubs have a far higher threshold in terms of players they think will make the grade. By that I mean they seem to be able to determine the very top talents and let go medium range talent whereas at Arsenal it seems to me to that some not elite but good academy products are kept on board and whilst they are ok ish they aren’t elite

  80. Terraloon

    Pedro

    Time Up, that average manager is 3 points from top 4 and has Arsenal fans who go to games loving life at The Emirates.

    Actually he is 4 points off 4th but hey.

    On the flip 3 points less would see Arsenal in 9th position

  81. Terraloon

    As things stand it’s only Leicester and Spurs that haven’t qualified for the next stages of their respective European competitions.

    Liverpool, City WHU and Utd have I believe already topped their groups so other than the extra bit of prize money they almost certainly will be massively changed so from this point on save tournaments that Arsenal are likewise involved in there won’t be any sort of + for Arsenal indeed the loss of potentially 4 players Arsenal are likely to loose to the AFCOM will impact significantly more than any of these clubs

    Chelsea have qualified but haven’t yet topped their group they certainly won’t be impacted their squad is just too deep.

    Leicester are struggling to qualify. Their squad is wafer thin and the stalwarts like Vardy, like Evans are on the downslope of their careers so they will be impacted the for a while and likewise the AFCON is going to hurt them big

    Spurs , well Conte will relish the extra couple of games to build confidence and of course work on his philosophy

    Put all that together and clearly the benefit from non EL/CL participation clearly is now just about over till the knockout stages.

  82. Leedsgunner

    Being out of Europa is limiting in terms of appearances for our youngsters but it helping us in terms of injuries.

    Plus our squad is nowhere near good enough in terms of quality to win the competition.

    Sure, we have the squad do well in terms of the group stages and the initial knock out phases.
    However when we get to the business end of the
    Europa League we are forced to play our strongest XI to make sure we get through to anywhere near the finals.

    This in turn derails our EPL campaign…

    This is counter productive because we are just making up the numbers.

    We need a squad capable of fighting on four fronts not just in terms of numbers but in terms of quality.

    If our owner invests heavily again in January and next summer we might actually start to do this.

    ESR, Saka, Ramsdale, Tierney, Tavares, Benny Blanco, Gabs, Tomi, AMN, Sambi, Balogun – all under 25 — they are the young heart of our team… all gaining confidence and experience learning to play their football the way the manager wants them too… without injuries ripping through that squad.

    This can only be a good thing.

    True, Chelsea won the title when they were out of Europe with Conte.

    However, there are crucial differences – Abrahamovich has constantly pumped money into that squad so Conte had a quality base to work with, including players like Hazard (at his peak) at his disposal… who consistently produced in the league. We don’t have players like that, yet.

    Conte was an experienced manager who knew what he wanted to do.

    Arteta is still working his vision out… but he is getting there. That’s the important thing, he’s getting there.

    The beginnings of a talented squad is there. They will become only stronger with experience.

  83. Chika

    When Arteta won the FA Cup, they called it a nothing trophy.
    When we played in the Europa, they called it a distraction.

  84. Chika

    Although I’m not the biggest fan of Sterling, it’d be silly to downplay his numbers over the years. A player like him would certainly elevate our attack. I’ve seen a few reports linking us recently.

  85. Mb

    PedroNovember 25, 2021 06:51:40
    Going to have to remember all these folk desperate for Europa next year when they are downgrading it as beneath them next season if we’re in it.

    — It doesn’t matter if we are beneath or above. I’m talking about player’s development, group stages provides a platform to play these kids and grow.

    — The last time I checked, we were not in Champions League. So, yeah Europa will very much do.

    — Remember me, any way 😎