As I blogged this morning, the questions asked of Arsene Wenger at press conferences are usually maddeningly inane.
So it was no surprise when the Sky bloke asked the manager whether he was going to make a transfer (free agent), then took some trivial snippets from yesterday’s Huawei video to quiz Wenger about what Arsenal’s future would have been like if he had managed to sign Cristiano Ronaldo and Didier Drogba.
And he gets paid money for this.
Rather obligingly though, London Standard journalist James Olley, a regular on the Arsenal beat, was a bit more on point. He said that fans had asked him to ask the boss about the tactical system and how players are being used this season.
“It’s difficult for me to explain all the tactical changes,” he said, “but not a lot has changed. We failed in some big games last year and behind that is the thinking that we have to be more solid in some games. We conceded too many goals in the big games last year.
“We have to find a balance. Look, I added a striker with Sanchez. We have another striker, Welbeck. We have a lot of offensive players, with Ozil, Wilshere and Ramsey – and even Arteta when he plays is initially an offensive player.
“To find the balance we have as well to defend and I think we have to find a balance between attacking and defending. That’s why it’s not an easy subject.
Asked if the team were still adapting to the changes, Wenger said, “Yes … yes and no, there hasn’t been a big change since last year.”
All in all, there’s some amount of clarity now. At least we have the manager’s reasoning (to stop conceding in big games), and an admission that there’s still a measure of discomfort with the system, but hopefully it’s just growing pains.
And for the record, Wenger isn’t going to sign Joseph Yobo.