Video: Unai Emery press conference – Arsenal 0-2 Man City

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Unai Emery spoke to the press following the opening day defeat to Man City, here’s what he had to say.

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Lula
Lula

Still have a lot of the old habits in our squad. But this will take some time to iron out and there were stages in the game where it looked like we were taking the game to them.

Lots to be positive about.

LEFT08
LEFT08

If by old habits you mean the same old owner who has made a habit of not investing in the club, I agree.

gooner4life
gooner4life

Wenger out

Viv
Viv

If we had not tried the gaolie passing to defender stuff,instead went for long balls,I think we would’ve got a point from the game

TommyGun
TommyGun

Ramsey might do well to sign his contract quickly as I am not sure he is deserving of a hefty pay rise based on that performance. I appreciate it is early days and he may have been carrying a knock but he was pretty ineffectual. If you want the big bucks you need to be consistent.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob

Totally agree and although I like him as a player it seems we struggle to fit him and ozil into the same team hence, as one has tied his future to the club, it would have made sense to sell Ramsey and get a winger into the squad!!! I feel a top quality defender and winger should be identified and purchased in the January transfer window!!!

Mother
Mother

One game in and people are already digging individual players out… It was the first game of the season where EVERYBODY looked off the pace – however I would argue that the signs looked good for how Emery intends to use Ramsey. He was the only player who constantly pressed City’s backline and made a couple of nice passes that other players couldn’t take advantage of.

Mootilated
Mootilated

There is only one thing that bothered me about yesterday from a managerial perspective. I don’t feel like it was the kind of game were experimentation was necessary. I think we should’ve gone the safe route to try and get the draw or win the game. For example; why play Ramsey at no 10 when you have Ozil who is one of the best in the world there? Why start with Guendouzi instead of Torreira? Isn’t the former a safer option?

I know it’s a new era and time for new ideas but I don’t feel like yesterday was a game were we should’ve tried new things. They are one of the top 5 teams in Europe. We should’ve played it safe.

santori
santori

I think Emery is doing the right thing not confusing things too much with new tactics too early.

he has to work as well with what he has on hand. He does not possess the sort of quick assets that can readily beat a player or two like Chelsea (Willian Hazard) or Liverpool (Shaqiri Firmino Mane) or City (Sane Sterling Mahrez) possess.

My gripe would be we should have started Torreira. He just ahs the instinct to cover the right places.

The other player I would have started was Iwobi (He is the closest to a winger we have besides young Nelson)

It would have given AMN more physical cover against Walker and the two were near telpathic (presumably from time spent in youth set up) when against Chelsea pre-season.

As for Ozil, Ramsey, I think they pretty much play similar function so one or the other for me in the middle ghosting into the box like you said.

Mother
Mother

You could see Emery’s system bursting through in patches and it looked positive – but the deep-routed issue of not taking our chances whilst allowing such easy shots on our own goal reared it’s ugly head.

At least it’s comforting to know that the players will now be shown video after video after video of where they went wrong and why. Hopefully this was the kind of loss where they learn more than if we had won!

santori
santori

Absolutely, issues both at top and bottom

But at least this time I thought in general we were more collected defending and the mistakes so to speak were more systemic rather than glaring individual error.

Even Mustafi whom many like to unduely blame for everything under the sun only had one poor moment when he was turned around by the excellent Sterling but the popular Guendouzi also made a number of errors (like the one leading to the Aguero opportunity) and is given the blind eye.

Criticism needs to be balanced which more often than not by most fans, is not.

Agree with attack also being culpable. We did not look sharp enough up top and were in many instances completely out of sync.

santori
santori

Like I said pre-season we aren’t attempting anything too new from what Wenger was already doing with his 4-3-3 and a rotating midfield like a fidget spinner.

In this game, Emery wisely kept it conservative in midfield with a more structured 4-2-3-1

I didn’t think we were outplayed unlike last season. Even though scoreline reflected 2 to their good and they had double the shots, I thought we were still in the game to the end (which is where statistics do not reflect reality by the ahem numbers alone)

What Emery has ‘improved’ is aggression and concerted pressing which was sustained through to end of game.

And we almost profited from several turnovers from Ramsey, Mhki, Lacazette, Guendouzi, even Mustafi to name a few high up which had we been sharper would have led to goals.

High press as I mentioned before is not a new thing but we only managed to sustain it for max 20 min spells last season before it all fell apart.

I thought yesterday even when they bypassed the press, we regroup better than before.

A lo of the usual moan about Granit (and personally I would have started Torreira for this sort of mobile opponent) but I thought he did in general decent.

He had one poor moment which led to the free kick conceded by Sokratis but so did Guendouzi that led to the heart stopping Aguero opportunity.

I thought in general we kept narrow cutting out the lines going into the middle but which also created other issues allowing them(their wingers and fullbacks) plenty of space wide.

Where we were poor and less aware was the zone in front of the box where both goals were scored.

Second goal in particular Guendouzi and Ozil were closest to reacting to Bernado Silva but not aware enough. Lichsteiner was caught in two minds bc Aguero was standing perilously close to goal and he could not entirely step out to block Bernado. It was like the first goal a very good strike but we could have made it slightly more difficult.

The other issue of course was out attack which was out of sync.

Aubameyang was poor. One decent attempt first half but off target.

Lacazette scuffed his shot with the late Mhkitaryan inspired chance.

Ozil had great chances one which he could not cue up his shot from a great Lichsteiner cross, then he put the ball in the back of the net but was offside. Won a turnover high up but Lacazette was not aware of their keeper.

Had we been quicker transitioning into our attack like they were and more sharp, it could have made a difference. Still work in progress.

We like to blame defense or some favorite scapegoats but the attack was also poor.

santori
santori

I think Emery can get something against Chelsea next.

I did not think (contrary to if you listen to the media) that we were a million miles away from City.

Stats might show we had 42% possession or they doubled the shots against us but I thought we were competitive to end of game.

We need to fix certain systemic issues defensively and we need to get our attack right.

Transitions can also be quicker. We worked the ball out from the back (with some harrowing moments) decently enough most of the time but we need to take advantage of the quick release provided by the likes of Torreira, Granit and Guendouzi with their long accurate balls.

As example when Cech gets the ball, we should already have someone ready to receive in space on the half way line

Part of the problem is we dont have those players that can beat opponents for pace or skill individually. Iwobi like I mentioned and Nelson are closest to this in the squad.

Even Aubameyang out left rarely took on anyone and was outdone for pace by Walker.

This is a glaring deficiency in current squad.

Either we risk one of Iwobi on left or Nelson on right or we have the same sort of pass and play types in Ozil, Ramsey, Mhki which tends to slow play down.

Its a tough call but we need to get the balance right.

AND of course we have to work on decision making up top. We were caught in two minds way too often without enough conviction.