One of the features of Arsenal under Unai Emery is the relatively indifferent displays we’ve had in the first halves of games.
The Spaniard has made half-time substitutions more than once to try and change a game, and done so effectively in fairness, but seven games into the new season the slow start issue is becoming a bit of a concern.
It’s something Emery acknowledged in the wake of the 2-0 win over Everton yesterday, particularly as the visitors had good chances to score and but for man of the match Petr Cech we might have found ourselves in trouble.
“We want to control the game more in the first half, because we didn’t have the ball like we want,” said Emery afterwards.
“We conceded two or three important chances to Everton, but in the second half we spoke in the dressing room about stopping their attacking moments with better positioning on the pitch.
“Also, individually, each player helped to push more in the second half. I think we only conceded one chance from a free-kick which Petr Cech saved very well and there were no more.
“In attacking moments, we played well in 20 minutes to win this match and in the last minutes we defended very well near our goalkeeper and in our box.”
The Gunners did much better in the second half, scoring twice and controlling the game subsequently to the point where Marco Silva’s side were nowhere near as threatening as they were in the first 45, but coming out of the blocks quicker and more aggressively is undoubtedly another addition to Emery’s ‘To Do’ list.