Emery demands further improvement from his players

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Nine consecutive victories across three competitions represents an impressive turnaround for Arsenal given the early season defeats to Manchester City and Chelsea, however, Unai Emery insists his side can get better.

Citing the attacking threat posed by Watford, who could easily have won at the Emirates had they taken their chances, and Fulham, who were dangerous in the first half at Craven Cottage, in our last two league fixtures, the Spaniard made clear that his players must tighten up defensively in the future.

“I think we need to improve a lot,” he said ahead of Monday’s clash with Leicester.

“I think we have to continue doing a lot of the things to get better. Our demands need to be very high. The supporters can enjoy it with us but also we’re speaking with our reality every day.

“We need to improve because for example the match against Fulham was a very good result and a very good game for 90 minutes. But in the first 45 minutes I thought we needed to do better.

“If we are remembering the last match at the Emirates [against Watford], we won but not playing like we want, with the control against the opposition. For me now, the most important thing is not to rush.

“The next game against Leicester is very big, very difficult. Leicester are a very good team and play with a clear identity under Claude Puel. They are very competitive, have very good players and we need every single player, and our mentality together to be stronger than in the last match.”

Several Arsenal players have talked up a change in mentality in the dressing room since the summer. Emery doesn’t believe his players can lay claim to a ‘winning’ mentality just yet, he just wants them to keep proving their mettle in both training and matches.

“This is one process: to work every day and not the possibility to say now we have a winning mentality,” he said.

“We need to continue improving, continue creating in our way. The strong mentality is [to show] each minute, each ball, each moment of the 90 minutes to show every supporter we are deciding to win with our example on the pitch. We need to give every action with that mentality.

“This process is very hard, very long and this is the way to do it together. Also with the supporters, we are stronger with them helping us, like for example against Fulham and in every match at the Emirates.”

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Pedant
Pedant

Like that he is driving the players onwards even when things seem to be going well eg on the back of a winning streak.

At times that drive seemed to be missing under Arsene, great manager though he was.

Lobster
Lobster

Agreed.
Our ugly wins under AW were met with an ode to ‘our fantastic spirit’ or something similar, while Emery seems not particularly afraid to call his team out when they’ve gotten away with it. The former method is probably aimed at boosting confidence, while Emery’s approach seems aimed at not letting the players rest on their laurels.
I don’t know enough about sports psychology to have a real opinion on which method is better, and this comment is in no way a dig at AW – a man whom I have great respect for. But I am making a comparison between the two coaches’ methods, and I find it surprising when people tell others not to do that. As if 22 unbelievable years of AW has not made him the standard bearer for all Arsenal coaches for the foreseeable future.

Aaron
Aaron

Well, let me weigh in.
Emery’s method may not boost confidence when the chips are down, but it sure eradicates complacency that we became famous for in the last few years under Arsene.
I am sure Arsene knew this too and his emphasis on starting games on the front foot with aggression went to deaf ears, but Emery drilling them in certainly looks like its working so far.

Love Arsene but he had his flaws and being complacent sometimes was certainly one.

David C
David C

Great words from the new boss!

Unrelated, but head over to the NY Times to read this sombre article:
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/17/sports/soccer/arsenal-shares-kroenke.html?smtyp=cur&smid=tw-nytsports

shokim
shokim

Thanks for a good read. The quote below is worth sharing:

“The takeover epitomizes that situation. It upsets me that one man can decide the destiny of the Arsenal, can accrue all the benefits of ownership himself, especially given that he does not regularly attend games. Does he have the interests of the Arsenal at heart? If he does, he has never demonstrated that to me.” – Jeffrey Freeman

A Different George
A Different George

Thanks for this link. This is an extraordinary article that every Arsenal supporter should read.

A Different George
A Different George

Blogs, I don’t know how it works legally, but I think you should provide a prominent place for this link as well.

Homer
Homer

Right. Good call. I mean, why not stage open revolt against the owner of the club that just spent 197M pounds on players over the last two xsfer windows. (Player sales offset that number, but spend isn’t the problem.)
After all, he’s a yank. After all, he’s neither a “football” man, nor an “Arsenal” man — because ya know, that’s how it works in world football now. Just like Chelsea, Liverpool, Manyoo – oh, wait … not like them it all.

There exists some perceived bias against him due to following the club bylaws and picking up the remaining shares. Sure, it sucks for those folks but they knew it was a possibility. But you’d rather Stan ignore the rules?

I’m fine with a perceived bias against Creepy Stan for the ridiculous mustache. I mean c’mon, the Hitler Nouveau look … its not a thing. And sure, involving his son in cub management reeks of nepotism and amateurism and this stuff is BS. Bitching about the stuff that matters, well I’m all for that.

A Different George
A Different George

It has nothing to do with his being American. (I cannot imagine a worse owner than the very English wrecker of Newcastle United.) Kronke has exercised his legal right (but, who does write the laws about corporate ownership?) to force the sale/purchase of the tiny percentage of shares he does not already own. Why? To destroy the last bit of transparency, of supporter participation, however limited, in governing the club.

David Hawke
David Hawke

Makes a welcome change from “We have great mental strength and we are a great side because we won 9 games in a row.” I like this refusal to be complacent and insistence on addressing the obvious weaknesses everyone can see.

Chidi
Chidi

Reading this reminds me how exciting it is learning a new language, and the boss is doing very well with his English. A whole lotta efforts he’s putting in this team and on and off the pitch and I’m very much appreciative.

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

His English gets distinctly better by each press conference.
I wish my Spanish could improve at that rate.

gooner1981
gooner1981

It’s nice that he is playing down the winning mentality thing. In the past, we have beaten teams out of the top 6 regularly. Last year was the worst possible blip. We have to keep this run going, not let teams slice through us so easily, and most importantly, win against the top teams in the weeks to come.

santori
santori

There have been a number of improvements already this season albeit still too early to tell.

Four in particular I’d highlight :

1) Bellerin has been concentrating on the defensive side more (at some expense at times going forward) BUT he is learning to ‘weather’ the (first half) storm and pick his moments later second half when indeed he has turned in a number of assists.

2) Iwobi has been improving already even in last ten games under Wenger. People as usual want to see what they want to see. He was offering more maturity and solidity last season so it is no surprise at all that he has more function this season particularly given he is the closest we have at the moment to a winger (with Nelson inexplicably out on loan)

What has improved in his game is he is taking the time (trusting in his technical ability) to keep his head up and look at his options. This comes with maturity. As I had mentioned many times, we saw this with Walcott and Ramsey before. Coquelin too. They all got better (less rushed) around 23yrs.

3) Granit has also been an improvement. Again those who want to find fault in him (like Mustafi and Flamini) will always amplify the ills over the good things he is doing. Whilst many would prefer to credit Torreira for midfield improvement (and indeed he brings a certain bite to us), Granit has also been improving defensively.

Particularly given the Uruguayan is handicapped by height, Granit makes a lot of clearances out for us with his head and is developing a better understanding with Mustafi behind.

But the MAIN profit we get from him is he is able to switch the point of attack for us very quickly with his long ball distribution. If we can get the right assets to release quicker without support on the counter, we will be benefit of not only Granit but also GUendouzi and Torreira.

4) Lacazette has been excellent this season. He struggled last season to find his feet (not surprising)and I mentioned Giroud had more function than Lacazette in the French set up for a reason.

This season, Laca has taken a page from Giroud. He isn’t as big but he uses his nimbleness and some strength to hustle for the ball for us (Great work rate). His touch though has been akin to his compatriot in bringing assets around him to play much quicker.

And of course, he is hitting the back of the net plus finding relation with Auba and Welbeck.

In addition, the new boys Guendouzi, Sokratis, Leno and Torreira have bedded in well.

NO surprise there is no room for Elneny whom I have mentioned repeatedly is a hardworking but average player we can get rid of (particularly with AMN looking for a role…likely as a utility in midfield and fullback positions)

I’d hasten to add Holding looks to be taking his chance as well with Chambers on loan and Sokratis out. Rob has always had a maturity beyond his years and what I like about him is he has that British unflapableness about him.

Again at 23yrs, he his starting to mature and pick the right options, not least helped by his good technical ability on the ball which provides the confidence to keep his head up and look for options (unlike say the helter skelter and VERY limited Jenkinson)

BUT its early days yet and one bad showing here or there may yet set things back again for some of these players.

Good signs so far but clearly more work to be done with only 8 games into season.

Pakgooner
Pakgooner

Santori sometimes you say lovely things

AnonymousGun
AnonymousGun

Santori says a lot of truths. Sometimes it hurts. but still theres truth is what he said.. Thats why he got thumbs down a lot :\

But I hope he keeps it up, its a better read then 100% fatgunner ever posted.

Nosferatu
Nosferatu

Not to mention Iwobi looks huge now. I believe the kids might say he’s “swole.” Granted, not as huge as Cech got this summer, but the fact that he didn’t seem to lose any of his pace, he looks like some massive old-school running back–like an Ironhead Heyward or Christian Okoye in their primes–with would-be tacklers just bouncing off him and flailing to the ground. It’s awfully fun to watch.

Homer
Homer

Top, top comment.
I’d give 100 thumbs up if I could.

Fatgooner
Fatgooner

To be honest I’ve got no time for Kroenke either, but at least he’s finally done something good for the club by bringing in Emery.

Stan represents everything that’s wrong with football but he’s hardly unique. Right across English football people like him exist. Football has lost its soul; that’s why I don’t go anymore.

KPGooner
KPGooner

I doubt Kroenke had anything to do with bringing Emery in.

afan
afan

and so you should, but you cant make a silk purse out of a sows ear