Arsenal are into the quarter-finals of the Europa League after a 3-0 second leg win over Rennes at the Emirates this evening.

The goals came from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Ainsley Maitland-Niles, and the visitors rarely threatened during the 90 minutes. Not only that, they were annoying with their playacting, but they’re out and we’re through so there you go.

Read the Arsenal 3-0 Rennes match report and see the goals here

Here’s how the players rated this afternoon.

Ratings

The ratings are now hidden by default until you vote, but if you just want to view the ratings and the comments, flick the switch at the top above Petr Cech. Also, give the ratings a few seconds to load.

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myrtle
myrtle

Ramsey is fast becoming irreplaceable.

Richie

Sad but true.

Nick
Nick

Not really.

loose_cannon
loose_cannon

I was thinking this as well, arguably MotM again.

Nick
Nick

I was thinking that you’re talking bollocks.

YoungFabregas
YoungFabregas

A life lesson to appreciate people while you still have them.

Came for the football report, left with feels.

PFo
PFo

In form (as he is now) he’s a great player, but surely I can’t be the only one who notices that putting him in a 2 man midfield plays havoc with our passing fluidity. He doesn’t stay alongside Xhaka long enough to help build play, too often looks to make runs long rather than offering himself to feet, and when he does receive it in midfield with any kind of pressure, he rarely receives it on the half turn capable of transitioning us forward and bypassing their midfield line, instead playing it right back to the defenders or taking too many touches to get turned.

As much as his constant running and all action game are invaluable in intense, high pressure matches like against Man United, it’s equally true that there’s a direct correlation between him in midfield and our passing being very frantic and sloppy the last two games. (Not saying he deserves the blame for being played there, or that the poor passing is mostly due to him: actually, of the starting 11 tonight, Laca, Auba, AMN, Rambo, Mustafi, and Kola are all among the poorer possession football players we have at the club, Cech doesn’t help matters by constantly booting it long, and many of our possession players–Guen, LT, Iwobi, Micki–were on the bench. Emery said afterward he felt we could control the ball better, but he doesn’t help matters by getting the balance wrong in this respect.)

But alas, these are points that have been made hundreds of times over many years by myself and others. It’s too late now for the club to iron out the weaknesses in his game, or for us to expect an Arsenal manager to play him in the right roles. I expect Juve will put him in either a midfield three, or further forward in an inside forward-ish role.

GraeB
GraeB

You mean he doesn’t sit deep just playing sideways and pushes forward on attacks to cause the chaos we’ve seen in opposition defences in the last two games?

Keepers need variety in kicking; constantly playing short ball – especially to Mustafi – just invites high press from opposition.

PFo
PFo

No, I mean what I said, not your straw man version. Nice try.

Crash Fistfight
Crash Fistfight

I agree with all of that. I hadn’t really thought about Ramsey’s affect on our passing at the time, but I desperately wanted us to get Mkhitaryan and Iwobi on to get some control back in our midfield. There were too many bad passes, not allowing us to gain any momentum.

I also agree wholeheartedly about the passing out from the back. I could’ve sworn that Monreal was the only defender that passed the ball well yesterday – personally he was my MOTM (and this after I thought his legs had gone earlier in the season). Kolasinac’s passing was typically sloppy and Mustafi tried hard but he actually isn’t that good at passing, especially when he’s not getting much in the way of options to pass to (I guess that goes back to your point about Ramsey).

Cyprus The Immortal Gooner
Cyprus The Immortal Gooner

Let’s wait and see his replacement that Emery is lining up…

Timsh
Timsh

I love the way he plays recently. He is leaving it all on the pitch. He was always a willing runner but I have never seen him chasing balls this much and with this kind of agression before. Is stepping it up for one last hoorah.

Nicknock
Nicknock

Just give Denis some time.

Big Sheezy
Big Sheezy

It was good to see the team play with a sense of urgency. Maybe Unai knows what he is doing.

Anonymarse
Anonymarse

It’s just possible

PFo
PFo

Urgency, good. Frantic sloppiness, bad.

Between taking the 2-0 lead and scoring the third, we gave away the ball cheaply and lost it by playing it long so many times, it was unreal.

A P
A P

Oh, I didn’t know we deliberately lost to BATE and Rennes in the first leg matches.

GraeB
GraeB

Yes, boosted attendances for second legs!

utk
utk

Curious to see if club will sign a new RB/RWB in summer with AMN playing so well in that RWB role. Maybe use those funds to sign a midfielder that can adequately replace Ramsey who is showing just how good he is on current form.

Jagger
Jagger

Are two games enough to change the transfer strategy?

utk
utk

No I wouldn’t say so. But given our limited budget which is heavily dependant on our position at end of the season and the many obvious gaps in the team i do wonder if the board may take shortcuts in this position. Also AMN hasn’t really locked down a position but been more of an Oxlade type player. So him competing with Bellerin (when he returns) could be what he needs to really kickstart his career and prolong his future at Arsenal hopefully!

Devlin
Devlin

Jodi Osei Tutu is also coming along really nicely and seems to have the club’s belief. It’s probably up to the coach to decide whether he is good enough to play or to ask for a signing.

Oh, and Ozil hasn’t done anything different in terms of his defending. He has only changed his approach to heading balls , but tracking back and tackling has remained the same. Emery hadn’t changed anything, so blogs should stop trying to make it seem like something was missing and it is now why he is playing. If you disagree, check his stats, he is still the same Ozil. Emery I’d just playing our best player and he is producing what he always had, chances.

Jack
Jack

Loved seeing my man Ozil mucking in with his defensive duties. Well done lad

Devlin
Devlin

He is still bad at it, still defends the same, puts in just as many tackles as before and tracks back just as much. Emery hadn’t changed anything in Mesut, he has just accepted that we are better with him playing than without him. Disagree? Watch last season’s games, the world cup games and compare his stats. Leaving him out during the first half of the season was mistake and the whole team’s spike in performance and confidence with him playing is proof.

Red-Sky
Red-Sky

whole team’s spike in performance and confidence with him playing is proof.

that way of correlating the entire squad’s good form with one above- average performer is so very ridiculous.
It’s effortless analysis and make believe.
Last night we improve the second he was hauled off. It was so painfully obvious.

NW Gooner
NW Gooner

“Piss Candle” hahaha iconic

Tony
Tony

I simply came down to the arses to ask what a ‘piss candle’ is. A cock?

Naked Cygan
Naked Cygan

Mark my words, Ainsley Maitland-Niles will be a future Arsenal captain and a legend.

YoungFabregas
YoungFabregas

No, everyone already knows this is going to be Rob ‘Holdini’ Holding

q8arse
q8arse

Maybe After he nails down a position. Love how he’s improving game by game.

possibly between him and Smith-Rowe for future captaincy 🙂

Bacary Lasagne
Bacary Lasagne

Not that anyone is getting ahead of themselves… I appreciate the enthusiasm though!

Kevin
Kevin

No way is someone becoming the captain ahead of Xhaka

DTL Presents
DTL Presents

Loved the performance. On a side note, blagged a seat in the directors box tonight thanks to my dad – how the other half live eh? Best heated seats I’ve ever sat in for a football game! Plus that Raymond Blanc produces a good meal…

Ainsley Maitland-Niles looking so sharp at the moment, really improving on his defensive game and was mopping up brilliantly when needed. Great prospect

Thierry Bergkamp
Thierry Bergkamp

Ha! That reminds me of a time years ago at Highbury, some fundraiser or something. After the match, my brother decided we’ll sneak into one of the boxes. He drunk champagne in there, then we somehow got into a large hall full of celebs waiting to be served dinner. It was a long time ago, but I remember seeing George Graham, Marvin Hagler and Jeremy Beadle. It was my birthday too. We got kicked out after a few minutes.

Jarghs
Jarghs

George Graham!
Marvin Hagler!!
Jeremy Beadle!!!

eternalflamini
eternalflamini

Meanwhile I was sat right at the back next to three lads who were off their tits on slash or something and gormlessly clapping along with the Rennes chants. First world problems eh?

YoungFabregas
YoungFabregas

kolasinac you monster

Wilsheres Middle Finger
Wilsheres Middle Finger

I’m glad Black Panter has found his mojo again. Here’s hoping he can keep notching them up for the rest of the season. Such a likable character.

Richard
Richard

Puts on mask then misses two sitters. From where I was sitting the last miss was particularly woeful . At that point they just needed one and it would have been extra time. No I did not like the theatrics.

Shmokin'em
Shmokin'em

Ook yea now that makes sense…the mask definitely made him miss those sitter! Sheesh grandad be real.

George
George

Well, it sure as fuck didn’t help.

Leave the kiddie’s costume at home next time maybe.

Rich
Rich

Apparently the quarter final draw will be split so we know the path to the final.

I genuinely think it’ll be fixed, particularly after the footage of Bellamy earlier this season calling Man City/Burton 24hrs before the draw, if you look at his face after he says it, he knows he’s dropped his foot in it.

And whilst I was happy we had Lacazette tonight, if you’re being objective, then you have to question the decision and the timing, if this had happened to us playing Barca or Madrid? Then we’d rightly feel aggrieved.

It be surprised if Arsenal, Napoli, Chelsea, Valencia all came out in the same side of the draw tomorrow.

And whilst I’d be delighted if we got Slavia Prague, and then the winner of Frankfurt/Villareal, I think there has to be genuine concern about the influence of the games sponsors.

Nameless_Gooner
Nameless_Gooner

Don’t mean to sound like an asshole after such a great night… But 7 for Ozil? Really?

Bernardo Silva has just signed a new contract for 150k per week over at Man City..

Wilsheres Middle Finger
Wilsheres Middle Finger

How does Bernardo Silvas contract affect Ozils rating?

Thierry Bergkamp
Thierry Bergkamp

It doesn’t. I think he’s implying that a player who impacts games more than Ozil has a pay rise and still gets paid less than him.

Nameless_Gooner
Nameless_Gooner

Just a comparison.. I don’t even see Ozil performing to his levels on most days..

utk
utk

the team ozil plays with is much different to the calibre of players Silva plays with weekly lets just be honest. if i remember correctly Ozil was being rated as the world’s best CAM when he was at Madrid!

YoungFabregas
YoungFabregas

So I’m sitting here reading the arseblog comments, barbecue sauce on my titties and I’m like… noone cares about bernado silva and what oil city are up too unless they want to give us Sane.

martin
martin

He is accused unfairly of being lazy by so many. Put in a great shift tonight and created a few chances so yes 7 is a very fair mark

Alan L
Alan L

Martin. I remember being at Highbury when we won the Fairs Cup after being 3 – 1 down. The first trophy for me since becoming an Arsenal supporter in 1954.
.Age being, what it is I’m sure in two weeks time I will still remember 1970 better than I will tonight. Hey ho. Great to be there though

GraeB
GraeB

Alan L – nice to be joined on here by a man of my own vintage. I was also there that night, Jon Sammels was my hero. It’s always the short term memory that goes first!

Nameless_Gooner
Nameless_Gooner

He gets so much slack.. that man is definitely lucky

KingKolo
KingKolo

It’s true, Ozil was a 6. He was good when we had to chase it early on but didn’t do much once it became nervy in the second half. I was screaming for Torreira to replace him and help out Xhaka. It’s crazy but he’s only reliable at home when we are on top of a game.

Martin
Martin

Well we were at home and were on top and he was reliable so he fulfilled everything you said

PFo
PFo

Why when we lack passing fluency and control of the ball/game in a nervy situation as was clearly true tonight, as even Emery admitted), is everyone’s favorite solution always to take off the one guy in the entire squad who is actually best at those things?????? Alright, Ozil wasn’t doing much in that second half to solve this problem on his own, but he often seemed like the only one trying, in terms of actually wanting to keep possession with thoughtful, controlled passing. The solution surely was to bring in another sitting midfielder alongside Xhaka, to take control of the ball and start to play those key transition balls from low to high midfield that Ozil excels at receiving, rather than constantly bypassing midfield by booting it long. Also, another creative focal point, in Iwobi or Micki, would have been more useful than two strikers up top. But why on earth does anyone–Emery included–think taking off Ozil, the calm in the perpetual bloody storm, is the way to increase control???? Ok, Ramsey’s hard work meant he shouldn’t have been replaced; fine, then bring off Lacazette, or maybe one of the wingbacks and switch formation.

Maybe, just maybe, if Ozil’s struggling to get on the ball and influence things in a sloppy game like tonight (being “anonymous” as every tired pundit and yer da loves to say), then at least *sometimes* the thought should be, “how can we tweak the system/personnel to get Ozil on the ball more, because he’ll help us calm things down and keep the ball more when we’re winning?” rather than “we have to take him off because it’s just not been his game.” I remain, genuinely and completely, dumbfounded by this. It’s like everyone else is watching a different game to me.

And yes, maybe Emery was actually fine with it staying bitty and sloppy, knowing that Rennes probably didn’t have the quality to impose their game on us and really hurt our back 5, and that they would tire. But then we can hardly fault Mesut for “not doing much once it became nervy”. One player can’t just impose passing calmness and fluidity on the rest of his teammates. He can’t, for instance, tell Petr Frickin Cech to stop booting it long to two strikers who between them rarely win possession in the air more than once or twice a game. That’s not how it works.

Simon
Simon

Agree – Ozil was awful. Look at him in the box for our second goal – he turns his back to the play. He was lucky it didn’t hit him on the back of the head. Apart from that a lot of flopping and letting guys run around him.

Caligunner
Caligunner

Only reAson he turned off at that point is he saw auba being offsides and surely was going to get called. It was obvious and I’m glad it wasn’t called but how the ref missed that is why var needs to be part of the game

Nameless_Gooner
Nameless_Gooner

I don’t blame Ozil for earning so much but our Management team.. 300k+ contracts shouldn’t be handed out unless the player is a game changer and consistently..

Caligunner
Caligunner

Everything doesn’t happen in a vacuum. The whole situation was messed up. At the point of the contract given it would have cost too much to replace. Nightmare of Ramsey leaving for nothing is going to hurt

Cliff Bastin
Cliff Bastin

Why is wearing a mask a yellow card offence omg stupid ref

Richardb
Richardb

Because from where I was sitting he looked like one of the guys from Kiss ( rock band)

SFGiants
SFGiants

I guess for the same reason you get carded for taking off your jersey after a goal. That never made much sense to me either.

Mc1892
Mc1892

I would say that’s generous for Xhaka. Invited a huge amount of unnecessary pressure in the second half with some sloppy passes that really didn’t need to be attempted and certainly shouldn’t have been missed. Shame as he was great in the first half. Maitland-Niles’ best game for us by a distance, eating humble pie when I suggested on here a while back he wasn’t good in that rb spot. Good night all in all!

KingKolo
KingKolo

Harsh. Xhaka plays on his own in midfield when you play him with Ramsey and Ozil. Desperately needed a partner in there.

PFo
PFo

true

Red-Sky
Red-Sky

Sloppy passes are made with possession, it’s not about him having to cover for other offensive partners. He was sloppy with the ball.

Kersha
Kersha

Sadist

Dobbi
Dobbi

10’s all around from me, I will be happy if we play with the same commitment, application and execution every week. Well done to the players and manager tonight.

Thierry Eboue
Thierry Eboue

How good is Mkhitaryan right now? Such a talent when he’s on

scott rice
scott rice

I agree Thierry. Mhki was heavily involved in the last goal where some of his touches and passes were with his weaker foot. Many players take an extra touch to avoid using their weaker foot and thus slow down an attack. He doesn’t because he is confident about using both feet. I don’t think he gets enough credit for this.

MateKiddleton
MateKiddleton

Ramsey was immense, should’ve had an assist for Auba at the end! He has been so, so good recently.

Uba Ngenegbo
Uba Ngenegbo

Didn’t see that. Saw a lot of running and few wayward passing
Ramsey is average; will be found out in Juve. 👍

Dat guy
Dat guy

Thought we looked a bit tired but happy to see it didn’t stop us from trouncing the divers. Now for a much needed break.

A Different George
A Different George

Well, I don’t want to get a reputation as Mustafi’s defense counsel, but he played very well. Cleared everything that came into his side of the penalty area, very solid defensive effort. He was caught on the ball once, but Xhaka, Kolasinac, Maitland-Niles, and Monreal all also made errors; that’s normal over 90 minutes. (For the record, I think Mustafi is a much better player than Arsenal supporters are willing to admit, but I am not convinced he will ever cure his penchant for the occasional serious mistake.)

Frank Bascombe
Frank Bascombe

Occasional?

PodB
PodB

A Different Santori …
he was very good but gets found out against top teams. Sokratis is superior despite his lack of global place naming awareness. Bit nervy at end and could have conceded but for the offsides and Cech’s brilliance.

A Different George
A Different George

(1) Santori? Just compare the length of the post.

(2) Sokratis? I thought we all agreed his stupid second yellow caused the debacle in Rennes–which put us at much greater risk than any error Mustafi made in the return leg. (I like Sokratis–everyone makes mistakes.)

(3) Top teams? No, Mustafi makes occasional (yes, only occasional–but still too often) serious errors, regardless of the quality of the opposition. Monreal is sometimes overwhelmed by a player who is too pacy or too technically proficient for him. I never see that from Mustafi–he is as likely to be the wrong side of a crap striker as a good one. The good news about that is that the errors are mental, not caused by a lack of ability, so much easier to cure. The bad news about that is that they are still too common.

Dobby
Dobby

The issue with Mustafi isn’t that he’s consistently bad but you know he always has one clanger that leads to a goal or (in this case) the other team hitting the post. It’s one thing to make an error further up the pitch, it’s another for a centre half to lose the ball in such a dangerous area… we were a cigarette paper away from having to score 4 because of that error…

Jonas
Jonas

Scoring early was brilliant. Set the tone. Chippy game, ref could have probably shone more plastic, good that he didn’t. Not a particularly composed 2nd half. Did not enjoy seeing Cech down with a head knock.
But, onward and upwards. Two big wins this week. Keep it moving forward.

Merlin’s Panini
Merlin’s Panini

I was really pleased to see this line up. I was hoping we would go as strong as possible and that’s what Emery did. With the break coming up there is plenty of time until the next game even though it is intersected by internationals. However, none of the defence other than Kolasinac and Sokratis are likely to be called up, which keeps them relatively fresh and, hopefully, focussed too. It’s all getting interesting now.

Tristian Beale
Tristian Beale

Not sure how much of a break we’ll be getting as we’re flying to dubai to play a friendly.

arsepedant
arsepedant

You don’t consider a week in Dubai to be a break?

Riddeezy
Riddeezy

Feels like we’ve got some real momentum for the business end of the season. The loss at Rennes seems like a little blip now and rightly so. Shame we have to wait so long to see us in action again but WE MOVE. The strength of the Black Panther has been restored!

johnnybud
johnnybud

Love this lineup. Such attacking talent. So Arsenal. And as someone once said, the best defense is a good offense.

Clean sheets and goals. Dont have to be exclusive

Tribe
Tribe

I am sorry to post this in a reply but that’s the only way I can post at this point.

Blogs, it’s not the first time this is happening to me.
If I try to leave a comment then the comment is “awaiting moderation”. But, if I hit reply then I am able to post.

Can you help me on this?

stefangunner
stefangunner

For the first time,it seems that this formation plays on strengths ou our players .
Before I had a feeling that it was just used to cover the lack of our proper CBs,DMs and wingers.
Now it takes the best of attacking qualities of Nails and Kolasinac and pairing of Laca and Oba,Ozil is free to roam and think and Rambo can run in space knowing that Xhaka and three CBs are behind him
On the defensive end it takes some burdain of Kolasinac and Nails who found it hard to defend in back four,Nacho in this age looks better suited for LCB than LB role,and that one more defender minimalize some issues Xhaka(sloppiness and decision making),Ramsey(indiscipline) and Ozil(we all know) have.
Also,since return of Kos the Boss,Emery can easily shift from 4 to 5 and it gives us big advantage.

Ozil is very good in last matches,not the star but so clever on ball and with his movement,everyone around him plays better with him in team.
Big pitty that Ramsey goes and that Emery needed so long to figure how to use him,this style of football is like made for him.
Also big pitty that Czech is retiring,he could be our cup and back up goalie for 3 more years,I feel so secure with him beetween sticks.He is real gentleman and I had respect for him even when he played for Chelsea and would be really nice to see him lifting LE trophy for all of us!

PFo
PFo

Nope. We looked better in the 4-2-3-1 a few games back, before Micki got injured (and yes, even in the first Rennes game, before going down to 10 men). We started great tonight, but then were pretty awful in possession for the rest of the game, until late on when the energy of the subs helped us get the third and then we could hit them on the break as they had to throw everything at us in the last 15.

Auba and Laca, despite their friendship, and despite them both being immensely likable players, still don’t really convince as a partnership. We look better when they’re trading off for that central spot. And when we have a back four and Iwobi and Micki on the wings. And a proper deep midfield partner for Xhaka.

But I like that Emery has found lots of different ways to get results. And I like the level of intensity without the ball from the whole team, which at least for now is covering over a lot of our problems in possession and shakiness at the back.

Crash Fistfight
Crash Fistfight

Completely agree. I’m not a fan of this formation at all, especially with Ramsey playing deep.

I also agree about Auba and Laca – we look much better with only one of them on the pitch. They don’t really have much of a partnership, other than looking to play it to each other constantly (which I actually think is to our detriment at times – just shoot for crying out loud!). Plus, neither is that great at holding up play, meaning one less person to control possession for us.

PFo
PFo

Yeah, Auba’s straight up terrible at holding the ball up. Laca’s much better, but I find at times he still holds onto the ball too long, trying to do to much on the dribble, when he should release it quickly and simply.

YaGunnersYa
YaGunnersYa

I agree this seems to be a lineup that accentuates our strengths and minimises our weaknesses, given our current personnel.

In Ramsey’s absence, I can see Torreira/Guendouzi slotting in to central midfield as part of a double pivot with Xhaka. No doubt Aaron will be missed but I am willing to put my trust in our young midfielders.

If we are leading in matches, I can see Emery substituting Laca on the 70 minute mark and injecting some pace and trickery on the form of Iwobi or Nelson next season when we are facing a tired defence that leaves some space to exploit.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob

What is a p1$$ candle? 🤣 Did make me laugh btw

Girouds scorpion kick
Girouds scorpion kick

Even piers Morgan a.k.a. the cunt, the fucking cunt, will miss Ramsey. Let’s see the dipshit saying goodbye at the end of the season after all the battering over these years.

P.S. To Juventus for free??? Really????!

Tribe
Tribe

The most important thing is the team showed desire!

Another thing that is good news I guess it’s that Emery is fluid in formations. We don’t have wingers? Okay then we will make a functional formation without them. He’s not always perfect but that’s another thing Arsene was not willing to do. It’s clear we cannot go forever with this kind of fluidity (I expect something to happen this summer in sense of transfers) but that’s definitely one of the things that will highlight Emery’s reign here.

Too bad that we will be two weeks without Arsenal.

Btw, when is the draw?

Tribe
Tribe

I am sorry to post this in a reply but that’s the only way I can post at this point.

Blogs, it’s not the first time this is happening to me.
If I try to leave a comment then the comment is “awaiting moderation”. But, if I hit reply then I am able to post.

Can you help me on this?

Dobby
Dobby

If you told me we could look solid with Xhaka, Ramsey and Ozil in midfield plus two up top at the beginning of the season I’d have laughed at you. Credit to the players and managers for making that work. It does feel like the players are starting to “get it” now, like we’re on the cusp of something potentially good here.

Devlin
Devlin

Sometimes the opposition is so preoccupied with stopping your biggest threats that they remain with very little to attack with. Adjusting to the opposition’s strengths is also a bad thing as much as it has a benefit, because it limits your own players to stopping the opposition rather than attacking.

That’s why attacking is usually the best form of defence, and having so many good players forces teams to adjust to us and limits their danger.

Caligunner
Caligunner

I’m happy for the win but another quality side would have killed us especially in the second half. We were too sloppy on the ball in the second half.

PFo
PFo

yep

SB Still
SB Still

It’s always better when the main men in the team are playing and executing the coach’s game plan.

It’s a shame Ramsey is leaving…on a free.

However it’s good to see Emery & staff improving the players – AMN is the latest. He has grown into the RWB role.

Emery is helping Mkhitaryan out of the infection called Mourinho Madness and we are slowly beginning to see the Dortmund version back.

Kos played again today, despite the huge gash in the ManU game. Some big shoes to fill, finding his replacement. Very pleased to have him back and still with us, while he said the injury stopped him from leaving us. Dare I say LANS on Van Dijk level?

Nasri’s missing chinbone
Nasri’s missing chinbone

Piss Candle 😂😂😂😂😂

Simon
Simon

Ozil has to go

Alan L
Alan L

Why exactly?

Devlin
Devlin

This manager does not know how to use his talent or handle a big name like him, he doesn’t fit into the team’s or Emery’s tactical set-up, there are other teams outside of Britain where a player like him isunderstood and cherished.

For the club, they can get his wages out of the way, even though 350k per week isntbthat much for a club of our size. And anyone who thinks we are being stopped from signing because if Ozil’s wages is just plain stupid, we are capable of signing more players even if Ozil stays. No club would corner themselves into a self imposed transfer ban, just because of one player’s contract extension and the players we signed in June proves that.

Caligunner
Caligunner

Devlin

That’s what it seems like. I think he wants anonymous above average players that are tactically flexible but not star players who can take it to the next level.

Crash Fistfight
Crash Fistfight

That approach has worked wonders for Tottenham and Liverpool.

Almunia4Pires
Almunia4Pires

You are deluded. Ozil was a passenger last night. Stray passes, pretending to defend, the usual. Do you really think one good game in ten, against the likes of Huddersfield and Bournemouth, is value for money?
I love to watch Ozil in full flight however the team cannot be held ransom to what side of the bed Ozil got up in the morning.

PFo
PFo

Or maybe, just maybe, how well he plays isn’t *exclusively or primarily* a matter of “what side of the bed he got up on” but how the team is set up. We had a team last night almost completely devoid–Monreal and Xhaka apart–of possession-strong players who could get him the ball in the right areas and who he could combine with. Mustafi, Auba, AMN, and Kola are all turnover machines. Laca’s only somewhat better. Ramsey’s all action style leads to him often not taking care of the ball like he could/should, nor taking up spaces that a deep midfielder should to help build play (I’m being tactful here to avoid the wrath of the Ramsey lovers). Cech looks like he’s completely given up on even pretending to try to play the ball out from the back. As I said above, the supposed Laca/Auba “partnership” really doesn’t work that well (though they’re both still dangerous in front of goal), as neither holds the ball up all that well or consistently combines well with the midfielders. When we play with this formation and this personnel, so many of our promising counterattacks peter out before they’ve barely gotten started because of a sloppy pass or poor decision.

You put Mesut in the midst of that, and it’s no surprise he can’t get into the game much. You put him in front of a proper holding midfield partnership (Xhaka + Guen/LT) and alongside one or both of Iwobi and Micki, and, surprise, surprise, he produces great, or very good, performances.

The simplistic thinking that attributes individual performance to that player not caring/trying enough–especially if that player is a creative type, whose whole game is *based on combinations with others*–is dreadfully dumb and tiresome.

Almunia4Pires
Almunia4Pires

You’re clutching at straws with your “possession-based players around Ozil analysis”. Ozil wasted possession a few times with unforced errors, bad five yard passes to an opponent. What did the other players have to do with those? It is purely a question of attitude with Ozil, exemplified by his turning his back on a promissing play that actually led to our second goal. What was that all about?
We have wasted a massive salary on a player way past his prime that doesn’t actually have the fire in him anymore. Removing himself from Germany’s national team at the age of 29, a few months after he signed a massive contract with Arsenal, has shown me that he doesn’t really enjoy playing football anymore, he’s just sitting on his salary going through the motions.

PFo
PFo

I also love the “stray passes” line, as it confirms a recent theory of mine: no matter what else happens in a game, if a player has 2 or more obviously bad stray passes, the majority of fans will declare that player had a bad game, whereas if a player puts 2 or more crunching tackles in, they’re automatically praised as having played a blinder. Such is the depth of insight from most fans…

Almunia4Pires
Almunia4Pires

Ozil fans love statistics when it suits them. It’s not just the “stray passes”. Why don’t you check his overall rating on whoscored.com.
https://www.whoscored.com/Matches/1364712/Live/Europe-UEFA-Europa-League-2018-2019-Arsenal-Rennes

AnonymousGun
AnonymousGun

I hope we can win it as a parting gift toward Cech and Ramsey… Maybe for a couple of others too.

Highberry
Highberry

2 clean sheets in a row. Really feel we can win out in the league and finish top 4 as well as win the Europa League. Keep it up lads! COYG!

Fred Garvin
Fred Garvin

Two games in a row now where our players have been disciplined, imposing, and in good form across the board. Where other teams like Chelsea and Tottenham seem to be on the wane, we look like we’re rising. Liking this.

Almunia4Pires
Almunia4Pires

Did I really hear some whistling from the crowd at Emery for replacing Ozil?

Jean Ralphio
Jean Ralphio

We will soon be asking Kola to sign a contract extension. Is there a better attacking left back than him ATM?

Fajr
Fajr

This rating system has no joy in it. It’s still very slow to load and 99% of the time you can’t see the ratings because the switch button doesn’t work. Either go back to the old system or please improve this one.

Trossinho
Trossinho

Interesting how being rested regularly has avoided the biannual Ramsey hamstring injury. People still go on about wenger and his intelligence, just sad really. Emery all day