After Granit Xhaka said the team were scared, and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang bemoaned Arsenal giving goals away, Bernd Leno said that the team’s set up on Sunday made it too easy for Watford.

The Gunners second half display was as bad as anything we’ve seen in recent years, and the German admitted that players were ‘crazy’ in the dressing room afterwards.

However, he also seemed to take a little pop at the tactical approach/in-game management following the 2-2 draw at Vicarage Road.

“The distances between all parts of the team were too big so they had so much space, especially in the second half,” he said.

“It was too easy for them and they could go around our box. I don’t know why it was like that but everybody could see that we have to talk about this.

“In the first half it was better but not perfect. I think we have to be honest and analyse this game.

“We were lucky we didn’t lose.”

The 27 year old admitted passions ran high afterwards, but said Unai Emery remained positive, looking ahead to the next game against Eintracht Frankfurt on Thursday.

“Everybody was angry and disappointed after,” he continued. “Everybody was emotional, very mad and crazy. But that is normal.

“The manager is a very positive guy. He said ‘Calm down and then on Tuesday we analyse this game and then on Thursday we have another game’.”

Playing out from the back is not wrong, but the way Arsenal do it is

guest
120 Comments
oldest
newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
OnlyBeingHonest

Get the feeling Patience is starting to run out with Unai.. inside the dressing room and outside.

Dave M

Safe to say we need some good performances and pretty soon. Otherwise $hit gonna hit the fan(s?!) again. Seeing some late Wenger like traits coming through in Unai. Blind faith in guys that aren’t getting it done (Xhaka, Sokratis, Luiz – Luiz probably has a little lee-way, but he better stop making errors ASAP), and too locked into his style (sure he changes formation, but there is so little room for adaption right now with this play-it-out-at-all-costs tactic. Too predictable, and with Xhaka in the team no matter what our mids are too slow to recover). Bottom line is Xhaka… Read more »

Olivije Žirod

Xhaka didn’t play against Burnley but we were still overrun in the midfield. They still had more possession in our 3rd than us in theirs. Like him or not but he is not the main problem that most teams overplay us. The way we are playing is. Didn’t we also play Guendouzi and Ceballos on Sunday? That is 3 man midifield. Why only Xhaka is to blame?

Dave M

It’s not about possession, it’s about quality of possession. This has been Arsenal’s problem for the last decade both with and without the ball. We generally have been focussed on getting a lot of quantity of possession, but the quality is lacking, because teams make it hard for us and we don’t adjust to turn that quantity into quality, while other teams get quality possessions against us – they shred us on the counter. Against Burnley they had quite a lot of possession, but they didn’t do much with it. Because structurally on defense we were very solid with Guendouzi-Ceballos-Willock.… Read more »

Olivije Žirod

Yes, I agree Xhaka is slow and he has sometimes problems with that but he is at least positional disciplined. This is why he is always there (and late). On the other hand you have Guendouzi or Torreira who are all over the place. Xhaka is the one who is covering their players. A great example is the penalty against Tottenham. Guendouzi is the one who left Son and Xhaka rushed into the tackle because he was trying to fix his mistake. He made even a bigger mess but it would never happen if Guendouzi was there in the first… Read more »

Dave M

We’ll have to beg to differ. Positionally, I don’t think Xhaka is that strong. If he was he would be better at preventing counter attacks in the first place by being aware and in the right place to close space in front of the attackers. Guendouzi has made some mistakes too sure, but he has been really good this season going forward and defending. For a slow player like Xhaka positioning is absolutely key to being effective. Look at the best similar players to him – Xavi, Alonso, Pirlo (to name a few). They were absolutely brilliant positionally, disciplined on… Read more »

Futsboller

Xhaka is a culprit a lot of the time, but our midfield is a larger problem than one player, and something Emery does not seem capable of sorting out. We still miss that single player who can lock down our defensive positioning whilst owning the capability to unlock theirs, so Emery is going to have to use combinations to solidify our midfield. Xhaka can be extremely valuable when opening up our attack, but he’s a known liability the other way. I know we all hate playing players out of position, but I don’t see why Emery doesn’t try Chambers as… Read more »

db10s

I agree. For example look at watford. Doucuore almost all by himself stopped our attacks from reaching their backline.

Positioning of our midfield is horrible. Surely that’s because of both player intelligence and coaching deficiency. How many times did 1 simple pass get through our whole midfield and we had pressure building up in our final third.

I think this is the main issue with our side under Emery. No doubt our backline isn’t the best but we’re not doing enough to protect it. We letting the opposition test our backline far too easily.

Dave M

If you are attempting to play a “traditional” holding midfielder whose job is merely to stay in his position and snuff out attacks and just play super simple passes then you MUST have mobile midfielders that can drive the ball forward in possession and move past players and increase the pace of attacks. Another reason why Xhaka doesn’t fit even if we did just play that role, which is why Wenger tried to make him fit in that DM role – but he didn’t work there either because he isn’t disciplined enough. Torreira could be that guy, Chambers too might… Read more »

Martinellis belly

The part about needing to be able to drive the ball forward at pace in possession to be a proper DM I disagree with. If they can do that like a Viera then thats a fantastic bonus and you’ve got a super player but kante and Makalele dont do that, they simply focus on positioning and ball winning and they are/ were invaluable to their team

Martinellis belly

Ah maybe I misunderstood. You’re saying if you play a ball winner you also need someone to drive the ball forward playing alongside them. True that would be useful. At the moment Ceballos looks like our best bet followed by Guendouzi but definitely not Xhaka.
Xhaka just needs benching asap. Theres nothing left in his defence.

Dave M

Ah yeah, I see here we’re on the same page now 😉
Xhaka – benching…exactly. I really want to see:
DM: Guendouzi/Torreira
CM1: Willock
CM2: Ceballos
I think that is our best midfield right now. It looked really nice in the first two games.

loose_cannon

Agree this is probably our best midfield atm though I’d still have potential reservations at the base of that midfield. We also have, as Leno said, a real issue with compactness. Until we sort that out, the personnel may not make a difference, though certainly removing the immobile Xhaka might help there.

Dave M

I didn’t mean the DM needs to do that. In fact i meant the exact opposite. If you play with a traditional DM, the other (two) midfielders are the ones that need to be able to do that. Otherwise you have a totally stagnant team that has no creativity and drive. Sorry if I confused in my comment. That is why Xhaka doesn’t work well in that system because we have to generally play a slow pace with a “traditional DM” and Xhaka because he doesn’t have the drive through midfield or speed to increase our attacking pace. Thus we… Read more »

Goonerink

kante was touted as potentially the best ever DM because he can do that. he has pace and strength and positional awareness.

his passing is ok at best which keeps him from reaching that hype but he has all the rest.

Martinellis belly

Why cant we try 2 dms and I mean proper defensive midfielders not wannabe registas who think they are better than they are. Lets try torreira and chambers/ Luiz (even AMN if we didnt need him at rb) to simply hold the fort stay in position, harrass the opposition, win the ball and then give quick passes to your Ceballos/ Ozil/ Guendouzi types. I agree guendouzi left us equally exposed as Xhaka did against Watford and he really needs to improve his positioning but hes 20 and has so much potential upside. Xhaka really offers us so little and can… Read more »

Dave M

I’m down with this style too (esp. in certain moments against stronger teams). We are built to play fast attacking football (TBH, I think emery sees this too, which is why he is SO obsessed with this play-it-out – but it’s to a fault as it becomes too easy to counter through patience and discplined pressing, not over committed pressing), but we aren’t playing the right personnel for that. I think Willock is showing he can do that 2nd DM role too, while also having that Viera/Diaby drive too…

Goonerink

tbh we have pace in all the peripheral areas of the pitch.
our CM and CB’s arent the quickest.

Goonerink

yep, i feel we have 3 ‘big’ players in the defensive mid role
and xhaka isnt one of them.

luiz
chambers
torreria

Mpls

Chambers is not proven at PL level, and it’s HIGHLY unlikely you’ll see him or Luiz at DM unless there is an injury crisis.

Martinellis belly

Yes I agree both choices feel strange and I would have loved for us to buy someone dominant in the transfer market instead but both of them have to be better than Xhaka as a DM at this stage. Emery is also too un adventurous to try it out. Cannot understand why Torreira isn’t starting there though. The only way it’s excusable is if there’s some injury issue we dont know about. Also correct me if Im wrong but doesnt Xhaka play further forward for Switzerland with more defensive minded midfielders behind him. Even they know the folly of trusting… Read more »

Dave M

And to add, Burnley overran our midfield? we had 65% of possession, and Ceballos put in one of the best games by an Arsenal mid in years, so even the basis of your argument is completely flawed.

Eduar-do a deer

Dave is getting his swag back.

Dave M

Cool, Eduar-do a deer is my entourage, who clings onto my every word!

Eduar-do a deer

You were pretty rude when advised not to sing everyones praises after the Burnley game. Just reminding you that a month ago to the day, you thought we were awesome. It doesn’t help when fans seesaw so dramatically all the time.

Dave M

I know what I said, and you’ve mentioned it many times. I was optimistic, why not?! I still am, I mean we aren’t doing that badly, but the last 3 games have been disappointing no doubt. But after that start (Newc. and Burnley) we then inserted Xhaka into our midfield and pop, up came our defensive issues in a flurry. Maybe that is a bit too much on Xhaka, but he has been poor and that is compounded by emery’s obsession with playing it out from the back at all costs. And please quote me when I was “pretty rude… Read more »

Johnny 4 Hats

Dave ‘the voice of this article’ M.

Dave M

Oh sorry, I missed the per article quota limit.

Johnny 4 Hats

…along with the mechanics and subtleties of conversation.

Dave M

Sorry m8 ill werk my webs “conversation” sklz

goonshow

That shud b convers8n

Red-Sky

That be funny. Seeing as how many dressing room figures are stabbing the team in the heart EVERY SINGLE GAME there is fatal error from one them. The manager is suspect too, but not for a minute should we get a wrong impression about our lack of quality.
Players and manager alike should be held responsible, but people always look at the easy targets.

Bob Will

I agree – wish I was wrong but looks to me like Emery is totally out of ideas. he looks totally lost and we should move on quickly because I cant see it getting better

B.O.B

EPL is brutal, but how this coach is setting us up for failure will cost him his job.No joy watching whatever it is they practice or analyze with the many video analysis crap.

yen

Feels like another subtle (or not so subtle) dig at the manager. They can be ‘together’ for only so long. Also, I’d like to point out that we took Mustafi out and our defence is still a shit show. People are already turning against Sokratis & Luiz. Don’t know how less experienced Holding & Chambers are gonna fix that. People already looking towards next season for Saliba to be our ‘saviour.’ Saw a comment earlier how you could put VVD in this squad and it would still be the same. Reminded me of the same comment I made years ago on… Read more »

Dave M

Remember the first two games of the season. We conceded a few shots, but overall our defense actually looked pretty good. Why? No Xhaka. Watch the games again when we play without Xhaka. We have a mobile midfield that can move and doesn’t get turned without the ball (doesn’t turn the ball over with so many unforced errors either) and we aren’t exposed on the counter. This last point is the key. EVERY game we play with Xhaka we get destroyed on the counter because he is so slow, always out of position defensively, over commits when closing down (easily… Read more »

Olivije Žirod

Burnley had 18 attempts, two more than Arsenal. They had more possession of the ball in our third. Also against Newcastle Xhaka played.

Dave M

And who won between Burnley and Arsenal? In terms of possession Quality>Quantity all day every day. Burnley were forced wide and just threw in crosses. If your basing the best team on the day based on number of shots then I think our conversation is done here:
http://youaremyarsenal.com/tactical-analysis-arsenal-vs-burnley-premier-league-2019-20/

Olivije Žirod

Yeah, because Burnley’s plan is not to go wide and cross the ball. This is the only thing they can do.

Ya gooner

Watching xgaka in midfield this weekend I will say I noticed when wr were ib possesion he never showed for the ball when our cbs had it. Perhaps he was scared.

Ya gooner

Apologies for my fat fingers

Martinellis belly

I cant understand why you are getting downvoted and why people are still defending Xhaka? He looks like hes stuck in treacle moving in slow motion. I did my ACL and put on some weight and ever since Ive come back Ive joked with my friends that Im now playing like Xhaka. Sit back stroke a few passes around but basically a complete defensive liability. If anyone dribbles at me Ive had it. They can go straight past me and I dont have the mobility or agility to get near them. Maybe a lot of the Xhaka apologists have never… Read more »

Martinellis belly

And thats just him when were not in possession! When we have the ball he is so slow to look up and pick his pass,invites the opposition to rob it or mark up, not to mention his one- footedness!

db10s

I get your point. I took a couple of years off the pitch as well because of fatherhood. Lost mobility and strength. One key thing though which I remembered from some Fabregas training video is to always know what your next pass is and have a plan B. This is what grinds my gears with Xhaka, he has a very good passing range but he never has an image of where his teammates are prior to receiving the ball. If only he could received the ball and play a quick pass. He always needs to turn and look around.

db10s

For example Arteta is very similar to Xhaka but Arteta is significantly smarter with and without the ball.

Oregoon

Arteta seemed a lot quicker than Xhaka both on the ball and off. Also, much more composed player under pressure than Xhaka, and that is where the latter seems to get into the most difficulty. I agree with the system being broken. We only have a few players to play in the middle, so both defensively and playing out of the back, we need massive strategic/postional changes. We played way to statically on Sunday and need to play in space much better. (Believe that is what separates the really top teams from the also rans) It will be a very… Read more »

Goonerink

guendouzi, torreria, xhaka, chambers,(DM) willock, ceballos, luiz(DM)

7 players for 2-3 positions

we have the personnel its utilising them correctly thats the problem.

we have seen ceballos play like santi and torreria get forward.
why cant they combine as a midfield 2?
then you can bring ozil infront of them or luiz/chambers behind depending on opposition.
front 3 of pepe auba and laca*when back* martinelli/nelson/saka for now
and a back 4 of Sead Papa luiz/chambers Ainsley.
with tierny and bellerin coming back in when fit and holding replacing the least performing cb when hes back.

Goonerink

with the pace we have up top and the ball winning abilities of the central two i mentioned we could play a high press like our unbeaten run and destroy teams.

instead we play a passing, man behind the ball possession game that we arent very good at because apart from not having a team of tiki taka gods we have players with no positional awareness and are prone to lapses in concentration.

Martinellis belly

And Fabregas was such a special player, so creative and such good decision making and execution that you build your team around him even though hes a bit slow. Xhaka is nowhere close to that. We also put Flamini next to Fabregas basically to mop up for him and compensate for his lack of dynamism by running around like a maniac even though he was a bit limited as a player.

Martinellis belly

Very interesting quote from Fabregas himself on who his best midfield partner in his career was.

“I had two years playing next to Flamini and he covered me,” Fabregas told the Football Daily. “He covers so much ground.

“If I say Iniesta or Xavi — yeah, it’s fantastic for the eyes but in real football it’s not real for me.

“But if I had to choose one it would have to be between Gilberto Silva and Flamini.”

Martinellis belly

Yep I agree hes both physically and mentally slow. I remember years ago sky sports did a player cam feature on Frank Lampard and highlighted how he was looking over both shoulders every few seconds making sure he was constantly aware of his surroundings. I wonder if Xhaka actually does this. Will try and look out for it next game

db10s

Yes exactly what I am referring to.

I’ve been watching xhaka, he does look around when we’re defending deep. Not so much when we have the ball. Meaning every time he gets ready to receive the pass, he’s very rarely looking around.

Martin Dufosse

Absolutely spot on.!!!!

goonshow

Or the clear & obvious lack thereof

George

Damn, sounds like a mutiny to me.

Mpls

Speaking of which, I’m waiting to see if Leno takes some executive action on this.

If you’re getting closed down for most of the match in your own end, you’re losing your shit, the midfield looks empty of your players, and you look up and see them ringing the box, perhaps an idea ought to pop into your head that the short pass inside the box to your CB not known for passing wizardry is something you should pass on.

It might be the coach’s directive, but sometimes that’s got to be ignored.

Mentally Drained Gooner

We lost Ramsey because of this stupid manager

allezkev

We lost Ramsey because his contract wasn’t dealt with two or three years before her left…

Berlingoon

That’s a myth. He wanted to stay, he said that and his emotions at his farewell showed it. Arsenal thought he’s not worth raising his salary and withdrew the offer that he was about to sign. Arsenal ended the talks, not Ramsey. It’s well documented.

Vonnie

Ramsey was always injured for half the season and wanted too much money. Emery froze him and Ozil out for no reason, but although Emery is at fault for many, many things, he isn’t the reason Ramsey left.

Hantal

Ramsay kept saying he was ready to sign but he didn’t, then we took the offer away. Him and his PR team managed the situation very well

Homer

No, what you write is a myth. He did not want to stay. He said as much.
Blaming Emery for Ramsey’s departure is silly.

And, btw, Ramsey blew hot/cold his entire Arsenal career – when he was healthy enough to play. Sure, he score two FA cup winners, and I got nothing but love for the man. But let’s not like he was the second coming.

Oregoon

Second that. He was never going to sign with Arsenal. Anyone can boo-how after the fact of the contract being pulled. He never went back to Arsenal requesting the contract be available again. Why? No intention of signing it in the first place.

gee

Last summer – Ramsey is on record as saying he wanted to be captain and was looking forward to working with the new manager. 6/7 months later he had agreed to join Juve.

Imustafiyou

I think it is time for Edu to call a stop to the tactics or maybe the manager tenure. This is what we expect when we bring him in.

irony

don’t think he has the mandate nor was he brought in to have a say in the team’s tactics

Imustafiyou

In the official site, it states: “He will be working closely with Unai Emery and the first-team coaches, and will play a relevant role leading our football vision and ensuring we have – and follow – a solid philosophy through all our football activities”

db10s

I assumed it’s Edu and Raul together. I am sure both of them can see the faults in our game.

I am still giving it till maybe Christmas to judge. Let our first choice full backs recover and maybe the upper management will be fed up seeing the same flaws over the next few months

Kran Stoenke

Chambers won player of the year at dm, a team which played seri(someone arsenal fans more less would welcome at arsenal), and he somehow isn’t good enough to bench a mistake prone xhaka or a willock who’s yet to prove he’s good enough to start or come off the bench, or even a guenndozi who Plays so deep but is yet to show any kind of defensive prowess or spacial awareness. I’m starting to think emery benching Chambers is resonating with emery benching ozil, just personal reasons. He needs to realise technical ability, reading the game, composure and vision is… Read more »

Dave M

I totally agree on Xhaka, but Willock has been sensational when he has played. Our midfield looks so much more balanced with a combination or much more mobile players. We need three out of Ceballos, Guendouzi, Torreira, Willock in midfield. I’m a huge fan of Willock – reminds me of prime (and fit) Abou Diaby!

db10s

The only thing with our mobile midfielders, if we play all 3 of them there won’t be enough muscle in the middle. I am sure we struggle against more physical teams. This team needs someone like a Gilberto.

Dave M

Are you arguing Xhaka brings muscle?

db10s

Defending set pieces yes but that’s about it.

N10

Agree

Mintoes

Two definite must starts in midfield every week are Torreira and Willock. Ceballos would be my third. Then you can rotate Xhaka/Guendouzi. That’s our best midfield.

Flavoured Rice

Let me handle the analysis for the team this week, Leno?
I’ll keep it short and sweet: STOP PLAYING IT OUT OF THE BACK! FIGHT! SHOW A BIT OF SPINE!

Ah whatever, don’t even know why I bother getting worked up anymore. They’ll only let us down again come next weekend.

Kismayo

The game against Watford, to me the problem wasn’t solely to our defenders but equally our midfielders,how can our defenders cope with 23 attacks within 45 minutes ,when we made 4 attacks,where are our midfielders?

Dave M

Spot on, especially when one of those midfielders simply cannot keep up with fast counter attacks that isolate and expose our defenders.
#XhakaOut

bob

I’m not going to single out any midfielders, even though I am no fan of some of them. The problem lies with the fact that Emery has no ability to coach a coherent midfield. At no point in is tenure has he been able to, nor shown any attempt to, coach a well drilled midfield for which the rest of the team can be build around. His response to the difficulty of this problem has been to completely bypass the midfield, preferring to put all of the burden of linking to the attack on Kola, to the massive detriment of… Read more »

Pepe Le Pew

Selling Iwobi and let Mikhi go was a mistake. We should have kept one of them. We have no quality link up defence to attack anymore (or vice versa) . Laca would be able to do it but he is injured. Yes we have a decent first team but no one on the bench. Ozil is useless.

Fatgooner

Deeply worrying when Emery’s own players are now openly criticising him. It looks he has lost dressing room. Here’s 5 reasons why he must go now: 1. His team selections make no sense. So far we’ve seen bizarre selections for key games. Three defensive midfielders at home to Spuds? Nothing to counter the two attacking full-backs at Liverpool? Even the junior players know that there’s something wrong here. And chopping and changing for each game means that the players can’t to settle into a system. 2. He’s failed to sign the defensive players we needed. He had a big say… Read more »

B.O.B

everything else is spot on apart from point 4, respectfully, Ozil was having his first start and was rusty as expected but without him we weren’t getting that second goal.that said, this manager is taking us nowhere,there is no joy watching us anymore.apart from the Valencia game and the 4-2 win over Spurs,we haven’t had anything close to an Arsenal performance.we are now bad at everything including the things we were good at.totally unacceptable.

Dave M

Overall I agree. i think Emery is a good manager, but not great. He isn’t really up to the standard we need. I’d rather he be replaced sooner rather than later because I just see this level continuing and better managers exploiting his fairly locked in and predictable changes (formation may change, but style doesn’t much and we aren’t flexible). But to play devil’s advocate: 1. I liked the team selection and formation against Liverpool – if we can lure liverpool into just throwing crosses in all game that’s a win, but we fell down again by inflexibly playing it… Read more »

Fanboy

Agree with what Dave M & Fat G mostly said.

But if Emery insist we play from the back, you got to make sure the ball connect with players like Ceballos & Ozil quickly (especially Ozil) because they can unleash the attacking players with their smart passing. When you’re just passing around with the back four & the base midfield players (Xhaka & Guendouzi) you’re just inviting troubles.

Oregoon

Good post. On #2. One of the mysteries of the summer was our real lack of conviction that our defense needed better players. Yes, we did sign Tierney, however we did not go for a first class CB, which seemed to be the most logical course. At one time, I read that Emery wanted Umtiti, and then we end up signing Pepe.(Nothing against Pepe, and it will probably turn out to be a decent move.) Does this mean that Emery endorsed the idea that having Holding, Hector, Tierney, and our current players was enough to solidify a very weak defensive… Read more »

Make Arsenal Great Again

If this trend continues, I don’t see how he makes it to the end of the season. He is getting called out by the fans, the press, and his players. The higher ups are going to have secret meetings with his players and the feedback from the players will seal his fate

kas

He, Emery is the head coach not a manager (old style) he should answer to Edu & Raul. What was the point of promoting Freddy, when this coach doesn’t want to put his faith in young players. All other points totally agree.

goonero

Well I’ve calmed down some since Sunday. For people saying it’s too soon to question the manager, this is exactly why it isn’t. That performance was bad enough to send a real strong shockwave of negativity right the way through the Arsenal world, fans players ex pros alike. And it’s not like this one just fell out of the sky, it’s just the worst in a bad bunch. We need, not should, need to play much much better than what we have done. The question of that we aren’t capable is not even up for debate, those players, even the… Read more »

goonshow

@ Santori – read this mate. Then read it again.
Lucid, logical and above all readable for a longish post, without the need to insult and demean others on this forum. Just flowing and incisive, well-reasoned input without a hint of ‘I told you so’.
Comment of the week imo

Malaysian gunner

Someone called him U Wenger and why not.Both like to play passing football with no end in sight. As everyone and rf knew once the ball breaks loose,a swift counter with 3/4 long passes the ball is in the Arsenal net.Watch how Miles was dispossessed near the Watford goalmouth and soon the hornets went direct to shoot. No passing in the goal area. Direct football instead of possession football. I am afraid opposing teams know how Emery likes to play.He has been lambasted and heavily criticized. This is natural . After all he is highly paid . He better get… Read more »

Mark

It seems to me like Emery and the players don’t have any clue what tactics he is going to employ each game. There certainly is a major disconnect between Emery and the players and what they do on the pitch. Defensively I thought under Emery we were going to be high pressing and an aggressive team, but it seems like that only happens when an individual or two wants to press on their own, it’s rarely a concerted team effort. Instead we seem to sit back, gift possession to the opponent in their attacking half and let them cross and… Read more »

bob

“It seems to me like Emery and the players don’t have any clue what tactics he is going to employ each game” That’s the thing, he wants us to be a chameleon for some reason. The problem with a chameleon is that they are reactive to their surroundings in the extreme. That can be a good thing when you are against the odds and need to try and match them, but for most part we need to be imposing on our teams, not waiting for them to come at us to we can react. Rather than chameleons, for most games… Read more »

B.O.B

Without Auba,Laca and Leno…..Unai Emery would be without a job. Why would Laca/Auba even renew their contract in this chaos?

loose_cannon

Leno is pointing out the issue we’ve had for a long time. Basically we’re not compact enough as a team. There’s always too few of us in attack, too few in the middle and too few in defence. You’d think it’d be the first thing Emery would want to sort out but….

Xhaka out

Other players feel uncomfortable when Xhaka in the team due to his style of play and impact their performance significantly.

Santori

Very silly comments on this site. Blaming Granit for all manners of ills. 1) They prefer to have GUendouzi when the young player has been culpable himself for several poor displays (recently against Spurs now against Watford. Just saying it wasn’t Granit giving away 4 or 5 poor passes nor did GUendouzi receive the ball properly on the half turn on one occasion he was almost robbed just in front of goal. 2) They want Torreira when they fail to understand Granit is in there bc of height and physicality that the Uruguayan lacks. Again last season over a spate… Read more »

Mintoes

Can you do an executive summary of this?

1 thing – Torreira and Xhaka actually complement each other quite well. Torreira should always start, he makes Xhaka better.

TCGNR

Hoping our squad doesn’t descend into tabloid nonsense with the team turning on the coach, public disputes, etc – that’s more suited to Chelsea and United. It’s distressing to see Auba so frustrated, our “captain” publicly claiming the team were scared of last-place Watford, Sokratis having to flog himself for the fans, little interviews like this with Leno where players are professionally and tactfully saying “our coach is confusing us and we are terrible right now.” And Emery seeming like it’s all fine, we’ll learn and figure it out, which nobody really believes. It wouldn’t be a disaster to sack… Read more »

Santori

At the moment, I think we need to be concern with – 1)How we get the ball played out form the back and 2)If the diamond 4 is the best solution for us. Personally, I think we were trying to accommodate Ozil (and he was marginally more effective than 72m signing Pepe on the day at least for first half), but this is not necessary. Ozil should play when it suits us not other way around. And I see no merit in playing BOTH cebellos and Ozil as it makes us less competitive defensively when the ball is turned over.… Read more »

goonshow

My word Santa but you can take a lot of column inches to say nothing of any value! Read my post above regarding perspective on Xhaka as an even average Arsenal def-mid… If only he could sidestep opponents as deftly as you avoid the glaring issue: he is too slow, too one-footed; too inept in the tackle. We do not have an out-ball because everything is geared around him (since we don’t have a HFB or Alan Smith type upfront to hold up the long ball) – Santi, Cesc, Pat, Manu, Gilbero, Mickey T (the list goes on) did not… Read more »

Santori

The other option IMO if we need more defensive block is a 3-5-2

…………………….Auba…………………..Pepe…………………….
………………………..Cebellos/Ozil/Smith-Rowe………………….
Kolasinac………………………………………………………….AMN
……………Guendoouzi/Willock…..Granit/Torreira………………
……….Holding/Luiz……………………Chambers/Mustafi……….
……………………………Sokratis……………………………………
……………………………..Leno………………………………………

N10

Would kill to have a recording of that dressing room postgame

shaka

the love of Emery for Guendouzi will be the tragedy story of Arsenal

pound4pound

Kudos to the brave soul who changed Erik Ten Hag’s Wikipedia bio to:

Erik ten Hag is a Dutch professional football manager and former player who is the currently in charge of Eredivisie club Ajax, and future manager of Arsenal FC.

I’ll bet it’s changed back soon, but I just appreciate that someone random on the Internet has more proactivity than Unai does.

Dathiram84@gmail.com

Think that leaving Socrates is the best solution, he’s a bit of slow and risky
Luiz made the mistakes but he is acceptable , how about with Holding and mvropanos

Paul Roberts

Mvropanos is not match fit.

Paul Roberts

As Blogs said on the Arsecast, the Watford manager was fired as a consequence of his poor end to last season and his poor start to this one. The end for Emery could be near?

Karlito

The stats coming out since his takeover make for some depressing reading. We’re top of the league for shots conceded, penalties conceded, errors leading to goals etc. Going back to his Sevilla days the stats are not too far off.

Homer

And so; the mighty and supposedly flawless virgil van dyk of the klopp-mugshmasers, pulls a Sokratis to gift Napoli a goal. In an CL tie yet!

Funny old game, the futball.

shaka

hmmm…so it was Arsene FC after all..

Calbull92

Leno bears some responsibility for the first goal. If his only short option is a back pass in the 6 yard box he needs to go long. It’s his choice to play short with 3 Watford players crowding the 18. At that point Sokratis has fewer options than Leno.

Longbow

Not his fault for the goal at all. Sokratis didn’t look up at all. Maitland-Niles was completely free on the right. It was the only viable pass. Sokratis and above all Emery is to blame.

Floppy Gloves

I think Calbull92 is right. He’s not saying it is all Leno’s fault, but going a bit rogue and just crushing that ball up field prevents that goal from happening (does it prevent an eventual goal? Probably not, but maybe slows the building momentum). As a keeper, when you’re feeling your team start to suffer from some pressure like we were, you need to have the sense to alleviate it.

Malaysian gunner

No manager is indispensable . Some have been sacked immediately after heavy losses.Wenger was lucky to survive the 8-2 mauling .That was a good 7 years before he was forced out.I wished he had left earlier. As for Emery, he has to start winning asap.Arsenal have not become a poor team overnight but tactically Emery has to get it right. It was really stupid to pass the ball when Cleverly and company were lurking with evil intent near the gunner. Why not take a leaf from how other lowly teams beat the big boys.The ex FM dismissed the idea in… Read more »

Pajanee

Unai’s tactical skill is as good as mustafi and xaka’s defensive skill combine.

Jumanne

When will this team complete this analysis thing, we mess a game, they go and analyze it, on a Tuesday, get into another game and come out with the same outcome! It’s so frustrating!

goonshow

Apropos all the comments on the Xhaka thread below… I’ve called for perspective previously in this regard. Whilst I don’t see the value – as supporters – in crucifying any particular player, I most certainly feel we as supporters have the right to air our views from the sidelines on who is or isn’t pulling their weight within the team. On Xhaka – my ‘perspective’ is this: Parlour, Vieira; Gilberto; Petit; Edu (yes him!); Mickey Thomas; Santi… etc – go back as far as Alex James and George Armstrong if you wish, our club has something of a tradition of… Read more »

Benriz

I’m glad they were pissed off at least

Floppy Gloves

Viva la revolución

goonshow

The fact the Emery didn’t think Bielik was even worth a run out at DM say it all, really. Let him go without ever really giving the lad a chance, despite glowing loan reviews from media and his managers… But then, we have so much quality in defence, we probably didn’t need him… yeah, right