Report: Vitoria SC 1 – 1 Arsenal (inc. goals)

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Result: Vitoria SC 1 – 1 Arsenal
Competition: Europa League
Date: 6 Nov 2019
Venue: Estadio D. Afonso Henriques

Arsenal: Martinez, Mustafi, Holding, Sokratis, Maitland-Niles, Ceballos, Willock, Tierney, Pepe, Martinelli, Saka

Subs: Leno, Bellerin, Kolasinac, Guendouzi, Torreira, Nelson, Lacazette


Arsenal drew 1-1 with Vitoria SC on a rainy day which could have easily seen Arsenal lose by a large margin. The Gunners were uninspiring and piss poor throughout the match and could have easily conceded a hatrick of chances in the first half.

However, Arsenal managed to score first in the 80th minute with a header from a free kick. They then struggled to hold back the Vitoria onslaught which saw them concede a late equalizer and could have conceded two more in the dying minutes in one of the Gunner’s poorest performances in recent years.

First Half

Just when you think Emery couldn’t tinker any further, he threw us another surprise by gambling on a team of first teamers in the Europa League which also saw the return of Pepe to the line-up. The coach also reverted to a back three in defence – a formation he favoured last season but one that he has avoided playing in the current season, until this game against Vitoria, that is.

This conservative approach could well be because of the scare the Portuguese side gave the Gunners in the reverse fixture at the Emirates, with only a last gasp Pepe free kick giving Arsenal the winning edge in injury time.

The formation almost worked a treat in the second minute as Tierney found space down the left wing and caught the Vitoria midfield off guard. His whipped cross almost found an onrushing Pepe. But it was the other wing back, Maitland-Niles, who received the cross but his delivery didn’t manage to find an Arsenal player as Vitoria defenders packed the box.

Despite Arsenal bossing possession, Vitoria were not going to go down without a fight. Vitoria’s Pepe found space outside the box and lashed a shot that evaded Martinez and hit the post – a warning sign for the Gunners.

Vitoria, taking advantage of the extra man in the centre of the park, cut through Arsenal’s midfield duo too easily. Edwards cut in on his left foot from the right and drove the ball towards the far post only for Martinez to save well. The Gunners were cut open just moment later down the right hand side as Vitoria made a low cross into the box that was just inches away from a tap in.

While this writer felt that Mustafi was on route to his redemption ark with a decent performance, the defender reverted to type by allowing his forward to run past him before resorting to a shrt tug to earn the match’s first yellow card. Martinez had to be alert again to palm away an attempt on goal from the resulting corner. The number of attempts (6) on the Arsenal goal within the first 20 minutes have been very worrying considering that Arsenal haven’t registered a shot at this point.

Arsenal replied with their first decent attempt in the 22nd minute as Saka and Pepe produced a good one-two for the former to cross for Holding who headed it just over from close range.

The rest of the first half continued to be a turgid affair with the Gunners lacking movement and creativity while managing their spaces poorly in attack and defence. With the last kick of the half, Pepe’s free kick on goal flew way high into Row Z – summing up the performance thus far.

Second Half

Arsenal came out of the locker room with a semblance of a plan. The exterior centre backs looked to progress the ball through the channels while the midfield four stayed compact to receive the ball.

It worked fairly well in attack but it left Ceballos isolated and exposed when defending Vitoria’s counters. The Spainard was left with a few high intensity runs to cover for his defenders leading him to pull his hamstring within 5 minutes of the restart. He was taken off for Guendouzi soon after.

Guendouzi’s did improve the team’s possession and progression out from the back but Arsenal still struggled to create in the final third. This prompted Saka’s substitution for Lacazette on the 65th minute in hopes of finding the match’s first goal.

With the standard of play not any better after the two substitutions, Emery’s last roll of the dice was to replace Willock for Torreira. An odd move considering that Vitoria were retreating into their shell, three defenders looked like overkill and Arsenal were crying out for an extra presence in midfield.

It seemed that Mustafi’s redemption ark was back on the agenda as it was the defender who made the difference 10 minutes from time. Pepe looped his free kick from the left and Mustafi rose high and unchallenged to head the ball low into the far post to move Arsenal ahead. 1-0

Vitoria released the handbrake and got their equalizer in injury time. Edwards made a mazy run down the right and crossed for a teammate. Arsenal never cleared the ball as the Vitoria players kept it alive in the box and Duarte’s acrobatic finish cost them their clean sheet. 1-1

It could have been 3-1 by the end of the whistle as Vitoria carved Arsenal open and had two more big chances to win the game before the final whistle put all Gooners out of their misery having watched one of the worst performances of the Emery era.

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HelderHughes

One team in group F, there’s only one team in group F, one team in group F…

Disappointing to concede late but still could be back to back champions of the Europa league group stage.

Don’t say this manager doesn’t have goals.

IamaGoober

I think Leicester away will be his last as the manager. They are going to bury us. So everyone just download the disappointment now because this weekend is going to be extremely painful — I think it could be as bad as 3 or more goals. So let’s see what Raul’s really worth, and let’s see the real intent from the boardroom. It’s all good to sit there preseason and talk about ambition — but this is it now. Time to show it. Project Emery is over and he has to go if we have any hope in saving our… Read more »

goongot

i actually want leicester to stuff us. I would be so dissapointed if we win or draw. I was actually sad today when mustafi scored.

Futsboller

No, you can’t wish a loss on this team — that’s flatly wrong — but you can wish that upper management see the blindingly obvious about Emery’s tenure at Arsenal, no matter what results he might achieve in the next month, and make the requisite change now to get this club firmly back into the top four of the Premier League and playing truly competitive football.

goongot

I am sorry but i believe arsenal wont pull the plug unless we lose badly. A single loss now for a much more entertaining december and whole season is an idea which enthralls me.

Jeremy

No it’s not. It’s not wrong if the only way to get better is to be temporarily worse. I’d sacrifice a a game at Leicester that we are going to lose anyway (probably heavily) if it mean’t no Emery, and a team making progress for the rest of the season.

MateKiddleton

We don’t have to lose at all. We can win at Leicester 1-0 to a fortuitous own goal with insipid tactics, and Emery will still get sacked. I’d prefer that. Losing is never the answer especially when champions league football is so important for our future.

Martinellis belly

The best outcome is the board have decided its his last game no matter the result. The body of evidence is huge now.
That way we can get behind the boys and fight for a vital 3 points but still know that he’s going.

modolph

I want the best team to win. I don’t want us to get a result we don’t deserve. Maybe a drubbing from Leicester will convince Raul to pull the trigger.

Mastaofthegoonaverse

That’s a nonsense thing to say. Go back to playing FIFA. And never call yourself a supporter again.

Fabulous

I have similar confidence in them trashing us. So much so I captained Vardy on my fantasy team. And I’m pretty close to triple captaining. Vardy, Maddison, Tielemans and Ndidi will have a field day thru the middle of the park, I can see it already. Remember the days Rodgers repeatedly f*cked us over at Anfield? It will be close. That said the top 4 currently have the most balanced midfield from the rest of the league. They’re mobile, create chances regularly, keeps possession and tempo ticking over very well, press well as a unit, and sense danger and cuts… Read more »

Bobbo

If ever there was a game that exemplified Emeryball. Our goal came from the only shot on target in the 80th minute.

lessthanthesumoftheirparts

From centre back at a set piece

gee

have our centre backs got as many goals as our midfield?

Would not surprise me. David luiz new No. 10!

Runcorn Gooner

I know the conditions were atrocious but just what were our players trying to do Or what was Emery trying to get them to do?

One of the poorest games I have seen in a long,long time.

I am dreading Leicester. Just hope that I am wrong.

Cultured determination

I’d like to tell you, but then i fell asleep while watching the match.

SB Still

Emeryball can put one to sleep at even at 4’o clock in the afternoon!

Nicolas Pepe

If we lose to Leicester and he still here what does that say about the board ?

Gooneron

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall;
All the King’s horses
And all the King’s men,
Couldn’t put Humpty together again.

We are Humpty Dumpty personified. Emery out

From Kenya

You nailed it.pap!

AmericanGooner

This is the first time I’ve said this, but Emery needs to go for several reasons: 1. I was giving him a chance to improve tactics when he got his fullbacks back, but we are still flat with no real form. We were outplayed by a team that finished fifth in the Portuguese league for goodness sake. 2. His substitutions are terrible. Torreira for Willock during a 0-0 draw? Why? 3. He’s lost the locker room. Not even mentioning the obvious Xhaka situation, the players seem to have no joy or energy on or off the pitch. It’s become hard… Read more »

Futsboller

Arsenal haven’t always won things, but we’ve always been enjoyable to watch even for the neutrals. But there is absolutely no reason to watch the Gunners under Emery — there is no joy, no potency, no incisiveness to our football at all. Neither style nor substance. How is upper management allowing this to happen?

AmericanGooner

I totally hear what you’re saying. And, to be quite frank, I don’t even care if we play attractive football. I’d rather us to, because it’s easier on the eye and quite beautiful when it’s done right. But as a supporter, I don’t NEED attractive football. What I do need is a real plan that works and puts the team in position to perform and ultimately win. Playing Torreira at #10 makes 0 sense. He’s an incredible, young CDM that will only get better as time goes on. Play him there. Playing with our PAL as a front 3 and… Read more »

Kolasinac

This didn´t look like Arsenal.

Efeli

Unfortunately this looked as Arsenal as it can be under Emery

Heavy Gunner

The horrifying truth is that it WAS actually Arsenal! Or have I been prescribed the wrong medicine? Holy shit- a bucket of it at that!

Dave

Let’s not kid ourselves, I can see your point yet the sad reality is we look as the Arsenal of late, toothless, shambles in defense, no creativity no backbone and just a mess

Thierry Bergkamp

What you saw was the new Arsenal

Efeli

Enough is enough…. I know it wasn’t our most important game this season but we’ve been outplayed by a championship level team (again), haven’t shown any cohesion and dominance at all and could only score from a set-piece. Don’t they see this clueless mess we’ve been doing for months now under the “guidance” of a completely incompetent person? What on earth is the board waiting for? It’s never been any clearer that this man is absolutely not qualified for this job and can only lead us to being more mediocre than ever in the last 20+ years. We’re on the… Read more »

Paul Roberts

Our second string team have now become as boring and poor as our first team? Some may say, this is the “Emery effect” finally coming through after 17 months? Is it too late already? How many more sleeps until he is gone please? 🙁

Frank

To quote the bloke on Talksport “you wouldn’t trust Unai Emrey to walk your dog would you, with his inability to hold on to leads

Dave

Funny, but fuck Talkshite radio.

Dave

He’s got to go.

Fatgooner in the Afternoon

Rubbish game. It looked like we were going to nick an undeserved win…but don’t be stupid: how could we avoid conceding that goal in injury time? So much for Holding being our defensive saviour.

Great finish by Mustafi.

AmericanGooner

Holding has unfortunately looked off his game since returning from injury. Quite disappointing. Let’s hope he can get back on track because the talent is there and he seems like a good dude overall.

Reality check

Everyone looks off these days let alone guys who just came back from an acl injury..

Martinellis belly

Ive done my ACL. It takes a long time to get your old agility, mobility and pace back, not to mention the mental sharpness.
Even if the knee is safe to play on he still will take time to get back to moving how he used to. Same with Bellerin. Were going to have to be patient.

Flash

1 shot on target…

Paul Roberts

I missed that?

Hantal

The goal

Paul Roberts

Oh the headed goal? Sorry

Xxxrob

2:50am kickoff. Was up at 3am (to piss) and considered flicking the telly on but trusted my instincts (match was recording) and went back to bed.

Got up at 5am to watch and lads.. thank fuck I waited.. that fast forward button got a work out! I was even skipping 5 minute chunks at one stage.

Watching football is getting depressing. Sick of this clown.

Hantal

I found on fast forward arsenal played at the speed I’d like them too

G Hepburn

This team are better than most people think, they have internationals and a good league position but not creating anything aside from set-pieces is intolerable. Devoid of creativity, it’s never going to get better – Emery was brought in to make the side more solid but I think the next manager’s biggest priority will be to get us creating again. It’s the only way he’ll get the fans onside

Pearson

His biggest job is going to be trying to get these guys enjoying football again

DericeJAM

Another lead given away, no attacking intent or obvious style of play, and an absolutely desperate Emery throwing on 3 first XI as subs in order to salvage the game and his job.

Not sure how long this can last, surely something has to be done?

From Kenya

BLOGS WE HAD ONE SHOT ON TARGET.
ONE guys

rohit

In the middle of the match, the website I was watching the match on asked me to pay to continue.. For the first time since I started following Arsenal, I clicked on Cancel. This was tiring and going by what I read on the liveblog, it became exhausting by the time it ended.

No player can be said to be at fault. Not till Emery is around.

Viva La Prof

Having known all day we were kicking off early, when it came I completely forgot, glad I missed it to be honest. The only thing to look forward to now is Emery getting sacked BEFORE the Leicester game and Wengerball In the Bundesliga. Fuck emery and the horse he ride in on !

Viva La Prof

Rode in on even.. what is Spanish for taxi? Emery is an absolute waste of skin

ScotchEggsRule

El taxi?

Jht

Right after final whistle my 1,5 years old daughter said “POTKUT” (means “fired” in Finnish)! Couldn’t help but laugh for that Although seriously thats how it should be for Unai now

Ketan

We’re going to be Potkutting him after the Leicester game.

bob

That was dire. Like watching Stoke vs Arsenal, instead we made them look like Arsenal (how we used to make chances and attack) and Emery has turned us into Stoke, despite an embarrassment of attacking riches available to him. No excuses available to him. Year and a half and still hasn’t worked out the function of a midfield in football, nor how to coach a team to create chances from open play and impose themselves on a game, or hold a lead. Took us most of the game to get even a single shot on target, yet they were having… Read more »

DericeJAM

Difference between us and Stoke of old is that they used to fight for every match, punch above their weight, and actually got results…

Futsboller

Well said.

Dat guy

Three at the back and starting tierny? Good ebening and goodbye Mr.Emery ?

StuArse

Just watching Mustafi on BT sport post game. “Vitoria are a good team, they are in the Europa League for a reason”. Yeah so are we!
So sad we have gone to comparing ourselves to Bayern to Vitoria.
No chance of a win at the weekend unfortunately.

DericeJAM

Sad thing is that even if we do eke out a result at the weekend, it won’t be because we’ve turned a corner. We seem to be headed one way under Emery.

Riku

Mustafi, our best player, holding looked rusty, couple bad passes And holding skinned before cross.
Pepe fantastic from set pieces, but takes too many touches to play on break, that extra touch, he takes allows opposition to get back in defence. Think just confidence, he should have vollied in the box in first half but tried to take a touch.
One shot on target all game , what …

GUS

i have been saying this for some time now, holding was championship level before the injury albeit with a 10 per cent chance of making the grade, now he def looks like a championship player. we were all wishing he becomes a beast of a centre back but he just dont got it we missed out on jonny fucking evans, gary cahil as experienced centre backs who could actually defend they wouldve been an upgrade on what we had and better than david luiz at defending. we were all over soyuncu aswell and le t him slip though as well,… Read more »

yen

Let’s have the same discussion we had after every game lately, that’s gonna be fun!

Viva La Prof

Isn’t it!, you could literally look at arseblog news comments from the last 10 games and it’s the same problems. I can’t believe we’ve become “that club”

Oregoon

Right, three guys go to the end line and cross it into the box to score the tying goal three games in a row. Emery does not seem to have the answers, but what about the players in each of these situations? No excuses. They aren’t getting it done.

Guns Up

Whether he’s viewed as a long-term solution or not, surely Freddie is capable of holding down the fort temporarily. He would undoubtedly set the side up better than Emery for Leicester on Saturday, which is all that matters right now. Action has to be immediate from above.

bob

The longer the board takes to act in removing Emery, the more they are culpable for our terrible performance and results. I hope they understand this and get decisive.

Andre

The game’s over already !?

Shitbird

Didn’t watch most of the match save for the last ten minutes, but now I have this image of Mustafi in a downpour, building himself an ark on the pitch and then taking it apart again. Thank you!

6 Arsenal players between the attacker and the goal before the equalizer, of course it goes in!

And is it just me or does Guendozi lead us into a lot of blind alleys?

Dave

Not much to say really, we need a change of direction and we need it asap. Emery needs to go, we should give Freddie a chance till we get a proper manager. Yes, things might not get better instantly under Freddie but at least we could be more lenient with him (being an arsenal great, his spell in the youth team actually seems to say he likes to play attractive football, and would be a new manager learning his trades). Emery can kindly go away, this team is devoid of joy, of shape and tactics. If we could get Ten… Read more »

Kelvim

Still can’t hold on to a lead..

Magic City Gooner

Blame it on the lluvia, señor…

Riku

Team at weekend .
Leno
Bellerin, chambers, papa, luiz,kola.
Matteo, Lucas,
Ozil
P.e.a., Alex .l.

Mouise

You forget Ceballos, harmstring or not.

Riku

All these players rested ( except papa) and then he did used substitutes tidsy by Emery.

Jeremy

Please, just make it stop.

Evaristus

The times we were poor last season, some people kept saying, “Be patient, this is Wenger’s team.” Well, whose team is this?
Wenger’s latter teams were piss-poor, but getting outshot regularly by “inferior” opposition?

We might as well be called Sketch Artist FC
We keep throwing away leads and drawing for a living

Pookins

I havent seen official stats but it feels like every single team we play has more shots than us, regardless of their quality. How is that actually possible??

Dave

That’s what happens when we play with no attacking intent (our most creative player always out of the team), with piss poor defensive tactics, with our best DM constantly on the bench or playing as an CAM, etc etc

Sean

Maybe it’s just because I don’t pay attention to enough of the media discussion in general, but what really irritates me is that all the discussions around us at the moment seem to end up being some pointless, vague debate about Arsenal and their various different shortcomings over a number of years, rather than ever actually focusing on the manager. We can all see it, yet for some reason outside of the actual fanbase, so many media personalities still seem so reluctant to really criticise Emery and the dour displays we see week in week out. Is it because the… Read more »

Oregoon

Not sure who you are listening to, but what I have been hearing from multiple outlets is Arsenal’s continued problems being laid directly at the feet of Unai Emery. One commentator on ESPN even went as far as calling him an idiot for his comments after the Wolves game.

Sean

You might be right, that kind of talk could well have ramped up in the past week or two. I wouldn’t really know because I pulled my hair out watching this shit-storm of an analysis and then kind of just switched off altogether https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I85mMT_9vZg

Oregoon

I see what you mean. Cole and Hargreaves. Not a lot to love there! Anyway, listening to that I think Hargreaves was talking negatively about how we are set up but just wasn’t naming names. Have given up on a lot of the English based pundits because, like you said, giving explanations for our play now from examples 10 years ago. Does anybody really believe that crap, as the players are different and so is the coach!! Bias and prejudice most die hard really hard among opposing players, I guess.

Martinellis belly

And some of them still think we play exciting football but were too soft. Its like theyre stuck 10 years in the past. Lazy punditry.

GoonerDane

Our midfield has been overrun by almost every team we’ve met lately and Emery feels a solution to this is removing a CM? Come now…
Horrible perfomance once again, no joy in watching us play or even shown in the players’ faces. Emery is on his way out, surely! Question is just… when?

Hantal

Absolutely crap

ScotchEggsRule

Toilet, absolute toilet performance.

Rick_Sanchez

Poor toilets, at least they serve a purpose. Unlike Mr. Emery.

GUS

A guy sitting on his arse, cuts open the team for the goal they scored,
Shittness personified

hopefully we lose another couple and emery can be home for xmas

Kentmonkey

Good ebe….abernoon

Oozil

The kids seemed to be playing well when the season started. Seems like involvement with the first team has brought them down.

Tbbro

Struggled to keep awake watching this. I don’t think Emery actually wants to win football matches! There can’t be any other explanation for the way he sets the team up. This is not the Arsenal that i use to love watching, no positivity.

Magic City Gooner

Emery is like a eunuch in a whorehouse
Hopeless

Arsenalista

He’s like a chocolate fire guard

loose_cannon

To be fair to Emery, at least we’re consistent….

GunnerIain

Same old same old! Any point in really trying to dissect it…

Change of subject? That rain was awful

anonarse

Maybe Trump has copyright on the term “you’re fired!” and that the board and Kroenke isn’t creative enough to come up with another phrase?

Magic City Gooner

He’s certainly Made Arsenal Great Again… for our rivals to laugh at us.

Andy

Yup, just like America…

Ray Parlour's ice cream van

Fortunately, I had a meeting at work today and wasn’t able to watch or even listen to the match. It seems that I saved myself a lot of grief and stress. I’m normally a glass half full sort of guy, but my current mind set is one of “dropped glass and smashed on the floor” with Arsenal. Ok god please let it end soon….

David

Boring

GunnerIain

Expect any different?

Anonymarse

Gash

Pepe's left foot

Hot news Emery gives press conference to why he keeps fucking things up at Arsenal. Please see link.. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hUeN6LZNPVQ

Naked Cygan

We should not wait till Saturday, He needs to get sacked tonight!!!! Based on the last 6 games miserable games we have to take action!!!! 1-Sheff Utd beat us 1-0 2-Pepe saves us from -21 down to 3-2 against VITORIA!!! 3-We are 2-0 up at Palace and drop 2 points 4-We are 4-2 & 5-4 up at Liverpool and we go out on penalties with 2 min left. 5- We are 1-0 up against Wolves and we drop 2 more points. 6- We are 1-0 up at VITORIA!!! ONE Shot on target!! We drop 2 more points 7-Most shots faced… Read more »

Santori

Xhaka issue is self inflicted by fans like yourself easily prey to media suggestion. Fans such as you have not helped with the tetchy environment. Drop in performance coincided with loss of Lacazette. Somehow we lost midfield fluency. Salnehi flattered to deceive bc elephant in the room, Pepe has been shite but for one game. We could have bought cheaper with Ziyech or Fekir and got our Cback issue fixed (Soyoncu at Leicester proving a bargain) instead of wasting 27m on saliba and a panic buy, hoping to extend on an over the hill Koscielny who did us a favour.… Read more »

Alex

What are you smoking dude? All due respect to your viewpoint, but this is not a squad or personnel issue. Lacazette, Pepe, Aubameyang, Özil is a forward line which should be terrorising most defences. We should be nailed on at third but we HE doesn’t believe it. HE believes it’s hard and he lacks that tiny little swagger – that belief in his core that HE AND ARSENAL are better than the opposition and WILL WIN! That’s what’s missing and that fear filters down to the players and infects performances.

Oregoon

Yes. Uninspiring, confidence sapping, and over complicating has brought us to this spot. This is why he needs to go. In a box without a solution to the problem that he created.

Tim

The fact that (if rumours are true) the board seems to be willing to sack the manager if we lose this weekend or to keep him, probably until Christmas, if we win, is really worrying. At this point, after a season and a half of hard evidence, the decision shouldn’t be based on the result of a single match. Any team can snag a win anywhere. What would it mean if we beat Leicester? Nothing.

Santori

More self inflicted nonsense. We are struggling but nobody except the delusional fans is thinking of sacking the gaffer. Press manufactures crisis all to easily with such spastic minds. Only have to look at the number of negative articles on Xhaka McNulty is running. Too many fans open to suggestion and create the shit show atmosphere at home games. As much as the team itself is deficient at the moment, the atmosphere doesn’t help. Andwhat good is sacking Unai at the moment? We won’t be competing for title anyway. We are still 5th pushing 4th, and in europa. A new… Read more »

Alex

Are you alright?

The Arsenal

Spuds and man u being shit is the only reason Emery does not look worse than he already does.

Futsboller

Do you really think Emery is doing a good job, and that another manager could not improve our performances?

Two wins for Spurs/United and two more draws for us and we’re below them on goal difference.

ScotchEggsRule

“Press manufactured crisis”

Yes, the media have manufactured our league form of 8 wins in about 22 games….

You don’t half talk rubbish.

Qwaliteee

Will someone on our board please grab a crucifix and some garlic, nail Dracula into his coffin and call a stage coach. Any airport, any destination, preferably Transylvania – JUST GO AND GO NOW you clueless Lugosi pillock.

The Arsenal

Leicester should sort this mess out. You know Arsene had many flaws but he was never afraid to play football. Eye gouging man u esque shiteball at the moment. Barring a couple of Carabao and Europa League games with the kids we have not played well since Valencia last season.