Report: Leeds United 0-0 Arsenal

225

Result: Leeds United 0-0 Arsenal
Competition: Premier League
Date: 22 November 2020
Venue: Elland Road

Arsenal: Leno, Bellerin, Holding, Gabriel, Tierney, Ceballos, Xhaka, Willock, Willian, Pepe, Aubameyang

Subs: Runarsson, Mustafi, Saka, Maitland-Niles, Lacazette, Nelson, Nketiah



Arsenal survived 40 minutes with 10 men to claim a hard-earned 0-0 draw against Leeds United at Elland Road. 

Marcelo Bielsa’s side were probably better value for the win even before Nicolas Pepe got himself sent off for a ridiculous headbutt on Ezgjan Alioski but the home side couldn’t take advantage of their man advantage hitting the woodwork on three occasions. 

The Gunners were disciplined defending deep and had chances of their own to snatch a winner leaving Mikel Arteta frustrated on an afternoon when he was desperate for a win. 

Pre-game

Mikel Arteta opted to bench both Alex Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah meaning Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was given the responsibility of leading the attack from a central position. Nicolas Pepe and Willian offered support on the flanks with Joe Willock, making his first Premier League appearance of the season, floating behind. In the absence of Mo Elneny and Thomas Partey, we returned to the Xhaka-Ceballos double-pivot that served us well at the tail-end of last season. Despite their troubles against Villa, Bellerin, Tierney, Gabriel and Holding got the nod in defence. After a busy international break, Bukayo Saka was left on the bench. David Luiz stayed in London after the birth of his daughter yesterday.

First Half

From the outset, this felt like a clash between two teams who’d been told exactly what to expect from each other. Both sides traded neat spells of possession but it was cagey, like boxers trading jabs but unwilling to commit to anything more risky.

Raphinha and Ceballos traded efforts that went high and wide, Bamford had a toe-poke saved by Leno and Pepe nearly caught out Meslier with a cross that clipped off the bar.

For the most part, Arsenal were comfortable in the opening 21 minutes. Ceballos offered bite and energy in midfield and Willock did his best to try and inject some drive when on the ball. Unfortunately, the front trio of Pepe, Willian and Aubameyang looked frustratingly disjointed. Our captain did have a decent chance on 24 minutes but swiped wide after quick interplay by Ceballos, Pepe, Willock and Bellerin.

After that, Leeds started to dominate. They really fancied their chances attacking Bellerin’s flank and time after time, they’d double up on the Spaniard before trying cutbacks towards the penalty spot. While Xhaka and Ceballos were often alert to the danger and cleared the ball, the fact that Dallas and Klich has chances was a worry. Leno also had to stop a bouncing volley by Bamford, who pounced on a tentative clearance by Gabriel, and was sent sprawling by a Raphinha shot from the edge of the box that was taken early.

Ayling and Pepe traded further efforts in the dying embers of the half, the latter trying his luck with a trademark curler, but to be honest we were lucky to head into the break on level terms.

Second Half

Reiss Nelson replaced the ineffective Willian and looked lively but his chances of making an impact were considerably affected by Pepe’s stupidity inside five minutes of the restart.

Off the ball, the Ivorian, clearly irked by something said or done by Alioski, confronted the defender with his head. The Macedonia international went down in a heap, VAR checked it, referee Anthony Taylor visited the pitchside monitor and a red card was shown. It was idiotic by Pepe and he deserved the punishment.

Arteta reacted by sending on Saka for Willock and Nelson switched from left to right. The plan was to sit in a deep block and then try and counter with pace. In a teaser, Saka and Tierney combined to tee up Aubameyang whose tame shot was saved.

At the other end, Raphinha slipped in Dallas who lashed an effort that was heading into the top corner before Leno tipped over. It was a great save by the German.

While we were doing pretty well at keeping Leeds at arm’s length, we repeatedly lost the duels in midfield and that meant the pressure kept building. Rodrigo, on as a sub, twice tried his luck; a first effort whistled over and a second, on 79 minutes, struck the bar.

Saka’s toil led to a chance for Aubameyang whose effort was blocked by the elbow of Cooper. VAR took a look but ruled the defender couldn’t have done anything more to get his arm out of the way.

The chances kept coming for both sides. Leno made a clean save to deny Poveda, another who was invited onto his left foot, and Saka had a fine chance to steal the points on the break. Bellerin put him through with a brilliant through ball but the England international couldn’t get the better of Meslier who closed him down quickly.

Back came Leeds. Bamford met Poveda’s cross with his head but the ball skipped off the turf and onto the post. Leno needed treatment in the aftermath, sustaining a cut to his arm that meant he had to change shirt.

Klich side-footed over in the first of five minutes of stoppage time that were extended even further when Saka picked up an injury that meant he had to be replaced by Maitland-Niles. Ceballos also went down in a heap after Phillips took out his ankle. He received a booking.

Raphinha ensured the nerves kept jangling until the dying seconds as he became the third Leeds player to hit the woodwork. We just about held on but the drama continued after the final whistle with a fired-up Tierney being dragged away from a number of Leeds players.

A point on the road in the circumstances isn’t to be sniffed at but more dropped points is a concern as the gap on the big boys starts to widen.

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Tomislav

Our players look like Banana Guards trying to catch intruder in Candy Kingdom.

The_Golden_Wrigglesworth

Sadly, Arteta seems to be more Duke of Nuts than Princess Bubblegum these days.

Futsboller

Poor result, of course, but I was impressed by the team as soon as Pepe was sent off, and really impressed with the chances we actually created after that. Hats off to the bloody defending and those goal posts.

Stupid by Pepe, of course, but I find simulation and exaggeration (of which Ceballos is very guilty) utterly pathetic. Sadly, the officiating justifies it and the fans support it, so it is institutionalized in the game. Sad.

Just love love love love love Tierney.

Atom

At some point we need actual results against teams outside the top 6. Prior to going down to 10 Leeds had outshot us by an almost 3 to 1 ratio and was starting to dominate us. We’re just flat out lucky they hit the post 3 times. I like Arteta but this quite frankly is on par with Emery ball in terms of how incompetent our offense is.

Cygan’sbaldspot

It’s worse… at least Emery had an idea, ok, one idea- to attack and do the cutback down the left. Got old quick but at least it was something.

IncrediblArsenal

It would be very difficult to compare, but Emery had a relatively good first season around the 11 month mark (except for Baku, of course).

Diaby's Left Peg

Did he though?

Futsboller

Of course we do, but I’ll put this game into context rather than deciding to knit it up with other disappointments this year, and instead realize that we tried 4231, we played Auba up the middle for the first time, didn’t have Partey or Elneny to energize the midfield, and this all just after the international break (and I do think we probably had more internationals playing). We knew that Arteta was going to have to experiment this year as he tried to rebuild our offence without sacrificing our defence. This game was an attempt at something different, and it… Read more »

Atom

We can’t afford another mid table season imo so while I think Arteta will be a good manager, we need him to learn quickly how to be one. He’s a year in the job and while he’s fixed the defense it’s come via us looking like a Maureen team.

Tanned arse

I don’t think he changed anything significant at all. Same approach, just shifted players into different starting positions.

Bleeding gums murphy

And how good was Willock 😂 oh no he wasn’t was he, that was against Dundalk and Molde

Hahaha couldn’t agree more. No idea why him and Nelson are being touted as saviours. They both run around…and then run around some more.

Thessaloniki

The out of sight, out of blame theory. We’re experts at it.

goongot

They are not saviours but they are young and might turn good in future unlike the player’s that are making 11 for namesake.

Andy

i agree. neither of these lads are up to scratch and unlikely to ever be. willock looked completely lost today. he looks good against teams from the level he should be playing at. nelson i have never seen the point of, and his whole attitude just seems off. he thinks he is some kind of superstar and he has achieved nothing yet. i like nketiah but i’m not sure he is going to be good enough to hold down a first team place either.

Still love wenger

How good was anyone in an attacking sense in the 1st half?
I remember one moment when willock had to tell a Willian to move,hard to do anything with no moment in front!

Still love wenger

Movement

allezkev

I saw a Tierney do that a couple of times, I think he was pointing for Willian to move and receive the ball.

Fuzz

players of the match G Post and C Bar

Jeremy

We are so passive. When we went down to 10 men our players lost their rigidity and were forced to beat a man or two and play a direct pass to make space – this was the period we created our best chances. I do wonder what the players do in training other than standing around in zones.

Bleeding gums murphy

Agreed Jeremy, the creativity is being sucked out of them with this obsession with position. I really miss watching mesut ozil. It must be hard for the players to know the most creative player we have is being left out.

Hank Scorpio

He’d be feeling smug about now that’s for sure.

The Arsenal

We look over coached. All spontaneity has been lost.

Thessaloniki

Couldn’t disagree more with this popular coaching vs. spontaneity narrative. You saw all the triangles in the Leeds midfield, that’s coached. Bamford run to the near post, with midfielders arriving behind him, coached. The man marking out of possession, coached. All good things that Leeds did to dominate us were practised, not individual brilliance.

goongot

was called clueless when i suggested nelson deserves to start before pepe and willian by some qwalitee turd. We actually looked better with 10, without both.

Fabulous

Nelson and Willock deserves to start next game. Hopefully Saka as well – fingers crossed its a minor injury. Abit unfair on Willock today, was the only one really trying in the first half, and just as we were getting into the game he had to be sacrificed for Pepè’s stupidity.

Michael Bolton Wanderers

But don’t let Nelson take any set pieces.

ClockEndRider

I thought Nelson did nothing to warrant a league starting place today. The minimum a professional footballer should be able to do is take a set piece that clears the first man. He failed to do this repeatedly. Awful game.

Der32

If that’s the case Neymar should probably not be a pro footballer too. Judge a player from his many facets, not just the set piece taking in 1 game.

ClockEndRider

That was just the most obvious shortcoming.

Mpls

Nelson was easily the equal of Willian and Pepe for the time he was on. I know that’s not saying a whole lot, but if we’re talking about who gets a start..

Mpls

Damn blogs, the last 2 months every comment I post is ‘awaiting approval’ what’d I do?!

Quentin Quarantino

Yeah, sometimes hours waiting? Not sure why?

Bleeding gums murphy

Willock 😂😂

David Hilliers Arm Cast

Willock was horrible. Slow and scared when he received the ball in very good positions.

Nelson is a breath of fresh air.

Andy

why? they were both rubbish today. nelson can’t even put a decent set piece in. why does he keep taking them?

Deano

I wouldn’t be sorry if they both didn’t play again. The willian deal was a disaster, his legs have gone. Pepe is just plain lazy and very slow on the ball.

Martin

I suppose you think Ozil is lazy too. For all his faults Pepe is never lazy.

Deano

No Martin, always defended Ozil even at the lowest of times, he has that creativity this team is crying out for.

Pepe is very skilful, but I feel that is the reason he slows all our plays down. His goal against Dundalk was simply brilliant but it felt like the only thing he really did In that match, a grafter he is not.

Oregoon

Not even sure that it matters if Pepe is called lazy especially if he shows us an undisciplined and petulant character. Have supported him ever since he was bought, but from what he did today, he can take a seat. Nelson, at least, was a positive force for us unlike the starting wingers.

karl

Nelson made the decision to stay and it looks like he has better instincts than the manager on this one.

High gooner

Nelsons corner kicks need improvement if he is going to continue taking them. Poor kicks.

Gooner79

Its not the player, but the tactic – to hit the first man and get a flick to the back post. Pepe, William, Nelson and a few others have all tried it this season and failed. Last season it worked. I don’t understand why none of them can do it now, but the tactic needs to change as we just waste every corner we get.

ClockEndRider

Is it a tactic to repeatedly hit corners and free kicks no higher than chest high? The old style Marwood for Adams and Boulder was successful. I’m not sure I remember seeing the tactic work over a period of time when the ball isn’t delivered at head height.

StockholmGooner

Nelson was horrendous on the corners and freekicks though.

karl

True, but Willian and Xhaka were no better.

ClockEndRider

A bit like saying “that shit sandwich was horrible but no more horrible than the bucket of cold sick I had to wash it down.”.

allezkev

To be honest, we’ve not got anyone who can take a decent corner consistently or anyone who threatens at free kicks, so it a bit unfair to dig out Nelson.

Qwaliteee

Turd.

Yet another name to add to the collection.

And you are clueless. Nelson isn’t anywhere near as good as Pepe.

goongot

still missing the point bud.Never claimed nelson is better then pepe (debatable) but on current form,nelson looks more capable then both to give us some attacking edge.

karl

Leno was the only decent player. Another mid table performance where nobody seems able to keep the ball.

The only real question is why our wage bill is so high.

High gooner

I thought Gabriel was good too. Ceballos and Bellerin as well

karl

Gabriel was below his usual standard with several poor giveaways.

Bellerin still doesn’t know how to take a throw in.

Fabulous

Throw in aside he created the best chance to win the game for Saka. Let’s have a bit of perspective yeah?

karl

I wish I could accept this level as well as you. Maybe once we are completely out of contention I will relax:-)

Fabulous

My father used to tell me to not set your expectations too high. Actually does wonders. I love the Arsenal, always have, but since a year ago I’ve fully accepted we’re mid table quality – just with a bloated wage structure. Top 4 or winning cups are frankly really extra.

Andy

bellerin is good going forward but that’s not his primary job. he is a very average defender.

Blahblah

Some players gave it their sweat ( Tierney), blood (Leno) and ballz (Gabriel).

Andy

Yep those 3 today were the only ones who looked like Premier League players.

Andy

and saka. he made a difference when he came on.

ClockEndRider

And Tierney. As was Saka until his injury.

Martin

Gabriel was immense.

David Hilliers Arm Cast

I keep hearing “transition”. You don’t pay transitional players 200k a week. I’m not buying it.

IncrediblArsenal

If you believe some of the things I’ve read, 95% of the wages go to Ozil. He’s a 100% responsible for our shocking performances this season, though.
What’s effing ironical though is we’ve just begun the same story with Willian.

ClockEndRider

Clearly Ozil is not to blame as he wasn’t on the pitch, That’s useless hyperbole. Neither has he shown anything over the last 3 years to suggest he deserves a starting place.

Oregoon

Better check your source on that wage bill. Think about what Auba and Willian are making a week, also.

Jo90

Please do not blame Ozil for the performance today. Let it go.

Pearson

The person who employed Ozil caused this malaise throughout our squad

Jo90

And Tierney.

Maniac

Well at least Leno is rediscovering his form.

Martin

Well cutting out the passing out from the back helps

Biggles

Agreed and thank goodness for that, or we may well have lost. Doesn’t really say much for our current position that the good news is that our keeper is getting back to form.

Fabulous

That’s probably the other positive for today, not having to listen to some folks crying about Emi.

Charles

This shit is just so bad – there isn’t a single team in the league that I expect us to score against, much less beat at this point. And we should have lost here, they hit the post what, 3 times?

We need to have a little patience putting in a new system, but it’s becoming increasingly clear Mikel doesn’t know how to coach attacking football. We don’t get players forward, and we don’t get shots on target. Missing the international break already.

Thessaloniki

Before the Arteta Out brigade gets in full swing. I think we need to realize just how bad our recruitment has been for a few years now (including AW). We just don’t have the funds to get our heaviest recruitments wrong over and over again. Essentially, we have an expensive squad of mismatched talent that can’t play together. Changing the coach won’t solve this issue.

For comparison note Leeds squad from 2019 https://www.worldfootball.net/teams/leeds-united/2019/2/ compared that with today https://www.worldfootball.net/teams/leeds-united/2021/2/. Note how Bielsa has completely moulded this team to play with each other despite the perceived lower level of talent.

Andy

i agree with this. outside of united we have been the worst run club in the top half of the league for a number of years now. pissing money down the toilet every transfer window on poor recruitment, fat contracts for players going over the hill and letting others with good value run their contracts down and/or leave for nothing. i’m not against arteta at all. i like the guy but i think it is too much to ask a novice coach to qualify for CL with the mess he inherited. we should have sold auba/laca and used the money… Read more »

Fabulous

In the famous words of that twat Michael Owen, “if they don’t score, they’re hardly ever gonna win.”

Deano

Thanks fabulous reminding me of his stupidity has just brightened my mood slightly. Only slightly.

Naija gooner

Inasmuch as you want to blame arteta, look at the incisive passes Leeds attackers were getting compared to ours, look at the non of touches it takes for our players to control the ball, Willian is awful midfielders can’t pass strikers can’t shoot

High gooner

I miss Wengerball

Maniac

Yes, they hit the woodwork three times, but honestly every time it was just a speculative chance that rebounded straight back to their players. I literally lost count of the times the commentators said “it drops to [insert Leeds player name here].” They had a few good chances, but so did we (Bellerin > Saka was probably the best of the game), so let’s not get too carried away. That being said, we are just dreadful going forward and I’m really struggling to see a coherent game plan here. Pepe is completely isolated to the right, Willian drifts and does… Read more »

Charles

Haha, no, it wasn’t three speculative chances. Bamford’s was extremely unlucky not to score. And also, they’re a newly promoted team who’s been out of the top flight for 16 years. We shouldn’t be worse than them in attack.

Maniac

The Bamford header – fair enough, but the others? One drops to Raphinha and the other a speculative long shot from Rodrigo. I was talking more generally about their shots where every single ball into the box ended up dropping to Klich or Dallas or Raphinha, etc.

Andy

leeds had at least three really good chances in the first half that they totally fluffed. if their finishing had been better that game could easily have been 3 or 4 nil to them.

IncrediblArsenal

Given how we’ve played in the league this season (so far), are you confident we’ll score half a dozen goals against Wolves and Sp*rs? Nothing would delight me (to be proven wrong) and the fanbase more than Auba, Laca and Willian scoring hat-tricks in those two games. But on current form and with Pepe out, I’m not as assured of our scoring skills as I was after the Fulham game.

efeli

Having no games is so much better than this crap.
I’m starting to develop anxiety before every single league game.

Charles

Why? Anxiety is fear of the unknown. You should know very well what’s going to take place.

efeli

I know that it’s the racional approach and it would cause me less stress but I just can’t accept the unacceptable.

Biggles

Is there any positive evidence of this “new system” you talk about? OK, we didn’t concede and got a point – but is that down to the ” system” or as much to the poor finishing of Leeds on this occasion? The lack of goals all season (excepting at Fulham) has been, and remains, the major worry. Two shots on target in 90 minutes today. I don’t see any “system” operating at all as far as that side of our game is concerned.

Charles

No I don’t either. But every good player has been away for two weeks on international duty, so I didn’t really expect us to be much better today (albeit not this bad either). I’m prepared to give Arteta a couple weeks to try to get this working though before deciding he’s the wrong man.

Andy

should have been 2 or 3-nil to leeds at half time. they were very unlucky. i think arteta is in big trouble now. players look completely confused about what they are supposed to be doing. and what happened to the pressing? it doesn’t happen anymore. auba/willian/pepe can’t be bothered. very worried about the lack of interest radiating from auba since he signed that contract. i hope we don’t have another ozil situation on our hands.

Fabulous

Tierney deserves extra points for his reaction after the final whistle. Genuinely pissed for drawing against Leeds and rightly so. Nelson also deserves extra marks, we were visibly better when he came on. But just as we’re getting some steam, Pepè on the other hand – after asking to be started he goes and does that. Alioski was being a cunt but he should know better.

Elgon views

Liked that bit from Tierney who was solid. Pepe was stupid for the head butt but someone needed to let Alioski know that his reaction was bitch move

Twatsloch

Massive brain fart from Pepe today. The kind that’ll linger for a long time.

Hail Gus!

Makes you wonder if Bielsa, knowing Pepe from Lille, “briefed” his players beforehand 🤔

Twatsloch

Not unlikely. We did it to Giroud in the FA Cup final.

Oregoon

Absolutely. Had to be one of the most selfish, arrogant, and idiotic moves ever from an Arsenal player. The only defense I can give him is that replays show him and the Leed’s twat pushing each other at least three times and Taylor, nor any other ref calls, them down. They both should have had yellows for that crap. Maybe that would have saved his ass.

charvakan

As long as he was going to get a red, Pepe should have gone all Diaby-on-Barton on the play-acting Alioski.

Twatsloch

Or not gifted him the opportunity in the first place. All this diving talk is bollocks. You seriously think any of our players wouldn’t have made a meal of contact like that? Had it been the reverse we’d be celebrating Pepe while laughing at Alioski’s gullibility.

efeli

Another dreadful performance without any sign of improvement whatsoever, playing like a mid table team. We’ve come to a point where we can’t be considered favourites against 90% of the PL teams. It’s painful to say but we should start admitting that Mikel is just not the right coach for us right now and find someone who might have a chande to save this horrible season. I know that we’re fighting with injuries and the COVID situation but it can’t be an excuse as others have the same issues. I understand that it is supposed to be a process but… Read more »

Charles

Still too early to start looking for a new manager, but we’re on that path. I still think he’ll turn it around, but he’s running out of time.

Fabulous

Have a sneaky feeling you were shouting to sign Mikel up for life after the FA Cup and Charity Shield. Or even after that Old Trafford win. Why are we overreacting after each game though? On both ends even. When he breaks records; he’s our messiah. When results are not coming; let’s call for his head. The reality is, it actually IS a process and today, although the results doesn’t show for it he did ring up some changes. And for a while in the second half it did work, before Pepe had a brainfart and even then with 10… Read more »

efeli

I just don’t understand the amount of downvotes.
Are people satisfied with the direction we’re heading towards, with the lack of improvement, with our impotent style of play, with our league position including the fact that we’ve collected 4 points in our last 6 games?

Charles

I downvoted it because Arteta changed in a direction that made sense today. It didn’t come off, but it was a change in the right direction without a great deal of training to implement the new ideas. If it’s still pure shit in a few weeks, let’s talk, but for now it feels too reactionary. Just my opinion.

efeli

Totally respectable.
I just wish that we won’t be so late with the right decision (or no decision) as we were with Emery.

Hank Scorpio

Let’s hope he has the balls to persist with this and doesn’t go back into playing conservatively. Getting Partey back and starting Saka will help.

Jules

I know we were shite against Villa and Leicester but man, I really felt it today. “It” being that typical arsenal feeling, that just… shit tiredness when you suddenly remember it’s been 16 years since we won the league and we’ve just performed so badly it feels like it’ll be another 16 before we compete again. I dunno folks, I’m so tired man. and bored. I know this sounds stupid but I just want us to be good again. it’s all so shit. I just want some interesting and exciting football and to actually feel that excitement at being a… Read more »

Naija gooner

Not years felt it at the end of last season but I don’t know what has happened

Futsboller

We need to be patient. Arteta hasn’t been here a year, and he transformed our defensive posture completely — which is what everyone was begging him to do. The next phase is going to take some time — the good news is that he switched to 4231, and though it didn’t work as we’d hoped it was nice to see that he’s not unwilling to adjust. We will get better.

goongot

25 shots on goal and getting a lucky draw is what emery used to do as well.

Futsboller

No, we’d lose those.

Yolo

Until we see evidence of our defence holding up while we play solid attacking football, there is no basis for the claim that our defence is very solid now. If we had our scoring patterns combined with a leaky defence, we’d literally get relegated

Futsboller

That’s the plan … the attack comes next. Arteta is working on it.

Ordnance Dave

Talk about systems all you want. These players are the worst I’ve ever seen in an Arsenal shirt

ClockEndRider

You clearly weren’t around in the mid 70s. Now, that was shit.

Ordnance Dave

My mates Dad says that to me whenever I complain about the crap players we have now.

ClockEndRider

He is right. I see your Willian and raise you Jeff Blockley, Terry Mancini, John Matthews and a usually drink Alan Hudson!

Jack

Pepe demanding more game time then facing a three match ban because he head butted someone on his first big opportunity is one of the most Arsenal things in the history of Arsenal things

Twatsloch

Not the 72 million pound moment we were hoping for.

Charles OJ

His three match ban is the only “positve” I wish it will be extended to the whole season.

Atom

Pathetic

nikoniko

This is not Arsenal, I insist! Tony Pulis’s Stoke is better

Der32

We signed a set piece specialist trainer. We must be looking for a throw in specialist in January. If anything he should also give Bellerin throw in lessons.

eddymc2

I feel like we learned a lot about several of our personnel today, on and off the pitch.

We’re a week out from the anniversary of Emery’s departure. I’m not saying he shouldn’t have gone, or that I want him back (he was rightfully dismissed, and all the best to him at Villarreal), but are we any better now, a year later?

Alex

That’s it: so many ask for time and patience for MA. But he’s been here for almost one year… and it is worse and worse. Was better when MA was playing Özil. yeah, I know, it’s taboo but it’s truth.

Charles

It wasn’t really though. Arteta has only ever been good against the teams better than us – hence the FA Cup run. We’re a small club.

Toure Motors

There’s a lot that needs to be improved. But we are way better off with Arteta than with Emery. We’ve won the FA cup with Arteta. He’s gonna need more time and support to sign alternatives to the dross we’ve picked up in recent years (including pepe). His worst mistake was signing Willian. Ozil is never going to play for arsenal again so there’s no point mentioning him whenever we don’t get a result

Charles

We aren’t, and he’s doing very well at Villareal. The rot goes beyond the manager.

Futsboller

Yes, we are, defensively at least, and we’re going to improve as the season wears on.

Flash

Very well said! The key is personality. Pepe, Willian, Ozil and folks like them would have had some tough time playing next to people like Adams, Vieira, Lauren and the rest. Having seen the Spuds vs. City game yesterday – it’s scary to compare the agility, hunger, work-rate and willingnes of Son or Kane to our attackers.

Viv the 🐐

Yeah, I watched just some minutes around the offside Kane goal in the first half. How decisive everyone acted offensively was next level. Everyone making good passes, running into space, and controlling the ball was scary. The workrate definitly dropped off the last few games. I think we ended it with Emery just before the really horrible stuff would have happened. And maybe Spain is a much better fit for Emery all along. Plus Villareal has been run really well over years. They had some worse years, but always were a tough team to beat. We lost the purpose whilst… Read more »

Goldfingered

It feels like a lot of players are downing tools. It’s painful to watch.

Futsboller

Did the 10 players on the pitch look like they were downing tools in the second half? Did Tierney look happy about the loss, or indifferent, the way players looked when Emery was running us into the ground? Differentiate, please.

Goldfingered

Does it look any better now than with Emery? And Emery got the team to beat Villa going one man down and Villa being in the lead. If thats you’r reasoning behind the players putting in a shift… Emery also have a better points/game. You also seem to forget that Leeds missed a lot of clear cut chaces and they should have won with 2-3 goals. Leeds was also better than us when it was 11-11. We haven’t scored a goal from open play in 8 hours. It’s embarrasing to watch and if you think the players are buying into… Read more »

Twatsloch

We did well to draw this one. That’s about the best I can say for us today.

chuffy

Arsenal are in a mire. It’s looking like the players are lost again, especially from midfield to up front. There is no cohesion, no movement, no invention and no drive. I have simply no idea what Arsenal are trying to do with the ball. It’s like Arteta just wants to be solid at the back, but he’s made the players rigid. It’s woeful football and right now Arteta is showing all his inexperience. Trust the process? What process exactly? It’s turgid football, with no invention, poor signings on long contracts, a front 2 who are 29 and 31, 72 million… Read more »

I used to think the Gervinho comparisons were coming too soon but if Pepe doesn’t score or assist in his next 8 games. He will literally be on par with Gervinho😂😂

Imagining paying 7 times the amount to get a player that produces as much as Gervinho.

Same thing with Lacazette and Giroud too.

I hope this club doesn’t spend more £30 million a player for the next 5 transfer windows. That’s the only to mitigate this kind of risk.

Viv the 🐐

That Pepe transfer looks more questionable by the minute. At the moment I would prefer Nelson or later on Martinelli starting in front of him. ( apart from injuries and suspension). I mean I think no one checked his character before the transfer, only looking at highlight reels and goals/assists. I’m just praying that he turns it around. One of the most questionable transfers probably ever. And I don’t know which cliff Laca fell of. His finishing is so tremendously bad for years now. We have to depart here, I see no other way. Auba-Laca has failed on the field.… Read more »

Totally agree in regards to the team.

It’s still early days for Hojbjerg though, I’m waiting to see if he truly has sorted out his disciplinary issues.

Viv the 🐐

I’m just saying it was such a cheap deal for a decent player in a position of need for them. I mean how much did Son cost? It weren’t even 40 Mill. 30 Mill€ to be exact. that is the prime example. A player and deal were I’m still siting like where was Arsenal and other clubs there? A player with tremendous potential and big value going to Spurs, because they saw tremendous potential and big value in him. Those kind of deals didn’t happen enough. Torreira would be one, that didn’t work out. Gabriel on the other hand looks… Read more »

Tayo

Please when was the last time we scored from open play?

Tayo

*In the league

SheffieldGooner

Don’t ask me I’m only 51.

Paul Roberts

“Stella performance from Arsenal new signing Dave Woodwork”

gooner

Pepe is just physically weak and almost useless. Then decides to do something silly

Charles OJ

That’s why Arteta plays on old Willian over Pepe. Willian might not be the same player he once was, but he would never in a million years do something silly like that. Pepe just has a low Football IQ to go along with his limited skillsets.

Alex

I’ve aged about 100 years.

Twatsloch

And still you have more legs than Willian.

nabster73

Handball at Old Trafford by a West Brom player – penalty to Man Utd.
Handball at Elland Road by a Leeds player – no penalty.

Yet both handballs were similar in that they were not deliberate.

If the definition of handball has been changed part-way through a season then that makes a mockery of having consistency through the season.

Naija gooner

Nothing here to see guys just a top premier league team playing a newly promoted team as clearly seen by the newly promoted championship side inability to shoot,take throwins and the keeper constantly giving the ball away to the opponents

Mick Malthouse

Can someone help me come up with a better descriptive word than “shithouse”?

Paul Roberts

Wank

IncrediblArsenal

No. You’ve pretty much hit the nail on the head.
On the other hand, “worse than shithouse” comes to mind.

Lacaubapepe

We can rant all day about brain-dead Pepe and his silly red card. We may even see the glass half full, citing how we held Leeds to a goalless draw with 10 men with over 40 minutes to go. But let’s face it – the Artetaball today was yet another pointless, aimless, tactics-less, spray and pray shifting around of the ball against yet another inferior opposition. The only question is whether it’s too early to conclude that Arteta isn’t just the droid we’re looking for.

Paul Roberts

All Arsenal have needed for many years is a team that can pass the ball with minimum mistakes. It’s not Arteta.

Lacaubapepe

I’m starting to think that Arteta might not be the one. Not completely there yet.

jfmgunner

I tend to agree, but will we ever really know if this is tactics or player shortcomings? Obviously its a combination, but maybe Arteta has tactics for offensive play and the team are incapable of executing. He had tactical ideas for our defense and he got the players capable of executing them in Tierney, Gabriel and Partey. Pepe is more and more I’m afraid a massive flop, Lacazette is shocking, Willian obviously, and Xhaka is simply too slow on the ball( if you disagree watch Partey transition up the pitch and release passes for an idea). The youngsters are promising… Read more »

Lacaubapepe

I agree there’s a lot to be said about player attitude on the pitch. But I think our problems are more fundamental than than that. We have enough quality in our first 22 to put a team like Leeds, Aston Villa etc to the swords. I feel Arteta’s football philosophy similar to Guardiola’s may be a bit behind the times. And I say this with every trepidation and hope that I’m proven wrong at the end of the day. It’s a footballing philosophy which on its day, could devastate the opposition and produce the most beautiful play anyone could hope… Read more »

Viv the 🐐

The technical mistakes and just the sheer avoidance of playing passes was just frightening. People just hoffing it for no reason and playing sloppy passes was visible just all over the place. Arteta even talked about it. Combined with just indicisivness is a bad mixture. I think Party and Elneny coming back will be key. Xhaka and Ceballos didn’t even have a defensive presence in the game. I don’t even know a positive about the two. I was really questioning how those players can’t even attempt to make good passes clearly reachable for them. And so alot of posessions broke… Read more »

Rob67

We haven’t scored an outfield goal in God knows how long ? Embarrassing.

Why start Willian after his adventures this week ? This team cries out for Smith Rowe to be given a run but I wouldn’t bank on seeing it.

We’re so poor to watch these days. If great teams are more than the sum of their component parts, we are so much less. We have good individuals but there is no sense of being a dynamic or dominant unit.

215Arse

This squad flat out sucks, and the coaching is abysmal. When we have the ball, we haven’t a clue. So many times the attacking player with the ball was completely isolated and had to go backwards or lose the ball. No quality in midfield, and one viable winger in Saka. Back line and Leno are are ok, and I know Partey was out, but regardless…no goals from open play in five matches?! We look like a championship side struggling to make it in the PL. Absolute joke of a club at the moment, and even though it’s more of a… Read more »

loose_cannon

Tbh very lucky to get the point, 25 attempts on our goal which is surely a record for the season. Leno deserves huge credit, and Tierney had a decent game as well. We actually played better with 10 men, Nelson and Saka made a difference.

Goodebemeyang

The real question is will we keep paying Pepe’s installments even after we’ve sold him.

Limaro

I think we just send the bill on to Raul

Yes of course we will. That’s cause for a lawsuit in most transactions if the club stops payment

Charles OJ

Unfortunateley, we will keep paying. The biggest daylight robbery in modern times. We have Nelson, Martinelli. Why we felt compelled to waste money, I’ll never know.

Fatgooner

Absolute fucking dogshit. We were outplayed for almost the full 90 minutes by a team that’s spent the last 15 years in the Championship. Again, no creativity and far too many passengers. The woodwork was our MOTM. Leeds should have won it comfortably. Willian was a fucking disgrace and was rightly subbed. Pepe: please, please just fuck off! You are the biggest waste of money in the history of this great club. Not only are you useless you’re fucking brainless too. I’m sorry, but we’re going nowhere under Arteta right now. Something has to change. We’ve forgotten how to score… Read more »

It was a terrible game but at least the line-up, formation and substitutions were a little different this time.

Nico needs to explain the reason from that silly outburst. Shame Saka didn’t score that 1v1 first time and left the pitch injured.

I wonder what Kieran was saying. His face didn’t look angry but his body language suggest rage.

StockholmGooner

1 game 1 game undefeated!
How come we didn’t see more angles of the VAR handball? I think if the ball is heading into the net it should be a penalty…

Not that we deserved a win here…

Der32

VAR is rigged. Only deluded fools will say otherwise.

Oregoon

Agree. Especially on the last line, but when a defender spins himself around, (to do what exactly?), and hits the ball with his arm how is that a “natural” position? They gave so many freebies away for handball at the start of the season, now no one will get one unless it is totally egregious.

Limaro

Worst Arsenal side I’ve seen since 95. The attacking part of the game could be the worst in memory. Absolutely nothing, no creativity and Aubameyang seems to have caught bigcontractitis. The midfield has no creativity either with no drive or physicality to compete with other midfields. The defence is just poor and the fact that Bellerin and Holding sit as first choice shows the depths this team has fallen. The team as a whole can defend if they sit still on the edge of the box and cross there fingers. The transition from attack to defence is still hopeless a… Read more »

Twatsloch

And yet, here are players we’ve spent quite a lot of money on. Not least Pepe. He was meant to be fantastic when he came to us. Had set the French league on fire apparently. What the fuck happened there?

Jo90

Footballers need coaches that are able to get the best out of them. That is one of the key differences between Wenger and who has come after him.

Andy

Interesting comparison to the 95 vintage. Pepe reminds me more of Eddie McGoldrick every time I see him.

Nick

Bring back Wenger?

ClockEndRider

Why?

Alex

A goal a goal, my kingdom for a goal!

Mootilated

I am no staunch Ozil supporter, however, could someone please tell me what the players we are fielding at the moment do more than he does? Thanks

Charles

I don’t care to see Ozil play for us ever again, but it’s pretty clear that creative players under Arteta are coached to make specific, prescribed decisions within the system, not to create. You’re fooling yourself if you still think switching out individuals is going to change anything.

Alex

Yes and maybe Ozil is not registered because he made it clear – verbally or otherwise – that he could do his job (creating) from his own half

IncrediblArsenal

Snap compromising photos of the ‘higher-ups’? Toe the company line? Demonstrate skill of passing the ball to Leno from the halfway line?
Who the eff knows at this point!

Biggles

Well, a draw was probably the best result we could have hoped for before the game so that’s something in the plus column, along with the fact that we didn’t concede. On the other side, apart from Pepe’s moment of madness, was the fact that we had just two shots on target I think over the whole 90 minutes. So it looks like we can do enough, occasionally, not to lose games but the major flaw remains – we just can’t score goals. This is getting embarrassing now and until/unless Arteta manages to fix it, we won’t make much progress… Read more »

MattB

Optimistic Match report. Leeds had 13 attempts on goal in the first half, the highest in any EPL game this season. Yes we don’t score goals but also we’re so passive in defence. And these stats aren’t a new thing. We’re seeing this game after game. No one wants another manager change but this has all the makings of a desperately poor season. Hats off for keeping their heads in the second half but let’s be frank, we gained a point because they had an off day finishing. 9 times out of 10 that’s a pasting.

David Hilliers Arm Cast

Actually felt a little bad for Willian to come off over Pepe. Was much better defensively and in general.

Godfrey Twatsloch

If it’s any consolation to you then Pepe didn’t exactly make the most of the confidence that was shown in him.

Der32

Don’t understand why we didn’t get a penalty though? If VAR referee thinks the defender can’t do anything about it, why shouldn’t the actual referee decide? Ridiculous. And I’ve seen plenty like that given. The question should be whether the hand was in an unnatural position, which you could argue it was. F*ck.

goonero

Some small positives to take away. Nelson and Willock are more than ready to start PL games. Judging Arteta on the pre Pepe idiocy; a marginally better showing than against Villa. Team looked less rigid for one. But still not enough end product. Not managing a shot on target in the opening spell we dominated should be his concern. As far as team selection. Pepe has ruled himself out so that’s convenient. Willian wasn’t horrid but he wasn’t effective. It’s time to give the academy lads the starting roles. Nelson and Willock in, ESR once he’s caught up as on… Read more »

Charles OJ

The sooner we ship out Pepe, the better for us. Lets loan out in January and ship out in the summer.

Graeme the optimist

Willock was awful.

Henrypiresberg

If Saka would have been in the league where pepe use to play, Real would have bought Saka for 200 million.

Charles OJ

The only “Positive” about Pepe’s red card is that he’ll miss the next three games. Frankly wish he could miss the remainder of the season. Martinelli please we need you to come back and stake a claim on that right wing.

Gabi played Left wing though

Charles OJ

He can play all across the front three. He played all across the front three in Brazil.

Nick

I think it was a poor man management decision not to select Ozil to play this season. He was a dressing room favourite and I guess the mood in the dressing room since is dismal. The training ground incident last week is evidence that the team is not functioning well. I like Arteta but the Ozil decision was crap. He needs to find a solution fast.

IncrediblArsenal

He can’t, because the transfer window is shut (isn’t open?). One thing Arteta can try is to play Luiz or Mustafi or Son of Runnar at #10.

Des

We have serious issues with our attack. Come January we need to buy a play maker of some sort, otherwise we won’t even make the top 7.

Turan Yilmazgul

Stop blaming players… no creativity even while it was 11vs11. To not register your only creative player ‘ Mesut Ozil ‘ in a 25 man squad is just stupidity , egotistical. Winning the FA Cup does not make you special !

Qwaliteee

Top post, well said. Although, credit where it’s due, the FA Cup is never a trophy to be sniffed at.

Those lily white cunts up the Seven Sisters Road would have given their hind teeth for that trophy last season. 😉

Jean Ralphio

Unlucky that we didn’t get to see how the second half went with Willian subbed off. Positive changes were made. Three team needs to gel. Arteta needs to start the attacking side of our team against Molde so they can gain some rhythm.

jfmgunner

Saka was really a bright spot, our best chances came with 10 with him bombing down the left (just like in his impressive week with England) and linking to Auba, who I think has to play down the middle and take advantage of Saka’s wing play. With a winter or summer transfer for a dynamic creative midfielder we might just be ok. The few counter-attack chances were the best offense I have seen from us in weeks and I think we finally have a blueprint to at least scrape together a few goals. Pepe worries me so much though. When… Read more »

Our solutions won’t be solved with signings alone. I have thought for a few months now that Arteta needs to replace Stuivenberg or Round with an offensive younger assistant coach.

The coaching plays just as big a part as the new signings. I am not comfortable knowing that both Round (Moyes) and Stuivenberg (Van Gaal) were both sacked by Manchester United.

Des Lynam

That’s a good point. 10 men, out of form, we dug deep. I’m not ready to give up on Pepe yet, but that was basically utter stupidity. Like the inflatable boy, he let his manager down, his team down and worst of all he let himself down. Twat. Auba looked lost, he is getting no service. There is so much broken in this team from a creative viewpoint. At least we have a bit of character about us, we worked hard, got lucky, and could have nicked it. I hate what we have become. Predictable, slow and risk averse. I… Read more »

edzo

The way you ended the recap says it all. The gap on the big boys. We are bang average with average players across the pitch with only a few exceptions. The top 4 is now something called the top 6, and Arsenal isn’t even close to the 6th place team in quality when the table all shakes out. Lacca is average. Pepe is below average. Holding is average. Ceballas is average. Xhaka average. Elneny average. Willian completely disinterested. Willock average but young. Nelson average but young. Maitland niles is a mystery. The talented are auba. Partey. Leno. Bellerin. Tierney. Gabriel.… Read more »

jfmgunner

You named 7 talented players, so with 4 more we’d be ok for atarters, right? Is Mari significantly better than Holding? He just might be from his admittedly small sample size. Or at least Luiz i think is pretty talented still. Martinelli might have to learn to play on the right wing bc I fully believe after his stellar week with England Saka is emerging into a real star at left wing. Martinelli makes 9. And the obvious one is we need a big creative force at CAM. Szoboszlai from Leipzig might just be that man. Point is I feel… Read more »

Charles OJ

Martinelli doesn’t need to learn to play the right wing. He like Saka can play on the left wing and right wing. He has personally stated that he prefers the right wing. In Brazil ,he played all across the front three. He can also play up top as a striker. The guy is gifted.

jfmgunner

Fair enough, I just meant he has played mostly central or left for us.Not that he can’t play right, but just that he’ll have to accept playing there, which apparently won’t be a problem, bc he prefers it. I admit I wasn’t aware of that. Good news and yes he is brilliant, not to mention he already has great chemistry with Saka.

Charles OJ

Yeah he has good chemistry with Saka and both have high IQs I cant wait for him to get back. We need him badly before the season becomes a disaster.

Phathisile

Remember Arteta hardly started a fit Martinelli why do we think he will start?

DaDude

Szoboszlai doen’t play for Leipzig … yet.

Jo90

Martinelli is also talented.

Still love wenger

I’ll be glad when the fans are let back in, so the players can’t hear Arteta.
I feel he try’s to control every moment, which would be annoying for anyone, in any walk of life.

Qwaliteee

A point is a point is a point – but, clean sheet aside, this was woefully underwhelming. No fluidity, no incisiveness, no creativity – no catalyst for a game plan at all. Willian continues to prove me right as to what an utter waste of resources his signing was during the summer. Yes, Pepe was entirely in the wrong and quite rightly picked up a red – only he will know why he reacted the way he did. It may well be an underlying frustration with how things are going for him and the team as a whole at the… Read more »