Sunday, December 4, 2022

Bellerin sounds warning after sloppy second half

Hector Bellerin says Arsenal should have done better managing their four-goal advantage against Leeds United who set pulses racing by halving the deficit with 21 minutes remaining.

While the Gunners eventually closed out a 4-2 win at the Emirates to leapfrog Marcelo Bielsa’s side in the table, the fact we gave the visitors a glimpse of a point was enough to give our right-back the hump.

“If there’s a team in the Premier League that you know will run for the whole 90 minutes, that’s Leeds,” he told

“We did really well to score straight away from the re-start but then we conceded a set piece. It’s something that we know they’re strong at and we need to be more careful with that.

“Then we conceded another goal and even though you’re still two goals up you’re trying to defend the box as much as you can and make sure they don’t get another one.

“That shouldn’t be the way we play, you know? We should manage the game better in a way that when we’re winning 4-0, we should just have the ball and make them run instead of them making us run. There’s still a lot to learn but obviously, especially that first half, was really positive.”

Bellerin also took a moment to reflect on his ninth goal for the club. The Spaniard beat keeper Illan Meslier at his near post to complete a fine team move just before half time. The last time he found the net was 13 months ago in the 2-2 draw with Chelsea.

“It’s been a long time,” he noted. “I’d almost forgotten the last time I scored. To be fair usually when I get into those positions I try to look for a striker.

“Someone to get in a better position than me but I saw the opening and I just went for goal. Obviously, I’m really happy about that but still in the back of my mind there’s a lot of work to do if you want to be back at the top.”

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Johnny 4 Hats

I know in the past Hector has scored two important left footed goals against Liverpool and Chelsea respectively.

But damn. When he strikes the ball with his left it looks like my two year old trying to kick a pigeon.


This criticism cuts both ways.


I just can’t beleive you allow your 4yr old to kick pigeons… unless they’re wearing Spuds colours, that is.


ALways best ot avoid having to deal with sloppy seconds




I love how Hector does not know how to celebrate a goal. He scores, looks like he’s been hit in the forehead by Anton Chigurh, until his teammates come to rescue him. His ninth celebration looked a lot like his first, just less puppyish! But we love them all!


Always more warnings, more introspection, more something … lessons learned? Zero.


You must be fun at parties.


Lessons learned by you

Philip Visser

Hector needs to replace “we” with “I” in his reflections. He’s defending is very sloppy too often


This was a better game from Hector, he got to the byline a lot more than normal and cut inside well. Had some troubles defensively against Rafinha who is a classy player, but overall much better. Needs to lift his game to this level more consistently.


He doesn’t have it in him, hasn’t really since that acl injury… damaged goods, the verdict is sell.

Soares is better these days anyways, and a back-up shouldn’t cost too much.


Soares is better LMAO…! I thought I’d have a quick look through the comments to see the Bellerin trolls; didn’t have to scroll down far!


That’s because they are the ones who know what they are watching.

A Different George

I really can’t understand the constant over-the-top criticisms of Bellerin from a footballing perspective. Some of it is just not understanding what modern fullbacks are supposed to do (“in my day, defenders had to defend first”–watch Consuelo at Man City, or Robertson and Alexander-Arnold at Liverpool or, for that matter, watch Tierney). And some of it is simply piling on–the online version of joining the mob. That doesn’t mean Bellerin is perfect, it doesn’t mean you can’t prefer Tierney, but the degree and vehemence of the criticisms he gets is almost bizarre. This is–at least–a good player who has been… Read more »


I don’t think he get’s criticised much at all. IMO he has been a bit mediocre. Not bad by any stretch, but not great. Just solid. We have a lot of guys that are just solid, which is why we are just solid.

I really like Hector, stand up dude and he can be a really good player, but I don’t think it is at all out of line to say he can and needs to be better and more consistently better.


Fair enough, see what you’re saying. I think he’s more than solid – has a great footballing brain, balances attack with defence well, and this season where he’s had license to come inside and drive with the ball he’s done it well.

The Beast

Agreed. I honestly didn’t know he got so much unwarranted (imo) stick until I began to venture below the line.

He’s practically grown up at the club, always seems to give his best and looks like a natural leader in addition to a decent human being. I’ve got nothing against criticism, just comes across as really mean spirited at times.

santi's thigh grab

This. I struggle with the mean spirited comments aimed at one of our academy lads. Hector will never be the best defending FB but he is a good attacking FB and an average defender. I understand his limitations and want him to improve on his weaknesses but I also understand the financial mess the entire world is under, and this is not the position we need to focus on right now. We need at least two creative attacking players to replace MØ and DC, a backup LB,a backup RW and a backup LW. That’s five players for this summer, I… Read more »


I do agree on backup LB.
But a backup LW and RW?
Isn’t that Martinelli and Pepe

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

How old is Willian? He looks like he moves at roughly the same speed I do, which must put him well over 50. If we tell him we’ve got a new training ground, and put him out to pasture in a field somewhere that would open up a spot for a new LW or RW, and if his memory is anything like mine he may even forget to ask for his pay.

That reminds me, I have to have a talk with my boss.


I thought he was largely decent against Grealish as well… arguably one of the most difficult to mark in the Prem.

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

Grealish is pretty good, and quite hard to defend against. He also seems to actually WANT to win (unlike one of our expensive (and old) forward-type wide players). He seems very keen about football to me. We should try to buy him.




He’s right, we did go to sleep for a time in the second half and the two goals conceded did take a little (only a little though) gloss off the win. I was hoping at half time that we would have pushed on in the second half and get our first “big” win of the season, which would have been a huge boost at the start of this “critical” two weeks (as MA has called it). That said, it was still a good win, and we missed a couple of other chances, but we need to be careful – games… Read more »

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

Hopefully the team have taken on board a) We can play well if we try, and b) slacking off is bad.

Arteta needs to tell them that getting complacent is nowhere near as much fun as winning 8-0, especially against historically horrible teams like dirty Leeds.


Bellerin switched off for Leeds second, but he had a decent game yesterday, took up some really aggressive positions Soares was the same, but he’s understandably not comfortable on his left foot It’s our poor squad planning that’s hurt us this season, not necessarily poor coaching or tactics We went into the season without a fit or registered attacking midfielder, but 8 senior centre half’s, with another out on loan We’ve seen the effects a fit Smith-Rowe has had, and Odegaard adds quality + depth to that area Aubameyang’s goal drought and our lack of creativity wasn’t down to poor… Read more »


Did Bellerin switch off, or was it actually a really nice build up for Leeds?

I see nothing wrong with accepting the fact that we will get scored on and it is not necessarily our fault that it happens.


I think both things are true simultaneously.

The through ball is very well paced but Hector switched off and lost his man.

I like Bellerin the player and the man but he needs to sharpen up as that’s not the only time he has been caught out.

At 4-2 we can shrug it off. Not sure I’d be that impressed if he does the same and we lose 0-1.


We should have been 5 – 0 up had it not been for VAR. Then they could’ve had their sloppy seconds for all I care. I do prefer having a great first half which affords a sloppy second. Rather than trying to make up for a messy first half which had been the norm. Also you could see the confliction Wrighty had on MOTD when they didn’t show the overturned arsenal penalty.. But showed the not penalty at all for Leeds. Its like they’re all in on it. Pundits, rileys inept goons. Sky sports. Do not mention shit var decisions… Read more »

slavisa starcev

The problem with this “narrative” is that if we got the first penalty you can’t say for sure that the second one would happen at all. Football like life is guided by couses and effects. The first saka penalty means the game changes from that point in to something different.

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

99% of people fail to spot this fact.

In fact it’s just as likely that if we scored the first penalty then an angry Leeds team might well have perked up a bit because they felt ripped off and gone on to beat us.

A Different George

I am not at all sure the first was a penalty. Sorry. But since the referee gave it, that should have been it; on balance, VAR has made the game worse.)

Sac, Lac & Craic

One of our best players.

I know the “get a haircut” brigade always want to undermine what he does for us because they’re worried that him turning his medals into earrings means that they’ll have to confront their medieval opinions about gender – or have foreign mates – but he’s a class apart.

No wonder it’s always the biggest clubs in European football linked with him.


Holy shit, this is what I was trying to write and couldn’t put together nearly as well. Thank you.


And the amount of numpties calling for him to be sold last August was incredible – all the more so bearing in mind he had been the catalyst for our FA Cup winner a matter of weeks earlier.


This is the worst take ever I won’t waste my time tearing this self righteous, fart sniffing waffle apart, with facts that are backed up by science and economics, that you refer to as medieval…. Because blogs won’t publish my comment anyway Biggest clubs in Europe being linked with a player, doesn’t mean that those links are true Our tabloids are generally full of click bait nonsense The reality is, if Bayern, Juve, PSG wanted Bellerin that badly They’d put a £30-£35mill offer on the table, and we’d accept, and most fans would see that as good business He’s a… Read more »

Philip Visser

Totally agree


Yeah, I’d go along with most of that.

Hector is no Alves or Cafu, but in a crap market that only favours the Man Cities and the PSGs, he is as safe a bet as anything else that is priced within our range in the market.

If we could afford the best, no doubt we’d buy the best – but even Stan’s little loans don’t grow on trees.


So you’ll write the longest post ever but won’t waste your time using facts that are backed up by science and economics… He is a Gooner nothing more needs to be said – back him. I can’t resist one economic stat+facts though – Chilwell 50m. Kyle Walker 50m. Bellerin has more combined goals and assists than both of them over the last 4 years + Arsenal currently have the second best defensive record in the league with Bellerin a starter


You’ve completely missed the point…..


Erm – I think you’ll find that his point was that yours wasn’t there, amidst all the ramblings.


“won’t waste my time”
science and economics?!?
he was out for so long, finding back to form and “fans” slagging him off after decent perfomances and a goal.
u r the only one talking about “politics” and what u r referring to as politics is what?! veganism? does he refuse to say londonderry? no pic of franco in his wallet?

A Different George

Exactly right–I posted something a lot more wordy above, but I think you explain it better. I would add one thing from what I said. By any normal standard, Bellerin should be a fan favourite–came here as a kid, stayed, came back from a horrendous injury, never afraid to represent the club in post-match interviews, talks like a Spanish cockney.


I want all our players to succeed, particularly the lads who’ve come out of our academy I’d love Bellerin to kick on, even though I disagree with most of his politics He seems like a good professional, and the stories about him helping new players to settle, shows he has leadership qualities, and he means well Whilst we need good characters, we cannot select the makeup of our squad based on who’d hypothetically make the best son in law, or who’s politics we agree or disagree with Bellerin was on the slide before his injury, and I wanted to give… Read more »

Gutbukkit Deffrolla

Our most pressing concern, but also the hardest to fix, is Willian.

We have to balance the books in any changes we make to the squad because we still have to go two more years of spending vast amounts of cash on him – the man who is holding open a hole in our team. Starting him, or bringing him on as a substitute has exactly the same effect on our team as having a player sent off.

Bellerin, on the other hand, always tries to do his best when he plays.

Sac, Lac & Craic

What politics!

He’s on record saying women should be able to access abortions and he doesn’t think the world should burn with all of us in it.

Aside from that his only politics is being who he is, wearing what he wants, having his hair how he likes it. Anyone who has a problem with people being themselves… there is a name for that.


When he first joined us, he bore more than a passing resemblance to a very young Ronnie Kray. (When the twins were local teenage boxing hopefuls – long before the fun and games they became notorious for)

Philip Visser

One of our best players? Huh! He’s average at best this season. And please don’t give me your crap “it’s his hair, earrings and political views” that informs my (and probably many others) opinion. I like his personal style, his leadership but as a player he’s inconsistent, against quality attackers he mostly loses out and it’s no coincidence that opposing teams often score goals from his side


You might equally say that people who sympathise with his politics cut him a bit more slack, which they obviously do.


I definitely do. Ever since he was pictured having a Guinness with some gooners on the preseason tour of America.

Nothing wrong with that though, part of fandom to pick your favourites.

A friend of mine HATED David Platt for some unknown reason. Used to give him dogs abuse from the stand. Then Platt scored one of the most important headers in modern history. My mate stopped coming shortly after that!


Good performance from Bellerin, the sort that makes me second guess whether he should be sold or not, especially when he makes a good vice captain


Hes right, just a shame the haters have some ammo against him so they can dismiss his valid points.
We should be open to selling him if a 35+ offer comes in, but hes a good lad, senior, works hard for us even if his efforts sometimes come up short. Hes also a big part in helping new guys settle down. Hes a Club ambassador for the new recruits.
Many bigger issues within our squad to worry about.

Philip Visser

“Then we conceded another goal and even though you’re still two goals up you’re trying to defend the box as much as you can and make sure they don’t get another one.

He’s not solely responsible for conceding the 2nd goal but I would like him to publicly take a lot more personal responsibility for sloppily giving goals away. He often berates the team when he’s the big offender.

Ny advice to you Hector is to replace”we” with “I”.


A few comments below about the treatment Arsenal receive from referees. If this was a short term problem or based on a few incidents neutrals would be entitled to criticise any complaints. Unfortunately this long term issue and treatment by referees is historical and is solidly backed up by data. There are a number of theories ranging from the predominance of northern based premier league referees to the influence of opposition managers (Ferguson, Klopp Guadiola etc) For me the main catalyst for this goes back to the vendetta held against Arsene Wenger during his tenure and his “audacity” to speak… Read more »

santi's thigh grab

Sadly I agree with this. The numbers don’t lie.


What are the numbers?

Femi Oluwole

Bellerin did fall to sleep for that second goal. I see it far too often with him, he does need to defend better. However, he has been back in form recently and he should be a fan favourite. I dont think we will sign a better attacking full back in this rebuilding process. He was my nominee for captain as hes been here the longest and always says the right things. His life outside is his business.


I find it really strange the way people talk about Hector. A large part of ourselves have been criticising the way players and managers try to hide their shortcomings for the last decade at least. Here’s a player who’s always honest, always tells when things need improving – even in a 4-2 -, is never self-righteous, etc. And people complain he’s “too introspective”. He’s being a proper captain, not allowing his team to get carried away. This is the type of attitude that gets you trophies. Even though Auba is the one with the armband, I feel Hector is the… Read more »

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