Wednesday, May 31, 2023

‘We need to develop, we need to pass the ball better’ Jonas Eidevall breaks down attacking principles

Arsenal boss Jonas Eidevall says that his team are still finding their way when it comes to building attacking moves. Arsenal haven’t scored in four of their last six games.

Star striker Vivianne Miedema has only scored once in her last six appearances and a lot of her key attacking data has declined compared to last season as the Gunners have moved from a possession-based style under Joe Montemurro to more of a transitional style under current coach Jonas Eidevall. Arsenal also brought in Swedish striker Stina Blackstenius during the January transfer window.

Arseblog News asked Jonas Eidevall whether Miedema and Arsenal are still adjusting to the way that he wants the team to attack during his Friday press conference.

“When I rewatched the Man United game, some of the moments had a really high standard,” Eidevall said. “We had some breakthroughs on the left hand side where we had the third player run. Viv is perfect at anticipating that movement and she is so close to scoring on two occasions in the first half from those moments.

“That’s exactly the right moment to play the ball into the area too. But you can also argue, when you see the game back, that we are playing the ball through and forward in situations when there is no space and there are no numerical superiorities.

“There we need to develop being a team that passes the ball better, we need to have a better support structure on how to play out of those situations so we can reach the central areas and we can reach the opposite side of the pitch and move the opposition.

“There we have to develop, I can see that. We need to keep that combination play when those situations are on but if it’s not on, we need to move the ball better, we need to pass better and hold onto it.

“The second half against United was way too transitional, we were trying to make forward passes and when they broke down, we didn’t have the support structure beneath that.

“That’s a problem when it comes to changing the point of attack but it’s also a problem when it comes to counterpressing. It works both ways and we have to develop there.”

Eidevall said that the way the team uses Miedema is also still developing, with the player often very good at dropping deep to knit moves together. The Gunners boss says it’s a case of a mutual understanding between Miedema and the team as to when she needs to be drop a little deeper and when she needs to be higher up.

“A part of that process is how we play to Viv, understanding when we need her to be high. She did that very well a couple of times against United, especially in the first half.

“But then also, for the team to understand that if the pass in behind is not on, we might need to use her lower to get into central overloads, find feet and see if we can make a central combination.

“Or if they squeeze us so much in the centre that it opens up space on the sides. The team also needs to anticipate if we are going to go forwards more quickly, then she needs to be higher.

“When she gets into that flow and anticipates she is so hard to play against because she will arrive with perfect timing into the penalty area.”

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Whatever it takes to get the best from Viv please do it.

Peter Story Teller

My concern is that this talk is all very well but we have become quite one dimensional. I suspect we came out of the traps at the beginning of the season under Jonas playing a different way to the set up under Joe and it was successful. The problem is that every other team now knows how we are going to try and play and they can easily stop us. This appears to be where Jonas is similar to Joe in that he has an ideal way of playing but when that is not working there is no plan B.… Read more »


I think some people felt Joe got a bit overcomplicated with his tactics at times and I wonder if Jonas is similar. He obviously knows what he’s talking about but is it clear to the players? I always have the impression that one of Emma Hayes’ strengths is the clarity she gives her players about what she wants them to do, but then she has had time to build her team and I guess Jonas needs the same. I still reckon he and the team will ride this run of poor form out and ultimately be stronger for it.


I remember some players who were coached under him (i forgot who) said his direction was always clear to the players as he would explain everything he wanted from the players and even discussed with them. And he was good at people interaction. So I assume he is doing a good job in that part. idk but he is always clear on what he wants in interviews. I do feel like the players are still getting used to this new playing style and structure which seem quite different to the previous one. Time is definitely needed for them to get… Read more »


This idea that it takes months to adapt to a new structure seems dubious. There appears to be a lot of confusion among the players about Eidevall’s plan, whatever it may be. Maybe it will all start clicking–except that it was clicking to start the season and it’s not been clicking at all for the last two months. That is worrisome.


Common sense would, I believe, say that changing the way a successful team plays half way through the season is downright madness. I have watched the Man U game over and over and the Arsenal girls look all over the place no one looks confident or happy in what they are doing!


Maybe it’s as you say Tim the way they are playing at the moment who can tell, one thing for sure their confidence is shot to pieces not as individuals but collectively they repeatedly struggle to string a few passes together and there is a clear lack of urgency, so alter change of style and insert total lack of sparkle, or willingness to win.

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