Sunday, July 3, 2022

Arteta: Young squad deserve and need my backing

In the space of two weeks, Arsenal have gone from being the bookies’ favourites to snatch fourth place to wondering where the next win might come from.

Defeats to Crystal Palace, Brighton and Southampton have been a jab-left cross-right uppercut combo to our Champions League aspirations and Chelsea, Manchester United and West Ham are next in line to deliver a knockout blow.

It’s a tough time for our manager and his young cohorts. After months of hard-fought victories, we appear to have run out of puff and ideas.

Understandably, Mikel Arteta doesn’t want to criticise players whose confidence has taken a pounding but he also knows he needs more from them if there’s to be any chance of qualifying for Europe.

After yesterday’s 1-0 defeat at Saint Mary’s, he told Arsenal.com: “I want to be behind my players because they deserve that, because I know what stage of their career they are and what they need and how they try every single day.

“To come here and play the way they played and lose the match, this is football. It’s not like basketball where you have 20 shots and the opponent has one, you’re always going to win and in football that doesn’t happen.

He added: “I’m very frustrated and disappointed because when you see what happened on the pitch, to concede and lose the football match I think it’s very difficult scenario to imagine.

“We tried to do everything that we could have done in the best possible way, I can not fault the attitude of the players.

“I think it’s the opposite, the way they played as well but at the end of the day you have to put the ball in the net in the opponent’s half and we didn’t for various reasons. One, because their keeper was exceptional and because the amount of situations that we created, we needed more quality to finish them off.”

If West Ham beat Burnley on Sunday, only three points will separate the four sides chasing the final Champions League slot. All have stuttered in recent weeks and know they can’t afford to do so again.

Arteta noted: “It’s another game gone and the situation hasn’t changed much but again I said it weeks ago, it’s about us, how we perform, the results that we have to pick up and the rest will come.”

That starts at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday. His players have pulled a rabbit out of the hat for him a couple of times against the Blues in recent years – the FA Cup final win and the 2020 Boxing Day success at the Emirates – and he’s in desperate need of another.

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Brady’s bunch

They deserve more than you Mikel.

backsakacrack

PLAY PEPE FOR FUCK’S SAKE

myrtle

I could not agree more. How can our best finisher, most dangerous player, and record signing not get off the bench, when we are losing to fucking Southampton? He should have started, let alone come on at half time.
What confidence he had has been completely destroyed by Arteta. Who is looking stupider and stupider by the day. Talk about missing open goals. He had Arsenal in the CL driving seat and he’s driven the club off a cliff.

Nketibag

I don’t care if Arteta is 3 years into a job or 1. The mistakes he makes are absolutely unforgivable. What are you doing starting a front 6 of under 23s in a Premier league game? He is naive beyond reproach. This Southampton just got twatted 6-0 by Chelsea. And we go into it with Nketiah upfront? Do you think their defenders are having nightmares about him? No. They are fucking laughing. The guy couldn’t trap a cold. We are lucky to have a £72 million player in our team who has baled you out on multiple occasions and you… Read more »

IamaGoober

I think its not all to do with the personnel, as per the comment I put on this thread. There are huge question marks over our offensive tactical approach to games — like look at Southampton, they played a back 3 with massive defenders, what’s a tactic we should look to probably avoid…? I donno, getting the ball wide and fucking crossing aerial balls into the box to our one central striker?

Its not rocket science..

caldie

I too would have started Pepe yesterday with Martinelli up front and Eddie on the bench, but not sure where you get that he is our best finisher and most dangerous player. That said, I think Arteta deserves plenty of blame for his recent lineup decisions and should have played Pepe more since January.

IamaGoober

The worst part of the game yesterday for me, was the fact we literally had every single one of our attacking players on the pitch and we created absolutely nothing of any merit, nothing. Forster has been getting a lot of plaudits in the press for having a great game, but in my opinion, he didn’t actually do a lot.. For periods in that second half, he could’ve been sat in a fucking deck chair with a can on, that’s how little we troubled his goal. It wasn’t as if he was diving all over the place, keeping us at… Read more »

Edzo

No midfield. That was a main problem. Xhaka isn’t good enough to make sambi better and sambi is just a young kid who has barely played this season. Elneny isn’t the best but he has experience. And can play mid for a team that reaches the afcon finals.

IamaGoober

We haven’t had a midfield for years, no doubt its a reason we are so poor. But I’d also say that personnel aside, our tactical approach to attacking is fairly limited and pretty easy for other teams to stifle. Primary objective — Get the ball wide to Martinelli and or Saka, and hope they beat their man. Secondary objective — If they don’t, work the overlap for Cedric to pump a cross into the box. Tertiary objective — Pump another ball into the box. Quaternary objective — When all of those options haven’t done a fucking thing, work the ball… Read more »

Heavenly Chapecoense

Pépé has been the best player for his national team lately. No reward from his club manager. Let’s face it. Arteta wants him out.

Longchops

Such a simpletons remark

Leon

Well you should know…

Walter White

True. Pepe might not be Mikels cup of tea, but of all the players we have, he is the one who can nick a goal out of the blue – and we definitely need that right now.
I would like Pepe on the right and Saka on the left. It has worked really well before (Wolves as an example). Come on Mikel, we need you to shake it up a bit.
Maybe Martinelli up top could be worth a gamble as well.

Awesomesauce20

Play Pepe? Is that what you think the answer is? Yikes. The guy has shown us time and again he is not very dependable. He’s not a first choice option in my viewpoint as he doesn’t seem to have the soccer brain to carry out a simple team plan. He is a late sub when behind who maybe can make something happen in desperation but is going to do his own thing for better or worse. And the player keeping him on the bench is Osaka who has been our best player for two seasons now…

Manninger

Be careful with your soccer brain comments please #BLM

Manninger

Downvote more. Kick It Out literally signposted this tired trope for all football broadcasters and commentators.

Black players who dare to have a bit of swagger are questioned way too much about their professionalism and IQ.

“He doesn’t seem to have a soccer brain to carry out a simple team plan” is such a bigoted statement for a player of his class.

Reiss Neverseen & El Dicteta

I’ve always had my suspicions that Naomi Osaka was secretly a Gooner. Now I know🙂

Daveo

And nketiah had shown time and time again… What exactly!?

Naked Cygan

I agree with you. But that’s a quick patch fix. The main issue is our manager and his non existent tactics. Slow passing, predictable passing, playing like we are in pre-season, always going wide with slow movements,giving the opposition time to regroup, pointless crosses in box., Players who can’t shoot at the target from outside the box. Just bringing on Pepe won’t fix our issues but it couldn’t hurt right now.

Henry

I love how he could always found an excuse. He has been in the position for three years. F*ck him.

enior

3 years ? can you f.. count ? i s more over 2 if you want to be precise. And as for young manager who most of this games during last 2 years might not be Shure who will play due to covid he did ok. People like you are just an joke of an supporter !!!!!!

Doghouse

Who do ? the team or the supporters.. both i suppose, cracks now appearing on Miki’s watch, having got rid of Gendousi/Auba who have now had successful spells for their clubs & letting go some of our squad players we are looking like a one trick pony of a side, 3 straight defeats against opponents we were all confident of gaining 9 points now 3 tough games i can’t see us getting any, 6 straight defeats then it is curtains for Miki..

Truj

Please send him packing

AussieGooner

Very clever Mikel, throwing the players under the bus but making it sound like you are trying to save them. You definitely are the most political manager we have ever had.

Aitcho

He always uses “we” to fool us into thinking it’s not his fault. Replace the we with “I” and his managerial shortcomings are clear

Reiss Neverseen & El Dicteta

Glad to see I’m not just imagining it. His PR skills are truly top notch.

Heavenly Chapecoense

He likes talking about non negotiables. Well, for clubs and supporters results are also non negotiables.

Winterburn87

Yeah young players like Guendouzi & Saliba too

Aitcho

The only young players he backed are the ones Emery took a chance on first. This man is taking us for idiots at this stage.

A Different George

What in the world are you talking about? Ramsdale, White, Gabriel, Tomiyasu, Tierney, Lokanga, Tavares, Odegaard–leaving aside Smith Rowe, Martinelli, and Saka.

Aitcho

Saka, Smith Rowe, Martinelli, Tierney were already there. He hasn’t backed Lokonga and Tavares by giving them game time.

The only ones he’s ‘backed’ are the ones he overpaid for or ones he was forced to play.

Manninger

You cleared that up so nicely.

Emery blooded them all. Mikel is running them into the ground because that is the perfect mitigating circumstance for failure.

A Different George

You said he didn’t “back” young players. I listed eight, not counting Saka, Smith Rowe, or Martinelli. Five of them, in addition to Tierney, are automatic starters when fit. You can believe Arteta is a poor man-manager, a clueless tactician, has annoying hair and dresses badly–those are all matters of opinion. But it’s ridiculous to say he hasn’t backed young players

Aitcho

Yu listed four he bought. Four already there and two he didn’t play until injuries forced him to. Arteta was flogging Willian and Luiz until the stupidity of doing so became too obvious. Spending too much on young players and ‘backing’ them aren’t the same thing.

Alex

Guendouzi is 2nd in Ligue 1 for pass rate, with Messi 1st. Shipped out because Mikel can’t handle a bit of personality. Get Viera in, he can handle a bit of personality

C.B.

I was at the match. The players that really let us down were Cedric (he made me very cross…), Eddie (Laca is so much better linking the team though neither have a goal threat) and Xhaka (I tried to see one good thing I’d remember him doing and there was nothing but easy passes and little energy and nothing threatening). Teams have got used to covering our main threats (Saka (2-3 men marking him), Gabi and ESR) so nullifiying us. As Orbinho says on Twitter: Crystal Palace hadn’t won at home in 2022. #helloArsenal Brighton had won none of their… Read more »

Qwaliteee

BIG SUMMER SALE

HURRY HURRY HURRY

The Frank Spencer Five.

Xhaka, Tavares, Eddie, Cedric and Lacazette.

Available for calamitous cock ups, wasted free kicks and other sundry goal scoring opportunities, physical slowness and mental lethargy unrivalled – all to safely screw up your club’s chances of European Champions League progression, whatever the opposition.

Call Mikel on our Non Negotiables Hotline.

Now. Go on. Please?

A Different George

Tavares and Cedric were always expected to be back-ups and unless you are Man City that inevitably means a drop in quality from your first choice; Nktieh and almost certainly Lacazette are leaving. So really, it’s another Xhaka discussion. Thanks for your insight.

Qwaliteee

Cheers.

Only repeating what I said months ago – and got downvoted for it in droves.

So yeah, perhaps it actually was insight all along. 😊

A.P.

Arteta was trying to play Nketiah into a new contract and some wanted an extension for Laca during his pink patch. Either one may still happen.

myrtle

So true. What the hell does Xhaka offer?
He never has. So many easy passes and ‘staying in position’. Well fuck that. I want a midfielder who takes the game to the opposition. Since the day he signed we’ve never made the champions league. It’s as simple as that.

Aitcho

It’s bigger than Xhaka. That’s a pointless scapegoat. Go and check the stats, we don’t morph into a great team when he’s out. The common factor is his manager. Regardless of who plays, we still get crappy football

goonero

I feel quite strongly about this one and this season is a pretty good microanalysis to represent 6 years of Xhaka. When he is the fulcrum of our midfield, our general play is sluggish and uninventive. He can have a lot of the ball and produce very little of value. When another player takes over that mantle who has actual quality, we see the difference almost like turning on the lights in a dark room. Partey is a fantastic midfielder, but we have to remember he earned his plaudits primarily for his defensive phase contribution. He had players like Saul… Read more »

Daveo

He’s rubbish, partey makes xhaka look acceptable because the team is setup with the two with no defensive onus on xhaka. He can’t play is space so he’s essentially an attacking midfielder that’s slow, makes no runs, has no goals in him and isn’t that creative in forward positions because he needs time and space and doesn’t get it playing forward. Konga or ESR could totally play the role and excel, but arteta is obsessed with making xhaka work. Now partey is out he’s once again exposed as a fraud. He makes life harder for lokonga who is a promising… Read more »

Goonshow

Could not have summed it up better. It’s not about personal attacks on Xhaka – whether you do or do not have issues with his attitude and ego, he is simply NOT a CL lever mid-fielder. And most certainly not a title-winning one!
Viera, Gilberto, Thomas, Davies, Rocastle, Brady, Petit, Parlour… and, currently, Kante, Rice, Gallagher, Firminho, Partey, etc etc etc etc.

Two sImple questions: where do we want to finish at season’s end? Are players of Xhaka’s proven level lifting closer to that level, or holding us back.

Calmly, rationally – we all know the answer.

Daveo

And once again, no one is going to offer fuck all for him in the summer so we’ll be stuck with him again and arteta will setup the team to make him look acceptable while others struggle around him to cover his deficiencies. And every man and his dog will rave about his 6.5 average form for a 1-2 month period and wave away the 2 reds and 2 penalties that cost is points with bullshit like “that’s only a red for xhaka” or “at least he gets stuck in”… And we’ll finish outside champions League places again, but it… Read more »

Goonshow

Well, when you put it like that…

Aitcho

We had a big summer of transfer activity last summer. A big winter of the same. Start of last season Arteta said he needed 6 new players. He got them. After 5 windows, how do we justify allowing him to waste more money? He hasn’t improved one players through his ability as a coach

Leon

The trouble is he signed players that were not long term improvements on what we had. If we don’t (and we will not) get champions league football we are going to really struggle to buy the players they need. Its not really his fault that the board lacked the ambition to sign an experienced and proven manager, but what I can blame him for is his failure to replace players that he fell out with and forced out of the club and for his complete lack of tactical ability when confronted by a manager who can apply tactics. I just… Read more »

goonero

And I suppose the young manager deserves and needs the same. Give it your best Mikel.

Aitcho

He doesn’t deserve it. He’s tanked the value of every player he’s coached. He’s broken all kinds of negative records. We’ve seen his best. It’s not good enough

goonero

Well, he’s here for the rest of the season, so I might as well give him what trivial support I can offer. Maybe Easter Sunday has got me in a better mood than usual but I see no benefit in shitting on a guy who is already in the shit. We know it, he knows it. Let him do his best and let’s evaluate in the summer.

Alan Sunderland

Think he’s here for all of next season as well at an minimum.

Pete Plum

I think we’re long overdue Elneny making a start. Artetas made mistakes but he’s right the young players do need protecting.
Trimming the squad so thin (his strategic decision) has massively highlighted the tactical mistakes since that he might otherwise have got away with.
I guess the reason to be so light was to save squad places to be built around the current cohort – but now that same cohort is suffering these body blows. Why not use the senior players you do still have???

UzesGooner

Yeah, I agree against Chelsea. Sambi will be good but he’s been thrown into the lion’s den (excuse the pun) and he looks a bit bewildered atm….

Aitcho

We have no way of telling if he’ll be good v Chelsea. It looks like he’s been thrown in at this stage because he’s been badly managed all season.

Daveo

Elneny and lokonga. That’s s midfield I’d like to see. Xhaka against Chelsea? Are you drunk? We’ll get slaughtered. Is Mikel drunk?

Qwaliteee

Elneny?

😂

Pete Plum

Elneny never lets us down. We can’t just have attacking players

Qwaliteee

Mate, come on.

We need attacking players, we need goals and fucking loads of them.

Elneny, when he plays well, helps keep possession but offers very little else.

Look at yesterday’s stats. Possession isn’t the problem here – we’ve got that but sussed.

It’s sticking the ball in the back of the net that’s the problem and if you want Champion’s League football next season – Hell, ANY European football next season, we’re going to need a lot more than what Wenger used to term ‘Sterile Domination.’

Daveo

” Elneny, when he plays well, helps keep possession but offers very little else.”
Still more than xhaka…

Aitcho

He wouldn’t have got away with it. He was just as bad a manager with a larger squad. It’s not the squad size, it’s his lack of ability

Alex

I agree with this actually. Elneny had a good AFCON. Without Partey we should have brought Elneny in next to Xhaka. Not exciting but solid. And experienced and tidy. Not batter Sambi’s confidence. Bad management. Pepe should be ok the pitch earning a living too.

Qwaliteee

The continued absence of Pepe from the starting XI is Arteta’s biggest sin at the moment, in my opinion.

The guy has proved in the past that if you give him a decent run in the side, he will create and score goals for you.

His omission is crass management. Utterly ridiculous.

Daveo

You’re memory is rather short. Xhaka and elneny are a disaster together. Couldn’t be two more I’ll suited players. Elneny is pass limited which allows teams to press xhaka hard, when do pressed xhaka is a disaster.

AussieGooner

I honestly would be glad to see the back of him. He is very hard to like. As the fickle football fan I am I can put aside his flaws when we are winning but now? They all come back sharply into focus. He doesn’t come across as a very nice person tbh. I can’t stand his micro management, his allegiance to system over player individuality. I mean that is fine when you are Man City can stop can afford to have clones of every player on the bench, but it isn’t okay for us. I hate his pitch side… Read more »

Qwaliteee

They certainly deserve your backing, Mikel.

Whether or not they actually need it, remains to be seen….

David Gooner

A young squad and a young manager; include a small squad and general inexperience it is no wonder things have slipped. I think it is easy to forget that if at the start of the season we had been given this position after 31 matches, we would likely have taken it.

It is the optimism that has brought us crashing down! Me as much as everybody else.

Chuck Felsea

You are correct, if you had told me before the season that we would finish sixth, I would have taken it.
However, if you had told me that we lose to Palace, Brighton and Soton in a row, I would have said that this is absolutely unacceptable for AFC.

Shano

If only we had lost 3 in Feb, accepted the season was over then won the last 3 and were in exact same position it would make for an interesting finish to the season.
To be fair he saved his season last season against Chelsea so let’s hope for a repeat and the arrival of ESR or someone similar

Goontang

Don’t blame this on a young squad.
The board and manager decided to have a young squad for the run in.
There’s no getting past giving auba away for free. So many people saying he was disturbing the squad, that seems like BS. He and the manager had a falling out. Sometimes you need to do what’s best for the team and we gave away a goalscorer and replaced him with noone.

That wasn’t a decision best for the team. It was a decision best for arteta. There’s a reason auba was made captain.

Qwaliteee

Top post well said.

Glad you’re getting plenty of thumbs up for this – I said basically the same thing in early February – and had the usual regulation zillion thumbs down for my trouble, but hey ho – I’m far from delighted to be proved right.

Seeing the team struggle without Auba’s goals has been a sad state of affairs.

Manninger

People projected that the team was happier without him, just because they won a few games. Which is hilarious because they are professionals that probablyyyyy valued him on the pitch.

A.P.

Arteta’s approach to managing players he cannot handle is either to buy them out or to send them out on a long exile.

Aitcho

He hasn’t backed them until he needed them to bail him out. His “backing’ does more harm than good. What young player would want to play under him?

Man Manny

Arteta’s penchant for sidestepping
Culpability for our poor delivery is legendary. It is always about what the players do or what they don’t.
How about how they are prepared for each game?
I am beginning to detest this man, and I don’t want to.

Mkh

Well, I think we are still in the “process”, and we need to believe in it. Maybe, till we sunk into the second half of table.

Chuck Felsea

My opinion: No Europe next season should mean that this “process” should be over and we need a new process and associated process owner.

karl

The latest player to fall foul of Mikel is Pepe. He is the player most likely to score a goal and it seems he just cannot be accommodated in a team that scored just twice in the last 6 games.

Much though I like what Arteta is trying to do, he does need to be a bit more flexible and not running top players out of the club on absolutes.

Leon

I don’t think what is happening at Arsenal is anything that has been pushed by Mikel.
The BOD has finally (and belatedly) learned their lesson regarding signing experienced players on huge salaries and has decided that signing young players (with far larger sell on values) is the way forward. This also allows young players like Saka and ESR an opportunity and at the same time saves millions in transfer fees.

Aitcho

Perhaps. But he’s failing on even that score. What player do you think we could sell for a profit except for those there before Arteta?
If the BOD want to follow that model Arteta isn’t the guy to achieve it.

Qwaliteee

That’s crap.

Any team selections or sales are completely on Arteta – not the board.

Some of you still won’t accept that the guy is fallible.

Pathetic.

karl

Whatever happens, Emery has a better win percentage at Arsenal after spending less money.

Alan Sunderland

He didn’t get to pick his own players either, was well documented he didn’t have any interest in pepe or torierra.

Mkh

Exactly before we get into these run of shame, I was saying that Mikel cannot handle the issues with players, and cannot manage them if they go into a bad run. And some fans told me this is how he works, and it has worked “pretty well”, and we don’t care so long as it works. So I’m now looking for those guys to come and tell me how the process is going on. Was it good to get rid of Auba, Ozil, Guendouzi, Saliba, Torreira, Bellerin, … ? It is like he can’t manage them or what? I am… Read more »

Manninger

Sorry I’m not buying the Lacazette Covid explanation at all.

I couldn’t see how he would be in the right mental state, after a week of negative stats and discussion around his form.

What’s annoying, is this is probably how he should have protected Auba during his long covid/disciplinary breach.

Mkh

Mee too! Seems a nasty joke.

Manninger

Reminds me of when Ozil came back after that WC mentally scarred by racism from the German FA.

No one even stopped to support him, and good form was expected right away. Things would have been so different if he got the Saka (post penalty miss) treatment.

Qwaliteee

Yep. Instead, he got absolute dogs abuse from morons who clearly have never comprehended the phrase ‘making the ball do the work.’ Because Ozil wasn’t chasing around like a fucking tit in a trance, he was deemed to be ‘lazy.’ Quite ironic really, given how ‘lazy’ that pathetic argument was. Ozil was the one true game-changer we had – and Arteta froze him out and put Willian in his place. A few of us called it out and were mocked for our troubles – but, as it was, everyone eventually caught up when the proof in the pudding was blatantly… Read more »

Manninger

It’s like throwing away a vintage Leica for a plug n play Sony.

But this is the ‘look busy’ culture shift fans wanted.

Bleeding gums murphy

Really well said. One of most gifted players I have ever had privilege to watch. He would never make a good team great but he would make a great team exceptional. Unfortunately he was mostly in a good team with us. His partnership with sanchez was fabulous.

Manninger

Even on Arsecast they it was just accepted he was out with ‘COVID’

Just seen on twitter – he’s out and about.

No Covid.

Praying for us as fans to be a little less reliant on news from the club. Some of it is clear waffle.

SarcasmB0T

The young players are fine. They’re the reason we’ve done as well as we have.

I don’t think there’s ever been any question of them deserving to be backed. They have been, including by the manager.

It seem like they deserve something more.

Mkh

One stat here:
Talking about Saliba meant too many downvotes few weeks ago, and it earns too many upvotes very recently.
How people change their mind quickly!

A.P.

Calling those who proclaim Arteta as one of our great managers just a few weeks ago to upvote.

MojoWillneny

No way is the top four race over for us. If for no other reason than our competition is just as ineffective as we are. The toilet bowl jockeys are in the driver seat but—“the history of the Tottenham” is real. West Ham just drew Burnley and United is shit. It’s a long shot, granted, but we can still get top four. Not giving up the fight, no way…

Qwaliteee

Yep.

Until it is mathematically impossible, I’ll refuse to throw in the towel.

Not because we’re going to tear up any trees between now and May – we won’t.

It’s because the shit around us, Spuds, Utd and West Ham are simply that – a load of shit.

mrugunner

Arteta and xhaka, a match of heaven

Qwaliteee

Whatever you do for a living son, stay away from Marketing…..

RobGooner

I think we’ve been really unlucky with injuries to key players at the wrong time. We do have a very small inexperienced squad but they’d performed brilliantly prior to the Palace game. The January transfer window is always going to be difficult to get players and if nothing else we got rid of players who many on here were happy to see go. This season could end o a very flat note but I would without hesitation give the Arteta/Edu combo one more season to do the business.

Aitcho

Scraping wins v Leicester, Villa and Wolves isn’t even ‘very good’ let alone ‘brilliant’.

3 years of Arteta has lowered your bar

RobGooner

We need some context here. We are a very young team that will only get better with some quality additions. We haven’t been hammering teams 5 or 6 nil but that’s just not where we are at the moment. I saw definite signs for genuine optimism over the last few months. The issue at the moment is the injuries and the impact its had on the squad.

enior

Few bad results and all scum crawling out slinging insults on left and right. Play Pepe, Play 3 at the back, Play Saka at LB, Play Martinelli as CF – U are a f… Joke !!!!!!!

Qwaliteee

Yeah.

How dare we all have different opinions and air them on a forum for discussion.

How dare we all react to poor results, poor individual and collective performances and a manager who, for all his well documented achievements, still contrives to shoot himself and this football club in both feet with an ever growing list of decidedly dodgy decisions.

People like you, who cannot tolerate healthy debate, are the joke.

Aitcho

We’ve lost more than Palace and Brighton. It’s more than ‘a few’ bad results

Cosby white

My take and only advice for arteta against chelsea is playing saka on the left pepe on the right martinelli in the middle,xhaka must play with elneny to protect the defence,tavares will play but no much of bombing forwards,then you will see us getting result against chelsea,for us to win chelsea it must be on a counter

Santori

The opiate that’s sold to gullible fans. “Its a team in development” No one has time for these sorts of projects in the PL. Considering the competition, we will be further and further cut a drift from the quality level we need to attain. And it will have compound impact in market as our own value of a club further diminishes in the eye of strong up and coming players. That said… As much as we have predictably flattered to deceive due to Arteta/Edu incompetence, we are still somehow in and around the spots for europe considering the other teams… Read more »

Goonshow

The fact that you have always believed- and clearly still do – that Xhaka is one of our best players, a sure-pick every week, robs your long-winded expositions of any credibility. The man is NOT – and never will be – of EPL Top 4, nor CL, nor most definitely of title-winning, standard.
He may not always be our worst player on any given day. But he has never, ever been our best.

Santori

The usual sell everyone and get a whole new roster people on here again… reality is we will sell and likely add poorer quality or more ‘developmental stage’ players. And likely we will be further diminished in allure as a club (Particularly without CL or europe) and will not be seen as an attractive destination for top up and coming players unless we pay the top money (and some…draw your own conclusions here) Too many people do not live in the reality of things. We continue to be ‘work in progress’ If I was advising a young up and coming… Read more »

MojoWillneny

Why are you convinced Arsenal will end up out of Europe? We are in the fight for top four and we’re well positioned for Europa. What causes fans to give up the fight so quickly and so softly? Hang in there, there are a handful of matches left for us and the others. Our competition is largely inconsistent and/or shit. This race isn’t over yet.

Cornish Gooner

Just 2 thoughts – crazy not to give a proper extended opportunity to Pepe in these desperate times who is the only player who can conjure a goal out of nothing but written off by stubborn Arteta. The other comes from one of my sons who was at the game & said our Fans were just AMAZING! They deserve better in game management than they have been getting.

Kafkush

He talks so much bullshit, and carefully shifts the blame. They deserve my, needed quality.

Kafkush

To clarify, the second sentence is half quotes from him.

I can’t stand him. Or other political operators like him.

Goonshow

A few, simple questions which – as an erstwhile Arteta backer – now cloud my opinion of his capability: why the failed experiment of Xhaka at LB? Mik has quoted stats, which actually do NOT back up his thinking. why persist with Xhaka week in/out? Elneny looked good next to Thomas, early season, and recently shone for the Afcon finalists, where Xhaka has never been our ‘best’ player and is a journeyman for the Swiss also-rans – we clearly have little to lose at this point… why not give Sambi the mobility, energy and solidity of Mo’Nenny and see what… Read more »

Dave Roberts

The reason we’re losing is the injury to Tomas Partey. He’s the glue, the maturity and the talent that’s essential for us to win. Remember the first three games of the season – Patrey was injured for those three losses too.

supergooner24

This may be very simplistic viewpoint, however when you think about our main slumps in form this season (first 3 games, winless January and last 3 games) they’ve all come when Partey has been out of the team. As good as a player he is, its extremely unhealthy for a team to be so reliant on one player (especially given how injury prone he is). This is an issue Mikel needs to sort out this summer, both in the transfer market and on the training ground. We can’t simply buy another player as good as Partey (there are not many… Read more »

Bobbyt

The team have looked dreadful the past three games. I feel Pepe should be getting more game time. He looked good at Afcon and I thought he might kick on but hasn’t been given a chance. We need some solid results and now.

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