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This wasn’t good

SO in our defence, it is true that the opener could to a considerable degree be blamed on the failure to award a foul on Coquelin. Chelsea played it brilliantly once they got possession but there could be no doubting the fact that Sagna’s position was based on thinking that Coquelin had the ball and wasn’t about to lose it.

It is also true that for their penalty Ramires did essentially kick his leg into Szczesny and so in a sense we were unlucky on that too (even if conventionally speaking it was a definite foul and red card).

But what I find so telling is our inability to deal with these kind of set-backs. To me the difference between us and the top sides is not whether or not we sometimes fall victim to poor officiating or set-backs but how we cope with it. We appear to have zero resilience.

It was interesting to hear the manager call for more aggression pre-match. Quite right too because against City we were tepid for the most part. Sadly, a few mistimed challenges aside, we were like that again before the break today. Perhaps I’m just ignorant of what it is to be a professional footballer, but to me Theo Walcott just stands there when the opposition have the ball. He puts no pressure on the defenders, marks space and appears content for the game to just pass him by. He’s not the only one but he is the most obvious.

So we were awful. And we were lucky not to have Szczesny sent-off because how you can tell me that a guy standing 10 yards from goal with no keeper and just two defenders on the line doesn’t have a clear goalscoring chance, I don’t know frankly.

We improved after the break and got a goal but then largely failed to kick on. Theo took his chance nicely enough but was too easily caught offside on other occasions. Giroud looked a little low rent truth be told, Diaby hasn’t shown his turn of pace since his return and Cazorla is quiet at the moment. In the second half Gibbs was the pick of our bunch I thought.

On a final note, is Sunday at 1.30pm not the most cretinous kick-off time of them all? It totally knocks out the notion of a Sunday lunch, which for many is the most sociable, family orientated, inclusive occasion of the week. Horrible time.

9 Responses to “This wasn’t good”

  1. West Upper says:

    An interesting game – hardly any of the players emerged with much credit. I thought our best player was Coquelin by a considerable margin – presumably he will now be out for several games with the injury he picked up.

    Giroud was really poor – he was in Cahill’s pocket for most of the game. He’s not an incisive finisher and is slow – but he is big, however, he didn’t put himself about at all and was easily brushed aside on numerous occasions.

    Ramires bullied our mid fielders and bossed the game all the way through – he’s a little guy and I longed for one of our boys to sort him out but it never happened.

    So for me this game utterly reinforced the need for a big hard midfielder who can tackle and another good striker as a minimum, to strengthen the squad. It’s now January 22nd and bugger all has happened in the transfer window so far. If quality reinforcements are not signed it will be a complete dereliction of managerial duty by Wenger yet again.

  2. Canada says:

    there’s only 1 way left before we see any changes in the management. we have to drop out from champions league spot and we will this season. Wenger’s press conferences are at shambles like his team. he says the market will be active in last 48 hours and i know he will buy players but that might just be too late.

  3. Spectrum says:

    “We will be active EARLY in the window.” Another of his many lies. Then he says it’s more likely that he’ll buy in the LAST COUPLE OF DAYS of the window, because “the prices tend to drop then” !

    Why are we even waiting for the prices to drop, when we have at least 70 million to spend, with even MORE revenue coming in from the new sponsorship deals e.t.c. ? And how can you expect to buy “exceptional” and “top, top top quality” players when we rarely offer more than 10 million for anyone ? Wenger’s comments are more and more contradictory and inconsistent as each day passes.

    Don’t forget this is the man who said before this season started, that this is his “best ever team.” Then he tops that with saying he still thinks we can win the league ! He belongs in a nursing home, not a football club.

    ” In Arsene we rust.”

  4. Wallace says:

    The loss of Cesc and van Persie is most keenly felt in these big games. In the past we could go on to the pitch knowing we had players at least the equal of the opposition, now we don’t. It baffles me that Wenger didn’t strengthen the squad at the beginning of January knowing the fixtures we had coming up. You only have to look at the impact of Sturridge and Remy to see how much of a boost it could have given us. If he thinks getting players a bit cheaper because he waits until the last moment to buy them is good business he’s a f**kin’ idiot.

  5. PD says:

    No really much I can add to what others have said. I think its fairly clear that Arsene should have been asked to leave after the Bradford match to give the new manager this transfer window to get changes made. This is the worst team of the Wenger era but it’s clear he doesn’t think it is & is therefore unfit to carry on as manager.

    As West Upper says Ramires bullied us. I think the abuse aimed at him by Gooners on many forums is so vitriolic because he showed so clearly what we don’t have. We’ve needed one since Flamini left in summer 2008 & here we are nearly 5 years later & no sign of one. It’s really quite pathetic.

    1 point out of 9 in January How clear did it have to be looking at the fixtures that we needed to buy early in the month ???? At this moment, 7th looks like our most likely finishing position. Sad, sad days.

  6. jp says:

    I was very impressed with Coquelin yesterday. Gibbs, Wilshere, Coquelin, Cazorla (if he shows up) and Walcott (ditto) are all good enough. Szczeszny I am not so sure about any more, Sagna was bodysnatched six weeks ago and we need the real one back, none of the central defenders are really that good. Arteta and the Ox will do to make up the numbers but aren’t top top players. The rest in my opinion are not good enough. At all.
    So I think we need the following players, all at the level of the ones who are currently good enough or better – a goalkeeper, two more central defenders, a defensive midfielder, another playmaker and two more forwards. At least one of the attacking players needs ot be a real marquee signing, someeone better than our current best player, Wilshere. Then we are in a position,. more or less, to challenge again. Would cost well over £100m, unless Wenger rediscovered his former flair for finding bargains.

  7. Wallace says:

    ps – on a bit of a tangent: comparing Arsenal with Jürgen Klopp’s Dortmund side is interesting. another team unable to compete with the big boys financially but through an excellent youth policy AND wise investment possessed of a team/squad that has outgunned mighty Bayern this last two years and comprehensively dicked Man City and Madrid this season.

  8. PD says:

    I’ve been looking over some stats. The lowest points total we’ve ever had under Arsene is 67. We currently have 34 points from 22 games. It is therefore very, very likely (unless there is a dramatic improvement – the likes of which is simply not going to happen without a major investment in personnel) that this will be proven statistically to be the worst team of the Wenger era at the end of the season….

  9. PD says:

    I really hope we start Frimpong tonight. He may not be as gifted as a lot of our squad but what’s most important tonight is that we come out with the right attitude & start quickly. At least we know with him we’ll get aggression at least. Anyway, if with both Arteta & Coquelin injured, if he doesn’t start then why isn’t he still on loan cos it’s pointless having him around…..

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