Arsenal: Draw specialists

Arsenal 1-1 Tottenham

It’s hard to know what to make of this Arsenal side at the moment. In terms of personnel, we’re stronger than last season. But as a team? It’s just not working properly, as two wins in nine testifies.

All the possession in the world, but what’s the point of that if we lack the means to go for the jugular?

Don’t get me wrong, a point is no disaster, but we’ve been a curious side to watch for much of the season. Generally not bad – apart from in Dortmund, where we were awful – but certainly not quite good enough.

Getting the right system right and bedding new players in is clearly vexing Wenger, as it is with several managers, so I suppose the fact that we are unbeaten in the league is something to draw comfort from. We’re not easy to beat.

But we’re six points off the pace, and should we see the kind of top four away-day Collaps-o-Arsenal of recent years next weekend (I don’t think we will ship six, but it’s a fair question to ask), then we’d be nine points off the top at the beginning of October. Time to get worried, or a bit of perspective required?

The latter, to be honest. I think we’ve got a very strong team, but it’s one that has yet found the groove. New players, World Cup returnees, etc etc – it’s not an excuse but it’s a factor.

As for yesterday, there were good shifts put in by most players. Oxlade-Chamberlain looked strong, Ozil and Welbeck worked hard, Wilshere was always looking to drive forward (and was felled on most occasions). Like I say, curious. We didn’t look bad. We just didn’t look quite capable of knocking the door down.

And to cap it all off, Arteta and Ramsey are now out. Of those, the former is the biggest worry as Flamini didn’t cover himself in glory yesterday. Why we have no other options in that position is of course a question that’s been asked a thousand times before, given our millions in the bank. But there you go – there are only so many times you can say it before it becomes boring.

Ramsey has perhaps epitomised Arsenal this season. Not bad, but just not hitting the heights of last season. Fortunately, it’s one position in the team we have options. If he’s been carrying a knock for a while (and it’s the second time he’s been out this season, so that could well explain something) then it’s probably best that he lets his body mend properly.

Onto the Champions League we go, where we’ve little room for error already. I guess we just have to KBO* until we get the balance right.



Arsenal since about 1979. Thick, thin and all that.

This Post Has 5 Comments

  1. terry5555

    “Pure obsession with English Players costing
    us valuable points” What the same English player (Ox) who got us the equalising goal???

  2. PDDD

    Time to get worried ? About a title challenge you mean ? Wow. That’s some comment. There is zero chance of a title challenge and hasn’t been since the transfer window closed. It’s nonsense to suggest otherwise.

    The defensive midfield situation is just embarrassing. We’ve got one in Flamini who used to be decent but looks spent & one who has always been hopeless there in Arteta. Oh, and Diaby apparently. That should make me laugh but the thought that Arsene actually means it is too depressing.
    I loved this in the Guardian –
    I particularly liked ‘Arteta left the field after half an hour with a calf problem, presumably caused by repeatedly turning full circle to chase into the wide-open spaces either side of him.’
    There’s no chance of a result at Chelsea. Would it better for the club if we got another 6-0 rather than losing in a close game & Arsene viewing it as progress ? Something drastic needs to happen so that he either takes proper action for a change or walks away.

  3. East Lower

    Well, I doubt very much we will be there at the end but with this squad we will certainly play better than this (irrespective of the Flamini/Arteta argument, which I do agree with).

  4. PDDD

    I don’t think you can say ‘irrespective of the Flamini/Arteta argument’ though. That position is the basis of everything we do. It’s all very well saying the squad is good enough to play better…..but if they’re not given a platform from whoever plays there then they can’t. Chelsea will prove that. For the first time in my life I had a bet against Arsenal in the corresponding fixture last season as I simply could not see any way we would not be hammered. Has anything changed ? Nope. Arsene has long since given up learning lessons.

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