After a somewhat cautious and nervous start to the game today, Arsenal scored two good goals through Mesut Ozil and the Ox and so a lot of Arsenal fans were looking forward to more of the same after the break. It had been seven years since the Gunners failed to score for the Premier League games in a row so I thought this was the perfect chance to make amends and fill our boots.
I think that Arsene Wenger was thinking the same way, although he would also have told his players at halftime that they had to stay solid and not let Bournemouth back into the match. And perhaps the fact that the home team had almost scored just before the break made the Arsenal players more cautious.
Whatever the reason, the second half saw us defending a lot more than we hoped and creating fewer chances at the other end. The boss even changed his mind about bringing Theo Walcott on to hit them on the counter after asking the England forward to warm up. Instead he brought on an extra defensive midfielder in Coquelin and then made another defensive change with Gibbs for Alexis Sanchez.
In his post match comments on the Arsenal website the boss admitted that our performance suffered because of the pressure to win.
Wenger said, “We had a strong start and we were 2-0 in front with a good convincing performance. After that we were weak in some periods and we suffered a bit more. It was important for us to not concede a goal. In the end the second half was about keeping the result than continuing our flow in the game. It was an important three points for us.
“[Winning was important] for two reasons, we hadn’t won in a while, we had gone four games without a win and when you play at the top it is a long period so your confidence drops a bit. Leicester were running away and us playing them next week makes the game very interesting.”
Do you agree that today was all about the points and the performance was secondary?