Can Arsenal shake off their tame start to the season, starting this weekend against Hull? by SE
Arsenal haven’t played to potential so far this season, and although they have shown flashes of brilliance in those massive wins over Manchester City in the FA Community Shield and Galatasaray in the UEFA Champions League, Wenger’s wizards are languishing at 8th place in the Barclays Premier League table. Injuries have impeded Arsenal’s ambitions and, to be frank, would have affected any side, regardless of the depth and size of the squad. In Arsenal’s case, however, the lack of flexibility in the managerial and playing styles is what is compounding problems for the Gunners. Their defense, midfield and attack are failing cohesively, and the spirit within the camp doesn’t seem all that boisterous. Having said that, can Arsenal produce the goods starting this weekend against Hull?
Arsenal simply got to start scoring goals and average 2 goals-per-game at best, to revive their position in the Barclays Premier League table. A tally of 11 goals from 7 games just isn’t good enough and, when you let in 9 goals at the back, you are not making your task any easier. This is where Wenger needs to be proactive, and maybe go with two up front against the supposedly mid and lower-mid table sides. I’d say, with Chamberlain slotting in on one of the wings during Ozil’s absence, Sanchez could be deployed alongside or just off Welbeck, at No.10. You win football matches by scoring more number of goals than your opponents, and it’s no different in Arsenal’s case.
Arsenal’s end-product this season, contrasting to previous seasons, depends hugely on Wenger’s man-management skills, and how he juggles around with his injury-hit squad. Three Arsenal players – Debuchy, Giroud and Ozil – look set to be out of action until the turn of the year, at least, which means that Wenger has been handed a serious kick up his backside, with a small squad at the start of the season further shortened by this injury pileup that also sees Ramsey, Arteta, Diaby, Monreal and Sanogo not yet fit to return. The slightly positive news, however, is that Walcott and Gnabry – two long term injury casualties – are closing in on their respective returns, which would be a welcoming one for Wenger and Arsenal season’s perspective. But it can’t be a ‘real’ positive for the North Londoners who are also sweating over the fitness of Koscielny – the Frenchman is said to be suffering from chronic tendinitis in both Achilles tendons. It’s worth-mentioning that Arsenal don’t have the Capital One Cup commitments to contend with, as it could only spell further trouble for an already depleted squad.
Finally, looking around that injury-hit Arsenal squad, it’s difficult to see someone carrying them through. Sanchez is still bedding in, and hasn’t made a staunch impact at his new club; Cazorla, during Ozil’s absence, will see plenty of game time, and will be hoping to bring some incision into Arsenal’s play from the middle-third of the pitch; Wilshere, having shown glimpses of his ability already this season, could be the player who gives Arsenal the cutting edge, during this tough period for the club. He can be imperious; a feisty personality who doesn’t need much to ignite him and that in turn could bring the best of him for the North Londoners. For Wenger’s wizards to rectify their unimpressive start to the campaign and surge up the Barclays Premier League table, the form and fitness of the aforementioned trio is of paramount importance.
Arsenal have a mountain to climb, in terms of finding their form and then translating that form into results. But, blatantly put: it’s going to be a monumental task for the Gunners squad and Wenger, especially this season, to fashion a recovery and make their way up in the Premier League table, while not losing focus in their Champions League assignments.