Posted on February 11, 2018 by ADMIN

Arsenal should have beaten Tottenham by half-time?

The stats suggest that Arsenal were over-run by Tottenham at Wembley yesterday, and in fact we only had one shot on target in the whole game, from Jack Wilshere in the second half, but according to Arsene Wenger we should have been well in front before the break. I have no idea why he should think that as I wouldn’t have even used a Bet365 promo to bet on the Gunners at the moment. Wenger said: “Possession is basically 50/50 in this game. Firstly, I think the game should have been finished at half-time for me. We missed opportunities on counter-attacks that are not missable at our level, due to the final ball.

“In the second half, we should have lost the game by more than one goal at the start. We were destabilised by the goal they scored and they had two or three more opportunities that they could have scored. In the final part of the game, we should have come back to 1-1. That maybe would not have been enough, but would be better than being 1-0 down. Overall, we’ve got mixed feelings because for long periods in the first half, with a bit more quality in our final pass, we would have won this game.

“I believe that we had opportunities, dangerous situations that we didn’t transform into opportunities. That’s where my regret is, that in the final ball we missed something. When you have two or three opportunities like we had in the final part of the game, you want to take your chances in these kinds of games. You know you will not have 10 chances. If you don’t take them, you will suffer at the end of the day. To be at the level mentally is to be capable of using your opportunities. That’s what the top level is about.”

Arsenal’s record of just 4 wins out of 14 games on the road is probably one of the worst I have ever known, and Wenger thinks this is simply down to our strikers not converting the chances they get. “It’s very poor. Once they had scored the goal, that maybe played a part in it. Football is about scoring goals. You can say, ‘We are not strong enough when defending our goal’, but when you look at the numbers and compare them to the top six, we do not score enough goals away from home. These two weaknesses, one added to the other, explain it.”

Aubameyang was brought in to change that, but he hardly got a sniff yesterday in our most crucial fixture in the race for the Top Four. We are now 6 points behind Fourth place but Wenger still hasn’t given up on qualifying for the Champions League. “It’s a game we couldn’t afford to lose, of course. That makes it much more difficult now but we have to fight for as long as we have a mathematical chance. There was more at stake than just the derby, I said that before the game. That’s why it’s so disappointing to lose the game in the way we lost it.”

The Boss is adamant that he doesn’t want to get in through the back door by winning the Europa League, but he accepts that we may have no other choice. “It’s too early, yes. Football is not about switching off for three games and then switching it on for one game. Manchester United decided that once they were in the semi-final. We are far from the semi-final and we have to fight to have a chance to come back. For me, it’s a very disappointing result because the priority has to be to get into the Champions League from the Premier League [top-four finish]. I’m not a great fan of qualifying through the Europa League because I don’t think it’s right. If it’s an opportunity, we’ll have to try to take it as well. The priority is still to be in the Premier League.”

It will certainly be interesting to see what team he puts out against Ostersunds on Thursday, but with no weekend game coming up we should put out our strongest side and try to get a nice lead to take back to the Emirates. I can’t see us qualifying any other way. Can you?

18 thoughts on “Arsenal should have beaten Tottenham by half-time?

  1. tatgooner

    mkhitaryan cech monreal bellerin aubameyang lacazette koscienly wilshere are the most overrated players in the premier league.None of them are good enough even to start for tottenham
    elneny welbeck xhaka iwobi mustafi are just shocking players.The fact that they are even playing at this level proves we have a dire problem with senior figures at the club.
    Mkhitaryan is a fraud and mourinho mugged us off yet another time,he looks like an armenian walcott.

    Wenger out

    1. Carlos Burton

      you talk non sense the reason arsenal lost was wenger fielded xaka and elnini and he told the team to play defensive and try to nick the game that’s a mistake arsenal should of started fast and attack them we would of won that game he auld of started with iwobi or welbeck on lacazette instead of xaka or elnini that is why the game was lost trying to play safe and trying to park a bus not arsenals style big mistake Tottenham are not a come back team go two up fast start and Tottenham would of been done just like that last game we played them

      1. John Ibrahim

        Exactly….we were too defensive…which is not our style

        the players are certainly not up for defensive mode….

        Aubameyang should not have been given the offside…..linesmen were extremely sharp

      2. Julius Ouko

        Wenger as usual being delusional! He always blames everyone else but himself. His choice of starting eleven, his substitutions, tactics or lack thereof and wrong positioning of players have time and time again been Arsenal’s downfall. How can you teach an old dog new tricks? When will Arsenal board decide it is time to part way with Wenger? ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!

  2. AndersS

    Basically we have been nowhere near good enough for top 4 for more than a year, so it is more than unlikely, we suddenly should be able to gain 8-10 points on those right in front of us.
    The most likely is, that we will finish 10-15 points behind top 4.
    We have a chance in the Europa League, but I don’t see us a favorites.
    Our constant slide under Wenger just goes on and on.

  3. Innit

    My mind is on Thursday. Our only chance is Europa I think and even that will be difficult

    In summer we need MAJOR changes:
    1. New manager (Allegri, Ancelloti, Simeone or Enrique or any manager whose last name ends with an “i” or “e”)
    2. A strong defensive midfielder who will dominate the midfield
    3. A creative Cazorla or Rosicky like box to box player
    4. Two quality consistently reliable Centre backs
    5. Another RB. Bellerin needs to improve and needs competition
    6. Summer clear out
    Sell Debuchy, Eleny, Iwobi, Akpom, Perez, Xhaka, Jenkinson, Campbell to fund new additions
    7. Kolsanic and Lacazette need to play more often next season.
    7. Play more or send on loan Nketiah, Adelaide, Nelson, Zelalem, Bielik, Chambers, Holding, Mavraponas to develop.

    1. Steve h

      Joachim low. Next manger. Play Kolsanic between mid and back four.
      Give bielik more game time. Give holding some coaching on defending Ffs
      Play Lacazett up front with Aub.

  4. bran911

    A team with attacking DNA decides to play defensive, like the tiki taka Barcelona decides to play long balls like Stoke city. How deluded is the manager to even try this.. and put in mind neither Elneny nor Xhaka is good defensively

  5. Gary Fox

    Arsenal should have had the game wrapped up at half time? How? The first shot on goal wasn’t till 70th minute. It was like watching a George Graham era Arsenal…..defend deep and hoof it up front. Ozil disappeared (again) and what’s the point of spending £150m on three forwards when you haven’t got one decent defender?

    1. Ozziegunner@Newcastle upon Hunter

      You are being disrespectful to George Graham and the players in his successful teams, who at least won in Europe!

  6. Kenny Rolfe

    Trying to think of something to say about Wenger but it’s all been said. Clueless, deluded, senile, you name it. Even though our board know nothing at all about football, surly they must see it’s time to let Wenger go. Trouble with Kroenke, Chips and the board, they’ve got no interest, they just check the accounts once a month, probably never even knew we played yesterday.

  7. Dee

    I wander which game wenger is talking about.How can you win a game in which you had no single shot on or off target throughout the first half.His poor tactics caused us the match.

  8. Chris

    In the first half Spurs barely got a sniff. They were on the attack a lot but barely looked like they could get anywhere near us. We had a gung-ho linesman who flagged an onside breakaway 1 on 1 as offside and failed with virtually every attempt to make a final ball count outside of this one moment. First half there was hardly a shade between the two teams and a wrong offside call and a poor finish by Kane were the only two moments that really could have turned the half on its head had they been flipped over.

    The second half was a different matter entirely. Tottenham came out guns blazing and pressured our players more. Our players didn’t react, looked sloppy and slow, moving the ball with a lack of urgency or desire to move forward. The quick through balls of the first half dried up and we slowly had less and less outlet. This meant Spurs could get into us more and more until eventually some atrocious defending let them in. This confounded the already poor confidence our team was playing with and we became even more sloppy with the ball, creating more and more chances for Spurs. It wasn’t good play by them, but rather awful play by us that was creating their opportunities. None of our back 4 or any of the 3 midfielders had any defence at that time in the game, even Ozil was shocking.

    Then came a third period, however. With no time left on the clock and a sudden resurgence from us, the last 10 minutes saw us driving into Spurs again. We created at least 2 clear goal scoring opportunities – not mistakes from Spurs particularly (may blame Sanchez for the second) – but Lacazette could and should have equalised. Even in the dying embers we had a free kick that we kicked into the wall but it showed a sudden pressure on Tottenham we hadn’t had all game.

    Our issue comes in the form of 3 key areas. Number 1 is our midfield. Xhaka and Elneny do a job but not well enough. They are not skilful enough going forward to get our attack kick started but equally not defensive enough to shut out the opposition. They do a half job which isn’t good enough at the highest level. They should be backup players, not first teamers. They aren’t doing enough to warrant that. Number 2 is the final ball area of our game. Bellerin is among the biggest culprits for this as he is often our player gaining the most space. His crosses, passes and drives into the box are consistently not of the high calibre you need – Spurs got one free cross into the box and scored yet Bellerin had 3 or 4 in the game and found our players 0 times. Other players made similar poor balls at the vital changeover moment when we had captured possession in good position and had to open the defence. It was simply too wasteful. Number 3 is our woeful distribution from defence. Cech is the biggest culprit, consistently dallying on the ball and then being wasteful with the possession, but it can be applied to Mustafi as well. It is easy to target Arsenal defensively when you can press certain players to ensure they will not attack efficiently. The care taken to retain the ball is dreadful and the speed of pass always draws the opposition on.

    These are consistent issues that have occurred throughout our season. I loathe to blame Wenger usually but his inability to replace Cazorla, sale of a target man and brute force DM, and his inability to improve the areas our game is clearly lacking in has to take much of the blame for our performances like this. While I am no manager, I’d seek a strong defensive midfielder in the summer to partner Wilshere or Rambo, replace Cech with a ball playing goalkeeper of significant quality and consider replacing Bellerin on the right of our defence. A CB would also be nice to replace Mustafi but I don’t see us finding adequate quality in the current climate. Either way – we really need a shake up and fast because our quality is slowly dissipating across the pitch. Attack is the only place I feel doing more tinkering wouldn’t help!

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