A battling draw against Man United leaves Arsenal fans feeling positive

Arsenal earn a battling draw against United by Konstantin Mitov

Welcome lovely Arsenal people! Arsenal got a battling draw against Man Utd and in the end I think it was a good game. When I saw our line up I was really worried.

Tierney didn’t even make the bench, Aubameyang was again missing due to some personal issues but the biggest hit was Saka failing a late fitness test and missing from the squad at all.

The game was back and forward with chances on both ends. In the first half, after minute 20 United dominated and we had to survive a few scares. Our passing was really sloppy and we lost the ball a few times by failing to play it out from the back.

The second half was much better. We introduced Willian at half time and this was his best performance since day one. We created a few chances, but Willian and Smith Rowe failed to find the target and Pepe had a shot blocked, then a fine effort drifted just wide of the post.

Laca hit the post from a free kick, but in the end fine margins in our finishing left us with only 1 point. That said, Cavani missed 2 chances to nick the game, especially one in the end. Leno also made an unbelievable save that helped us keep a clean sheet.

All and all a fair result on the balance of play, but I leave with a more positive feeling. Despite some ropey defending that was a 4th clean sheet in a row at home in all competitions.

There were some good performances, especially from Pepe, who was my man of the match. He was our most dangerous player, his pressing was good and he was tracking back. I had a lot of criticsm for him, but with displays like that, he might challenge for a regular place again.

Willian also gave a performance of note. With all the players missing, we really needed someone to step up and I was happy to see it from players under pressure.

On the other end, I think Thomas Partey struggled and our midfield failed to move the ball forward with the pace we did recently. It likely has something to do with the absence of Saka, which also affected Xhaka, who didn’t have the energy and the runners up front to put in slicing passes.

In the end I’m happy with the performance, especially under the circumstances. A path to the top 4 in our situation is always a longshot. This was our seventh game in a row where we didn’t lose in the league. Before this run, our best undefeated run featured just 2 games. Wolves and Villa away next. Difficult games, but with players hopefully returning fresh in the squad, I’m feeling positive.

Konstantin

12 Comments

  1. Uwot? says:

    We never ever seem to have a full side against yahnited it’s like a curse.A full side & I believe we’d have beaten them.still makes a change from what wenger would have done.which is attack them with an injury hit side & then got picked off & hammered.

  2. gotanidea says:

    The match could’ve gone either way, but a draw was acceptable since Tierney and Saka were missing. We can’t always rely on a right-footed LB like Soares though, since we need a dribbler along the left touchline to compete with Tierney

    Another pressing requirement is Lacazette’s backup. Losing him would likely make us lose the ball more often and I don’t think Martinelli/ Balogun could hold the ball as good as Lacazette in the front line

    1. Cliff says:

      Spot on @ gotanidea

    2. Khadii says:

      Lol..
      The unfortunate thing is Nketiah is ahead of those two in the CF position..
      SMH. And he’s the worst of the bunch

  3. Umar says:

    Had laca score mateneli cross it would have been different

  4. Peter Shaw says:

    Pity they played the passing-backwards game so early in the match. WHY DO THEY DO THAT? It gives the opposition all the time in the world to re-group and compose. They pass it sideways and backwards all too much! It shows a lack of confidence!

  5. Reddb10 says:

    People must have watched a different game. Luiz was even given the MOM. Ridiculous

  6. Sunny says:

    Next 2 games are really important. Wolves because we must get 3 points after we drop 2 yesterday. Next is Villa that would be 6 pointer as they are our competitors for Europe. Win next 2 than we are in good shape for a shout at top 4

  7. Wayne says:

    My biggest disappointment with Arteta is his belief in Willian. Even after a series of horrible performances, Arteta keeps giving Willian minutes over the likes of Nelson and Willock. Personally, Willian should not be in a match day squad for the rest of the season, if Arsenal should have a chance of making the top four. His lack of confidence and body language shows with consistent lackluster performances . Although against Manchester United, he was slightly better, but, Willian lacks the creativity and quality Arsenal needs. Too often, he kills off the run of play, by keeping the ball too long and not knowing what to do with it and then back passing it,instead of moving forward. Willian’s lack of pace is also a major problem, and he has not been that good defensively either. Considering how some of the young talents (Pepe,Nelson and Saliba in particular) were treated by Arteta, it is blatant that Arteta has a bias preferential treatment of Willian, despite his failures thus far. Nelson should replace Willian period, as Arsenal look forward to progress further up the table.

  8. Mohsan says:

    Feeling positive? How far have we fallen. United were there for the taking, poor side just lost to Sheifeild and under pressure to win league. We had only Saka missing from last game and were at home but still could not win (ppl saying Tierney n Auba were out as well, but they were also out in last match which was our best performance for season as said by many Arsenal fans, plus Auba is struggling this season anyways n getting abuse for it so you can not probably use these two as an injury excuse). I said this ages ago that it’s not only the club but fans have also accepted mediocrity. If we loose by a single goal or draw against big four even at home it’s celebrated or taken as a positive result. That is the mark of mid table team.

    1. Jimmy Bauer says:

      Here ! Here!! Well said Mohsan..

  9. Jah son says:

    Thank you Moshan.

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