A brutally honest assessment of this current Arsenal team

What are our wishes for this season? by Brian Tole

Nothing to be happy about. I am worried, disappointed and flabberghasted at our current state.
I am extremely struggling to pick out a single lightest of all positives from this season. Nothing is working our way. The stats are telling a very harsh reality about us. We are as poor as we have ever been for years, decades, or even major parts of our entire history. Our squad has severe limitations. Let’s see….

The goalkeepers
While he may be good at saving one on ones and saving us the embarassment of extreme humiliations.
He has been more than shocking this season. It was his fault we lost against Swansea and has never ever saved even a single penalty for us.
Height and lack of concentration seem to be his major problems. Can be a decent keeper on his day but we need better.

Hector Bellerin
He has been all talk this season. Criticising fans, criticising Sanchez for being a winner and he does nothing on the pitch. Shocking defensively, shocking crosses, shocking passing and shocking haircuts. Only has speed and dribbling as his qualities but he needs to improve his concentration on the pitch.
Our worst defender this season. Gets tormented far too often. He has looked levels below his previous club Everton.
He has not delivered this season. He has committed many defensive errors which have led to goals. We need him to improve exponentially.
He has been one of our best performers this season but has at times been inconsistent.

Nothing much to speak about our reserve defenders apart from that they are not good enough.

It was once our biggest strength but has let us down this season. Our play has been so poor in midfield, constantly losing balls, slow passing sideway, passing undetectable in defense and attack.

Elneny and Xhaka are our worst midfielders. Ramsey and Wilshere are just slightly better. Ozil is nowhere to be seen since he signed his new contract. Mkhitaryan looks worse than Iwobi and that really is saying something since Iwobi is Championship level.

Now lets move on to attack.
Aubameyang looks a very limited type of attacker. His only qualities look like pace, movement and limited finishing. Lacazette had been a fan favourite at first but like many in the current squad has deteriorated badly after settling with the team for a while. Welbeck looks nothing special with his only weapon being pace and physicality.

Our manager is a also one that is really regressing badly with age. The results so far have been shocking. An unknown team like Ostersunds almost produced a miracle against us. And almost in this sense being a very close call.

The tactics have been poor.
The squad has been incomplete.
The gameplan has been shocking.

Maybe the one positive we can take from all this is that Kroenke is reportedly seeking to be in the Champions league next season and maybe even, though it is far fetched, he might be willing to bring change before the season ends, should it look unlikely we are to qualify for the Champs league under current setup.



  1. Tatgooner says:

    Our weaknesses are being exposed because of poor planning.
    We need to hide our weaknesses and at the same time pkay our strengths.
    We need the right manager to transform the mentality of our players to winning at all costs

    1. Footballistrivial says:

      You can’t hide a weakness if people already know them, you have to fix them.

  2. Arseneout says:

    we need to improve our squad in these areas:
    and most importantly a manager!!!!
    but lets be honest, the probability of devils reaching heaven is higher ?

    1. gotanidea says:

      Brian’s observation is good. About your suggestion:

      – GK: We already have Martinez and Macey

      – RB: Bellerin need a strong competitor to push him

      – CB: De Vrij would be available for free transfer

      – DM: Ndidi or Jorginho?

      – RW: We already have Mkhitaryan and I believe Nelson, Maitland-Niles and Bellerin can play well there

      – LW: How about Adama Traore

      1. Mobella says:

        Adama Traore!!! What are you smoking.

      2. Obinna Obiekwe says:

        Ada who!!!

  3. Sue says:

    Put Gunnersaurus in goal, he’d save a penalty hey Cech?!
    This season has been so disappointing… nothing to gloat or brag about… Even the United fans are buzzing about our demise ?

  4. Ted says:

    I thought English was your second language but with a name like Brian it seems you are a native speaker. Just an incredibly badly written article. Awful, awful, awful. Please don’t write any more. Give it up. Do something else with your life.

    1. jon fox says:

      I have to agree the article told us nothing we did not already know , not did it offer an interesting point of view. It was just a re-hash, by a man without much gift of using English to actually SAY something. I flatter myself that I am good with words but unless I have something dynamic to say to all on here, I prefer to let others write articles and take the flak, as is usually and with justice, the case. Proper writing and good journalism is a gift but, sadly, not given to many. Thankfully though and unlike many comments , MOST article writers can punctuate , at least reasonably accurately. Though I would prefer an article saying something of interest , EVEN IF the English was not that wonderful. We have to accept that few people in the modern era, even many graduates, can spell accurately(though spellchecker relieves that problem for some) or punctuate. My English is merely good, rather than perfect and I do not mean to preach.

  5. RSH says:

    finally an article admitting wilshere isn’t the messiah, and is as bang average as the rest of the midfield. He just falls over more often and misses tackles more. Which admittedly is an upgrade on just standing around and doing nothing. Low, low standards these days.

    1. Ks-gunner says:

      He is better than Ramsey so its okay to have him. He gets fouled bec he can dribble and run with the ball. Something others cant do.

      1. AshburtonGrove says:

        True, Ramsey is the most over-rated player in the league. He can only play the ball sideways or backward and sky-it toward that ‘Atom and Humber’ banner (oh wait…)
        He does score an important goal now and then – I’ll give him that, but is it worth the three celebs that loose their lives!?
        Come on Brighton and Milan! A few more embarrassments and Wenger will be gone, all the real Gunners stay at home, we need to see all those empty red seats, I could almost make out the white canon at the City game. We’re almost there. Stan can only take so much!

      2. RSH says:

        yet ramsey has won us several trophies and has probably the same amount of good games as wilshere this season? It’s just that Jack is a fan favorite ppl give him a past on his overall average play.

    2. Arseneout says:

      he is our best midfielder. he can dribble and pass behind defence, he is a fighter something special compared to other midfielders

      1. RSH says:

        not hard to be our best midfielder when this is the least talented one ever under Wenger. and compared of our rivals CM’s he really isnt that special .

  6. muffdiver says:

    Jose Fonte, Yannick Carrasco & Nicolas Gaitan all made their debuts for Chinese Super League club Dalian Yifang earlier today…

    They lost 8-0

    money – brings happiness

  7. jon fox says:

    So many posts all say the same thing, basically. They all analyse, mostly correctly, the well known short comings of most of our players and of the manager. I have personally been among the most boringly consistent in these matters. But surely we must now be all agreed he is now toast(barring one or two Wenger “relatives” on here, who refuse to see the pending truth of his sacking) and thus we should MOVE ON to what happens after a new man is installed. Yes, it IS interesting to have thoughts on who that might be. Personally, I have not a clue though I want, above all, a motivator and someone who will build a proper defence and bring in a real CDM, which have been Wengers main bette noires. I am not a pessimist IF we act quickly. What the club SHOULD do is clear; sack Wenger this moment, put Bould in temporary charge at Brighton and also until the new man is installed which MUST be ASAP. Only PROVIDED Wenger is sacked by then , I will still hope, though not expect, we could win the Europa; if he is not, then I hope we are knocked out by ACMilan, and sadly , that is what is most likely. What I think WILL happen , is that Wenger will limp on til the PREM is over and in the meantime the club will be sounding out his preferred successor, ready to install the week Wenger leaves. I would accept that , though prefer , obviously, his sacking today. THE CRITICAL THINK IS TO HAVE A NEW , PROVEN WORLD CLASS MANAGER INSTALLED BEFORE THE WORLD CUP STARTS.

    1. Arsene Out says:

      Last 5 years 480M spent 158M sold, net spending 322M and we have nothing to show for it. Kroenke is a miserable git but he is not the problem. The Main problem in this club is Wenger. Then we need a proactive board. So i agree with you 100%

      Wenger needs to announce that this is his last season no matter what, it is time to bring clarity to the situation, then everyone including people who despise him like me, would give our support to him and the team for the last push of the season. At the moment, i am actually happy when we loose as it helps push him out of the club, and i dont want to feel this way.

  8. Sony says:

    We need completely new defence. I would bench all of them except maybe for bellerin as I think he has potential. Kos and monreal are old, but good as back up defenders. Mustafi dunno he was wc for me, but he is shocking now. We need DM for sure.
    Mikhy is a above average at his best day so Rw and Lw still waiting for Daxler I rate him highly. Rest of Mid is okay for me. Attack is also good enough.
    I think our worst season is becouse of defence and lack of dm. i honestly miss Sanchez as even half committed Sanchez was better than most of our squad atleast he was not jogging back but sprinting always.

    1. Ks-gunner says:

      Draxler rejected us to become a bench player. Rather bech then playing for Arsenal. Just imagine how low we have fallen. He is amazing indeed.

      1. Sony says:

        If that is true than it is very sad indeed rather bench than play for Arsenal. He would improve our team for sure. I also forget to say get rid of wellbeck and bring back giroud he is not good as main striker but I miss him as super sub he saved us so many points. Better than having same type of strikers and they seem to not understand what offiside is. Walcott had same problem I think this is some kinda tactic from Wenger it is ridiculous.

      2. Break-on-through says:

        Mkhitaryan is a better player than Draxler, or at least he done more damage to German league defences in his best season than Draxler done in all of his combined. Draxler has allot of promise, he has allot going for him but most of it is promise. He does not look out of place when playing with good players but he is not a difference maker, or at least he never showed himself to be one. Mkhitaryan was a difference maker for Dortmund, both creatively and the goal tally to prove it.

        1. Sony says:

          I agree with you with stats and he deserved to be one of the best in his best season, but I think Pl just do not suit him and that is why I think he is above avarage on his day.
          For me Draxler have what we need now and could prove him self here, but that is just speculation and me rating him highly.

    2. Goonerboy says:

      We SERIOUSLY need proper left and right wingers, wingers with eye for goal, with movement, running behind, crossing and dribbling skill not f**king midfielders.

      Pavon…..Auba….Malcomm/ Pavon…Laca…Mahrez

      Check out this teams:

      After this, we need directness, not the rubbish passing for passing sake pretending to be offensive, we need tactics overhaul.

    3. Mohamed says:

      Why did bellerin fall when the ball was infront him for tye 3rd cty gaol? He is below average as well

  9. Goonerboy says:

    Our team is in total shambles, it is so far from a proper team, not balanced in any way.
    No need repeating what we all know but it is clear Wenger just wanna remain relevant and thats why he is scared of resigning.
    If he loves Arsenal as he claims, then he should know his time is up. fergusson could have stayed at United but he left despite the huge success he was having.
    Nobody wants Wenger to be treated this way but he brought it upon himself.

  10. Ks-gunner says:

    We dont use our players to their strenghts but rather to theirs weaknesses. Wenger again is here to blame as players who leave arsenal do improve in their game and players who come are getting weaker. This should not come as a surprise. Maybe Xhaka is a good cm but him being used as a dm is wrong. Maybe laca is a fantastic striker if the service would be better. Maybe Mustafi would be a better defender if he would be told by the manager not to run his mouth so much and focus more. Maybe bellerin can become better by having competition. Maybe maybes are all linked with not having a proper manager

    1. Goonerboy says:

      Totally spot on mate

    2. Sony says:

      I still rate Xhaka despite all the criticism he gets. He is bad as dm and average at his best day, but I see him as great cm. He have it all what cm needs not afraid to shoot good passing ability and can kinda defend when neeeded. I would love Ozil to shoot more as I watched how he played for Germany.

  11. Bur says:

    I have said it before and I’ll say it again, all the good players weegor has sold have went on to win major trophies. So it’s not their ability it’s the man who unsuccessfully directed them …….. our so called manager. No wonder Sanchez wanted away. Away from a team of loosers.

  12. Break-on-through says:

    I wonder who’s the one running around telling people what goes on behind closed doors and about Koscielny supposedly breaking into tears. This could be someone trying to put the boot into Arsenal while they are down, I wouldn’t rule that out. But if someone is going round swapping dressing room stories they’re not a Gooner, they do not stick by team members, and they have damaged our reputation further.

  13. Goonerboy says:

    Watching Spurs now made shows the difference between us.
    Huddersfield are showing aggresivesness but Spurs are showing they are up to the task, matching their tenacity.
    In our own case, we lack aggresive players, our players lack composure when pressed, no organisation, we crack under any form of pressure despite having an experienced manager that got his early success from aggresive,strong but highly technical players. Yet he refuses to see all this.

    We are only good when our opponents respect us and give us spaces to play.
    It shows how weak, tame and monotomous our training programme has become under Wenger
    I wont be surprised if he still uses the same trianing tactics since 10 years.
    Players have come and gone, we need Wenger to be gone too, am sure some of our players want that too

  14. Innit says:

    Everyone knows our biggest weakness. I used to think it was Kroenke but he has let Wenger spend over £300 mil. So hes not that bad. Perhaps a bad human being but not a cheap one. It’s WENGER!!!

    Cech hasn’t been good BUT Cech and Ospina has been let down by Wenger and our defenders. GK is the LAST line of defense. In front of him you have 4 defenders and in front of them you should have a Defenisive midfielder and in front of him the rest of players should make an effort defensively. So its unfair to use Cech as a scape goat for all the goals let in.

    Bellerin has been awful. Koscielny okay. Mustafi good and bad. Our only good defenders have been Monreal and Kolsanic.

    Again, without a TOP DEFENISIVE MIDFIELDER. we will never challenge. And we wont get one till Wenger GOES

  15. Grandad says:

    Only Monreal has been decent in defense.The rest have been poor and the likes of Mustafi and Kolasinic should be sold on asap.I feel sorry for B ellerin who needs a re st and some real competition to get him going again.Why has AMN not been tried at right back.He did well as a makeshift left back despite being naturally right footed.Wenger does not seem to trust our younger defenders who really should be tried and tested in league matches as we are out of contention for a top four spot..In essence we have nothing to lose.

  16. GB says:

    Up the Arse but fukc spurs ?or ? ?
    Sorry, I’m bored!

  17. Midkemma says:

    “Mkhitaryan looks worse than Iwobi”

    I have thought Mkhi looks miles better than Iwobi, Mkhi appears to think about what he wants to do while Iwobi runs around like a headless chicken waving his arms around while running.

    If you look at the chances Mkhi has created compared to Iwobi then I think you will see who the better AM is, Iwobi who has no plan when on the ball or Mkhi who has looked to create something and showing intent by driving the ball into the box.

    Considering Mkhi is new to AFC, I think he has done better than Iwobi already and if you disagree then point to the hat trick of assists that he hasn’t had while Mkhi has, even though he is new to AFC and doesn’t know our players as well as Iwobi.

    Also saying Auba is about pace and limited shooting abilities is kinda opposite what BvB fans was saying about him, they watched him for years, writer of this post has seen how much of him?
    Wenger can do more to get more out of him, the players fault? Is it Auba fault that the tactics have left him isolated????

    Brutally honest… PMSL!
    Brutally inaccurate more like.

    Tactics hasn’t been poor, that would imply we had some! More like Tactics have been missing!

    Says it all.

  18. All of these players have got worse the longer they play for Arsenal. Mustafi was solid to start last season, but is a shadow of that player; Bellerin was a great prospect, but has regressed; Kolasinac was a beast pre-season, now looks average, Laca started well, but confidence dipped with no service to complement his strengths and continually being subbed. The common factor – coaching, tactics, man management – I still think this squad would go places with the right manager IMMEDIATELY. Why is Arsenal the only board to accept this level of failure with no change?

  19. Nothing changed says:

    I have to say I don’t believe our squad is so poor. It is aging but not poor. It is nearly impossible to say how good or bad our players are as long as Wenger trains them. There is no way we have top scorers from other leagues in PEA and Laca without them having talent. Kolasinac was defensive player of the year in the Bundesliga before he joined us (I think) and started brightly. Mustafi started solidly with us. IMO Wenger does something to destroy players confidence.

    Bellerin has been disappointing but you have to be blind IMO to not see that a Pep or Klopp would have a lot of talent to work with when it comes to Bellerin.

    Before I judge the players I would like to see a skilled manager work with them for a season. Look what Pep has done for some of the City players. Klopp has also improved Liverpool players. The strength of a good manager is in making his players better individually and making them play better as collective. This way the whole exceeds the sum of the parts. Spurs have managed this and Wenger managed this briefly 12-13 years ago.

    Jardim has done this at Monaco.

    1. Waal2waal says:

      Jardim would be welcome imo – wenger is my reoccurring nightmare – all the love is gone and he’s oblivious to it.

  20. Jonm says:

    Wenger in his early years had a reputation for developing players, Thierry Henri being the most outstanding but there were lots of others. For years he managed to stay in the top four whilst making a profit on player transfers. More recently though it seems to be the other way.

    Remember Arshavin, when he arrived he was a fan favourite, remember the chant “we have arshvin f… adebeyor”. It ended with him being booed when substituted for oxlaide chamberlin.

    Chamach was fantastic when he arrived, got the record for scoring in the most consecutive champions league games, after four months it was all over.

    Then there was the young british core, ramsay, wilshere, ox, gibbs, jenkinson, walcott, meant to dominate the arsenal and uk national teams. Nowhere near fulfilled the hopes for them.

    I think wenger lost the ability to motivate and it started about the time we sold Fabregas and Ramsey.

    1. Jonm says:

      In the above please change last word from ramsey to nasri

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