Arsenal fans need to stop hating on Iwobi

Why do Arsenal fans keep picking on Alexander Iwobi? by Eddy Hoyte

We’ve all been familiar with the face and name, while now most of the
fans want him out, cutoff or isolated on the bench. I can’t help but
notice the hate most fans have for Iwobi at his age.

I see all of our matches, and watch Iwobi’s performance, though his
best performance has been against Crystal Palace and his worst is
against Liverpool, when we lost 3-1. The whole team mates were
miserably poor.

So here’s a short study on Iwobi. I’m not coming with the numbers and stats.

According to whoscored

Alex Iwobi
Characteristics and Strengths
Through balls (*Very Strong*)
Passing (*Strong*)
Holding on to the ball (*Strong*)
Key passes (*Strong*)

Aerial Duels (*Weak*)
Finishing (*Weak*)
Defensive contribution (*Weak*)

Alex Iwobi’s Style of Play
Likes to do layoffs
Likes to play short passes
Does not dive into tackles.

Now a lot of this is true, but also one thing I’ve noticed most about Iwobi that’s similar to Our Little Magician Santi is the ability to hold and make use of the ball in tight spaces with quick feet. Iwobi is a good dribbler and retainer of the ball and his link up play with the rest is absolutely free and easy.

Wenger sees something in him so he keeps on choosing him on match days. This boy has a bright future ahead of him and could easily become a star once he starts learning to score goals. I’m calling on all Arsenal fans, Iwobi isn’t a player that deserves our hate, he’s done nothing wrong to the team! We complain about him a lot and all we find are negative words about him. If Rashford, Mbappe and Martial never had the trust of their coaches at one time, nobody would know they even exist.

What Iwobi needs now is to improve his finishing and shot taking. Surely don’t they have drills for that at London Colney?? We need to support him, yes we should point out his mistakes and make him know he can do better but coming and going on social media ranting absolutely dirty and negative words on the young man is completely harsh.

Arsenal fans are so different, we tear into our players like they’re not worth it or they’re utterly useless. Walcott, had years of trust, Ramsey did and still does, Bellerin does also (In their contribution to the team he’s been a lot poorer than Iwobi) yet he doesn’t get the stick.

What is it about Iwobi?? I try to figure it out, the boy is strong, athletic, creative and has loads of courage on the ball. Add goalscoring abilities and we’re looking at a wonderkid who could end up being Africa’s best player someday.

Support the boy, stop the hate on him, he’s not on the top 5 worst players for us this season. We can only hope Wenger leaves and a good coach gets in to make Iwobi grow. Look at the effect of Pep on Sane and Sterling’s goalscoring abilities.

Get up, support the boy, encourage him to be better and quit venting all your frustrations on him like he’s responsible for the misfortunes the club or you individually faced in the past.



    1. good article stop hating!! like bellerin last season all hate and anger is directed towards iwobi who as the author of this article said has alot of qualities dispite his flaws and I beleive he is being treated way to harshly. again he is an academy product who has great potential and should not be considered as deadwood as some fans may beleive, support for a player goes a long way!! fans can help pave the way or completly destroy a players confidence and iwobi should definetly be given a chance. COYG

  1. If he would improve his defensive capabilities, he would be much more an asset to the team. His finishing is poor as well.

    But for now, Laca should start ahead of him.

  2. Iwobi plays as a LW. Sanchez was a LW. Now compare them both. Compare their scoring records. As a LW, your finishing has to be good.Currently Iwobi is like denilson at LW. I mean below average LW.

    1. Has Iwobi improved since Sanchez has gone? In my opinion yes, he seems to play more freely, way off the finished player, but with quality around him now, hopefully he can lift his game, and show his real potential.

      1. It’s been 2 games since Alexis left, and before that he was inconsistent. He was poor against Swansea and decent against Everton, but that’s down to the fact the whole team was on it and Eeverton were so bad. Hardly enough to say he’s picked his game up. I believe he’s regressed since his first season

    2. At 21, I bet you never heard of Sanchez. It means in terms of development, he way ahead. Sanchez never played at the level Iwobi is playing now at his age

      1. At 21, sanchez was killing it at udinese.He was killing it so much that Barcelona went for him. Now Iwobi has a good passing range I agree, but scoring is a must for LW. He can be a backup midfielder at best.

  3. Some fans treatment of Iwobi has been shocking in the extreme and u nustifiable.He is a very talented young player who is still learning his trade.He lacks composure in the business end of the pitch but he has the potential to be a fine box to box midfielder.The fact that Arsenal continue to ship goals has precious little to do with Iwobi.In this connection the fault lies with our experienced players like Cech,Mustafi and last but not least Xhaka.It’s time for fans to get behind Iwobi who,despite his failings gives 100% every match.

    1. Yes, we cannot discourage a talented youngster like him. A loan could help this young man to grow, like Wilshere and Coquelin.

      1. to be honest his growing on me lately he has improved a lot but he makes the same mistakes when his in our half with his panic passing to players who are marked, he needs to address that ASAP, and i would agree he has huge talent but needs to be loaned out to new arrival EPL team to work on his weaknesses and Arsenal is too big a club for us to field a young player with one or two small shortfall’s, same goes to AMN

    2. Agreed, a talent for sure but not ready to be starting every week. The wing doesn’t suit him and our mid is to packed for him. A loan where he’s playing every week would be best for him to find consistency.

  4. I just call it like I see it. No blame for any losses but not a good finisher and needs to work harder for the team. Luckily he’s young so things can be improved.

  5. Every criticism of players gets interpreted as hate by the AKBs … Ridiculous … Here is the basic truth Iwobi has some good points as you identify but he is a long way from being the finished article and it is absurd that he is a regular in a team trying for top 4 let alone winning big titles .. He needs to go out on loan for a season …I would suggest brentford and see how he progresses … The fact that he might keep laca out of the starting 11 Saturday is the result of a warped mind

    1. Totally correct Rkw.He is struggling to win the fans over and he must feel our frustration.A season with a good Championship side Leeds Sheffield Wednesday etc or a struggling Premiership club like Brighton Palace or Chelski will either make him or beak him.

    2. I don’t think it’s the constructive criticism Eddy is talking about here. Some of the comments are completely over the top. But that’s the internet for you. Since his indiscretion before the FA Cup he’s put his head down and worked hard. I still think Welbeck offers more though at both ends.

  6. The reason Iwobi gets hate is because unlike our African fans, not all of us are biased towards him. When Iwobi debuted for us, he looked like an exciting prospect,but for the last two seasons he has been going downhill. Whats even worse is the fact that even with his current poor form, he still gets picked ahead of Lacazette, Kolasinac and Maitland Niles,who have all played in the LW position for us this year and are much better than him.
    And as for your stats,here’s an interesting stat for you, Arsenal against top 6 this season
    Played : 7, W : 1, D : 3, L : 3
    Spurs is the only top 6 team we have beaten this season so far,and Iwobi did not start that game. Make of it what you will.

    1. That’s what this article is about. Did Iwobi not play both legs of our carling cup semifinal tie with Chelsea in which we drew the first and came from behind to win the second.
      He was so good defensively that he won the ball off victor moses on every single occasion.
      BTW, Sanchez is 29, Iwobi is 21. How can you compare them?
      Iwobi is not keeping Lacazette out of the team, Auba is.

  7. To be honest, players like Ramsey, Walcott etc. got their time to develop not only because they needed time, but also because we didn’t have much alternatives. That is why Arsenal was such an attractive club for developing young players during the post Highbury era… …up to now. Now everything changes (hopefully) and if we seriously want to compete at top Level, we have to have finished players on every Position. In my opinion, we should send Iwobi out on loan to get game time and if he gets the breakthrough he can come back.
    But now it looks quite good, would be great if AW finds a way to play LMAO together. Then we need a central defender and a defensive midfielder for the summer.. OMG would that be great!!

    1. very good point.. We are not a development club anymore…..We have been patient with average players for far too long. We will never compete if we continue to carry average players like we did in the past.Our rivals have talent worth millions of pounds on the bench.

  8. You are correct, Iwobi has good close ball control like Cazorla and Sanchez. Maybe the fans hate Iwobi because he showed lacklustre display, like what Ozil showed previously.

    Winger and attacking midfielder might be not his forte, but maybe he could be a great deep playmaker like Cazorla, because of his excellent ball control and his physical attributes (tall and strong).

    Xhaka is another player the fans hate. Do you want to trade Xhaka, a 30 million player, with Bakayoko (40 million) or Moussa Sissoko (30 million)? Arsenal and Chelsea always need scapegoats (usually DM) for their bad systems.

    1. No, but I WOULD trade Xhaka (30 – 35 mill.) for Kante (32 mill. during THE SAME WINDOW).

      Everyone of us would.

    2. The reason Xhaka is not well liked is not completely his fault. Wenger chose him in the same window over Kante who was cheaper. We needed a DM and Xhaka can not play that position.

      Overall he is a square peg for a round hole, not totally his fault.

      We dont need him, at best he is a squad player. We need a real DM.

      Jorginho or Fabinho are both looking really good. I would snap one of them as soon as the window opens.

      Also Rugani could be a good option at CD.

  9. Iwobi had one assist in the last match and also had a hand in other 3 goals we scored in the first half..
    Iwobi and Milkitaryn ball movement were the key to us scoring four early goals against Everton….. in that first half, the duo were the best on the pitch….
    You guys should watch the match again

    1. Because Ramsey couldn’t have anything to do with it, couldn’t have been great positioning before some very neat finishes. Nah, a lamppost could’ve been substitute, right.

  10. I think it’s more the fans frustrations, and patience, that has worn so thin over the years because of Wenger, so we then take it on the players. We’re fed up of waiting years, upon years for players to develop, when most of them are clearly not good enough anyway! Iwobi has some potential, but it’s criminal he’s playing so many games for us, when he isn’t performing. He should be out on loan.

    We’ve got a better chance of being successful if we have quality in every position. The club has the money, so that’s what we want to see!

  11. Iwobi lacks finishing, as an attacking player how can he be like that, look at Sterling, Sane n Gabriel, same age but good finishers, poor in desicion making

  12. My take is criticize the players when they don’t do well……..
    but no ……they don’t deserve personal abuse from any fan………… is their job……….and unfortunately that’s your addiction………….so respect footballers doing their job…..

  13. He has more weaknesses than those three. He completely melts whenever he does something wrong, he finds it hard to shake off then it accumulates before he gets withdrawn within himself. His positional awareness is not strong, needs improving. He has good strength, but he rarely pushes himself, never imposes himself on a game.

    Whoscored is a good data base, but no substitute for players you know from the experience with watching them in action. It’s good when you know little about the subject matter.

    Iwobi should not have gotten the starting minutes he’s received. Himself and Xhaka have not earned a first team place, along with the GK & Koscielny (to name 1) this season. Those are four big positions, with more quality added we could get closer to having a more stubborn outfit. They’d go to the bench and might look more competitive if they had to fight their way into the team. It’ll be interesting to see what business is done in summer.

  14. I need to correct you.
    Ramsey his a very bad patch early on and was getting booed each time he’d touch a ball.
    No one wants to be reminded of it because there were mayn who joined the booing.

    Stupid idiots if you ask me. Support your team !

  15. I don’t think anybody “hates” him. Well at least i hope not. Blame Wenger for over using him. In our first match against Liverpool, Iwobi was on the pitch when Lacazette, Giroud, Walcott, Welbeck were all off the pitch. We ended up losing huge.

    Wenger over uses Iwobi and Xhaka in my opinion. They aren’t enough quality to be regular starters. Now that we have Aubameyang and Mkhitaryan it would be insanity to start Iwobi over them.

    We need to upgrade Xhaka in the summer. And i don’t “hate” Xhaka either. I just feel he isn’t good enough.

    Wenger is the problem. Not Iwobi or Xhaka because a top manager would not start them

    1. The difference between Iwobi(Arsenal) and Iwobi(SuperEagles) is the fan…Arsenal fans are using their mouth to destroy the young boy while Nigerian fan praise…You can see the different…Wife Wenger is not a top manager, I winder who is top manager in your own defination… Common guys, let us critise positively…

  16. Alex Iwobi is a very gud player…He deserves to play. He is one of the stars in Nigeria and remember how he teared a strong Argentina in their friendlies

  17. It’s not so much Iwobi – even though he has gone massively off the boil since his first inclusions in to the first team. Yes he’s frustrating to watch at the moment but it’s more indirected hatred of Wenger.
    It’s Ramsey-syndrome all over again. No matter how bad a certain player will perform, Stubborn, senile Wenger has his favorites and will play them no matter what.

  18. He has great potential, we have all seen Laca play this season and if anyone is objective he needs to be on the bench. Besides what’s the use in changing a winning team. My advice is our fans should becareful of what they wish for

  19. Players with great natural talents will always be judged more harsely. Iwobi since the start of the season had pitiful work rate both attacking and defending. His awful finishing and dubious decision making can be attributed to young age and inexperience but to see ozil upped his workrate and iwobi walking like he thinks he’s Messi is infuriating.
    If world class talent like alexis or ozil can be critised for bad workrate why should iwobi be exempted.

  20. LOL. You actually compared Iwobi to Santi Cazorla. I shall conclude that you don’t really know what you’re talking about.
    Iwobi IS NOT a starter for a team vying to get into the top 4. He needs to be loaned out.

  21. Wait until Iwobi plays against us them you can tell me about his work rate.. Sane is a tricky pick.. But I will pick Iwobi over Sterling or a rash Rashford.. Come on you guys Iwobi has been brilliant for the team the last couple of games he featured.. I remember him tracking yards back to stop Kenny and Walcott in that Everton game.. Chelsea fans can explain this situation better.. The players they said were not good enough are setting the league on fire.. Be careful what you wish for.

  22. Last season was our worst season in the last 2 decades, we played Chelsea who were the best team last season I. The FA cup, did Iwobi play in the that match, community sheld this season, did Iwobi play, why all these hash criticism on this young lad…don’t let us dwell too much on his weakness because every players has individual weakness…

  23. I don’t think I hate Iwobi, im just pissede to see him start over and over again, leaving better players on the bench. I pissed to see his lazy attitude, loosing balls to easy and look like a big question when the rest of the team tries to win back his last balls, and then his positioning in my mind I wrong, he take to many wrong decisions and yes he don’t score enough. I like Iwobi earlier, but AW playing keep playing him since the parti case is really pissing me off.

  24. The reason Wenger has been choosing Iwobi… his ball control in tight situations(someone said Kolasinac Buh Kolasinac panicks in tight situations, same as Xhaka- he needs space to operate well)
    He can retain ball better than Ramsey n he is a has better football brain compare to Sterling..sterling in Dt Arsenal team will b low on confidence because of d way we Arsenal fans abuse players.
    I will
    Love Lacazette to play ahead of him Buh Lacazette can’t retain ball d way he can in tight situation.
    Have you noticed his link up play with odas… lacazette doesn’t have that.
    Do you think Sanchez just like him for no reason?
    There are things coaches see Dt we don’t just Dt our Coach has past his peak.
    Iwobi’s technique is among d best in Dt Arsenal team.

  25. Iwobi is young give him time..when Walcott was his age did he face half of d criticisms you guys are dishing out Cox his African..what about xhaka and holding and chambers failing to impress..please let d boy be..his got a talent that most of you will come applauding tomorrow when he starts to shine after all Messi never started with a first bang did he?

  26. Chris to mention Iwobi and talk about “Messi never started with a first bang did he? 9 years ago when Messi was the same age as Iwobi is now. Messi won Fifa world player of the year 😉 If Iwobi wins Ballon d’Or next year I will be very surprised

      1. Admin it was not me bringing the name Messi in to the debate, I was Chris 😉 I do NOT expect Iwobe to reach anything near to Messi level. Just to get that clear!

  27. I query the word “hate” which is so wrongly used about football players in general. To really hate, surely we should reserve that emotive word for terrorists, evil villains, rapists, also for horrors of war victims, famine and ghastly inhumane acts by some “people” to other people, etc. I like forceful and real language that paints TRUE pictures but intensely dislike -NOT hate – hype and incorrect use of our rich and beautiful language. So a plea from me to anyone reading this; can we please stop using the word “hate” for football players who are not good enough or whose play or personality we dislike? If a players recklessly tackles and severely hurts a fellow pro, we can hate what he did but unless he DELIBERATELY sets out to MAIM someone – which in sixty years of watching I have never seen – we should NEVER hate the person. This is how decent folk really think, don’t we all? I DO HOPE SO!

  28. He wouldn’t get so much shtick if he was spanish or german or smthn. African players usually get trashed more for poor games or bad run of form. Stop beating around the bush.

  29. Iwobi is not a bad player just as some of the fans are presuming him to be, but his only problem are in the finishing. Iwobi is better than Ramsey but many will dispute that because he score goals sometime, Ramsey is our weak point if u have a critical look at his performers but alway being favour by mr wenger. Until we know our problem and fix them in other for Arsenal to move forward. Ramsey is too static, we need the flee and drive of Wilshere in the midfield to move forward. Let us appotion blame to whom blame are due

  30. In response to the Eddie Hoyte the main issue supporters have is that, with no disrespect to Iwobi, there is no way he should start in big games over Lacazette. Also there doesn’t appear to be much training in shooting and scoring drills at Colney, given the abilities demonstrated in matches by Welbeck and Iwobi.
    Similarly thetr doesn’t appear to be too much effort placed on training the team in defensive organization, structures, tactics and techniques. Again what input does Steve Bould have in training our international credentialed defenders?

  31. The Lad is Just 21 perhaps going to 22. He obviously still has a bright future and I’m sure he is holding his own in comparison with his age group. We should not put so much burden with our expectations on him so that he can mature fully into what we would expect.

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