Arsenal winning 4 big games in a row is not a coincidence – it takes belief

Arteta Does It Again! By Dan

While Aubameyang will get most of the headlines for yet again scoring at Wembley, the most pleasing aspect is yet again rookie Arteta out-thought one of the best managers in the world.

Liverpool fans suggested their defeat at the Emirates was down to the Champions downing tools, and no doubt will suddenly be referring to this fixture as just a friendly.

In the FA Cup Final Chelsea used the referee as an excuse.

Yet, including Man City in the Semi Final of the Cup, that’s 4 times now that we have won a big game due to our tactics being better.

Maybe if you do it once you can call it luck, but when you keep winning despite the opposition at times dominating possession, that’s not a coincidence.

At times yesterday our opponents had near 80 percent of the ball. Yet that was deliberate from us, that was part of the game plan, to soak up the pressure, then hit on the break, knowing we have a striker you can rely on to be clinical.

I said before many Gooners won’t be used to this. If you’re like me and grew up with Arsene Wenger, the idea of altering formations or styles depending on the opposition would be an alien concept to you. That’s because the Frenchmen believed in his ethos and wouldn’t sacrifice his principles no matter what. His stance was his way gave us the best chance of winning so why worry about what others are doing? In the glory days of Henry, Vieira, Bergkamp, Pires, etc maybe you could afford to think like that. Yet Arteta is smart enough to recognise this squad’s limitations.

Part of finding any solution is admitting you have a problem, and the Spaniard being honest about how far away we are from those at the top takes more skill then you think. It’s not easy to hold your hands up and say there are issues.

It takes a certain personality (especially so early in your first job) to refuse to tell people what they want to hear and share with your players, staff, fans and employers that certain aspects are wrong.

Long term our coach wants to press high and control the ball, but he’s looked at our weaknesses and found ideas to give us the best possible chance of winning a match. It takes incredible man management to do that. First of all, to get a group who had lost all confidence under Emery to believe they could beat sides so many points ahead of them in the table.

You can be on the training pitch for hours doing drills, but you can only do what Arteta has done if players believe in what he is saying.

He’s taken Footballers, many who are used to being on the attack and being positive, and is getting them to run, to track back, to defend as a unit, while convincing them that when the odd chance arrives they are good enough to convert them.

Vieira once said that while working with Jose Mourinho at Inter Milan he was taught that it’s okay to acknowledge that another team is better than you, but that doesn’t mean you accept losing to them. It simply means you have to find other ways to win.

So, while there are games where we can get three points simply because we have talent who are technically better, when that’s not the case we are prepared to run faster, work harder, fight more. You couldn’t always say that about Arsenal over the years. Our last three performances at the Twin Towers have simply been very un-Arsenal like.

Naturally, the assumption is that if he gets the players he wants then our manager has even more ideas to try. Logically he’s only going to get better the more experiences he garners.

If we had an ambitious owner, he would start to see he might have someone special in that dugout capable of some amazing things, I’m just worried that Stan Kroenke won’t match those ambitions to take that extra step.

It’s only fair that I wait till October to judge this transfer window, but ultimately I fear we will fail not due to who our manager is but who he works for.

The only thing I would change from our performance is I would have loved Auba to have put on the Black Panther Mask although he did pay tribute to Chadwick Boseman.

The Gabon International teams are nicknamed the ‘Panthers’ and their star man has admitted in the past how the mask/character was a representation of himself.

Upon learning the sad news, he tweeted: ‘We all feeling it!! May you Rest in Peace. You gave us so much Hope and strength thanks for everything’.

So, I guess there was some kind of destiny about Aubameyang scoring hours after hearing one of his heroes had passed away.

On behalf of everyone at Justarsenal, RIP Black Panther.


Dan Smith


  1. We won all four CS that we were FA champions. You cant get lucky that many times against the PL winner. If the board backs Arterta, we will be back for real. In the meantime lets enjoy the attention.

  2. Nice one, Dan 🙂
    Harvey Elliott dubbed it a ‘McDonald’s trophy’
    We’re looking a completely different team, so much harder to break down now… and it will only get better! It really is a joy to watch….
    I agree about the mask, but loved the celebration…
    Oh and btw, I’ve just watched it all again on MOTD!! Lovely jubbly!!

  3. Arteta has got a 2-0 head-to-head with Klopp. Hopefully Arsenal will be able to use some psychological advantage against the defending champions.

  4. Still waiting for the likes of Top Gunner and co to regurgitate their usual Arteta Assistant manager noñseñse.

    I can imagine if we had lost yesterday, how much they would have bombarded dis site with negativity.

    Onwards and Upwards gooners.

  5. The problem with fans this days is they want quick success, hence such fans are called fickle. We all can see Arteta Vision and progress hence we should support him… lose, win or draw he needs our support as I know we are in for greatness but it will take some time for the impressive rebuilding process. All I m saying is, when we lose people shouldnt come and start bashing Him rather we should look at the performance and criticise constructively.

    Onwards and upwards….What a time to be a Fan. YAY

  6. Its nice Dan how your article tells a story of how the gaffer has galvanised the teams belief and mentality to make them match winners. You did however left out how the gaffer has also brought back so of the belief that used to be in the fans. We as the supporters had been growing marginalised and fractured as highlighted by AKB vs Wenger Out. But with Arteta, we have seen the unity amongst Gooners slowly creeping back. I hope as fans we present a united front and show up when the team is at it lowest. When the boys are struggling we the fans disappear and become the loudest critics. Which aint the role of supporters: supporters should Support.

    Rest in peace Chawick

  7. I’ll tell you the biggest worry coming up.
    It’s the fans!! The fans that might be returning at the stadium who’ll easily turn around and boo players, make our players uncomfortable.
    Fans would be shouting kick it out and all sorts if we were to be playing from the back against Liverpool.
    I hope when fan returns to the stadium, they’ll respect the players and coach

      1. How about free speech then? Would you ban THAT too? In fact you sound a bit Trump like with that anti freedom comment !

        1. There has to be some restraints to keep order because there is no such thing as absolute freedom – otherwise the world will be in total choas.

  8. Great to see Arteta, and he deserves the praise, and great to see, we also have owners, who seem to be ready to once again invest in the squad 🙂
    With Arteta, they finally seem to get value for money.

    1. AndersS, What evidence do you have for your puzzling claim that our owners are now backing us? I see nothing of any substance at all so far. You surely do not count getting MA as that evidence? We need better players and quickly. So far we have brought in only Wilian on a free. No funds avail for Partey, Aoure nor even Auba s new contract yet signed. Kroenke is our handicap Anders and in no REAL way, our backer. Surprised at you , frankly. YOU of all people in fact!
      I share your optimisn with MA but he also needs substantial backing from the owner which despite your puzzling comment has NOT been forthcoming. CARE TO EXLAIN WHAT YOU MEANT, as I doubt any on here other than you can see it?

      1. Exactly Jon. My concern is that Kronke sees Arteta accomplishing more with less, and will deem it “being competitive” in his eyes. Kronke has no appetite or hunger for titles as his decade in charge has proven.
        Merely look at his “ambition” with Wenger and the top 4 and his CL money grab. I fear once again Kronke will be satisfied with top 4 and CL only to get the participation check, cash the profits with no appetite to chase titles and glory.
        I don’t need until October to remind me of Kronke’s”ambition,” I have 10 years of evidence to know better.

      2. Over the last 5 years, our owners have allowed us a nett spend on improving the squad that is much more than nearly all other clubs. Only City and Man Utd. have spent more. If rumours are correct about this transfer window, then not only have we signed Willian and Auba to huge salaries, we are also on the verge of buying a few players, even before any is sold. If that is not backing, what is?

        1. I must add. Part of the problem is seeing what City United and Chelsea do and fans think we must do the same yet don’t understand City and Chelsea are run by individuals and United are a historically a strong financial presence globally for many a decades.

          We are investing and if fans don’t think Toerira Saliba Gabriel Tierney Pepe Williams Leno is a sign our board is investing in decent players then I cant help you.

          And it’s not just investing it’s how we are. We now have 2 top keepers, Chelsea have none. United and Chelsea invest £50m on left backs while we invest £22m on Tierney. City and Liverpool invest £50+ on one player in defence, we spent £60m on Gabriel and Saliba.

          Investing in Auba Sanchez over the years has been a sign of progress imo

        2. Perhaps building the midfield, dragging out Auba renewal, addressing concerns rather than settling for cheaper options? Wasting money on Mustafi, Sokratis, Luiz, etc… as patching rather than solving issues like with Saliba and Gabriel finally.

          Point being ownership settled for a squad full of stop gaps rather than building on success. Maybe 4 years now out of CL is a reality check for ownership.
          Lastly, rumors of buying players, Willan on a free is all we have, Auba not signed so I’m not holding my breath.

          1. You can’t blame the owners for getting the wrong players. That is a managememnt mistake. The fact is, the owners have made plenty of funds availbale both for transfers and salaries. Unfortunately, previous regimes/managers like Wenger in his later years and Emery didn’t manage to get it right. Let’s hope Arteta does. It looks good so far. But stop feeding the myth, that the owners aren’t investing. It is simply false.

        3. But it is not DONE and we are very short of money to buy such as PARTEY AND AOURE , BOTH TOP PLAYERS WHO IT SEEMS THAT MA WANTS. AND NEEDS. You are being simplistically over optimistic about KROENKE WITH 13 YEARS EVIDENCE SO FAR TO THE CONTRARY. I just don’t understand why you of all people, a man I have hitherto hugely respected, cannot see the dismal truth, Anders. Hope, with precious little evidence to it being reality, is NOT fact!

          1. I admit the deals for new players this window and the deal to keep Auba aren’t done.
            But the constant blaming the owners for not spending money, is simply not based on facts. Let me repeat, over the last 5 years, we have a nett spend, that is 2.7 times higher than Liverpool, but Liverpool has surpassed us by miles in that period. And that is just one of the clubs who have done much better for less money. The simple truth is, our management has been useless in that period, and if you want to blame the owners, blame them for not sacking Wenger and others in management earlier.
            I think, we should try to recognize, Arsenal at the moment are not held back by the owners. There is no need for that constant remark, as it really only causes division.

  9. Its no coincidence for sure and i started believing in MA in the first game against bournemouth back in December.I knew he was the MAN.He need sime signings to play his philosophy which is a possession based attack.

    Auba is a great player and the current tactical plans are all around him.Counter attacking and those long balls are just meant to be Aubas game.He knows how to make those runs frim behind so i get why MA is asking tge board to keep Auba.

    Rest in Peace,

  10. Reports are saying Emi is close to signing a new contract. ‘Close’ – we’ve heard that a lot lately 😄

    1. I hope he does Sue, he deserves it

      Peharps he has been assured Leno epnt walk back to first team action? Also playing him yesterday would definitely help the situation

    2. I remembered who the owners are and lowered my expectations! Was checking for updates on Arsenal transfers and was excited when we won the fa to book a Europa spot and I think Arteta had said it could determine our dealings, but been disappointed so far. Bidding less for partey, Gabriel on medical God knows how long!…..

      1. Surely we’ll have some good news tomorrow, Kenya… I’m astounded at how long it’s taken!!
        Gabriel chatting to Luiz yesterday is a good sign 😉

  11. As usual reggie is sounding negative again by downgrading our archievement of yesterday…very unfortunate

      1. Friendly??
        Would you call the Spanish super cup friendly? Or the UEFA super cup?
        Community shield is the English super cup, and we got £1,000,000 for it, so it isn’t a friendly in my opinion. It is what it is

        1. Plus Liverpool clearly didn’t take the loss as a friendly loss, could tell with the look on their faces, they were gutted to lose the English Super Trophy 😂😂

        2. Hydrogen, both teams got the same around £650k from McDonald’s, no winners or losers cheques. It is a preseason friendly always has been always will. Nobody likes to lose and it is always better to win, we won and that is great because we beat Liverpool on pens and that is always nice, friendly or not.

  12. An important article at a relevant time.

    It is not just adjusting to what the opponents do, but also adjusting to what we do.

    Much like in American football were tactics are based on phases of play, football is becoming more about phases of play….defending, transition…etc

    It’s nice to see our new manager is part of that era of coaching

  13. Well it can also be coincidental with the quality of coach we now have and what he brings to the table.🤔

  14. The fact that we have beaten those teams shows the real impact of how coaching abilities matter in understanding the player’s abilities and changing the formation as required.

    I hope that all the fans appreciate the great work MA is doing right now and give him the time to make more changes. On top of that, is to understand that these CUPS are the PUSH forward and reasonable things to win when we have better rivals in the PL.

  15. MA is doing a wonderful job and only hope he gets the players he wants in the current transfer window. Also, MA not only plays to the opposition strengths, but also has a game plan to cover our weaknesses, and that is how he designs his formations and tactics. Up the Gunners!

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