Arsenal’s away form – and the problem with playing Man United at home

There is a reason why Arsenal play better away than at home by KM

Hello fellow Arsenal fans. Our great away form continued at Leicester at the weekend when we dispatched 5 goals, all of them coming from our strikers. Happy times right? Who needs a striker if you can score five goals against the thus far unbeaten Leicester side?

Well, at least that is what the typical short term sightseeing will say, and so will the English press who don’t fail to make a club in crisis or champions by seeing one game. It was nice to see our main forwards all score, but don’t hurry to make conclusions off of what still is a shaky start to the season.

This still is Leicester who have conceded 14 goals so far, which is the second worst record after Sunderland who’ve shipped in 16. Onto the game… if you follow the script of their season so far, they were the comeback kings since the end of last season, so you might say that it was better they scored first!

Just joking, but there is no place for joking with our defense which was terrible once again. Leicester totally dominated the game in the first 20 minutes and hit the post twice. Jamie Vardy was playing in the Amateur leagues a few years back. Now the guy scored two wonderful goals, but the number of goals we ship in is way too damn high.

I really don’t know what is the problem there. New personnel? New coaches? New tactics? We have a decent back four that on it’s day should record easy clean sheets. It’s no longer the keeper. Leicester threw in long balls, which we had no idea how to deal with. They also hit us with pace, which we couldn’t handle in defence.

But that was their biggest weakness as well and it brings us to our main point. We hit them with pace and quality as well and it was too much to handle. We had spaces where our players could run and where our midfield could supply balls and that worked numerous times on Saturday.

Let’s take a look at the games so far. We had 4 away games winning 3 and losing one thanks to Mike Dean. We won on some of the toughest grounds of the so called smaller teams, because they tried to press us, we had space and we used it. Leicester was a prime example.

On the other hand, at our home games, where we tried to dominate possession we were flat, struggled with too many touches on the ball and scored only 2 goals. Same thing with Newcastle away, who were with 10 men and we still only managed one goal.

As I mentioned before, we are not a possession based team anymore. Last year, we performed better with less possession than we did with more. This reminds me of the Dortmund side that played a final of the Champions league. They were counter-attacking kings and ripped sides apart with pace. Our current squad has similar qualities.

Next come two home games of significant importance. We really need our best squad for Olympiacos as if we don’t win this one we’ll be pretty much hoping to upset Bayern which is unlikely to happen. Then comes Manchester United who are top of the league somehow.

The top teams in the league are so bad, United are first. But they are still not that good. The problem is in England once you get a psychological problem, it becomes impossible to deal with it. We have it with United, who no matter how bad they are, always manage to beat us. I was at the Emirates last season when we totally dominated the first 60 minutes to end up beaten 1:2.

A problem is our leaky defense. We need to let them have more of the ball and hit them on the break. Score first and then if they come at us hit them again. Martial is riding his luck and United were lucky to beat Southampton, but no matter what they are coming in first place and will be confident.

If we fail to beat them, we’ll hardly win the league. On a final note Alexis scored a hat trick and people talk about breaking the drought. Firstly Alexis played well on numerous occasion, like Crystal Palace where he practically scored our second goal, though it counted as an own goal. He hit the post twice and set up numerous chances against Stoke as well so it was coming for him.

He scored more goals in one game than our other strikers managed so far in the season, so the quick judgement is a bit premature. Still Alexis and Theo seem to be our main strikers so far and they’ll be key in our title charge. It’s funny how Kane scored an offside goal against City and he suddenly silences the critics. Short term thinking once again.

Looking at that game it’s ridiculous how the referees don’t get punishment for decisions which cost points in a multi-billion industry that is the Premier league. I could’ve spotted Spurs two offside goals from the TV. What does the ref do? I feel for Pelegrini, because City dominated the game and now their confidence is shot to nothing just before the Champions League.

The FA really needs to do something about it if they care about our fourth Champions League spot. The English teams didn’t get very difficult groups and failing to make it out will be a disaster.

That’s it from me. Have a nice week.


Tags Alexis Man United


  1. A bit of a stretch the conclusion that our defense was a joke. At first goal Mertesacker did not followed (it was not his side anyway) because he knew he will be beaten by pace. All clear for Cech but Vardy’s bend was an absolutely brilliant goal. Second one watch Ox again, watch him how he contemplates what’s happening in front of him. Do you guys understand now why he does not start and will never start unless he put something back in it. Agree, we were 3 up but it was annoying to see the same stuff all over again.

    1. That curly goals were fantastic by Vardy. No one could have stopped them either because in that situation, GK will have very less time to react to stretch himself fully. For example 3 seasons ago, Cazorla scored similar type of goal against Man Utd with De Gea in goal.

      Also, one mentioned (Josh37 I guess) here that looking at position of Koscielny at time of first goal, he could have played Vardy offside, but he decided to run backwards to catch Vardy or his fellow teammate who was being marked by Kos. I will not criticize Kos for that because that was a 50-50 situation.

      But Leicester got punished for similar type of goal. Credits to Cazorla and Walcott.

      Overall, it will be a tough game against Man Utd. I am not saying that we should take it for granted but I think Man Utd should not underestimate us either. With Coquelin back hopefully, and a Kos Gab partnership with our reliant Spanish fullbacks and Cech in goal, we are going to have a very intense game. Also, Walcott and Alexis should be on their top level to finish the chances.

      I would fancy a draw at least, and a win atmost. Not trying be pessimistic here, but looking to forms of both teams, it will be a exciting match.

    2. I saw Ox walking quite lazily and looking lost, guess he was afraid he could do an OG if he got close to the goal. But we need GAbriel ASAP, the German Rhino is good but Gabs taken his place.

    3. It wasn’t OX fault. Cech punched the ball out and in a jiffy the ball was struck home. Ramsey as far as I am concerned is a liability to the team. Wenger playing him on the wings puts so much pressure on that wing because Ramsey hardly stays there but constantly drifts to the centre of the pitch thereby forcing Belerin to attack up field. As soon as the ball is lost, Bellerin is no where near the back to recover or assist Martesacker or whoever plays the right or centre back back position. Please note that 90% of Liecester attack was from that wing! Ramsey position should be on the bench as long as Ozil or Carzola is playing. He is the weakest link of our team, Why Wenger plays him on the wing ahead of Ox baffles me.

      1. First of all if Ramsey wouldn’t have to be moved in the middle he would be on the right side and this would not happen. The same as if Ox would actually run with his man. Ramsey is the best ball carrier we have on that position for the moment.
        Secondly, if the forward is already passing my fullback I am seriously question my winger especially on a positional attack and not a counter. If it is a counter as the first goal ok, I can understand. But the second one? He should have covered his area.

  2. Now I’m worry; what happens if Walcott gets injured? We go back to the “Giroud” thing? At lease I see most things I’d like to see in a modern striker in Theo.

  3. Actually think our away form is better cause teams dont sit back(in their home grounds) and park the bus like they do when they come to the Emirates but I expect an open game vs Man U, although its our home game..

  4. Why am I not having confidence when we play home? But am always sure of winning away. We handed Dynamo the win in Croatia. Referee gave Chelsea the win. Outside these, we alway have a way out at away most times. I hope our boys are not jittery like me at home.
    If Ramsey should play on RW as Wenger insists, Gabriel should be playing alway. Too much work for young Hector covering RW and RB when Ramsey is on the wing. Beat Man U please lads and let’s go on.

  5. Off Topic
    Our play makers Ozil and Cazorla will be excited to play with Walcott in coming games. I saw his performance and I am delighted to say that his pace and movement were top quality. He has to work more on his hold-up play and burying chances but I am sure that will come with more games.

  6. If you are desperate for negative articles about Arsenal then you need to hunt for articles by this chap called KM. I guess its time he/she starts another site called negativearsenal. He/she wants to give us an impression that Leicester’s defense is the weakest in the league but ignoring the fact that over 1/3 of the goals that made them the second weakest team in the league so far were scored by Arsenal. The best defensive teams so far are Everton, Man United, and Tottenham with 5 goals conceded, while every other team is on the 10 goals conceded mark. After six games Leicester had conceded 9 goals that is around the average goals against for the season. So it cannot therefore be said that Leicester has one of the weakest defenses in the league so far.

    Second the writer wants to label the Arsenal defense as leaky. Before the Leicester game, Arsenal had conceded 5 goals and so were Man United and Everton. The only teams that were better than Arsenal defensively were Man City (2) and Tottenham (4). Every other top half team had conceded 5 or more goals. I will not waste time on how the other two goals were conceded in one of the worst officiated games in the league. A proper analysis of the statistics will show that the Arsenal defense is comparable to, if not better than the Man United defense when you factor in opposition faced to date.

    Other readers have pointed out that the goals conceded by Arsenal were down to individual mistakes rather than a poor defense. Take for instance, the first goal, the team was in possession trying to find openings. Hector had moved high up the pitch in anticipation of a pass from Ramsey. Ramsey decides to make a very difficult pass which resulted in us losing the ball when all players were well out of their defensive positions. This mistake by Ramsey was similar to the one by Alexis last season, I think in the game against Monaco or Dortmund. This culminated in a counter and a goal against us. It was thus Ramsey’s lack of awareness of circumstances around him that cost us that goal. It was better to play safe by passing backwards rather than try to force issues when the team’s positioning meant that once the ball is lost we are doomed.

    Once Central defenders are exposed to one on one situations the outcome favours the attackers as the defenders have to deal with multiple possibilities. I will not blame any of our defenders for the first goal because they should not have been exposed to that situation if Ramsey had played sensible football.

    The second goal while largely attributable to Chamberlain was down to the whole team suddenly dropping off thus losing concentration. Cech saved the situation on more than three occasions in the attack leading to the goal. The organization went missing a bit probably because players were tired. Chamberlain having just got in as a sub was expected to be sharp covering space left right and centre but on that occasion he just stood there hoping a clearance would come his way so that he could start those wizardry runs forward. He is not yet a complete player and I think it is an area he has been told to improve on. In the Dynamo game he switched off leading to the first goal, and after that he was not himself until he got subbed off. I do not know whether it is something he can address by playing more games or it will be his weakness for the rest of his career.

    Having said that I want to reiterate that the KM chap is one person who will try to be negative even if Arsenal were to beat Bayern 5-2.

  7. They have been a good team for some time now yeah not top 7 but they won’t be going down this season. I think January they will pick up a few players and good for them so well done LFC
    I think our problems at the back are this BFG he is now a bench player. Simple as that. FQ should be rested until the weekend and I would put chambers there with the captain and hold position not move all over the part. Remember SILVER he just sat back and dictate the game.

  8. The article rightly points out Lec deficiencies in keeping clean sheets as well as us not being able to get one against a team that scores allot when at home. You neglect to mention that Arsenal had the second best defence last season which took some doing.

    Whether we play counter attacking or possession based football depends entirely on our opponents. If we play Barca I think it’s fair to say they will have majority of ball and if we play a Birmingham I think your facing two to three walls of back lines. Teams are what they are, like us, we are a team that hogs the ball and likes to pass but we also have pace to burn.

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