Arsenal’s cheap and cheerful summer business is really paying dividends now

If Arsenal beat Crystal Palace away tomorrow the Gunners will have won four away games in the League, as many as we won in the whole of last season. The change is incredible and according to Martin Keown we can only put it down to our new manager. “The best teams are defined by how they play away from home,” he wrote in the Daily Mail.

“Arsenal did not look capable of competing on the road last season, winning four of their 19 away trips in the Premier League.

“They were embarrassing to watch and their ability to get to boiling point was being questioned.

“Unai Emery has quickly identified the weakness.

“He is getting these players to dig deeper in a way that Arsene Wenger was unable to do at the end of his tenure and it has produced 11 straight wins.”

Even Unai Emery admits that it is the new competitiveness in the team that is making them work harder. “I think the first thing we spoke about when I arrived here was to improve our competitiveness, both individually and collectively as a team,” he said.

“We are doing that. Step by step, I think the team is more competitive and we are not giving the opposition a lot of chances to score easy goals.

“At the moment, we are conceding a lot more than we want to but, in the last matches, we are learning to control games better, little by little. Also, we are not losing.

“The most important thing is that these players and this team, like over the last few years, have this combination of quality and competitiveness. Then we can finish with a lot of players in the opposition box.

“This is the balance between being more competitive and not losing our identity and style. We also need to keep that identity in this team.”

Emery may not have spent much money in the summer, but if you look at who has come in you have Leno who made Cech try that little bit harder, Lichtsteiner as competition for Bellerin, Sokratis challenging the full-backs and Guendouzi and Torreira shaking up the midfield.This has forced Wenger’s unchallenged old guard to up their games to keep a place in the first team.

We may have all moaned that we didn’t get any superstars in the summer, but they were definitely very astute acquisitions….



  1. odey_me says:

    Absolutely right admin. Kudos must be given to the manager and also the players for their commitment towards taking arsenal back to the top where she belong. Long may it continues

  2. jon fox says:

    Who can imagine a meeting between Emery and Wenger and what questions Emery would ask Wenger? I can imagine Unai asking Wenger why he abdicated the clear duty he had to the club, the fans, and in particular the players, by failing to motivate them and set standards of fight, commitment and pride in the shirt. A fight that is now so thrilling , so evident and so regular. Thank God we at LONG LAST have a proper manager in charge; one who is not betraying his responsibilities in so appalling a fashion as did WENGER. THE DARKNESS HAS PASSED AND WE ARE NOW BATHED IN SUNLIGHT.

    1. gotanidea says:

      They could meet in Europa League, if Wenger goes to AC Milan

      Emery is spot on about the internal competition in the team. During Wenger’s tenure, some players always play first, no matter how bad they perform

      Now no player can claim his position in the main team easily

    2. Midkemma says:

      I think Emery would show Wenger some respect.
      I think Emery will be aware that the manager doesn’t have final say on transfers.

      Jon, why can’t you let Wenger go? I have seen the WOB and AKB unite with Emery, well, apart from you. Majority appear to be of the mentality of thanks for the memories but Emery is now our focus.

      I’m glad Emery has class, he wouldn’t forget the big picture to slate Wenger just to get a few thumbs up, I bet he would slate fans who didn’t support and call for all fans to act in a more positive manner.

      So Jon, please, put Wenger behind you like majority of the other Arsenal fans have. You was never a fly in the room to see who done what so do not act like you was, esp when the logic is as strong as a wet paper towel.

  3. Th14 says:

    To cap it off we should sign Nicolas Pepe from Lille when the market opens again. If Barca or Real Madrid get serious about their interest then we stand no chance. Recent reports has linked us with him and I hope it’s all true.

    ————— Auba——-
    — Iwobi—— Ozil———Pepe—
    ———- Xhaka—- Tor——

    If we can maintain our current form and manage to land him in January then we have a strong case for the title. Although I see him going to Barca, which is also good for us because they’ll have to offload either Dembele or Malcom

    1. gotanidea says:

      I don’t think he would go to Barcelona, because they just bought Malcom and they still have Dembele/ El Haddadi/ Messi/ etc

  4. jon fox says:


    1. Midkemma says:

      Wenger is not a drill sergeant style coach, Wenger was more of a teacher…
      Some players need the drill sergeant, some need a teacher.

      While Gazidis was buying cheap then we was getting players who needed the drilling… We signed players who needed the drilling. Teacher style was not going to work and it didn’t.

      Alexis done well under Wenger yet not so well under Jose. This is what I mean about managers having different styles and the club needs to get players that fit the manager.

      It is sad that you can not let Wenger go. We have stuff to look forward to yet seeing how some people can’t let the past go, it is very sad indeed.

    2. ken1945 says:

      Jon, your too old to run a museum!!!
      But seriously, let’s have some proper debating from you, like your previous articles published by admin.
      I have to agree with Midkemma on this Wenger obsession that you have though.
      One might even use your anologies as a comparison of you forever referring to the past, versus his (and the thousands of others on here) who want to look forward.
      You and I have agreed to disagree on this subject, but I would like to think that I have moved on with Emery, whereas you haven’t regarding AW.
      It’s like reading every post that Konstantin writes, as he cannot seem to live without mentioning AW…or is that you under a pseudonym???

      Just forget about him Jon, surely you have more pertinent thoughts about how Emery is turning AW’s players into a team, along with all the AW youngsters breaking through the ranks? That’s with just five great new signings of his own!!!
      Look how he has made you rethink your views on players like Iwobi, Ozil, Xhaka and Bellerin.

      The futures bright, the futures Emery.
      The past is past, thanks for the memories AW.

      1. Mwsupporter says:

        Well said, the continuos ramblings about Wenger by Fox are now ridiculous and rather pathetic. Move on please.

  5. Innit says:

    How did we survive without players like Torreira and Guendouzi for so long?

    Guendouzi is fantastic for a 19 year old
    Both Torreira and Guendouzi are worth their money

    We just need a player like Cazorla/Viera/Rosicky to join Torreira and Ozi in central midfield and we can have an amazing central midfield

    Sokratis is getting better
    Lichtesteiner is a better defender than Bellerin in my opinion but Bellerin is a better winger or lwb

    I think we need another cb, cm and winger in the summer probably but Emery made good signings this past summer

    1. Break-on-through says:

      The premiership should be great for Guendouzi’s game, he looks, one day, destined for the France national team and it’s amazing how they took a look at him in only a small number of games, thanks to his Arsenal form.

      We all love Torriera, there’s not much else to say. The Arsenal fan-base can be some of the hardest fans to please, with Invincibles to compare players to, but am sure as I’m writing this, every-one of them is in love with Lucas Torriera.

  6. Sue says:

    Brilliant signings! Well done Sven… keep them coming ?

    1. Midkemma says:

      Nice to see Sven still getting some love 🙂

      The guy will be a big factor in how well we progress as a club, getting in potential for the future while getting the right players for now, even if it isn’t a big name.

      Sokratis had me underwhelmed but I am warming up to the brute, nice to see a solid CB take no nonsense, not the flashy signing I (along with others) had hoped for but he has the qualities we had hoped for, at least I think so 😛

      1. Sue says:

        Yes he’s been solid

        1. ozziegunner says:

          ??Torreira will be Sven’s buy of the season.

  7. Leon says:

    Never thought much of the signings and thought even less of the appointment of Emery as our new coach.
    All have gone on to prove what a brilliant choice they were.
    Emery has brought a new confidence and work ethic to the team which has allowed players like Iwobi, Lacazette and Bellerin to shine.
    Torreira, Leno, Guendouzi and Sokratis have been very good – especially Torreira
    We started off badly, which was to be expected but since then we have really pushed on.
    All we need is a couple of defenders and a winger and we will be there or thereabouts…

    1. ozziegunner says:

      Leon, just as a point of interest what did you have against Unai Emery?
      Everything I had heard about him prior to his taking the Arsenal job was positive; even Phil Neville spoke highly of him from his time coaching at Valencia. The only negatives I had heard was his inability to win the Champions League with PSG and issues managing the egos of Calvani and Neymar.

    2. Midkemma says:

      Give Emery time to change your mind about how many defenders we need ^.^
      If our players do not step up then I hope Sven (Our head of recruitment) will find the right talent for Emery.

      Iwobi is doing well and Welbeck could thrive under Emery, Bellerin has improved since Emery has taken over, who is to say that Holding and Mavrop will not turn into monster defenders who makes CFs rock and cry themselves to sleep at night?

      Signings are nice but don’t you feel extra pride when the talent was realised at Arsenal rather than just bought?

  8. Kenny Rolfe says:

    Absolutely right Ozziegunner, and regarding the only negative, that was because Unai was not getting the backing from the hierarchy at PSG concerning the ego’s those players.

    1. ozziegunner says:


  9. Midkemma says:

    “Sokratis challenging the full-backs”
    Sokratis is a CB, he is comp for CBs… Not fullbacks.

    “Emery may not have spent much money in the summer”
    Please find evidence to support the manager spending the money and it wasn’t AFC who may have an input from the manager but it isn’t the manager who makes final decision.

    Credit to Sven here, why do people ignore Sven and his input in transfers?
    Reports was that Emery wanted Nzonzi and it was Sven who spotted the cheaper and younger Torreira… Why no praise to Sven?

    Articles like this encourage the belief that the manager is some kinda dictator and has final say in everything, how about being a bit more accurate and praise the other people in Arsenal who are doing some fantastic work?!?

    1. Durand says:

      I agree with you about Sven, he has been fantastic. That’s what happens when head scout focuses on scouting players, and coaches focus on coaching and tactics. One person trying to control everything simply doesn’t work.

      1. ken1945 says:

        Durand, how are you my friend?
        The clues lie in the titles, that’s for sure.
        Still don’t agree with your suggestion/analysis that one man might have controlled everything however!
        Surely the Ramsey contract debacle proved that?
        Unless, of course, that’s what you’re thinking of?

        What a breath of fresh air Emery and his three musketeers have brought to the club!!
        Can’t imagine why anyone is looking backwards when everything about the place is so positive regarding the future.
        Great crop of youngsters breaking through, five brilliant summer signings and a squad from last season FINALLY showing the class we all thought they had.

        Hope you have recovered from the hurricane damage over there, funny how easy it is to move on and forget SO quickly isn’t it?

        1. Durand says:

          Ken my friend! Rebuilding houses and lives from storm is never truly done. Arsenal itself is continually rebuilding; with executives or players, there is constant change.

          I am pleased to see you back and commenting, challenging all to think deeper and sometimes re-evaluate their (and my) opinion.

          More pleased your results were positive and you and your family are well.

          Ramsey contract saga appears clearer after Gazidis is moving on. Hopefully Raul put on the breaks and stopped dealing with that greedy agent for a chronic underperformer.

          I think 1/3 Ramsey fault for holding out, 1/3 agent fault for ridiculous wage demands, and 1/3 Gazidis fault.

          I was stating my opinion that one person cannot properly focus on title, scouting, development, and contracts at same time and get consistent top results. We are seeing when top people focus on their specific jobs only and work as a team, results follow.

          Wasn’t referring to any one person only the process, that’s why I didn’t mention Conte, Jose, Wenger, Allegri, etc…by name. I’m sure you knew that as we are quite familiar with one another’s posts and opinions by now.

          Look forward to more of your posts my friend!

          1. ken1945 says:

            Durand, thanks for the thoughts, things look better at the moment.
            We still see pictures of the devastation caused by hurricane Katrina, so I hope you are faring better than some of those images

            I find it really interesting that as soon as Gazidis confirmed his departure, the offer was rescinded.
            To my mind, that really does imply just how much he was involved in that side of the club’s dealings with contracts.
            The new set up is so much healthier, not only for the club, but for the coach himself.
            I believe Emery wants him to stay, but that is not his decision to make.
            That’s what makes his playing Ramsey so difficult to understand, unless there is a twist in the storyline!?
            If he isn’t to be offered a new contract, why persist in still selecting him?
            Still, who am I to question the wisdom of someone who has turned the club completely around?

            I had to smile at the”cheap and cheerful” headline.
            If Sven can keep finding these bargains and Emery can keep coaching the current players as he has so far, the sky’s the limit.
            Brilliant example of a man who knows what he wants and can see that the players he has will deliver.
            If they don’t, he will react, of that I am certain!

          2. Durand says:

            Ken perhaps playing Ramsey shows potential suitors that he has some ability and is available to try and draw some offers. Otherwise I don’t think he helps Arsenal, but rather unbalances our midfield and slows down our attack.

            Just a thought, but clearly we don’t depend and therefore don’tneed him. Rather AMN get his opportunities, because I think he’s the future not Ramsey.

          3. ken1945 says:

            Durand, that makes some kind of sense regarding playing time, perhaps the club is hoping for an auction in the January window?

            There are some really good young players pushing the established first team, and AMN is most definitely one of them.
            Emery has got some real gems to work with and I have no doubt he will be using them.

            Didn’t really want Ramsey to go myself, but no-one is bigger than the club.
            Wonder how Ramsey himself feels about the way it’s all unfolded? Surely he’s regretting it as he sees the brand of football Emery’s team is producing?

          4. ozziegunner says:

            Good discussion, Durand and Ken.
            Best wishes, Durand with your house repairs. I had good friends in the Dallas/Fort Worth area affected by Texas flood 2017.

          5. Durand says:

            Thanks Ozzie, jump in the discussion, I’d like to know your thoughts on the Ramsey saga

    2. Break-on-through says:

      Midkemma, slip of the tongue on Sokratis, no doubt, in computer form. I like reading from you Midkemma, sometimes it comes across, most refreshing, am sure you know what/who I mean. Haven’t seen you in here in quite a while, before this last week or so. Welcome back friend!

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