Arsenal’s defence is a shambles – Can any coach fix this average club?

The players and the board need a hard look at themselves now. by Konstantin Mitov

Hello lovely Arsenal people. So let’s jump straight to it, I was in such a rush to catch the Arsenal game, to see if something will magically change, like wizard from Hogwarts has cast a spell on us, and while some things looked a bit better, some things looked exactly the same.

The central defenders at this club are just shocking. Gary Neville was spot on, that they are uncoachable. The defending for the first Norwich goal highlighted everything about our defense. Mustafi was pointing at Luiz, who just let Pukki past him and then the ball hit Mustafi before going in the net.

We give players too much space and time on the ball, but when we try to attack them it’s even worse. Our defenders can make any player look like Messi. I see Calum Chambers struggling at right back and nobody is helping him, because we have Auba on the wings and the DMs don’t bother.

Sadly Xhaka was the best of the midfield, but the substitutions were atrocious just like the last game. What has Bukayo Saka done to get in in front of Pepe? Not that the former Lille man had a great start to his career, but surely if you need to pick one of the two, you’d go for Pepe right? Or at least bring on Martinelli first. Saka was a terrible sub and all he did was lose the ball like 5 times in 6 touches.

Then Torreira again. I mean Guendouzi was poor, but are we trying to win the game or hold a draw? The new Arsenal manager has an incredibly difficult job. This goes far beyond steadying the ship. You practically have to build a new one before you drown on your current wreck. The board need to make a very good appointment. Emery was their project and it failed, now they can’t afford another mistake.

As much as I love what Freddie did for us as a Player, we must remember that he was a part of this structure that failed. He doesn’t fit the job in any respect, apart from knowing the Arsenal DNA, but Arsenal has changed dramatically for the worse since he last played for us.

I personally would like to see someone who’d spend more time talking to the players and giving instructions during the game. Someone with more charisma. One who’d come in with a bang like Klopp did at Liverpool. Sure he didn’t start winning straight away, but he gave the club the shake up it needed.

We need someone who can organize a team of players who’ve been doing whatever they want, and got away with it for years. These player sacked Wenger, then Emery and now whoever comes will have serious doubts and demands before taking over.

Let’s be brutally honest, we are an average club. Most of the players need to be replaced sooner rather than later. For me the likes of Allegri and Pochettino will not chose Arsenal as their next job. If I’m Brendan Rodgers, I’ll see little reason to leave Leicester for Arsenal right now too.

Ideally I’d like Allegri, because he’ll bring in some feel good factor with him. He’d immediately add some sense of belief for the better future. He’d command respect and he’s managed to get the best out of Milan and Juventus on low budgets.

But I don’t see how we convince him, and he also doesn’t know English which was one of Emery’s downfalls. And what he achieved was in Italy, and England is a very different beer. This is why we have names like Arteta on the list, who’d be a massive gamble. Being a good coach and a number 2 is a completely different story from being the main man.

In my view probably the best option we have right now is Rafa Benitez. He’ll bring in experience and he’ll definitely try to build an organized squad. What’s really sad is that we don’t have the permanent replacement lined up already.

It feels like we’re caught by surprise again. Poch was sacked and boom Mourinho was in. The new man has to come before January and some signings will be much welcomed too. In defense especially, where pretty much anything will be an improvement.

Those players better realise they are playing for their careers, cause if you are so bad at Arsenal, you’re never seeing a top club come in for you again. They should hide no more and accept that their performances are nowhere near good enough and pick it up (if this is even possible with some of them).

Sacking the head coach was the necessary decision, but it was also an easy one, dictated by results. Now comes the real difficult question of how to improve? And it’s time the power battle at Arsenal on board/director level to be put on the side for the best interests of the club. In fact this should be for both players, fans and the manager (temporary or permanent).

We have Brighton on Thursday, and it won’t be any easier. We’re struggling against the bottom teams,which is a clear sign of an average club, but it’s the Emirates and we simply must win. We must unite, get behind Freddy and the team, and hope they for once do not disappoint us. And also hope the board line up a good manager as soon as possible…

Konstantin

Updated: December 2, 2019 — 8:51 am

25 Comments

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  1. I don’t think so.. Where is Mavropanos?

    We need a CB and CDM in January.. as soon as possible.

    I know players are hard to come By in January, but those 2 positions are essential.

    Ship out Xhaka to release funds. Kalvin Philips of Leeds is playing really, really well and I think Arsenal has overlooked Championship players for too long.

    1. The long term answer is to get rid of the existing board and bring back David Dein.
      Arsenal’s defence problems started the day it was decided by some eeediyot director or other to spend 35 million on buying Xhaka instead of 25 million on getting Kante. 10 mil extra for a lot more rubbish
      Xhaka, Mustafi, Luiz and Torreria must be sold before we can start fixing what is going wrong on the pitch

  2. Our defense were never ever given the proper attention since Wenger arrived, he was lucky to inherit one of the best defenses in England if not in the whole of Europe Wenger just added a potent attack. So yes we need a coach that is going to spend time building up our defence the way George Graham did back in the day and that is going to be a difficult task.

    1. MIKE, Eureka! A fellow realist on here at long last. I have been actively saying for a decade back into Wengers time here that we have not had a proper defence and now I say it almost every day. This idiocy that a club can function at all without ANY, AS IN NOT EVEN ONE,, top quality outfield defender is sheer madness. Wenger was fortunate to inherit the great Graham built defence and , to his credit, had the sense not to change it and even extended their playing lives by his, at that time, revolutionary dietary and stretching methods. Later on, Wenger built one more great defence for the Invincibles period. Other than those years, Wenger had litle idea of how to coach or organise a proper defence and over many years, beginning with Senderos and ending with Mustafi, he bought a long list of woefully substandard CBs. His only real TOP quality CB he personally brought in was Sol Campbell. There were other merely decent but short of REAL top class CB s in Kos, Gallas and Toure, who was stupidly fan hyoed as a great CB, when he was never better than decent and who benefitted greatly from playing next to the sublime Campbell in a great , great team. Other than those Wenger failed to recognise and bring in any proper CBs at all. His list of failures was long and terrible. Emery, seemed unable to make any impression at all on both the defence, midfield and attack and currently we have BY FAR, the worst defence in my time as an attending supporter since 1958. This scandal worries the owner and board not at all. Stupidly, the club spent £72 mill on a winger who has not fight or “balls” and who we did not need, INSTEAD of buying two top CB’s. This club grieves us fans with its suicidal stupidity in refusing to get an even adequate defence. We are fast becoming the sickick defensive joke among all Prem clubs.

      This fan led mania about having attacking style is purely because of the successful fist half of Wengers time, when we had both a top defence AND attack and were a great team. BUT, without a PROPER and coached defence NO CLUB CAN HOPE TO SUCCEEED. How I long for another GEORGE GRAHAM, TO PUT THE CART BEFOR WTHE HORSE. ie, HE GOT THE DEFNCE RIGHT FIRST. Congrats on being a fellow relist and at least seeing loud and clear what we MOST NEED RIGHT NOW!!!

  3. Our problem is simple but complex.

    The starting 11 and formation matters a lot, until the coach gets that right we won’t improve.

    As it stands this is our best 11

    Aubameyang
    Lacazette
    Martinelli
    Pepe/Saka
    Guendouzi
    Torreira
    Tierney
    Bellerin
    Chambers
    Holding
    Leno.

    1. If you think that is are best 11 SJ I would think again Torreira is not interested he wants a transfer Chambers is not good enough for Arsenal. What we need right now is 2 top defenders and if we are lucky enough to get them you would see a big transformation in the ARSENAL

    2. I more or less agree … but no one connects defense to attack that is why I would have ozil instead of guendhouzi … only quality player we have to do that whatever people say about his work rate … would b attack minded but without defenders brought in we can only play to our strengths as even when we put in 6 defenders it’s shambolic

  4. I am worried by the way Liunberg approached his first game as an Arsenal Head Coach. His team selection and late substitutions were shocking. Emery was a specialist in messing up his team selection while Mr. Wenger was famous in making very late substitutions. It seems that Freddie takes the wrong lessons from his predecessors. Arsenal should stop complicating things and hire their new Manager as soon as possible. Gzidis and his team passed through a looong recruitment process, produced over a hundred pages document and ended up with hiring Unay Emrey. But, We have seen how Spurs were reactive and quick in hiring their new Manager. Arsenal needs to take a lesson from their past mistakes and act quickly before united and other big Clubs joined htem in the search of a new Coach. In my opinion, since it is unlikely to get Rogers, they should focus on Pochetino, Naglsman, and Arteta, in that order.

    1. Arteta is a number 2 it is a big step up to be number 1 We the ARSENAL cannot afford to experiment We must get a top manager with the likes of Rogers, Allegri as quickly as possible

      1. Forget a quick turnaround at Arsenal. We are not guaranteed to achieve success under Alegri as we will not be under Arteta. Remember Rogers was not a fan favorite 18 months ago, it is only his success at Leicester City that brought him into the frontlist. I see us, Arsenal, chasing Arteta in a couple of years to come when he becomes a success at Everton/City or somewhere else.

        We need to stop dreaming of quick success and wish to get a young manager who will bring success in three to four years to come. Are there such managers other than Rogers, Pochetino, Naglsman, and Arteta? I don’t see any.

  5. It’s not just our squad is the worst Arsenal squad in over 30 years, they are clueless as to how to defend. Our defenders are terrible, but whole team cannot seem to defend properly as a cohesive unit. I think Arsenal are the worst in the league off the ball.

    We’re being easily torn apart by the likes of Watford, Southampton, and Norwich, all of which are at the bottom! Extremely lucky to get three draws out of those fixtures. I honestly cannot see us getting another clean sheet this season against anyone! Forget the top four, or any European football next season, because relegation is unbelievable, a possibility. Our form, and points tally from the back end of last season, and this season has been shocking! We’ve been steadily getting worse, and what worries me even more, is that we have hardly any fighters within our squad. Players with that strong mentality, that will scrap for every point going, thus lifting everyone else around them.

    It may seem delusional mentioning Arsenal, and relegation in the same sentence, but like I said, I don’t know when a clean sheet is coming? We have a terrible squad, with a poor mentality, that have no clue how to defend.

  6. Pochettino has said ‘no’ to the Arsenal job.

    1. No!!! He’s was the perfect fit for us. Available, world class manager, can work on a budget and knows the league.

      The Allegri’s of the world aren’t gonna come to arsenal if they won’t be backed in the transfer market.

      I can’t see Rodgers leaving Leicester after 1 year. Neither Nagelsman.

      I think it will be Arteta

      1. Would rather stick with Freddie than have Artteta any day

  7. There is this feel good factor at Arsenal which seems to be draining. The players are not yet motivated and I am yet to fully admit if Freddie would command the required respect these players need to get organized. We lack organization and until we put in a no-nonsense coach to get rid of switching off then we should expect the same.

    It’s now a question if the players are ready to fight for their shirt? Jose Mourinho would have instilled that into them but the board don’t act swiftly on matters that concerns the pitch this is why we don’t have a replacement coach lined up already.

    We still need to give Freddie time to turn things around if he can otherwise time is not on our side. These players needs to take responsibility of their actions especially on the pitch.

    But we fans needs to support the team and I see a lot of qualified coaches on this site so to speak besides some of us are too difficult to please.

    Freddie can’t get it right just immediately let that sink in.

  8. Somebody should get on the phone this morning and get Tony Adams and Martin Keown into the Club TODAY. Even they can’t make these defenders any more than average but at least they can start to teach them some basic fundamentals as it seems nobody has ever done that.And unless Steve Bould is brought in to make the tea then keep him well away.We have had years of seeing what he managed to do under Wenger and Emery.

  9. We need a pacey center back to play alongside either Holding or Luiz,and also Xhaka has to go and be replaced by a strong hard working ball winner, Luiz looked good in the holding midfield role that Emery put him in against Frankfurt until he got injured.That might be worth a try.
    Either way a new fast cb and strong no nonsense cm is a must.

    1. We need a new set of central midfielders and centerbacks. What we have now is just no good

  10. Is now obvious that Emery was not the only problem behind arsenal crisis but too many average players,mouriho and simeone can’t fix anything right now,we need to buy new and get rid of this average players like Ozil,if he can’t perform in small matches what do u expect him to do in big games?xhaka,mustafi,Luis,Socratics, chambers, bellerin,Niles,and many more,arsenal fans need to be realistic and we don’t expect too much from this average team,no excuse for any players who can’t perform,I don’t know arsenal best Ix,is time for martinelli to start

  11. If Pepe has been bad in training, does it mean that Torreira has been bad too? Who is Guendouzi for God’s sake?

  12. The answer is no to that question unless they buy.

  13. Bringing Tony Adams as a defensive coach is a great idea. What he has that you can’t train or teach is a winning mentality. Players are inspired by winners, people who have achieved at the highest level. His first job for me would be to evaluate all of our defenders and decide who has
    1. The heart
    2. The brains
    3. The ability to improve.

    Anyone who can’t meet that criteria should be shipped out. Someone mentioned shipping out Xhaka in order to generate immediate funds. I totally endorse that idea. Also looking at the Championship is a great idea for defenders Look at defenders in clubs like Brighton, Wolves and Sheffield United as well as Leeds. Mings at Villa, there’s some players out there far better than our clowns.

    Getting defenders working as a unit is the first step to mending our problems

  14. The only way we can perform defensively is by being able to keep the ball overselves for the most part of the game. That way, these defenders would face a lot less traffic.

    So we need to have extra men in midfield capable of ball playing.

  15. No way to Benitez, I say bring in Arteta. he will make real changes by fielding an attacking team and probably convert Pepe and Martinelli as our own David Silva and Bernardo Silva. Luiz should be moved to defensive midfield. 5 defensive players and 5 attacking players will solve our problems as against 7 defensive players and 3 attacking players which we have been playing all season.I bet if Arteta was the manager, this are the players he would have on the pitch.I know the back line is still the weakest link but we have to believe and rely on our 5 attacking players to win us the games.For me this formation is no brainer. I know some will say our midfield we will be exposed but With what we are playing currently, is the midfield not still exposed?

    ————————–Leno——————————

    Niles/Bellerin——–Chambers—-Holding——–Tierney

    ——Pepe——————Luiz—————-Martinelli

    ——-Lacazette————Aubamayang———–Ozil

  16. We have had a mental block when it comes to buying top defenders and this goes back many years. We had a chance to buy Soyuncu a couple of years ago and Leicester bought him for a relative pittance. We also had the opportunity to buy Van Dijk from Celtic and The Saints beat us to it. We ended up with Mustafi and Sokratis.

    Our new head coach/manager must make this his first priority or we will continue the downward drift. I was so surprised Emery didn’t address this in the 18 months he was here considering he had a dossier on each team member.
    If so he might have saved his job.

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