Arteta very happy with Rangers draw but rues missed chances (as usual)

The story of last season for Arsenal was an incredible amount of games that we completely dominated, but failed to turn our myriad goalscoring opportunities into goals.

This left us completely open to one defensive error or a silly sending off to hand the advantage to our opponents, and sadly that was usually the case and we ended up dropping points.

Our wastefulness up front was the case again against Rangers yesterday, and although Mikel Arteta thought that we created more than enough to win the game, the after match conference sounded eerily familiar.

“Overall I’m really pleased with the performance.” the boss told “I think we dominated the game, we created so many chances – I counted about eight or 10 clear chances to score – but this game is decided in both boxes. We weren’t clinical in the opponent’s box and we conceded two goals from two corners, which were the only chances they had apart from the counter-attack from our own corner.

“It’s much better from the other day and you tell that physically we were already better in the second game, the organisation was better, individually they played better, but I really liked the collective understanding of the game and how we executed a lot of things we’ve been working on in the training pitch.”

“It’s been really good. We created so many chances but we are not converting enough. Today we should’ve scored many more goals and with the quality of the players we have up front, they have to demand much more of themselves. But at least we are getting there, the process is becoming much clearer, much better. Without the ball as well, we worked really hard and were really efficient. We won a lot of balls in the final third so there are a lot of positives to take.”

Although both Rangers goals were simple headers from corners, the debut goal from Nuno Tavares was a joy to watch, and Eddie Nketiah scored a great individual goal to give us the draw, but the annoying thing is that they were opportunistic half-chances.

We had so many chances that would have been easier to convert, we should have had a much more respectable scoreline in the end.


Let’s hope this is not going to carry on into the new season…


Darren N


Tags Arteta Rangers


  1. Our set-piece defending vulnerability reminds me of Wenger’s time and we’d likely concede more if we don’t have more tall players in the main team. I don’t think Ben White is dominant in aerial duels and Holding/ Magalhaes/ Mari will always struggle against towering monsters like Benteke/ Van Dijk/ Maguire

    This is why having a taller CF with Lacazette’s capabilities in tight spaces and in linking-up is very important. The new CF can give us plan B and help us with set-piece defending too, like what Giroud did

    Our main strikers missed a lot of sitters last season and in pre-season, so we need another CF type who can change our striking style in the last twenty minutes of the games. Unfortunately, I think Arteta is too idealistic with open-play scoring expectations, so he’d likely not become very pragmatic soon

    1. I think think you make a good point here. Who would your ideal CF me in the current climate? Also with Auba and Laca looking like they are staying it might be almost impossible bringing in another CF. Remember we still have the likes of Eddie, Balogun and Martinelli in the ranks.

      It will take prudence to solve this problem. For me i will do everything to move one of Auba or Laca out, also I will move Eddie out and them go for Edouad from Celtic. He can offer something in the likes of what you just described.

      1. Maybe Odsonne Edouard or Dusan Vlahovic can give us a different approach. I saw Edouard’s YouTube highlights and I liked the way he released himself from tight spaces, but I’ve never seen how Vlahovic plays

        If we can get a CF who performed well in Euro, Kane and Lukaku have shown that they can easily handle the opposition’s CBs

    2. GAI, lack of height is not causing Arsenal strikers to miss “sitters”, because the sitters have been in the large part on the ground, not in the air. The problems have been in timing runs into the box, poor ball control and inaccurate shooting. The issues have related to skills and judgement. That’s not to say that a tall CF like Nikolaj Moller wouldn’t be a good plan B. Hopefully he gets opportunities this season.

  2. You’re right GAI, whilst White is great with the ball, tackling, covering and passing, he is not great in the air. I’m sure he will be a great acquisition to the team but the whole defence needs to be coached on defending set pieces.

    1. MA has just hired a new set-pieces coach Jover from Man City to replace the previous one I forgot his name he is Swedish who’s joining Malmö FC(higher position)

    2. Declan and GAI, the first step should be dropping zone defending. Too many times we see Arsenal defenders not tracking the opposition attackers and ball watching, particularly at set pieces. Man on Man marking puts responsibility on players to track runners and defend their man.

      1. Generally, modern footballs dont play man marking anymore because the game is more fluid now. The only time we need man marking is if there is a clear star player in the opposite team, and even then usually a DM plays the man mark while the rest of the defense sticks to zonal play. Though, if you are only talking about man markings during set piece, I can agree with u.

        Defense wise, I believe what we need is a GK/CB who can command/organize the defence. Ben White is not this kind of player. I believe he is brought in not to improve our defense. Arteta wants someone who can carry the ball from the back to front (to replace DL)..

        1. Gu4l, I am specifically talking about man on man marking at set pieces. Zonal marking as “executed” by Arsenal is an utter defensive failure.

  3. Let’s hope Auba regains his efficiency in front of goal which was certainly lacking against Rangers.Last season fans tended to give him the benefit of the doubt because of personal issues which may have impacted on his displays, but there are no such excuses this term.In essence, if he does not perform, he should be dropped.

    1. Completely agree. I didnt think last years performances were just down to personal issues anyway.

      He hasnt been the same since he signed a new contract and its ovvious for anyone to see. But for some reason he always seems to get a pass

      1. Aubameyang appears totally out of sorts at the moment. Hopefully he snaps out of it quickly.

  4. I’m not too sure what else Arteta could say really Darren?

    I enjoyed the game, thought we played well and there were a number of encouraging things about it, not least the new guy’s debut

    I could be wrong but I don’t recall conceding too many from set pieces last season, I don’t remember it being the achilles heel that it has been before at times

    I didn’t think either of the goals conceded were “simple” headers, Elneny should have done better on the first one but it was good strength, movement and finish by the wrong Balogun, the second was a really strong leap and header and I think we already knew that Tierney and Bellerin were a bit weak in the air, again I could be wrong but I think both Holding and Mari were off by then?

    So, I agree with the other guys above, the only concern after this one is Auba

  5. I have read several comments and it’s good to know what is on people’s minds regarding arsenal performance

    Firstly, I would like to add that our so called rooky manager is not as bad as some people think. He is beginning to stamp his philosophy in Arsenal. His targets and signing indicates what he is planning.

    I can see Arteta planning something that will make us great

    1. Hila, please elaborate and fill me in, because Glasgow Rangers and Hibernian aren’t exactly great sides?
      I was hoping Mikel Arteta would provide hope that the Arsenal midfield deficiencies are to be addressed.

    2. If his philosophy is what we have been seeing for the past 1.5 years + this preseason, I am totally worried..

  6. For goodness sake! This was simply a pre season friendly with still almost a month til Prem starts. Such a way overblown fuss from this hasty minded article writer about a mere pre season friendly!

    Such pre season results are notoriously different from when the real competition starts.

    1. Yeah then the season starts and you see same shxt then you are going to say it’s just the start of the season wait for a month for things to kick in then after that another excuse then another excuse. If we can’t beat two Scottish teams in friendly hiding behind various excuses I don’t see how we will do good based on starting fixture list we have. Keep calling fans for blowing things out of proportion while you keep your head in sand.

  7. Arteta has a huge decision to make! Laca and Auba seem to be past there best. Laca work rate in the game is great but he’s on the pitch to put the ball in the back of the net! Which unfortunately he did not do enough last season. Auba cannot have a season like last. We have all seen the incredible misses over his career but in the past he’s scored lots of goal so they could be overlooked. Last season his misses cost us games and points and we need to take him out of the team if that’s how this season unfolds. I’ve been a big fan of his for many years but he needs to step aside if he cant score and spend some time trying to rediscover his goal scoring form. (For the love of the team)

  8. I am sorry but I have zero hope for the season, ppl can call me negative but writing is on the wall and I already know the excuse that will come flying from Mr Arteta support, we have a lot of new players they need time to settle in EPL even Henry and D.B struggled in their first season. You will see Arteta unleashing their fill potential next season be patient because it takes time for team to jel and play together…blah blah blah the club which was once know as long if beautiful football on these shires of England is now know as king of excuses becaue that what we have from owner, board, manager and now to increasing majority of fans.

  9. Logic u’ve said it all. May God continually bless u always as u speak the simple and logic truth as to the turn out of event in the current state of this once great club called arsenal.its not rocket science and it clear for all to see that arsenal is a sinking club that needs to be saved. Mikel Aterta is an incompetent rookie manager that cannot elevate the club. take for instance in andrea pirlo case although he won Juventus copa itallia and qualified them for a nervy top 4 finish in the the end he still got the boots. reasons bcos they were loosing their identity and lost their position as Italy’s no1 domineering force for 9 straight yrs. But in arsenal it’s a different ball game entirely.for a couple of years now medicore has become the other of the day.aterta’s achievement for arsenal is 1FA cup & 8th place finish on 2consecutive seasons. and uptill now he’s still sitting comfortably on the job, going into his 3rd season without any pressure for better performance/a top 4 finish.or be kicked out. Only in arsenal we see such strange occurrences.

  10. Arteta must take a call on Auba and Laca. They cant miss such sitters in a PL game. If required he must start with Balogun and Martinelli.

  11. My blood type is B positive…… im always positive….)……….the writing is on the wall……..arsenal are going to have a successful season…with lots of possession…scoring opportunities…And great defending….not winning preseason games means a good start to the season……our strikers will score lots of goals….and I’m not worried about defense…we had the 3rd best defense this year and will get better………..I CAN SEE ARSENAL RETURNING TO CHAMPIONS LEAGUE SOON……………!

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