Hello Gooners around the world, happy new week! Congrats on the wonderful win over Newcastle United on Sunday. I actually saw it coming and I am proud we won in a grand style.
While we played Newcastle on Sunday, I observed something. I observed that Arteta is virtually making use of players that the fans consider not good enough or no longer good enough to play for Arsenal.
Against Newcastle, my star of the match is of course Pepe, followed by Saka and finally, I will choose Mustafi in third position. Pepe and Saka lit up the Arsenal attack on Sunday and they both deserve the accolades, but who even noticed that apart from one odd mistake by Mustafi, he virtually had a good game? Who noticed that Mustafi is gradually warming himself to both the fans that go to watch the boys play live and Mikel Arteta, the manager?
When Arteta came to Arsenal, the first thing he did was to recall Xhaka back to the first team, against the interest of many people. Xhaka right now, is playing his best games in the red and white jersey of Arsenal. Just the way he re-installed Xhaka to the first team, is the same way he started making use of players who probably felt they would never play for Arsenal again. Arteta is beginning to develop a knack for turning rejected players to player machines.
Against Newcastle, we didn’t concede a goal! This may be partly to luck (one of the Newcastle’s player played a ball that hit the bar off the post, after beating our defence), or the grittiness shown by our players, who defended like their lives depended on it. Our defending has been improving in recent games but with the way we played against Newcastle I believe we have finally found a defensive structure that works well for us.
Without trying to praise Mustafi for doing his job, I can’t just stop myself from giving him his due praise. I personally counted the number of successful tackles he had and it will surprise you that our German pro, won 15 tackles! And they were very crucial tackles. Mustafi is gradually forming a defensive wall with David Luiz and they are both slowly winning permanent slots in the middle of Arsenal’s defense. If Mustafi continues playing as good as he did on Sunday, and Arsenal is starting to keep more clean sheets, then I can assure you that both Mustafi and Luiz, players that the majority of the Arsenal fans don’t want to see play for us, will be in the middle of the Arsenal’s defence for a long time! Wow, I am so excited.
We are Arsenal and we are proud.