Carroll factor the main threat to Arsenal beating West Ham?

One of the big criticism of the Arsenal team over the years with Arsene Wenger in charge is that we are too predictable and that our manager does not do enough research or make any plans to cope with and counter the different dangers posed by different opponents.

Well I hope that the boss has been taking on board these criticisms and that he responds to them today when the Gunners take on West Ham at the Emirates stadium later, because if he does not do something to negate the threat posed by Andy Carroll then we could be in for another painful 90 minutes of disappointment.

To be fair, Wenger should be well aware of just how dangerous the big England centre forward can be, even in a team that is not playing well, because he showed it against us just last season. We were 2-0 up and cruising to victory when Carroll stepped up and in the space of 10 minutes or so Arsenal were trailing and needed a rare Koscielny strike to claim a point.

Carroll also scored against us in our away clash this season, although it was nothing more than a consolation in their 5-1 defeat. It does reinforce his threat though, so I was glad to see Wenger address just that in comments reported on this week.

He said, “The best way to keep him quiet is to play in their half. Apart from that, Carroll’s strengths are that he protects the ball well, he’s good in the air, he’s very forceful with his commitment as well, so we will need to be good to stop the crosses. Once a cross comes into the box, he’s always very dangerous against anyone.”

As well as the full backs having a big part to play tonight, our centre backs need to be on the ball to stop Carroll making the most of any service, but does that mean turning to the stature of Mertesacker or sticking with Mustafi and Gabriel after their second half showing against Man City?



  1. Gunner says:

    Prefer Holding to Gabriel. Gabriel gives away needless corners…needs to know his surroundings well before just giving away a corner.

  2. gotanidea says:

    A top European team should be able to nullify the tall target man tactic. Take a look at Barcelona. Usually they only have one tall central defender in the back (Pique), but it is always difficult for their opponents to attack them with tall target man tactic. Their opponents cannot make crosses easily against Barcelona’s defense system, hence the opponent’s target man hardly got supplies from the wings. There is something really wrong if a top European like Arsenal cannot defend themselves from the old, cheap and predictable tall target man tactic.

  3. ThirdManJW says:

    Not sure if Antonio is fit, but he’s massive threat on set-pieces, along with Carroll. Almost all of Antonio’s goals seem to be from headers. He must be one the best in the league when it comes to heading. I am sure zonal marking will cause a lot of problems again.

  4. stubill says:

    Completely agree on zonal marking, I hate it, especially when the opposition has a big target man or two.

    Go back to man to man marking, tell your players who they are marking and stick to them like glue, all zonal marking does is give the attacking players the advantage of getting a run on the defenders and being able to attack the ball.

    I’ve never understood why zonal marking is so popular when it offers advantages to the opposition.

  5. jermaineBryan says:

    Carol statistically is the best in the air across the whole of Europe. Arsenal’s weaknesses have been arial and inability to intercept the opponents when trying to create chances

  6. khangunners says:

    Looking at westham they hve huge players than us. Not only carrol so we need to be very weary in set pieces situations and looking at our defence not so good but lets see how they do

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