Look Beyond the Coach and See the Rot. by AI
Here is a rough estimation of squad turnover under Pep, Klopp, Ole and Arteta.
Klopp has made 11 signings that can contend for major minutes (at least 2500 minutes across all competitions)since his appointment. Pep has made 17 far. Ole just 6.
Wait, there’s a lot more. Let’s continue to look deeper.
So, how many players did these coaches find at their clubs who have since gone on to play major minutes (2500+ minutes average) under them over time and could be reasonably assumed to continue to do so, including from the academy?
Klopp met 5 players. Ole met 7. Pep met 6.
Arteta? 4 players.
But all of these coaches have been there for far longer than Arteta. So let’s look at the average per season. How many major signings (as defined by minutes played) have these coaches gotten per season since their appointment?
Klopp = 2/season. Pep = 3.4/season. Ole = 2/season.
Arteta so far? 1.5/season.
Arteta consistently comes across all measurements as the least-supported manager on average.
Major signings are what determine the ceiling on the quality of football you play. You can’t evolve a team without enough quality turnover. If you investigate further, you will see that Arteta also has the youngest crop of major players among all 4 managers examined. However, this can be explained by the argument that Arsenal are intentionally rebuilding the team with a carefully calculated aim of having a crop of quality players entering into their prime ages just when the City and Liverpool squads finish their current cycles.
Arsenal are well and truly investing a lot of money in young, capable players either through transfer fees or contracts handed out. However, this rebuild is simply too lethargic and slow. Constant improvement is a must. Only one major step has been made this window. Using my calculations, Arsenal should aim for at least 2, preferably 3 more major signings this window. This will put them right in the middle of the proven timescale of improvement as epitomized at Liverpool and United.
Ideally, a major GK, new RB, and a 10 (Odegaard?) must all come in. At worst, a GK and a 10 should come in. Without this, it would be the equivalent of Arsenal sending Arteta to war without a gun. Tottenham’s 2018/19 transfer activity illustrates my point.
Another team that was left out of the analysis and who represent a major rival to Arsenal, Chelsea, attained almost 5 new major signings in one window. This unprecedented and unpredictable activity was precisely the reason why they were left out of the analysis.
Enough of the deadwood signings. Get some major signings in. Get in as many as possible. Give the coach something to work on, meat to chew. Improve your team with serious blood.
So far, Arteta has been heavily under-supported. This is the true fault for the lacklustre football. In December/January of last season, when two major players entered this same Arsenal team in Emile Smith-Rowe and Martin Odeegard, the football received more life and verve. Arsenal went on to acquire a superb number of points. People have forgotten this.
The problem at the club still remains the recruitment office. This was why Emery had no excuse. He received plenty of new blood and the football got worse. On the basis of evidence, this trend won’t repeat itself with Arteta. After all, even in the last match, Arsenal still made the highest number of shots that they have ever made under Arteta. It was meant to be better. Unfortunately, too many kids were playing. And the adults couldn’t find their heads. However, the season is still young and full of possibilities. Hopefully, the recruitment side will wake up and sign some serious players.
(Calculations were done using information from Transfermarkt).