Do Arsenal need to score more or defend better?

Towards the end of last season, Arsene Wenger changed the team formation at Arsenal to arrest an awful run of form, and it worked brilliantly as the Gunners went on a long winning run and only failed by one point to get Fourth Place in the League.

But this season, the opposite has happened and Arsenal have struggled to score goals. Wenger confirmed that the idea is to have an extra midfielder to help with the offensive side of the game instead of the wingbacks, which has left Saed Kolasinac out of the team. He said: “He [Kolasinac] is highly suited for a wing-back role, for a more offensive role,”

“I think he will play again and I gave him a breather as well.

“He is working hard and I think he will play in a back four, as well.”

“I will still adapt because we are capable to play in a three as well, because the team has practised now in both systems so we are adaptable.

“But, for me, we didn’t score enough goals away from home. So that’s why [I switched].

“I felt as well that sometimes our game was a bit too lateral.”

But it’s great that w e want to attack and score more goals, but hasn’t our problem been letting in goals? We have already conceded 23 in just 19 games. Perhaps we should concentrate a bit more on defence? This is what Wenger thought about it… “We have been very consistent at home and the quality of our performances has been absolutely fantastic,” he said.

“We lost one game that even a neutral observer would concede that we had an outstanding performance in a unique game that we lost. Overall I believe the consistency is not in question.

“We have to find a balance, we are an offensive team and we take a gamble and a risk and we stand up for that but we have maybe to find a better balance between offensive and defensive efficiency.

“We always have a high number of players in front of the ball. If you look at the league you can analyse it in that way. You take team after team, how many players are in front of the ball when you attack?

“We are one of the teams in the league who has the most players in front of the ball when we attack, that means that for us to get back quickly and defend quickly and transition is absolutely vital.”

So we need to score more goals, and we need to get back to defend. Which one would you choose?



    1. The first and most important thing we should do is bfing a DMF into the lineup.This means Coquelin or even Niles should start from now on.Wenger has left it too late as we should’ve been playing with a proper DMF early in the season to this time.
      Secondly,we need to pass and hold the ball better.Our passing lacks intent and at times is very ugly.We always keep giving away the ball.This is what has caused ourdefence to be greatly exposed this season.With better passing and holding on to the ball we wouldn’t have conceded several goals.
      In addition,,we need to stick with the four back so that we have that extra midfielder instead of that extra defender.The 3 back makes us less creative and does not suit our style of play from what I’ve
      In a nutsell,there are several players who have bedn poor defensively or offensively and those players should be benched.
      All these would solve our problems easily.

      1. How come Wenger is saying Kolasinac is more suited to a wing back role for a more offensive role when clearly he’s not.Kolasinac is more of a left back to me than LWB just like how Debuchy is.LWB is more demanding and I feel the way he plays is not suited to LWB at all.Even Bellerin who I thought RWB would’ve suited him hasn’t lived up to expectation though in his case I feel it’s due to poor form.Bellerin’s qualities suit either RB or RWB but not for Kolasinac or even Niles who to me will always be a CM who’s just being used as right or left fullback.

        1. We need to buy CDM for at least 60 mil!
          and CB for at least 40 mil, and somebody to replace Alexis, and give Wilshere and spec Ozil whatever they want.

    2. In terms of creating chances, Arsenal are amongst the top in the epl. However, the goals they concede so cheaply puts a question mark on their defending, leaving them look like a championship side. I am convinced, by the statistics, Arsenal are not doing so badly attack wise: they have scored good measure of goals like a top team should do. Well, this is not to say they are good defensively; just to say that if they can enhance their conversion ratio vs-a-vis the chances they create, its natural that the goals they concede will reduce and so will the defensive frailties of the team. Basically, what is of topmost priority to Arsenal is for the team to be more efficient in front of goal-convert more of the chances they create. By this they scare opponents from attacking them freely and thus concede fewer goals.

      1. Well said.Am I right in saying that our passing has been more shocking and woeful than our defending or finishing?If only we passed and held on the ball better numerous goals this season wouldn’t have been conceded due to not aimlessly giving the ball away.How come we never focus on solving our passing problems.Our positioning when receiving passes is also poor.

  1. I view the Premier League teams below as examples:

    – Liverpool: Tend to fight with gung-ho attacks. Very entertaining to watch.

    – Manchester United: Tend to be more defensive and more physical. Boring to watch.

    – Manchester City: Perfect balance between attacking and defending. Entertaining as well.

    I want Arsenal to play like Manchester City, but it would be highly improbable under Wenger. Because Wenger has never learned from top European clubs when he was a football player, whereas Guardiola was one of the top midfielders in Barcelona and Spain.

  2. Just buy a new dm or play coqelin
    And up xhaka to cm position.
    Seem wenger will transform kola to winger, to replace alexis.
    Who know, only god who knowing what wenger mind inside, beside him self.

  3. I thought when he said we always have a high number of players in front of the ball, that that would lead him to the conclusion of keeping another few of them behind the ball. But no, he says we have to get back quicker. He spells out some flaws in our balance but then talks like it’s something to be proud of.

  4. Not doing great in either but attack has been abysmal with a few exceptions. I would hazard a guess we could have gained more points from better attack than better defending this season.

  5. attack: ditch sanchez
    midfield:complete makeover. Xhaka not good enough. Ramsey/Wilshere squad players
    defense: not terrible players, just horribly coached
    GK: time for an upgrade
    Manager: we all know the solution to this

  6. Year after year under Wenger, our problem has been, that we are too easy to score against. That is the plain truth, if you care to look at the facts. Just like it is a fact, you can’t win the league when you can’t defend.
    So the question is very uintelligent and misleading, unless you think Arsenal should forget about getting more points and a better position in the league.
    I am afraid this question cannot be answered by Wenger.

  7. Going for a Palace win tonight.
    They might not have the skill or the players.
    But they have the fight.
    Which is more than Arsenal do.
    What a complete shambles Arsenal are.
    They let their best players leave on a free.
    They don’t invest.
    They stick by a manager who would have been fired years ago anywhere else.
    Where Jack “the invalid” Wilshere’s new contract is the biggest piece of “news” you have to be worried…

      1. That is funny.
        A year ago Arsenal fans were saying he was a physical and financial liability but now, all of a sudden he is the hero of Arsenal and the solution to the inevitable departures of Sanchez and Ozil.
        Wilshere is pants – simple as.
        He could never deliver with consistency when he was fully fit and he sure as hell cannot after a history of injury that makes Evel Knievel seem like a picture of health.
        Agree or not Arsenal are a club in a dire crisis – about to lose our two best players for FREE and competing against the likes of United, City and Chelsea who can offer CL football and more money to the top players.
        And managed by a delusional old fart who should have retired years ago.
        Wilshere the messiah…

  8. Though we’ve been unlucky scoring goals, there has been no shortage of opportunities, and the front line can score, so it seems the offensive drought is momentary. However, the surprising number of amateurish defensive errors and giveaways has taken a big toll and lost us a good 12-15 points. I’m not sure whether these are moments of lack of focus or temporary insanity, but the players are pros and they know that these are simply not the kinds of errors anyone can accept at this level of football. Unfortunately, it appears these stupid mistakes are affecting team confidence, and are probably part of the reason Arsenal played with fear and hesitation in the first half at Anfield. At this point it seems those most responsible–Mustafi and Koscielny, need a rest for defensive solidity and squad confidence to be restored.

  9. Palace will score early and we will have to chase the game leaving us vulnerable at the back thus conceding more as our defence inept. We should be holding strong in defence then hit hard in the counter attack.

  10. Agree AndersS. The Liverpool match highlighted the glaring weakness at centre back and defensive midfield. We scored three yet only scraped a point.Hopefully our new head of recruitment will address these issues asap but at the end of the day as we know to our cost he will have to convince AW that the current incumbents are not up to scratch.I hope I,m wrong but I feel the Kocielney – Mustafi partnership could be a recipe for disaster against the Palace.

  11. Nahh, we are fine, having values and good cohession is all what matters, those who say something else are very mean and jelly

  12. Is that a trick question!!! Conceded 23 goals! Scored 34? Think we need to improve both, starting tonight please! Don’t wait until the second half to start playing! COYG

  13. Do ARSENAL NEED TO SCORE MORE OR DEFEND BETTER? The obvious answer is both but anyone who has ever been involved in building a team whether it be football or rugby will know you start with a superb defence then, somehow, the goals start to come.

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