Does this mean Arsenal are in BIG trouble?

First of all you have to decide whether the former Arsenal forward and current TV pundit Charlie Nicholas has a point and if he does, whether it is a big problem for Arsene Wenger and the Arsenal players to overcome. The fact that the Scot made his claim about the Gunners before we struggled to a draw in the north London derby certainly supports the theory he put forward that Arsenal are still suffering the same problems that affected us last season.

Nicholas told Sky Sports that he feels that any improvement in the Arsenal side of the current season is only a very small one, despite the fact that ahead of the clash with Spurs we had taken 25 points which is a significant improvement on the 17 points we had at the same point last year.

He said, “I think Arsenal are what they are, I don’t think it’s dramatically improved, it’s slightly better.

“The cohesion of the team domestically is a bit better and they’re coping at the moment without the vast injuries that they have.

“I think the vulnerabilities Arsenal have been there for the last eight years.

“Everybody knows you can get at them defensively, they’ve improved a bit as their record this season tells you and they’re eight points better off than they were this time last season. It’s a team that’s improved in terms of the performances of Ozil in particular going forward.

“Sanchez we know what he gives you. Giroud is not playing well for me yet but he’s nicking a few goals so the positive side is still the attacking side.

“I’m still unsure whether Cazorla is right for certain games in the deep lying midfield.

“He’s got wonderful ability, two great feet but when you’re asking him to do the other side of these games the hard yards, it’s a difficult process for him. I think he was one of those who were exposed against Bayern.”

It is hard for us to gauge just how much the injury situation is affecting the Gunners at the minute, but you would have to assume that having the likes of Koscielny and Cazorla fully fit, and also having the likes of Walcott, Ramsey and Bellerin available for selection would give us a much better chance of beating the spuds.

But the suggestion that we are only a little better this time around could be backed up by the struggles of our big rivals like Chelsea, Liverpool and even Man City. The league leaders have been having to cope without two of their vital stars in the shape of Sergio Aguero and David Silva, so the news on the injury website that both are due back in action after the international break, could spell trouble for Arsenal.

City also have Zabaleta and Nasri due back straight after the break, so will Champagne Charlie´s gloomy assessment of Arsenal prove to be correct? And if so, what can Wenger and Arsenal do about it?

Tags Aguero Man City Silva


  1. Listen Baby Please

    He is one pundit out of many

    Lets hope that we at least get Bellerin, Walcott, Ramsey, Ospina and Ox after the break so that we can compete

    Yes City will be strengthened with Aguero and Silva but we need to concentrate on ourselves and concentrate on winning

  2. Every team is a potential candidate for injuries. Nothing stops players coming back from injury to have a relapse or some other injury. Any team can lose key players at any stage of the season and if it means we have to face up to the return of Silva and Aguero , than we have to be prepared and prove our mettle against them. The squad that beat Man Utd 3-0 will do just fine against Man City also, so let’s not think too far ahead and rather focus on WBA up next.

  3. well 8pts better off than last season ,don,t forget we have at least 8 players out so imagine when they all get back,fresh and rested!!can,t wait:)

  4. 1. Arsenal’s terrible injury record = is often a primary cause of their troubles. Solving the injury problem will be the key. It may take some transfers to overcome it.

    2. As Jamie Carragher pontificates and criticizes…….. Ozil is on the pitch breaking all the assist records while every other pundit is singing Ozil’s praises. Jamie, it seems you are all alone on grumpy idiot island.

    3. I loved Wenger’s little dig at Spurs when he stated Cazorla’s 1st half illness made Spurs look good because they were effectively playing vs. a 10 man Arsenal side. Way to go, Arsene.

  5. Although we would like to see players coming back from injuries asap its more likely that this list of injuries will keep increasing since it takes only a match to get injured but weeks/months to return from injury. Wenger needs to get his decisions right because its that time of the year where we begin to lose points and sight of title. Must remain in top 2 by the start of January!

  6. We will have them back but it’s down to AW not to send players out for there countries
    The reason is this they are tired and need the rest both on and if the park. We pay them and if they can’t put a shift in for us then they stay. We need to buy in Jan and there are loads of names but look at home for EPL harden players. Vardy the lad from the spuds loads of players. We need Carl back next season and let West Ham take chambers plz take him coz I just don’t rate him at all. We need a change in the back room staff but all this can be done without up setting anything. First thing we need a captain Ozill or Peter but someone that plays for us and all the dead wood out

  7. It depends to how quickly people return from injuries. Injuries happening at the same time and to players with the same role is somewhat random, I am hoping and somewhat expecting a relatively quick return of Ramsey, Ox and Bellerin after the international break. If injured players consistently return faster than they used to that would represent real improvement.

    Beyond that, Arsenal is clearly much improved in the league. In three weeks, 7 of 9 points from Everton, Swansea and Tottenham. Last year the Gunners gained 5 of 18 points against these three teams. Home 2-0 Everton, 0-1 Swansea, 1-1 Tottenham for 4 points. Away 2-2 draw with Everton and 2-1 losses to Swansea and Tottenham for 1 point. Throw in the 3-0 win against United and that the away wins to Leicester and Palace look more impressive now that we see how those teams have been doing this year.

    Clearly we have a ways to go; Bayern proved that. And there was summer business that could have been done that wasn’t — beyond the obvious DM I would have liked to see the purchase of an “in case of emergency, break glass” CB — a veteran who would be content to sit unless injury to starters compelled him playing. Arteta fits that bill in the midfield, but we don’t have a CB like that. The purpose of this would be to loan out Chambers to get him game time. It’s another sign of progress that we are loaning out players like Akpom and Hayden rather than keeping them deep on the Arsenal bench, but Chambers was a big omission in my opinion, and his progress suffers for not playing.

    I would also play Ramsey in central midfield against more physical teams to give Cazorla rest and consider playing Walcott on Giroud’s right for some games to get both goal scorers on the pitch at the same time. Add in more rotation and bringing on the Campbells and DeBuchys when there is a 3 goal lead and 15 minutes left. Then your injury replacements aren’t coming into the starting lineup cold.

    All of these should not negate that we built a good first XI, or XII if you consider Walcott and Giroud to be rotating at striker. But there are areas that could be better if we are to continue to chase the title.

  8. Charlie is correct in his assessment. Cazola,though playing well still puts a burden on the defensive side required when we are having to defend. It’s the same roll Arteta has even though he’s an offencive player similar to Cazola.
    Wenger won’t go out and buy a player for that particular roll,he just converts from within ie penny pinching.. As for the striker roll,everybody and his uncle knows we need an extra class striker. Proof being Chelski ‘s main problem. A striker.

  9. Well Arsenal have got more away games than city so it hits bad on Arsenal where City rip into teams by 5 or 6 goals.Liverpool and Southhampton have to do a job on city.

  10. Is it only me that feels Cazorla’s form is in part due to Coquelin? Coquelin’s game has dropped in recent in my opinion. I recall somebody wondering whether Coquelin was “saving” himself for the Bayern game after an average performance against Swansea. Ideally it should have been Coquelin tackling Alaba for the 3rd goal and not Cazorla.

  11. Walcott and Bellerin are the key players here. Without them we’re left lacking, Giroud missed 3 chances, 2 were right there for him to put in the goal. Debuchy is not good enough at this level and bellerin has proved himself already so i cannot wait for those two players to come back. Ramsay and OX are nice to have but i want to stress that we MUST give sanchez a rest against west brom. We can put Gibbs up there who showed how crucial he was when he came on as a LW so wenger needs to be decisive and rest him immediately. Coquelin also must be rested, flamini can play against west brom, arteta can come in for cazorla 70 min. Lastly, Mertersacker should be rested for Gabriel

  12. In any team you have to start from the back, work into your core and let the flare players do their jobs. At the moment our back four is constantly shifting due to Kos and Bellerin picking up injuries. Then our CM has been bullied all season as we’ve been forced to pretty much constantly use Santi, Coq and Ozil in EVERY game due to injuries in the middle to Arteta, Flamini, Jack, Rosicky and now Rambo. Our CF position is now lacking depth due to Theo’s injury. This has left us a bit predictable up top.

    In short – If you whip out Kompany, Aguero, Nasri, Navas, Delph, Zabaleta and Fernando from their team and have already overplayed every other player, then by now you might see some small dip in form. Low and behold – city HAVE dropped some silly games.

    Want to know a fun fact? We are 7 games off the half way point. We have West Brom, Sunderland, Bournemouth, Villa and Norwich to play in that. 5/7 games with bottom half teams. 3/3 of the bottom 3. And yet…we’re joint top of the table. If that says anything to me it says we have most definitely improved. There are still kinks BUT we are definitely playing well most of the time and a sudden dip that has coincided with an injury bout is no surprise. Get some players back, we’ll get our form back.

  13. Thank arsena in January should go buy Kane and vardy and a EPL player that can play as DM. We have the cash and they would come to Arsenal

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