Emery needs Arsenal to start playing right from the start

All season it looks like Arsenal simply look all at sea in the first half of every game, but after Emery’s half-time talk and a couple of changes they improve dramatically as the game goes on. Emery is very aware of this problem. “I think we need to improve a lot.” he said on Arsenal.com. “I think we have to continue doing a lot of the things to get better. Our demands need to be very high. The supporters can enjoy it with us but also we’re speaking with our reality every day. We need to improve because for example the match against Fulham was a very good result and a very good game for 90 minutes. But in the first 45 minutes I thought we needed to do better.

“If we are remembering the last match at the Emirates [against Watford], we won but not playing like we want, with the control against the opposition. For me now, the most important thing is not to rush. The next game against Leicester is very big, very difficult. Leicester are a very good team and play with a clear identity under Claude Puel. They are very competitive, have very good players and we need every single player, and our mentality together to be stronger than in the last match.”

Leicester are comfortably mid-table, but with recent defeats to Bournemouth and Everton they are hardly world-beaters, and there wins against Newcastle and Huddersfield are not anything to write home about, so we should be feeling pretty confident going into the match, but Emery knows that we have been winning without playing well and that needs to change. “We need to continue working calmly in our bodies and our mentality.” he continued. “Our target now is the same as in the first matches. The first two matches we lost, against Manchester City and Chelsea. But after six matches winning in the Premier League, it hasn’t changed. [We need] this calm because we [beat] a lot of opposition teams with very [poor] performances. We need to stay with the best teams in the Premier League. To stay with them, we need to do better and get better at different things.”

This is a great chance to get our tenth win in a row in front of our own fans, but Emery is right, we really need to start playing well right from the start or one day we are going to get punished.

Darren N


  1. gotanidea says:

    As long as Arsenal can steal the first goal from Leicester, they would most likely be in control

    Therefore they need Xhaka that can score from free-kicks and assist from set-pieces. Also Welbeck, Mustafi and Monreal that are usually threatening in corners

    Arsenal are good in dead ball situations this season and they have to utilize it in the first twenty minutes

    1. sanmi.marvellous says:

      That is our strength, what about Leicester’s strength: counter attack ? How do we curtail that?

  2. Innit says:

    Who is likely to start in central defense?
    Mustafi and Holding?
    Sokratis is doubtful
    Mavrapanos is out

    If that’s the case then Leicester has a real chance of upsetting us at home.

    I would consider starting both Torreira and Guendouzi

    1. kev says:

      I do not rate our defence that much tbh. Both Mustafi and Holding are susceptible to being easily beaten in 1v1’s. What I’ve observed in the past matches is that the midfield has not left them exposed.However,should they be ever exposed then we would be in serious trouble.

      1. Sarmmie says:

        Yeah, you’re right, most of the situations they’ve had to touch the ball were in calm situations

  3. kev says:

    For most part of the season we have looked at sea for both the first half and second half.It’s just that luck has been on our side thus our opponents have not been able to finish their chances.We could have been thrashed badly by some of the smaller teams but thankfully it didnt happen.I also have not been impressed with Unai Emery’s use of Ozil and Ramsey.These two could have been better this season if they had been played in their right positions.If you look back at season 13/14 then you’d know they can play together.The main problem is for Emery to give Ramsey instructions to be more disciplined which is more than possible.

    1. gotanidea says:

      Both Ozil and Ramsey do not look fit into Emery’s high pressing idea. Arsenal have been winning without a lot of contribution from them and I don’t think they won nine times consecutively because of luck

      I hope Emery keeps the winning team’s harmony by excluding the duo

  4. Jah son says:

    I for one would like to see this team given a chance
    Auba Laca
    Gwen Xhaka Torriera
    Mon Rob Must Bell
    I think our front six is Ballance we need two very good full back ones with good ball control like Marcello at Madrid but must have some defensive quality
    Leno keeps is place because he’s simply better with the ball at his feet which makes the defenders most confident.

    1. kev says:

      This would mean basically no width in the team since Bellerin and Monreal can barely take on heir man and aren’t great crossers. The team would also struggle to break down team because out of all the players I cannot mention even one player willing to take on their man.It will be pass,pass and pass.Do not be deceived by the fact that Auba and Laca are upfront so all shall be well.This would also require Ozil to be the main focal point of chance creation and looking at him now that will be a huge risk.We need someone who will be able to take on his man and create chances in very lineup because we are going to really struggle to break down teams in this lineup.It would be far better for Arsenal to use a 4-4-2 if they want to sustainably and successfully fit Auba and Laca in the team.That will be better than this lineup so that at least we can have some wingers in there.

      1. Goonerboi says:

        Agreed! iwobi has to play For directness and myhki for creativity. Laca and torreira should play a bit deeper to help out to control possesion and stop the vardy and ineacho from countering us cause our CBs are getting destroued if exposed.

        Bellerin must holding Monreal

        Mhyki iwobi


      2. Sarmmie says:

        They’re not excellent crossers but bellerin has two assists and monreal has one this season and would have had more if our attackers had been more clinical, they may not get every cross inch perfect but at least they’re creating chances and would create more if we play 3 cmfs

    2. Sarmmie says:

      Personally, this is the lineup I’ve had in mind for a long time, and as for width, bellerin and monreal would provide that. I have a feeling they won’t be faced with 1v1 situations cos a midfield trio of torreira, guendouzi and xhaka would control the game that most times bellerin and monreal would be latching on to through passes and with a touch they can cross the ball to a waiting auba or laca
      And as for dealing with counter attacks, I feel our 3 midfielders will just have to drop back when the fullbacks attack, this will make our midfield more difficult to pass through

  5. AndersS says:

    I really like Emery’s honest and focused approach.
    No bullshit like “we controlled the game, but lost a little bit of cohesion” etc.

    1. ozziegunner says:


  6. Jah son says:

    @ Kev
    That’s your humble opinion
    When you talk about taking on players who’s the player or players arsenal have that has a good success at dribble along with end product
    One of Arsenal’s best weapon is our counter ozil is our greatest threat in that area as he always know the right pass to make would like to see your starting choice.

    1. kev says:

      I said if we must play Auba and Laca together then we must play a lineup which involves players who can take on their men hence the 4-4-2 I stated.On paper,in your lineup you would think Ozil,Laca and Auba will work just like that but even with these three we will still struggle to break teams down if we do not have players in the team willing to run at opposition defenders.Typical example is our last game against Fulham where Iwobi’s dribbling gave them headache allowing us to create many chances.Also,seeing how Emery’s tactics is mostly about use of width when attacking it would be difficult for us if we dont use some dribblers.

  7. Samuel Akinsola Adebosin says:

    If Arsenal play ugly in the PL match at home against Leicester on Monday night, but beat them and collect all the 3 points at stake in the match to extend their winning run to 10 games in all competitions and 7 in the PL, I’ll take the result absolutely over Arsenal to play a control finesse game dominating proceedings in the ,match to the adminiration of the onlookers teeming Gooners watching the match at the Ems. But at the end only to play to the gallery not beating Leicester dropping points in the match. NO!

    I understand Emery’s concern on Arsenal not taking total control of matches they’ve played in the PL so far this season from the onset to dominate the game in both half of the match. But I would want Emery to be calm in his worry on the lack of Arsenal dominating the opposition teams in the PL for 90 minutes plus in the game. I think he should not forget how Arsenal had recovered from their 2 opening season games lose to Man City and Chelsea when the Gunners played exuberant game in the 2 matches but lost. And after they have regroupped, they approached their next match at home against West Ham in the PL calmly allowing West Ham to come at them showing early initiatives in the game to score which they did. But the Gunners latter took control of the match hitting the Hammers on the break which gave Arsenal a 3-1 home win over the Hammers. And since then, they’ve looked to be comfortable playing cautiously in the first half to contain the opposition team first, but go full blast in the 2nd half to outdo the opponent teams in the game to beating them.

    Emery can continue impacting his philosophy to the Gunners, but not to the expense of jeopardizing their current game winning mentality that is seeing Arsenal winning games on the run currently which him and the Gunners should ensured it continues.

    With time, what Emery wants to see happen in the Gunners will eventually happened as they grow from confidence to confidence which will make what Emery wants to see happen start happening.

  8. dotash says:

    Winning 9 consecutive matches is no longer a luck, it is called performance. Do you guys expect us to play beautiful football and the score line to remain 1-1, maybe against Fulham our last adversary, I don’t think so, therefore, a win is a win. Against Chelsea we played some beautiful football but lost at the end due to our wastages in front of goal, I don’t want a repeat, any how we can win, it is acceptable to me, even if we have referee help called penalty, it is welcome. But playing beautifully and still lose, l say capital NO to this.

    1. Goonerboi says:

      Agreed I love this robust and rigid Arsenal. Definitely gets the heart racing but I definitely prefer this than having 78% possession and drawing 1-1 like the Arsebe days

  9. Clergy says:

    Arsenal performances has been admiring base on their effort and creativity.Sokratis overlap in dat position so i prefer Emery should continue using Holding than sokratis to partner mustafi due to his confidentiality.ln the attack,Auba should play alongside Laca while torrera nd xhaka should hold our defensive mildfil.

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