Five things we can take from Arsenal’s loss to Wolves

Well, that was not good, was it? Another poor showing from the team and now Arsenal’s top-four hopes are no longer in our own hands with just three games to go.

Where does one start? There are problems all over the place and not just with the players and it is hard to see how we are going to be able to turn things around any time soon and the performance on the field last night against Wolves is a clear indicator that all is not rosy with our beautiful club.

Arsenal need a leader

That is now abundantly clear, a Tony Adams of old would have steadied the ship when Wolves were overrunning us in the first half and kept the score down while we regrouped, there was zero sign of that last night and not just from Laurent Koscielny but from anyone on the pitch.

The defence is not fit for purpose

Monreal simply does not have the legs anymore, Sokratis is mediocre at best, Maitland-Niles progression is starting to flounder, Koscielny has little impact as a leader – and apart from maybe one or two players we are seriously lacking in depth in terms of defensive quality.

Ozil is no longer a great asset

His defenders are running out of excuses, he offered up nothing once again and it is ok blaming the players around him but where was his influence? his encouragement? his leading by example?

Emery is lacking a credible plan B

Too often recently Unai Emery has been unable to change the direction of a game, against Everton, against Crystal Palace and even against Watford he was unable to turn things around, his substitutions and tactical changes have made almost no difference and at some point, the buck has to stop with the manager.

Arsenal are not fit for Champions League football

Unless a huge influx of quality players are brought in Arsenal will just be making up the numbers if they qualify for the Champions League, we are just not good enough. We are closer to Wolves than Liverpool or Man City and that is just in the Premier League. You can forget PSG, Barca, Juve, Bayern Munich and Ajax, we are not in their class.

I actually made a list of ten issues and could have made even more that is how deep the problems run with us right now and it is depressing and the really sad thing is, that last night’s defeat was not a surprise.

Updated: April 25, 2019 — 9:48 am

57 Comments

  1. things are changing

    I won’t argue with most of the list. But let’s be careful with drawing conclusions when we are on a low. I know I am on a low and this part week Emery has gone from a great step up from last season to a manager who can no longer get his players to play with any form of urgency and organization.

    We can really truly only judge his first season by the final results. If he gets us into the CL he will have done a good job. If he fails we can speak about his shortcomings.

    If we qualify for CL football we deserve to be there IMO.

    But the truth is, my biggest worry is Emery being able to sell enough players to turn this team around. Without us getting rid of some of our flops we won’t have funds to build a team. And we are poor when it comes to selling players and the quality of the players we have to sell gets weaker and weaker. No sales no purchases.

  2. I’ll get in quick and post this comment I made on an earlier article as people may have missed it:

    In defence of Ozil – again!

    James I agree with your call to calm down and that Emery has done a reasonable job with the dross at his disposal.
    However, in my opinion, I think you, along with many others, look at Ozil in completely the wrong way.
    Ozil is a creator of chances/passes. With only a lone striker up against Wolves, who defend with every man once the opposition get the ball, that striker will be marked out of the game by at least 2, and possibly 3, defenders. If Ozil passes to him in this situation Laca has no chance and will inevitably lose the ball.

    So let’s check out who else he was supposed to pass to in that line up in order to create shooting chances:
    1) Mkhitaryan? Hahaha! Is he a striker? No! Is he a winger? No! Is he a creator? No! In fact what the hell is he? Exactly why is he in the squad?
    2) Iwobi? Does his best and is enthusiastic but a striker? Did you see his latest passes to the opposing goalkeepers? Believe it or not they were supposed to be shots!
    3) Did we have an attacking midfielder in that line up to take the place of Ramsey and make runs into the box so Ozil could pick him out? No!
    Xhaka? You’ve got to be joking. Torreira? Well he did his best to get forward but was brought in to protect the defence and so both he AND the defence suffered as a result.

    So UE fields a line up of defensive players – again – and lets Wolves attack us, with the usual consequences.

    Suggestions:
    UE is supposed to be known for giving youngsters a chance so why didn’t he grab that chance and:
    1) As soon as it was known that Auba was not playing he should have been replaced by Nketiah FROM THE START!
    2) Likewise from the subs bench only Joe Willock is known to get forward. With no Smith Rowe available at the moment he’s all we’ve got! So maybe Xhaka out and Willock in?

    This would have given Ozil passing targets of 2 strikers, an attacking midfielder and the wing backs – NOT JUST LONE STRIKER LACA!

    Please stop the Ozil hating until you understand his role and realise he needs the ammo, in the form of striking options, to pass to. If UE is going to field a defensive line up then Ozil should not even be in the squad. On the other hand if we want to attack then Ozil should be the first name on the team sheet.

    And now a few words from our haters . . . 🙂

    1. Here we go again. This is no different than what was pointed out in the article. All Ozil defenders can do in consistently blame either Emery or the players around Ozil. It is NEVER Ozil’s fault for going missing. Ozil has had games where he has played w/ both Auba and Lacazette and he was just as poor. He does nothing during the game to suggest he is any more useful than Iwobi or Miki either. He is not a leader, does not take the game by the scruff of the neck (you’d think for somebody making that much money he’d demand the ball constantly and try to direct play instead of just hiding and casually drifting). He’s a passenger and the only reason he gets so much defending is because of his previous reputation and better days before he came to Arsenal. Your suggestions are completely due to hindsight as well. If we started Willock and still got annihilated we’d be saying how much we miss Xhaka. You can suggest formation and personnel changes all you like, Ozil has gone missing in all those types of situations. Need to wake up and realize he is a liability. He’s part of the group of players that are widely inconsistent and when they do finally have a good game we pretend they are top players. Ozil is not, and neither are the several others that get this kind of praise. You want to know why Emery does not build the team around Ozil? He shows no form, no desire. Why would any sane manager build a team around somebody like that? And before you go with the predictable rebuttal, no Ozil is not to blame for everything wrong with the team. But he is another member that is dragging it down.

    2. Here you go again. According to Roy Keane “great players make others around them better”. But our suppose best player is always excused from blame because others are poor. But our less talented players even put in more effort in matches than him. As long as I’m concern if we must criticize our players Ozil should be no 1 on that list because he is suppose to lead this squad but guess what he goes missing in matches faster than the below average players. This squad don’t have character, how many time have they rely on the coach’s halftime talk before winning games. Bring in the best coach this group of players won’t stop embarrassing performances. We requested for back four we got it yesterday, Ozil played 90 minutes yesterday, and that was our best available squad yesterday and people are still shouting Emery. These players are disappointing, they did it with Wenger and now Emery

    3. This delusion about Ozil has to stop. He’s had his chances and has failed to lead or impress. Even when Giroud was here Ozil actually did better than he’s doing, especially since Laca and Auba arrived… He’s finished mate

  3. Seeing iwobi playing playing making me to hate football

  4. Well said gunner jack

  5. .Jack, you must be joking to call other players worthless and then praise Ozil. I am beginning to think you didn’t watch that match because the Ozil I saw couldn’t drive the ball apart from safe passes here and there. Kevin at Mancity will drive the ball as well as David Silva or Isco or any known ten in any top team. Ozil has hardly played in any through ball in eons, I am sure Guendouzi is even ahead of him in that regard.

    …..Auba is a quick player as well as his partner, how many through balls has he received from Ozil since he came into the club. Ozil couldn’t drive the ball, couldn’t control and dictate play and kept on passing and passing to no attacking outcome. His crosses went to no one and that’s his best ability as most of his assists from us have been from crosses into the box. The guy has no use for us or any top team. He is a waste of space and obviously, Ramsey is the better player hence why he was quickly snapped up by Juventus.

    …. I want him gone and thank God, the Arsenal board too want the same thing

    1. James I wasn’t trying to praise Ozil, just defend him from unfair criticism.
      When you say ‘drive the ball’ I’m not sure what you mean. Drive the ball forward to one of our attackers (we didn’t have any except for Laca) or try to do a Hazard and drive through the opposition with the ball himself? Ozil is a totally different player to that and a similar player to Hazard would likely cost a fortune – if one could be found.

      1. I don’t like Ozil and Mkhit in the same line-up I must admit, esp not an away game. I am not blaming those two, but those two were apart of it, too many of our players were not in the right frame of mind. Some used to say Ozil and Ramsey in the same team doesn’t do it for them, but I never minded those two as they are two of our biggest talents, esp at home you can see the sense. But Mkhit and Ozil, if they can’t give killer passes then the mental strength and physical strength works against us, the cover will also lack at times, and that can be a large advantage to give to an opponent.

        I do feel that Emery got his team selection wrong, I still think that most of the blame goes onto the players, they are responsible for their own performance. Not sure of what the choices were with selection, some look low on fuel, Niles is already filling in, Monreal has not got the engine, so without knowing everything behind scenes, maybe he got the team selection a bit wrong ..but that doesn’t let our players off the hook.

      2. Ozil cost us a fortune. Probably higher than what Chelsea paid for Hazard

  6. The five issues raised are all relevant but the matter of our woeful defence is the one which needs attention without delay.Opposition fans including some of my relations in Leicester, look forward with eager anticipation to the visit of Arsenal, not to admire our attractive style of play, but to witness first hand our laughable attempts to defend..They actually pencil in our visit as a home banker and look forward to seeing our aging defenders floundering against their attack despite the fact that their forwards are not world beaters.In three consecutive league matches we have been abysmal and quite frankly I expect us to lose against a speedy Leicester side who are not burdened by the physical demands of Europa Cup football.In fact , the Europa Cup has completely drained our players and quite frankly the prospect of competing in this competition next year could again deny us a realistic opportunity to make the top four as we simply do not have the playing resources to compete on two fronts.Isn’t it sad for an Arsenal supporter to be thinking along these lines, but quite frankly I no longer feel frustrated when we lose away from home because it has become the norm.

  7. You are right in your assessment and i think all these problems will not go away until we start acting like a big club and invest in players that will take us forward, no more buying of limited players like kolasinac who can’t defend, or xhaka that has no mobilty, mistake ridden mustafi, average elneny etc.

    These issues run deep and i have been saying how limited and unbalanced our squad is, apart from the inadequate investments, when we have actually spent, we have bought players with the wrong technical, mental and physical capabilities.

    Apart from the glaring deficiencies in defence where we lack solid defenders, our attack and midfield is equally limited which also puts pressure on the defence because all we do is pass sideways and backwards until these smaller teams recover, win the ball and counter us. We lack dribblers to attack with speed and directness, it’s like we are allergic to buying wingers/wing forwards. Imagine if we had players like sane, mane, sterling and salah. We would be a much dangerous team but it requires money to acquire players of such quality and the earlier the club realises this, the better. This why I still back emery because he needs a better squad to show his best qualities, he is tinkering too much because he can’t settle on a good enough first team. Do you think he would tinker so much if he had the liverpool or man city squad? NO. We need better players!

    We need to go out there and get a minimum of 4 top players in the CB, LB, winger and CAM/CM positions to start building a proper team. I think we need more than 4 players but i would rather spend on 4 quality players than a bunch of average limited players to just make up the numbers.

    1. 👍plus players with professional pride, heart and mongrel.

      1. I read somewhere that players are a true reflection of their manager. Surely that was evident in Wenger’s long career.

    2. That Brazilian youngster we bought, he plays on the wing or as a second striker (when Auba doesn’t start we sometimes miss the second striker role of Lacazette – as he’s now the leading man) And we’ll be targeting a decently (25m – 40m) priced one in Europe also. So fear not about us not going for wingers, Emery is of the mind that you are, he sees it as a necessity. The kid looks good on his clips, not reliable to go on those alone but at-least you get a small picture.

      He’s quick, looks handy with ball control, he’s Brazilian, and he looks tall for his age, not too small at-least. I seen him play an Ozil like touch on one clip when he raced forward and then just let the ball hit off his foot and delicately beat the keeper, it showed he has a mind even under pressure.

      Do you know what this last spell says to me, that people are kidding themselves if they believe Nelson could be ready for next season. To come back and be the type of wideman that we need him to be, I think he’ll spend another season on loan and then he’ll be an understudy on his first season back. Smith Rowe might help make up our numbers next season, esp with Ramsey gone, and I’d prefer to see him at an away game that a couple of others if last night is anything to go by.

      I’m more concerned with what type of CB are we going to bring in and will it be more than one. The best ones are going to be very expensive, Liv and City saw to that. Your man off Tott is good, but are they gonna stall because he only has a short window at that price, I think he’s a very good player but a wee bit over-hyped. Koulibaly, he didn’t look too hot over our games with Napoli, see, as good as he can be, he’s never going to be that captain Marvel we all want though.

      1. How often do we play two strickers. The poor fans are as confused as the players them selves.

        1. Lol, certainly after over a decade of heart breaks

  8. We started brightly, very brightly, but then the goal just knocked the stuffing out of us, after that then came the errors and there was no coming back. Leno is off form all of a sudden right after he gets into player of season category (that ref though, that wall was at least 15 feet back, nowhere near ten feet).

    The thing about these last two defeats, our opponents didn’t bring a physical game, not the way you’d expect from an away match at that ground anyway. Because they didn’t it meant we looked relaxed, we play better when we’re winning 50/50s, chasing lost causes and stuff, I don’t know why we can’t just turn that on no matter what game the others are playing, esp if we go a goal down because you’d think we’d jump into action with the fear of not making the CL places. That’s the tough part to take, we know what sort of game these players can be capable of, and we’re more than a match for every team bar the two top clubs right now, that is why it’s such a hard pill to swallow for me, I feel they really let us fans down. As for the fans at the game, I must admit they were in brilliant voice before it all crumbled, I remember thinking at one stage that they are as loud as the Emirates, and consistent with it though, they brought their A game.

  9. Emery needed to name a captain this season. This passing of the armband is ridiculous. No leaders at this club. Not one. And honestly, out of the players that played yesterday, I only hope to see Leno, Lacazette, and Torreira as important players in the coming years. In 2-3 years I hope to look back and see the majority of this squad gone because most of them are infected with whatever mentality Wenger was spreading around for over a decade.

  10. Is everyone saying we do a Fulham and waste our money again? Or be sensible and bring through our own players or find a good young player from a lower league. But then either way we’ve developed a reputation for being shit that I don’t think any sane player wants to join us.

    1. Better yet find a suitable manager first.

      1. I still think Emery could do us good as this is not the players he wants. Even Pep looked bad in his first season and he had some really good players still, Klop if am correct finished 7th…
        Let’s judge the man at the season’s end. At least we could still win Europa!

  11. I am still waiting for someone to tell me that Wolves, West Ham, Everton, Crystal Palace have better players than us, until someone will say these teams have better individual players than us, until then I will never agree that our players are craps. The difference between our team and these teams is that they have managers who are ready to do whatever it takes to beat us. We have a manger who doesn’t even understand what formation he wants to use, how can these players perform consistently? How can they know who is on their left or right consistently on a give match day? Even we fans don’t know what to expect, these manger doesn’t know exactly what they are doing, he is playing us as we go. I have studied all successful teams and they are very consistent in the way they SETUP, THE WAY THEY PLAY, WHO IS ON EVERY PART OF THE PITCH. Emery doesn’t know what he is doing, he doesn’t have a clue about Arsenal’ type of football so all our players are either bad or not good enough. Emery is doing an average job!!! Hopefully we can win Europa League

    1. Yes they have a more balance squad than us. All we have in our team is a group of sideways passers. No penetration, no risk taking. That is why the coach often try to fit in Kolasinac at least to provide crosses into the box. Wolves; Adams, Costa, Crystal Palace; Zaha, Townsend, Everton; Richarlison, Sigurdsson, Bernardo even West Ham Felipe all these players drive at their makers and they take risk for the team. How many of such calibre of players do we have in our team, the only player who even attempt such is who we criticize the most.

      1. We were never sideways passers until Emery came, and even Wenger in his last days never play sideways football. Am sure no player will play like this under their own instructions. 4 away games now and all we do is sideways and backwards football. Appalling football!!!!!

        1. You are not honest

          1. Martin, what do you mean I am not honest, were we like this sideways football club under Wenger, and if so should it continued under Emery (because he obviously would know that is part of what needs to change, and He needed more than 4 away defeats without correction) because every one knows what style of football Wenger plays. And that is attacking football Barcelona style, except he we were not as good as them.

          2. Please remember that Klop finished 7th in his first season

      2. Ask your manger why we play like this for a while now and there is no correction, yesterday was a nightmare!!!!

  12. Pat, I keep asking you and others, should Emery leave, who do you want to coach/manage Arsenal?
    Which well credentialled manager would be attracted to the Emirates given the quality of the current squad, the probable transfer budget, Kroenke’s ownership and the self sustaining financial model of Arsenal FC?
    The majority of professional pundits believe Unai Emery has over achieved in his first season to have Arsenal where they are given the lack of squad depth, quality of defenders, injuries and transfer budget and the fact that he took over from Arsene Wenger, who had managed the Club for 22 years.
    You disagree, but appear to be in the minority in the football world.

    1. Majority is normally who we go with seen that we are in a democratic environment.

  13. And what difference it makes what coach anyone on here favours. It’s still the club duty to provide a suitable pick which Emery clearly was not.

    1. Jah son your reasoning is totally irrational; hve you ever passed an exam in your life, played sport at any level, coached or achieved anything in your life. All you ever do is knock, without given any alternative suggestions to make improvements.

  14. People need to remember that our problems run deep. As I said in a previous thread, that horror show at Wolves, is exact same type of performance I have been seeing for years, not just the last couple of seasons. It was nothing new.

    Despite what some fans were saying, that Wenger left the club in a good place, they are now seeing how wrong they were. I said at the beginning of the season that Emery inherited an absolute mess. It wasn’t just the lack of quality, but also the fragile mentality of the squad, and the club as a whole. The entire team needs to be gutted, and completely rebuilt, and that’s never going to happen in just the two transfer windows that Emery’s had so far. Might even need 6 windows, and even then it’ll depend on what funds are available? I actually feel that Emery has over achieved thus far, and I am amazed how much he’s been able to squeeze out of his average squad, especially given the injuries.

    Clearly about 80/90% of the squad needs to go, and we need some real leaders in, and a lot of defensive minded players.

  15. I think Emery has along way to go.He just messing chances to enter top 4

  16. All these players suffer from a weak mentality. Very few of them deserve to be in this club. Yesterday’s match reminded me of how much Sanchez used to scare opponents & fight for the ball while his mates were just strolling. Just look at the work rate & desire of those Wolves players & compare that with us. We don’t have any player who can change a match for us like Sanchez (hate to say this) used. It’s time to let go of these overpaid & weak players & start investing in the youth. Give Nketiah a chance in the remaining fixtures & bin Iwobi (don’t wana see this guy in our starting line up ever). Let Willock or Saka replace Mhki & Ozil. I used to like Ozil but it’s time to let him go. I’m tired of seeing overpaid players do nothing on the pitch & being dominated by a 10 man Watford.
    Arsenal comes first for me, so any player can f**k off if they can’t respect & fight for the badge.

  17. Am sure if we give this squad of players to a manager like Klopp or Pep within six weeks you can see the changes needed. You will be seeing a brand of football and a clear system of play. We might lose more games but the weak links would be obvious. Never have I heard of a club of arsenal stature not having quality players. Emery is just simply outclassed.

    1. You would be wrong I am afraid, and Pep is a perfect example in his first season. He inherited a quality squad, spent £190 million (£160 million net spend), and finished 3rd in his first season, and I don’t think he even made a semi-final of any of the cup competitions.

      I am not saying that Emery is or isn’t the right choice, but I think he’s won about the most trophies of any manager over the last 5/6 years, so clearly he isn’t rubbish. Our problems are more about how poor the squad is in quality, and their fragile mentality. How many of our players would get into the Spurs, City, Liverpool lineups?

      1. It’s not about the trophies. It is about having a system of play.
        We don’t know if Emery needs full backs or wing backs.
        We don’t know if he wants old fashioned wingers or ones that cut inside.
        We do not know if Emery prefers 3 at the back or 4.
        We do not know if Emery likes playing two strickers which was clear before taking the job.
        Since Unai Emery joined our club he has given us more questions than answers.

        1. Jah son, gotanidea is one of the most consistent contributors on this platform, he understands formation (at least more than me) he likes Emery, Iwobi, he is at least fair in his estimation of events and yet he doesn’t know what formation Emery uses, he doesn’t understand his players selections, or the changes our manger makes. How then can the players understand what to do consistently. How can they know what each other will do if given the ball, so automatically all the players will look bad and weak and underperforming. Consistency is one of the rules of football.

        2. You’re right in regards to a defined style of play. I am not sure what Emery wants half the time?

          Clearly he does his homework on his opponents, but maybe he goes overboard? I get the impression he’s so focused on his opponent, that he doesn’t develop his own style, which clearly hasn’t been helping the players. On the flip side, maybe that’s why he wins so many trophies? Wenger didn’t give opponents a second thought, and it showed. Whereas Emery knows how to counter his opponents strengths, and that probably helped him to 3 EL in a row, including beating Klopp’s Liverpool, amongst other successes. It’s also why we’ve seen a huge improvement from us in big games. I get the impression that he does have a style of play, but that he cannot implement it with the current squad.

          I think it’s tough for Emery, because he picked a much stronger team against Wolves, yet got a much worse performance than what he saw in the Palace game. This is why he tinkers so much, because even our strongest lineup is almost as bad as our weakest.

    2. Jah son thanks!!! Players are a reflection of the mangers. Look at wolves, championship they always perform even if they lose, Broussia Dortmund were as difficult to play as Liverpool are now, different clubs, different players, different owners. Pep the same, his team are always special, different players, different club. Emery is not a bad manager but he is doing a bad job at Arsenal for reasons I don’t know but all our players cannot be this bad.

      1. When a team gets to the point where the manager doesn’t know who to pick I think motivation is a serious factor. It’s been a sad season through and through its even hard to pick the player of the season simply because arsenal haven’t had a player bang in from this season.

  18. I agree with Gunner Jack to the extent that Ozil should not have been picked for the game. The situation did not suite him, Ozil is a luxury player and away at Wolves isn’t a luxury game.

    I am however more concerned that we selected a defensive lineup (without Mustafi) and still managed to leak 3 goals. From an attacking sense it was clear how much of a hole Ramsey leaves in our side, and finding an appropriate replacement needs to rank right up there with further improvements to our defense.

    In terms of our attacking in general however, I am fairly satisfied, we have only gone two games in the league this season without scoring. Over the last two games we have scored 3 goals, the problem is that we conceded 6 and no team with designs on the top 4 can hope to cope with defense like that.

    Reference has been made to a plan B, and I must say that I agree. Games like this we miss Giroud, Wolves defended very well and Ozil and co. struggled to pass through them, we needed a target man in the box to put the 70+ percent possession that we had to better use. Lacazette was totally isolated.

    I do however credit Guendouzi for trying to get the ball forward and get the ball into the box instead of sideways and backward passing that was the norm until he came on, he is 10 years younger than Ozil and he appears to already read the game better.

  19. I can deal with them losing, what I can’t deal with is how we fall apart once we concede… had a lot of the play once again – did nothing with it, once again!
    The sideways & backwards passing is back with a bang! Leicester up next… to say I’m nervous is an understatement

  20. The simple truth is that teams like Man City and Liverpool have good players yes but the difference between them and the rest of the top 6 is they work them socks off in EVERY game.How many times have we send Arsenal players after they loose the ball just jog back and make no effort to help the rest of the team.That’s the simple truth and until we get a team that is prepared to work as hard as the top 2 we have no chance of winning anything.Just look at Man U ,a squad that cost a fortune and most of the players are just lazy.Money isn’t the answer ,getting the right type of player is.

    1. Very true!! Commitment and hardwork in most games is what makes a set of winners… James Milner is a true example of that

  21. Very good point Highbury.Even when they are a few goals ahead Man City players work their socks off.They have to because their Manager does not tolerate anything less.On the same theme I have to say the Man Utd team all worked hard yesterday but they were simply inferior to their opponents in most positions including goalkeeper on the night.

    1. Exactly the manager won’t except any thing else.This is where Emery has to stamp down on our lazy players,but the problem at present is the squad is thin he can’t do this .

  22. Before anyone can ever win a battle they have to have the desire and will to win. Clearly we at Arsenal, with a very few exceptions, have lacked this vital necessity for many of Wengers last decade and clearly we still lack even now. This is by no means unique to us; it is also seen at United and other big clubs, notably Chelsea too. But NOT at City, Liverpool and Spurs, plainly! Why is this then? Several factors are plain. We have a lot of players who are simply weak in character , in desire and also too old and too wage comfortable. Then we have to factor in the widespread snowflake players rife throughout top level football. Nothing wrong with their inate ability but everything wrong with their courage or more precisely their LACK of courage. I identified this total lack of desire and of weakness (weediness, as I call it) in Walcott almost at the very start of his Arsenal career and called him out for it loudly long and correctly. We have a number of Walcotts in our team and squad, notably, Ozil, Mkhi, Auba and we have a greater number of just nowhere near good enough , but who show more desire. But my point has ALWAYS BEEN that without GREAT DESIRE AND GREAT TALENT TOO, EVERY PLAYER IS NOT EFFECTIVE ENOUGH AT OUR LEVEL. So then , WHICH players have talent and desire? Clearly Lacazette for one. Mostly Torriera and also Leno. In terms of consistency for both, the list ends here and that is a frightening thought. In essence we have three players who are reliably brave, talented and who show desire. Now, it is clear that even brave, talented and committed players sometimes have off days. This happened at Wolves and it must be recognised that a team with three players only who have these qualities will always be beaten by a team who have all eleven committed , brave and talented , EVEN WHEN the talent part of that equation is lesser than in our team. This has been amply proven throughout Wengers last several years and ALSO this season, in almost every away game of late.

    So should we blame the present manager for the faults he was forced to inherit from the Wenger era players? As a fair man and a realist I say an emphatic NO! But my opinion is NOT shared by the majority on here who are slaughtering Emery for his failure to instill desire in Wengers spineless players and for his inability to instill more talent in Wengers brave enough but just not good enough players. Mustafi for instance. He does not lack courage but he does lack EVERYTHING ELSE A PLAYER NEEDS. He lacks, focus, concentration, speed, an ability to stay on his feet, to jockey an opponent into a safer position ( to show him inside / outside), judgement , even basic ability and any sense of leadereship too. He is also too short and poor in the air at the needed level. Now, I have many times written on here that, IMO, it is just not possible to make a silk purse from a sows ear. Mustafi is possibly the very best of all as an example of this unpalatable but obvious truth. Yet others blame Emery for this? Why? Are they stupid, unfair, vindictive , rash, hasty and looking around angrily for anyone connected to our club to vent their anger upon? I believe that in some cases they are, though others are not. But all are blaming the wrong man, even so. I suggest to the thinkers on here – I will not my waste time on those who refuse to think or who simply cannot think properly – that Wenger, aided and abetted by the morally corrupt ( though legal) “villain” of the piece Gazidis, are the two men responsible for our present laughably thin sqaud of players with all three qualities we need. I would add that such as Holding and Nelson, Nketia, Smith -Rowe and other fringe players retain my support, even though as yet, their talent quota is still unproven and cannot be accurately valued. They all show promise in varying degrees. BUT ALL the rest of the midtwenties or older squad need wedding out and getting rid. I fully accept this cannot be done in two or three windows, only two of which have now gone(last summer and this January). It could, in theory, happen in one window BUT only if we had an owner who loved the club and committed his huge wealth in our cause as a true fan would gladly do.

    This, however, is not the case and we have an owner who actively holds us back from progress by his non caring and meanness. This is where we are right now and speaking as one who is never afraid to face the truth and to spell it out clearly, I KNOW THAT ANY IMPROVEMENT WE MAKE WILL TAKE A LONG TIME AND MANY WINDOWS. Whether the bulk of our fans will be patient enough to accept this, and this manager, remains to be seen. That is beyond my knowing. I hope they can stay with this admirable and proven top manager, even though right now many are unfairly blaming him for Wenger’s, Gazidis’s and Kroenke’s failings! WHERE I SEE A FINE MANAGER BATTLING AGAINST ALL ODDS, THEY EXPECT A MIRACLE WORKER. SIGH!!!

    1. Well said. I agree with you every bit apart from Auba.
      I really like this guy, I know he isnt the most committed player in terms of pressing, combination play and defending but I think his numbers justify him playing every game. He can be ineffective for a whole 70mins then Bang!! he smashes one in.
      I think he will do even better next season especially with a strong and balanced midfield and attack

      1. Spot on jon; unfortunately there are a lot of very unreasonable people on here, who apparently expect Unai Emery to greatly improve Arsenal’s position in his first season. They have forgotten the last two previous seasons prior to Emery’s arrival, the difficulties experienced by Guardiola, Rogers and Klopp at Manchester City, Manchester United and Liverpool respectively and the transfer funds expended by these clubs in the years since.

  23. It is too early to criticises unai. I said it before, after Pep he has the most trophies by any other manager in the league so he must be able to do something right?

    I think his tactics are very un-arsenal like and this seems to be a concern because the players are struggling to deal with it.

    This brings me to the mentality and focus. I can’t think of a single player who comes close to the like so of Adams, Lehmann, Viera, Henry…

    Talent is nothing without execution…as the saying goes.

  24. Smh…… everyone wants Arsenal to win every game……this is the EPL…….tough to win any game ……. besides Wolves are a pretty good team who want to be in Europe next season……they have a pretty good home record ..,….I was not surprised at the score …..cos it was one of those games that whoever scored first won….anyway let’s get behind the team and help them cross the line to fourth……and Europa



  25. Daily Poll - Will Arsenal regret signing David Luiz?

Comments are closed.