Former Gunner urges Freddie Ljungberg to make big decision for Norwich City game

Martin Keown advises Freddie Ljungberg to drop big-name star.

Martin Keown is urging his former teammate Freddie Ljungberg to drop David Luiz for tomorrows game against the Canaries.

Arsenal named Ljungberg as their interim manager yesterday after Unai Emery was given the chop and faces his first test in the Premier League away to Norwich City on Sunday afternoon.

The biggest problem this season has been the defence which keeps leaking all kinds of goals.

As they head to struggling Norwich, there are fears that Emery may not have been the club’s problems, and Keown believes the same problem could spoil Ljungberg’s reign if they are not addressed.

The former Arsenal star reckons that he would start David Luiz on the bench if he was Ljungberg and name a central defence partnership of Sokratis Papasthadopolous and Calum Chambers.

“Whoever they decide to bring in after Freddie Ljungberg will be inheriting the same problems that Emery failed to fix,” Keown wrote for the Daily Mail.

“Their lack of solidity at the back, for example. For Norwich on Sunday, I’d have David Luiz on the bench.

“Sokratis and Calum Chambers would be my centre backs and I’d have Lucas Torreira deep in that midfield, patrolling that area in front of them.

“Get that triangle right, then build the team from there.”

Luiz has not been the signing many thought he would be. He really is a liability that brings very little to the team. The defence is more woeful this season than last and it cannot be a coincidence that Luiz has been a consistent presence in that defence.

The Brazilian has his supporters but I am not one of them, though I would not have Sokratis in the defence either.

It really will be interesting to see who Ljungberg selects tomorrow.


  1. Durand says:

    Sorry but I wouldn’t have Sokratis anywhere near the team. Absolutely wasted money on him as a CB, awful for Arsenal.

    Hope Freddie tries Mustafi as CB if he’s not injured. Maybe Chambers as other CB.

    Just excited Emery is gone, Freddie will play attacking football, and glad to have an Arsenal man at the helm.

  2. gotanidea says:

    Keown must have not paid attention to how Sokratis played

    If Sokratis has to play, another two CBs must accompany him

  3. Vlad the impaler says:

    Where the hell is mavropanos?? We keep saying we need tall, physically imposing CB, yet he’s there and no one is bringing him up…I mean I remember he’s debut against manure and then burnley… basically he was bullying and bossing their forwards and they were scared to get near him he’s a beast at 6’4″ and not mertesacker skinny tall kids got big bones and some meat on him…I’d say him and chambers in CBs and louiz as a DM…that’s plenty physicality and height to negate areal route of opposition and no one bullies us!! Toreira is just too small I’m afraid!

    1. Daulat says:

      I think Mavro will receive the nod from Freddie soon. His physical presence is what we require, he just needs playtime.

    2. Franklin Taylor says:

      You’re right on the money. I guess that will not only upgrade the middle, but also improve the defence. I will also like Gabriel and Pepe in their natural positions, right and left forward positions respectively.

  4. Vlad the impaler says:

    Also he’s got a mean nasty streak in him which to me is a must for a CB heck I think it’s a must to be a successful elite pro in any profession…but that’s just me…arsenal are accused if being family orientated and nice guys…the successful arsenal teams used to have as shaft would say bad motherf^k&$!!!!

  5. towny254 says:

    Chambers ball-watching when Vardy scored we cannot have a player ball- watching that’s the last thing we want

    1. GunnerJack says:

      The whole defence are a bunch of ball watchers – 11 year old kids should be brought in to teach them how to play. Hope Freddie insists on the RESPONSIBILITY of man-marking instead of the usual ABSOLUTELY NO RESPONSIBILITY of zonal marking. Ever wonder why Arsenal defenders look at each other in bewilderment when the opposition has scored? Now you know!

      As Alex Ferguson would say ‘That’s YOUR man. Now go and win the ball!’ Even one of the most disliked manager on here knows this. Rembember Mourinho bawling out Shaw because he was 10 yards away from the player he was supposed to be marking. Welcome to the Arsenal style of ‘defending’ Shaw. He’s probably had it knocked out of him by now – wish our defenders had.

      1. GunnerJack says:

        Get that bit right and our whole defence is transformed. Carry on as normal and await the next catastrophic defensive cock-up.

        1. ozziegunner says:

          I agree wholeheartedly on the need for “man marking” not “zone” defense.

  6. RSH says:

    Dropping Luiz and Sokratis is the first step. Why emery kept persisting with that duo is beyond me. Arsenal really need to go back to basics when it comes to defending. Man marking for set pieces, clear defensive shape, passing out the back to a minimum, knowing what to do when opponent launches a counter…

    1. GunnerJack says:

      RSH I’m hoping that Chambers and Holding can be knocked into shape as our CBs. If they do make it and play regularly then I also hope they gain great confidence and one of them gets the captain’s armband with the other as vice captain. From what I’ve read they are also good mates so it could work out very well. Here’s hoping.

  7. Break-on-through says:

    Never wanted Luiz and never wanted any Dortmund defenders that stayed under Klopp. Klopp has changed since coming over here, and if you ask me, that change occurred to him after watching Leic come from nowhere to smash the top of England. All the forwards play a Vardy like game except one who drops back and pulls the strings, ala Mahrez. Workaholics in midfield of course, no need to name them and some fans are sick we did not get the one that went to Che. Dortmund used to have a fat plump playmaker in number 10 role, and they’d have a passer/passers in CM, they ran with Leic cities blueprint and they haven’t looked back. Remember we used to play them and it was end to end, now we play this side he has and it is mostly all at the one end. He might not have totally copied the blueprint, but the change to his side I have a feeling that lightbulb moment happened after watching Leic. He did always press, but they weren’t all very capable at tackling like the pressers are now, it’d be akin to pressing with Xhaka / pressing with Torriera, the player change makes all the difference in the world. If it done so well for Leic, wonder what it could do for teams higher up and having bigger resources, lightbulb.

    I hope Freddie and Per can bring back the joy, ask a few more Invincibles to come back and instill a stronger will and better pride, it could be fun seeing them arrive home and training these guys in the old arts. I find it difficult to talk about AFC at the minute, it brings me down and I’m not the type of person who has little trouble with complaining, there’s only so much moaning and bickering you can do, and we’ve probably all long reached our quota. Good luck Freddie, we believe in you, you have all the fans with you that is a big plus, everyone wants to see you in the hot-seat full-time, you can do it Freddie.

  8. Grandad says:

    Cannot believe Keown would play Sokratis who in my opinion is the poorest of our centre backs.I would have thought a former centre half would recognise the Greek’s deficiencies?

    1. jon fox says:

      Grandad,I make Sokratis, the wrestler, our worst CB since the hapless Gus Caesar. He is THAT bad. Worse than Mustafi, worse then Luiz, worse even than Silvestre and Senderos and all the other hopeless sub standard CB’s Wenger brought in over all those years. He should go bavk to thr wretling ring where he belongs. In Australia or the other side of the world. THAT THIS MAN APPEARS -I CANNOT CALL IT PLAYING – IN OUR SHIRT IS A TOTAL DISGRACE.

      1. lcebox says:

        Cygan…worst of the lot.

        1. ozziegunner says:

          Socrates has lost the pace he once had dramatically.

  9. Innit says:

    I prefer Luiz to Sokratis and Mustafi. Chambers hasn’t played much as CB

    We need to sign a quality CB with Premier League experience

    We can’t just hope Saliba will be good enough or Chambers & Holding will work. If we have ambition to win trophies we need to spend on quality players

  10. Austin Osemwegie says:

    where is that Greek under 21 defender? That young man and Holding are by far the best CB at Arsenal. Please don’t allow David Luiz play in the defence. He is a better defensive mid-fielder than playing in the defence.

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