Four positives Arsenal can take from win over Eintracht Frankfurt

Sometimes all that matters is the actual result and considering the turmoil Arsenal have been in since the draw with Watford last Sunday, a win was all that was required right now.

Was it perfect against Frankfurt? Of course it was not and the result does mask the issues that are clearly still there but regardless, there were positives last night and we should acknowledge them.

Martinez is a quality keeper

Whether he has put Bernd Leno under any real pressure I do not know, only Unai Emery knows that but it is clear and not just because of last night that Arsenal does have a quality back up keeper and if there is one position we do not need to worry about, it is the goalkeeping position.

Youngsters are progressing very well

None of the youngsters, including Bukayo Saka, had an error-free game, he, Willock and Smith Rowe all missed great opportunities, lost the ball at key moments, missed great passing opportunities etc. but they also showed that they are highly talented, are comfortable on the big stage and have great careers ahead of them. All three had good games.

Mustafi and Luiz did a good job

The defence has been highly criticised and rightfully so and two players, in particular, Mustafi and Luiz, have been the brunt of the fiercest criticism from fans and pundits alike, well, last night they stood very strong, it was not a quiet game for either defender and they deserve to be told, you did your jobs well. If only they could be more consistent.

Arsenal showed flexibility from the back

I do not know why this happened but I did notice last night that Martinez did not always do the short ball, when it was required or the better option he hoofed it upfield or did a quick throw-out. That works and it showed that Arsenal can adopt a degree of flexibility when it is required, let’s hope that is the case going forward.

Updated: September 20, 2019 — 8:41 am

36 Comments

  1. The result was more impressive than the performance.Frankfurt still had 26 attempts on goal.That is far too many.What Is wrong? The midfield allows too much space for teams to simply walk through us and the two full backs allow too many crosses to come into the box.
    Tierney and Bellerin will hopefully improve us defensively from out wide but Emery still needs to sort our midfield shield to the back four.
    One day we will get a right old hammering if we continue like we are.

    1. That’s the problem with Arsenal’s old 4-2-3-1 system since Wenger’s era. It is vulnerable to offsides, counter-attacks and through-balls

      However, it usually works well against poor oppositions, especially if the Gunners focus on winning the ball possession at the Emirates

      I don’t think Tierney and Bellerin inclusion would change the team’s fragility in away matches, especially if we remember that Bellerin is also not a good defender like Maitland-Niles

      The only aspect that could improve the defense is a change in management, which we might have to wait till the end of this season

      1. i dont understand why did we bought Pepe. His work rate is very low and plus his passing accuracy in 3-4 games is very bad. I jope he doesnt turn out to be another gerviniho.

      2. Yes Gotanidea it’s to some extent a matter of tactics and organisation rather than players attributes.

      3. U.Emery need to tell his defensive midfield players to take their responsibility serious. A defensive midfielder should do his work to make the midfield firm and press high. And an attacking midfielder should do his work. A lot of times this players become adventurous and leave the midfield vulnerable to opposition attack.Arsenal legends like Patrick Viera and Alex Song knows what it means to be a good defensive midfielders.At the moment we don’t have a good defensive midfielder like Fenaldinho of Man-City, Fabinho of Liverpool, Matic of Man-U etc. Otherwise a change of coach with grit like Morhinho etc could be better

    2. Yes Phil, that was an average performance against an average team. They still managed to press us and created good chances. Our team is average and inconsistent. The result is better than our performance. The team is not improving.

      1. Had we have dominated but lost the game, would you have said the team is improving? This was an AWAY game! They are always difficult. I have never seen an easy away game. We are always going to get touched at the back, it’s really not possible to dominate a game from beginning to the end..more so an away game. Your opponents will create chances and so will you. You guys need to readjust your expectations when it comes to away games. The result is always the only thing that matters. I remember Man utd used to scrap away victories during Fergie time and won many titles doing that.

        1. Thumbs up Quantum Dream???

        2. QD-Watford had 31 attempts and Frankfurt 26.That is far too many. There are no easy away games but surely it is up to Emery to work out a system to stop this flow don’t you think?

        3. Quatic dream, this is were the problem is, the worse we perform the lower some fans put their expectations until we are very close to Everton. Teams that wants to move forward don’t lower expectations, they look up to meet teams at the top. My opinion though. Liverpool lost, but it will be foolishness for anyone to think Liverpool is an average team.

    3. Exactly Phil, good result, poor performance, good job it wasn’t against City!

    4. they had 18 shots of and on goal

    5. Sometimes I wonder if U.Emery ever told his defensive midfield players to take their responsibility serious. A defensive midfielder should do his work to make the midfield firm and press high. And an attacking midfielder should do his work. A lot of times this players become adventurous and leave the midfield vulnerable to opposition attack.Arsenal egends like Patrick Viera and Alex Song knows what it means to be a good defensive midfielders.At the moment we don’t have a good defensive midfielder like Fenaldinho of Man-City, Fabinho of Liverpool, Matic of Man-U etc.

    6. Jon-The quality of CB’s at this Club over the last 10-12 seasons is laughable.Wenger seemed to believe we didn’t need them and Emery feels anyone will do.
      But it’s not as though we did not have a few duffers back in the day-Terry Mancini Ian Ure Jeff Blockley. Seems to be a tradition forming-if your a crap CB get yourself up to the Arsenal.They will have you

  2. Phil is right. The midfield is too easy to walk through.

  3. The negative thing is Pepe didn’t show any improvement in his work ethics. He can’t always expect his teammates to chase and roughen up the opponents for him, because he has not become the focal point in Arsenal’s attack yet

    Even Messi and Ronaldo worked hard to help their colleagues to get the ball back, when they played as specialist wingers. Messi still does that occasionally, especially when the Argentina national football team are losing

    Nelson was awful when playing on the left wing, but at least he worked his socks off to help the LB and the midfielder. If Pepe doesn’t change his attitude and if his barren period continues, I believe either Nelson or Martinelli would eventually dethrone him from the right wing

    1. I can remember Dennis Bergkamp struggling in his first 8-10 games.Even Robert Pires did not make too much of an impression when he first came.Im not saying Pepe is in their class but let’s give him a chance shall we.
      And as for Bellerrin not being as good a defender as AMN. I dispute that all day long.Bellerrin was the noe player Emery seemed to improve defensively last season. He was unlucky with his injury but he is far more solid than AMN who let’s not forget has done half decent in a position completely alien to him

      1. Let’s see when Bellerin return from his long absent. At least he is much faster than Chambers

      2. Bellerin is far more solid than Niles in terms of his positioning and the understanding of the position but when it comes to 1v1 and actual defensive work Miles is better. It’s just that he just came in at a time where Arsenal werent performing well and he has received little help from the wingers that have played on his side.
        When Niles came in many first thought he was going to be a good DM because he was very solid defensively in the centre of the park. He showed this in the 17/18 Europa league matches when Wenger changed his position and against Southampton in the 16/17 Carling Cup. It’s all about absence making the heart grow fonder. Bellerin is easily slaughtered on 1v1 occasions and there’s rarely any match I can say Bellerin pocketed the winger unlike Niles. There’s a reason why last season many here stated he’d be a good winger

        1. 1 vs 1, bellerin over niles all day

    2. Well it’s disappointing you seem to have already given up on Pepè when you were signing his praises and recommending we sign him along side Tanguy Ndombele towards the end of last season.

      Pepè will click soon. I don’t think he was priced at £70M+ for no reason. If Auba didn’t deny him that goal yesterday Pepè’s bum would be smelling like roses this morning! But Auba is a striker and he needs to look out for himself too. Which begs the question, what now for Lacazette? Auba seems to be doing very well as striker!

      1. This guy have too many tongue @Gotanidea

      2. I’m not given up on Pepe yet, but he needs to improve

    3. Bruv, Pepe is better for us even with his play so far. He is a massive threat to opposing defenders on any day and he’s gon do better.
      I see no negative…rather, a work in progress

    4. It took Henry 9 games to score his first goal. I actually thought Aubameyang should have passed to Pepé in the box to let him get his account open.

    5. PEP really need to step up; he is not doing enough at all at the moment. He doesn’t need a long time to prove his worth else he would be another over-hyped player.

  4. Martinez looks damn GOOD.

    In the PL, we’ve scored 8 and conceded 8. While it’s expected we’ve conceded so much, we are definitely not scoring enough. Last season we were 3rd highest scoring team after Pool and City. We’ve lost no one important in attack but acquired Pepe.

    We need to open the floodgates.

    1. @McLovin, we were the 3rd highest scoring team after a total of 38 games. We just did 5 ??. It is going to be a good season. I believe!

  5. I don’t think that Pepe does,t know that, the ball’s faster than any player world wide, so when he stopped running with the ball and released it to his team mate, the assist paved the way for the incredible goal.He has to play as a team player as well as idividual one.

  6. The real positive was Emiliano Martinez taking real goal kicks and not putting Luiz and Mustafi in trouble. Lets be honest if we gave Premier League clubs that many shotd we would be in trouble. Until we get Bellerin, Tierney, and Holding back we are going to be shite in defence and Emery playing out from goal kicks with Luiz and Socratis yards from Leno….even when being fully pressed is worthy of Emery being called a ‘Shmuck’. One thing that is clear is that Willock and Saka are fine young players and should be proud of playing so well. Ernie Rowe has got so much potential too. Chambers though is a better full back than AMN.

  7. When I look at the future Arsenal I smile.

    Nketiah..

    Martinelli, E. S-Rowe, Saka..

    Willock, Guendouzi..

    Tierney, Saliba, Holding, Bellerin..

    Leno.

    Subs – Pepe, Torreira, Nelson,

  8. It took Thierry Henry 8 games to get his first Arsenal goal..
    It took Robert Pires 8 games to get his first Arsenal goal
    It took Dennis Bergkamp 7 games to get his first Arsenal goal.
    Listen, I don’t care about the rival fans. But Arsenal fans needs to be patient with Nico Pepe, i’m certain the goals will surely come.
    He just needs confidence. The confidence that made him score 22 goals and made 11 assist last season… Keep calm and let’s get behind him!

  9. Extend the contract with Emiliano Martinez

  10. I didn’t see much in terms of positives. The result was impressive. But how the result came about was less impressive.

    Did we see signs of improvement in defending? Not so sure.
    Did we blow them away? Not really.

    It will be easier to gauge our performance against PL teams.

    I wasn’t crazy about Auba playing so many minutes. The PL this season should be our main focus and we should keep Auba fresh.

  11. I hope Leno watched Martinez commanding his defense but also varying short and long passes,he used common sense i
    believe a game on the bench would do Leno some good watching Martinez distribution!!

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