Ian Wright has questioned Mikel Arteta‘s positive comments about putting crosses into the box during Arsenal’s loss to neighbours Tottenham.
Our manager insisted that his side were positive in attack, and putting plenty of crosses into the box as a stat used to highlight that positivity, but Wright claims that the team should be working the ball into the box in other ways, as neither of his strike options are known for headed goals.
“With the crosses as well, I think Mikel was very happy with 34 crosses,” he said on MOTD2 (via the DailyStar).
“But when you look at our two front men, 86 goals – not counting penalties – and they’ve only got seven headers between them.
“When you look at the way Spurs set up, they were very comfortable in those situations. Something has to happen – Saka is the only man on the half-turn that’s trying to create something.
“I thought it was a little bit better today. They’ve got to keep going because I think the manager is the right guy, but they’ve got to find something somewhere.”
We did look more positive on the pitch however, worked hard to get up the field, although when you analyse the match, Spurs allowed us to.
Jose Mourinho set his team up to soak up the pressure in defence and to hit us on the break, and his it worked a treat. Like it or loathe it, the Portuguese’s game plan worked perfectly, and Mikel Arteta’s didn’t.
I’d be interested to know just how many of these 34 crosses found an Arsenal player, and how many of those came in low down to be controlled by the forwards, but I don’t have access to such.
Is the decision to put crosses into the box out of desperation? Is the manager running out of ideas?