Is Arsenal’s brave 10-men comeback against Chelsea the turning point for Arteta?

Arteta’s turning point? by Dan Smith

Call me a romantic, but in a few years’ time we could look back at Tuesday’s result at Stamford Bridge as a pivotal moment in the managerial career of Arteta.

Don’t get me wrong, no one is getting carried away with one win in our manager’s first 7 League games, but sometimes you reach a point where your performance is as important as your results.

We have fallen so far down the table that outside of the cups you can almost write off this campaign. We have had nothing to cheer for months, getting to the point where we just wanted to see the basics of players fighting for the shirt and even caring.

That’s why even without the victories, barring Sheffield United, many Gooners have been comforted by the early signs of the new regime. We were seeing details we hadn’t seen under Emery.

Even had we lost to Chelsea we would be again talking about positives that can be built on. Yet we know how harsh this game can be.

Without Bellerin’s equalizer the next days would have been spent talking about our defence, our ability to see out matches and of course further scrutiny on our coach’s win record.

While the squad has clearly responded to a fresh voice, the longer they go without results to show for their efforts the quicker they will stop listening.

Coming away from Dean Court, Selhurst Park and even when Chelsea won at the Emirates it was nice to be at a point where you felt unlucky not to be getting three points. Not like the rock bottom days of Brighton outplaying us on our own pitch.

I don’t want to pick on Emery, but I can’t help but think if he was in the dugout still, our players wouldn’t have the spirit to fight and stay in the contest?

Xhaka and Mustafi have both been open about how the recent atmosphere around the club has affected them mentally. Yet after his error Mustafi didn’t go hiding while Xhaka was inspired dropping back into the back 4.

I’m not going to commend fans for not verbally abusing their own, but the reason the away contingent stood by their team was because they saw those in red and white were giving everything they had, that’s all you can ask for. It makes me feel we have reached a real turning point.

Laca’s work rate makes up for his goal drought, Martinelli has that street fighter personality associated with so many South American exploits, while so many more are in their best form this season (not saying much).

Common sense would say that the longer Arteta gets on the training pitch with his new players the better they will become, the fitter they will feel, and more they will buy into new principles.

If Arteta takes us back to the level we belong (zero guarantees) we might all look back on this game as the turning point.

Be kind in the comments…

Dan Smith


  1. Players need to be dropped. I hope arteta has it in him to start dropping players. Lacca, ozil, mustafi. These 3 and possibly pepe should be dropped in the next game. Let’s have it right they have had their chance to impress and havent.

    2ndly arteta need board support. Let’s get some decent players in. If arsenal are going to complete they will need atleast 200m in the summer for a complete overhaul. If we wanna do it on the cheap atleast get a decent spine. I think another CB to work with saliba. Another imposing DMF. And attacking CM/CAM who can dribble and shoot.

    Unpopular opinion but I think I wouldnt mind seeing lacca get sold and using the money for a real CAM like KDB od Silva they really make city tick. Unfortunately we have ozil

    1. Mate we don’t have city’s or PSG’s bench. We are going through injury crisis n our Academy has not stepped up apart from one player Saka. So can I take the liberty to ask you, all the players you suggested to drop who you are going to replace them with?

    2. Are you for real? If we drop ozil lacazette , Pepe, do who do we have left to play? Are those on the bench better than these right now? With our present situation and with David Luiz out it’s even almost impossible to drop Mustafi. There’s the reality.

  2. Given the mediocre players he inherited and injuries to key personelle I am heartened by the change in attitude on the park.Virtually every player, including Ozil has bought into the Manager ‘ demands for a high work rate which is so evident in the likes of Man City and Liverpool.Arteta cannot turn water into wine but he is succeeding in turning Arsenal into a team which will no longer roll over in adversity.This to me is one big step forward.I am very happy with what our new Manager has achieved this far.

    1. If Ozil has “bought into the Manager ‘ demands”, how comes he gets a rating of 2 in the previous post?The fact that he cares a damn about the club, fans and coach is based on his performances. Every team has a talisman, sad but true our talisman is not our highest earner, happy it is an 18 year old lad playing his game in a new continent, a new team team and no complaints of language issues or anything.

      1. My view is that Arteta’s organisation of the team defensively is better which partly explains the reduced number of shots against. The team is more compact. Some players have been better overall e.g. Xhaka. It remains to be seen whether that will be sustained.
        The fighting spirit and attitude thing is just nonsense and is people seeing what they want to see.
        Some players like Ozil had a bit of a bounce as he did last year (after being benched) but has returned to his level.
        Unfortunately, the attacking side of the team has suffered recently
        A major issue that needs addressing is that some players are just not good enough and need to be replaced. This will require effective recruitment which Arsenal have struggled with recently.

  3. My take on it is that Arteta was told at interview there would be limited money available this window but that he would be backed financially in the summer and that his prime aim is to keep us in the top division of the league. Of course we are not away from the relegation zone yet but under Emery were hurtling towards the bottom. Is this the turning point for Arteta? I don’t look at it like that. It was the turning point for Arsenal when he was appointed. Would an Emery team have fought back like that? I believe not. There’s still lots to do but we are slowly heading in the right direction.


  5. Shortboy, can we all for once get off this well-worn path of only finding faults with this team? With all the battling, warrior mode yesterday, I find it really surprising that it is the ‘negatives’ that can come to the fore for you.

    Everyone of our players did well (Mustafi inclusive, in spite of his error) and should be commended. Let all this bashing about ‘quality’ stop. They have proved that Arteta has injected some potent stuff into them and they are willing to stare any team down. Gone are the days of ‘Arsenal has a soft underbelly’ and ‘they lack leaders on the field’ nonsense. This team has it in them to grind out results. Write them off at your own peril and shame.

    1. Gunnerphillic

      I definatley understand where you are coming from. In terms of being positive. For a long time I was very positive. But it cant be overlooked that there is still alot of changes to be made. I feel like we lack a ruthlessness from management.

      I am actually please arteta gave mustafi a chance and I agree, he has actually been decent bar the mistake. But we need a more ruthless streak to ilprove

  6. The results are bad very bad.
    4 draws 1 win 1 loss.
    This is sacking territory but Arteta has been given a free pass till the summer at least.
    Is it the players, Arteta or a combination of both?
    Is the league incredibly tough? Or are 17 teams garbage?
    Chelsea are bollocks right now and with 11 men we would have won
    So many teams are dropping points at this rate 61 points will be enough to make the EL.
    And crazy as it might seem despite Arsenal and Man U having
    their worst seasons for 25 years both can still make the CL!!!
    Last season under Emery Arsenal chalked up 21 wins and 72 points.
    Right now we have 6 wins with 14 games left.
    Now we must win all 14 of those games to match Emery’s mark set last season.
    Is this the turning point for Areta?
    Well as Yazz sung in 1988 “The only way is up”

    1. Stevo /agu emen
      Are you being mischievous here?
      Sacking territory after a month?
      One match lost against Chelsea who are 4th
      Comparing Arteta with Emery’s glittering achievements last season – where he failed to inspire the team from spring time onwards and oversaw a dreadful Europa league final capitulation

    1. Hey Sue, hope ur well. I really liked his approach going around the club last week n meeting most of the club employees. Then asking them to work together n work hard. This will bring more solidarity to the club n brings everyone on same page. Given his age n ability I personally think if he stays for a while n with right support from the board he can bring us back to one of the elite clubs in Europe. Which we have lost since Wenger left. Wenger was not just a manager he did so many other good things for the club which either fans are unaware of or are not appreciated. That’s why with in the club n the football community he has so much respect.

  7. If the results are ‘bad, very bad’ so much that there is nothing good to say about the team, then something is wrong with how you see. This same team was in such a hopeless State and now we’re battling Chelsea to a draw in their own backyard and with ten men against their eleven, and you find nothing good to say about the boys?

    You cannot truly back a team if you don’t love them warts and all. It is not a good sign if all you see (and say) at a moment in time like now, is how sh*t they are and how the manager should be sacked tomorrow because he won only one match in seven.

    Wow. Some perspective.

  8. Arsenal were great yesterday and all players battled hard and worked for each other. Mustafi included because he did not go into hiding after his error but initiated the equalizer. Xhaka worked his socks off in his defensive role. As for Laca it is only bad luck which is keeping him away from scoring but his work rate is phenomenal. David Louis was selfless because he knew he would be sent off for the tackle but yet he put down Abraham in the hope the penalty would be blocked. In Arteta we find a Manager who has instilled renewed hope and confidence into the team who can take on any team. Performance wise we are right up there and results shall come soon. I only hope the Board backs Arteta with 1-2 signings this month. The way Arsenal played yesterday, I am proud to be a Gunner. They had the spirit, resilience and fire in them. In Arteta we trust.

  9. The attitude from the team was incredible, passion, excitement, commitment, they dug right in and did not deserve to lose an away game at top four club despite being down to ten men. They done Arsenal proud, after all the turbulence and with there still being a lot of work to be done, it’s great to see a bit of attitude in a bunch of players who were maligned all season long by outside and inside forces. Arteta looks to be instilling a good team spirit, that’s a great place to start. He’s also making players accountable for both ends of the pitch (you don’t have only one duty) The players look happier, the fans look happier, the pundits are giving credit, the opposition are hoping that our board have no money for Arteta, things are looking brighter. And I didn’t even mention Martinelli yet.

    We’ve been a bit unlucky with the final results. It seems we are now a team that is hard to beat, this is good, we’ll eventually start turning draws into wins and then people will be talking about AFC not beaten since ?

    I love Arsenal when our players play for the shirt, it’s an inspiring feeling ..I’m gonna do fifty push ups and am gonna jump over my front gate!

  10. We could have easily lost at 11 or 10, Kante slips on first goal or he has ball, second one, we are 10, Abraham who missed at least a clear chances, couldn’t defend Bellerin on one leg!

    Let’s not get ahead of ourselves, it is a good spirit indeed but lots of pressure due to result and relegation becomes too often a reality; almost 2 games away from 19th spot…

    To have spirit I one thing, but wrong team formation for same results ends up by killing spirit again. All efforts always become useless; results and points are what’s count.

    In those term, mathematicaly, Arteta is even with Eddie’s record and can get worst after next game ; scary! He won’t get fired tho, until stadium gets empty…

    Spirit is great but without proper formation, tac tic cant be right, revolves on players on pitch! Overall it is what Arteta misses, which is the all point and costing us so many!

    Until he plays a 4-1 formation, I won’t be possible to lock that central defensive zone in our last third, not to attack with Xhaka & Torreira defending; simply no transition playing forward, beside wide long balls, how Ozil gets ball to pass it if doesn’t comes to his level on pitch? Has to go defend and all team doing so! Latest games, Auba was a defender almost, crazy! All our game is played backwards defense because of those 2 middle defending!

  11. Are you for real? If we drop ozil lacazette , Pepe, do who do we have left to play? Are those on the bench better than these right now? With our present situation and with David Luiz out it’s even almost impossible to drop Mustafi. There’s the reality.

  12. Some people just don’t have the sense to put things together only a human with a rat brain will still look for an Excuse to Blame our players nor the coach since he’s first game against Bornemourth have Noticed a big change on the lads yesterday draw was even Acceptable by me than the win against united,thats my opinion cause i know we can all be Blessed with a proper brain to Appreciate good work from others especialy like not able to Notice How the lads fight yesterday night like there lifes Depend on that match I Think is time we show our players some respect and love that they Curently Deserve, Gunners for ever COYG

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