Leicester Review – Arsenal unexpectedly boss the game for easy win

Arsenal deliver a great victory at the King Power stadium by Konstantin Mitov

Ladies and Gentlemen, I enjoyed this! We spanked Leicester 3:1 away and it was about time. We should not fear teams like Leicester, Aston Villa and Wolves with all my respect to them.

We even managed to come back after another suicidal start and going a goal down inside the first 5 minutes. Add the fact that we played in Athens and Rome in the week before.

In typical fashion for us we had a miscommunication in defense and we allowed Tielemans a free run on our goal. Mari and Elneny both could’ve intercepted, but didn’t and we ended up behind again.

What we did different today was, we kept trying. We bossed the game and didn’t let our heads drop, even after having a penalty disallowed in another day of terrible refereeing. I’m so happy we proved today that if you play good, the ref can’t take it away from you, because Leicester’s full back should’ve gone just for the amount of fouls on Pepe alone.

Anyway, we equalized from a goal “made in Chelsea” as David Luiz connected brilliantly from Willian’s cross. I am so happy, because we get a lot of corners and free kicks and we finally produced something out of them.

LEICESTER, ENGLAND – FEBRUARY 28: Alexandre Lacazette of Arsenal is challenged by Ricardo Pereira of Leicester City during the Premier League match between Leicester City and Arsenal at The King Power Stadium on February 28, 2021 in Leicester, England.(Photo by Rui Vieira – Pool/Getty Images)

Just minutes later, VAR finally got something right, although because it’s Arsenal, it took forever to spot a handball that was obvious from open play and this time Lacca didn’t just stare at the spot kick but actually took it and we ended up the half 2-1 ahead and it was no less than we deserve.

In the second half we made a brilliant counter which started with a quick pass to Pepe who made a brilliant run, found Odegaard who slipped it to Willian, who found Pepe at the open net and we finished them off. It was honestly comfortable in the end.

Two players were head and shoulders above the rest this game and those were Pepe and Willian. The fact that we didn’t miss Saka at all says enough. I was really impressed with the Brazilian, because he was taking players on, making runs and finding dangerous spaces.

I think people don’t give him enough credit for the influence he had on Thursday as well. The problem at Arsenal is that such performances from players are hardly ever consistent. If our “bench” players can come on like that away to Leicester and deliver this on a regular basis, we are easily talking of a top 4 place.

The reality is a bit different though. We’ve bombed the league hard and nobody expected us to deliver a proper performance. This position suits us and usually most of our better performances have come in such situations.

Our mere 37 points are 8 away from West Ham sitting in 4th, and there are quite a lot of teams in between our position of 10th and the top 4 that have more points and games in hand.

That said, apart from City, nobody really scares me. Liverpool are nowhere near the levels they had in the last 3 years, they have a ton of injuries and it’s far from certain if they’ll make the top 4. Everton are up and down, Tottenham are nothing special, Chelsea are on the up with the new manager, but that can wear out fast.

We’ve played both Manchester clubs, Villa and Leicester, so in this season of uncertainties, it’s not impossible to climb to a top 6 finish, but it will require winning as many games as we’ve won all season in half the games, which I highly doubt.

But that doesn’t mean the league games mean nothing. We need to win for the pride of the club and the fans. We can use it to build our system for next year and identify what we need. And keep our players in shape and boost confidence for the Europa League, which is where our hopes lie. We cannot underestimate Olympiacos again.

Today though it was the performance that really impressed me. Maybe the fact that we turned the game around on Thursday made a difference, I don’t know. I just want us to keep it up and give us fans something to hang on to and give hope for next season, and see where we end up.

Konstantin

17 Comments

  1. Hope says:

    What’s going on with Martinelli?

    1. Damm says:

      His time will come

      1. Hope says:

        I hope so. The guy has talent and needs more play time

  2. Joe. S says:

    Yes, ” boss the game”, unexpectedly, “easy win”, It’s been a long time, hasn’t it? Even five years ago Arsenal were at least flat track bullies. We couldn’t do it against the likes of Man. U. or Chelmsky but did it often enough to the minows especially when the pressure was off. The Leicester win was a foretaste of what has been missing for too long.

  3. OnceGreat says:

    Willian and Pepe were brilliant. I hope they can start putting in these performances on a consistent basis.

    It took Xhaka forever, but he’s been very solid for almost the entire second half of this season which is something he never did before. So there’s hope for these two.

    1. McLovin says:

      Yeah he missed the tackle on fhe first goal but the hell was Elneny doing? NOTHING. Mari tracked Vardy understandably, but what the hell is Elneny doing during that goal? Honestly that was terrible from the midfielder, just jogging in the middle guarding empty pitch.

  4. reddb10 says:

    They couldn’t deal with Pepe the ball was stuck to his feet. If he keeps this momentum going its going to be great to watch.

  5. gotanidea says:

    It was because Rodgers set his team for counter-attacks, despite facing a team that sit in the 11th position of EPL table. If we have to replace Arteta next season, we should never hire counter-attacking managers like Rodgers and Simeone

    Simeone put six defenders at the back to counter Tuchel’s Chelsea and fortunately his anti-football tactic failed. Simeone used similar bus parking tactic against Emery’s Villareal that sit in the fifth position of La Liga table and unfortunately it worked

    If we have to part ways with Arteta someday, the next Arsenal manager should be the one with established attacking system like Guardiola or Klopp

    1. kev says:

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    2. gooner4life says:

      I think Nagelsman at RB Lipzig would be perfect.

  6. Twig says:

    “In the second half we made a brilliant counter which started with a quick pass to Pepe…”

    Can anyone guess the name of the player who started the counter? 🙂

    1. Sean M says:

      Xhaka, of course, but Laca managed to hold off three players allowing Xhaka to drift in and play the ball forward.

  7. Grandad says:

    As a fan of Arteta, I am not getting carried away by our performance against an injury hit side , compounded by the necessary replacement of the talented Barnes.The reality is we recovered well and deserved to win,but the weaknesses we had before the game are still there ,and unless we can find a way to overcome a complete lack of pace in important areas, we will struggle to continue our “recovery”Basically, our quadrant comprising Luis, Mari, Elneny and Xhaka cannot cover the ground quickly, and because of that, the CB’s and central midfielders are obliged to sit deep.The Leicester goal was remarkable for the ease with which Tielemans was allowed to make ground, and highlights once again the need for a top quality DM with pace.Xhaka, Elneny and Mari were all culpable for the goal, but credit to two of them who went on to play well.Partey will help alleviate the lack of pace to an extent but we really need to bring some athleticism to the team.AMN and Willock may be far from being solutions but at least they can cover the ground quickly, as can Saliba.Some food for thought on what is a Spring like morning.

    1. kev says:

      Bissouma is needed at Arsenal. I actually had hope since 17/18 that AMN since that Utd game would’ve developed into a DM for us as I believe he’s great defensivsly but he’s since been thrown around everywhere all in the name of versatility.

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  9. Jake says:

    I’m an Arsenal fan, and I agree with the majority of this article, but I really don’t think that the first disallowed penalty was a foul. You could clearly see that pepe jumped over the second leg in the penalty area, so the free kick was justified because it was just outside the box.

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