Opinion: Don’t expect Arsenal’s young signings to bring instant success

It is interesting to see that some Arsenal fans who were excited about some of the summer signings have now turned on the club’s manager and want him to leave.

I was never convinced that we would have a great season because of our transfer business, at least not from the start.

In football, talented players deliver fine performances, but it takes more than that to get results.

After finishing last season outside the top four, we must have known our problems and should have moved for established names who can solve them.

Instead, we signed Nuno Tavares and Albert Sambi Lokonga from the Portuguese and Belgian leagues.

Yet some fans expected that we would have a solid start to this campaign when our rivals were signing players like Romelu Lukaku, Jadon Sancho and Jack Grealish.

Another exciting and intriguing signing we have just made is the return of Martin Odegaard.

I will never understand Mikel Arteta’s obsession with the Norwegian who wasn’t exactly consistent enough when he played for us on loan in the second half of last season.

I think he is a top talent, just like the other players I mentioned above, but they are still kids and at best still inexperienced.

Their talent can only take them so far and we have to be prepared for more underwhelming outings this season, not because Arteta is not getting his tactics spot on, but because his team is filled with young players who need time to deliver the results we crave for.

An article from Ime

Tags arsenal kids


  1. “Their talent can only take them so far and we have to be prepared for more underwhelming outings this season, not because Arteta is not getting his tactics spot on, but because his team is filled with young players who need time to deliver the results we crave for.”

    So it’s not Arteta’s fault? It’s now the youngsters 🤣 These MA fans will say anything. Pretty sure he switched to buying youngsters to hide behind their age.

    1. @PJSA,

      Hahhah exactly what I thought.

      If our young players are yet to fulfil their true potentials, MA with 100% certainty isn’t the one to polish them.

    2. Is your issue with reading or comprehending?? The youngsters are NOT being blamed..they need time to deliver even if Jesus Christ was the Managers..

      1. Provided he brings John the Baptist to play DM and can “resurrect” the careers of the current poorly performing Arsenal players, as he did for Lazarus.

    3. No doubt PJ-SA…it certainly wasn’t the young players who were the weak links in our most recent of 3 defeats…my eyes don’t lie and what they see know is tire fire of epic proportions

    4. “Pretty sure he switched to buying youngsters to hide behind their age.”

      Now, that’s a tactical masterstroke. Nobody can accuse MA of lacking any tactical knowledge now.

  2. No but we expect effort. Effort means we always have a chance. Can Arteta inspire them? Not so far.

  3. @Ime the article writer: Odegaard is very important to Arteta’s 4-2-3-1, because of his diagonal passes to the left side

    Those passes enable us to quickly switch sides, after luring the opponents on the right side. Smith-Rowe/ Maddison/ Aouar are unable to do it frequently and effectively from a tight space, because they’re right-footed

    I agree about the new young players and the low expectation. Had Arsenal wanted to make a faster impact, they would’ve spent 100 M for one or two senior players with better physicalities

    1. you know what’s infinitely better than stockpiling your team full of left-footed players, especially considering our most relied upon lefties have no real right foot capabilities whatsoever, is having players who can use both of their feet effectively, when required, even if one is marginally more effective than the other for the purposes of long range shooting etc…btw longer range diagonal passing is only a viable tactic if you attack with a sense of urgency/pace once said passes have been completed, otherwise they’re largely unnecessary higher risk parlour tricks

      1. Skillful ambidextrous midfielders like Cazorla are very rare, so some big teams usually have two CAM types for various tactics. Good left-footed players are also rare, hence we usually choose to open up the right space and attack the opposition’s LB after a successful left overload

        In crowded/ tight spaces or in urgent situations, a midfielder instinctively uses his dominant foot to release himself from a group of opponents. This is why signing Odegaard could be much more effective for Arteta’s 4-2-3-1, than signing Maddison/ Aouar/ Sabitzer to play a CAM

        Odegaard’s diagonal passes have been pretty effective for us since last season, aside from the game in Manchester. Mancini doesn’t need someone like that as a starter though, because he uses 4-3-3 for Italy

        1. they actually aren’t that rare, as I clearly stated it wasn’t necessary that they be truly ambidextrous, but simply have two viable options with the ball at their respective FEET…you created some peculiar left-footed fictitious world where at first you wanted left-footed players on the left side, to facilitate the wingers/wingbacks, then when it fit your particular narrative, once Ode was mistakenly brought back to North London, you flipped the proverbial script and suggested that, in fact, it’s even better to now have left-footed players on the right side of the pitch so that they can make long diagonal passes from right to left…this would seem counter-intuitive to your earlier argument when you didn’t like right-footed players on our left side, unless you’re really stating that the ultimate option is to field a whole team of lefties…the only advantage to those types of lower percentage/higher risk passes are if you actually care to catch the opposing teams in a moment of disbalance and attack immediately, whereas we have a tendency to pass sideways or backwards during those rare moments in time when the thing you’re suggesting actually occurs…you can’t always have your cake and eat it too GAI

          1. I prefer a left-footed DM and a left-footed CB in our 4-2-3-1 formation, because of the left overload tendency

            I have never said those players are tasked to make diagonal passes to the left side. But to make forward passes along the left sideline, for feeding our attacking LB

            Only the left-footed CAM is assigned to make the diagonal passes. Having said that, a right-footed CAM like Smith-Rowe is also required occasionally, to make crosses from the right wing as Man City do

          2. that’s the crux of the problem, as deep-down you’re an Arteta fan and as such you want so desperately to find the secret formula to unlock his overtly negative 4-2-3-1 scheme…the fact remains this formation is predicated on absorbing pressure then countering with pace, when utilized correctly….otherwise, it’s an insanely boring relegation-based tactic, used functionally to “park the bus” and eke out one goal scorelines…our wage bill is far too inflated, especially up top, to ever adopt this as a viable footballing philosophy…the fact is the more you try to cater to the whims of a scared manager, the more likely things will go sideways, as how would we ever lean into a strategy that simply doesn’t suit the personnel whatsoever…when you do this you will invariably struggle against teams who have logically adopted a similar approach, but recruited accordingly, and you will likewise be found out by those teams that have the requisite skill to unlock your “paper tiger” scheme

          3. 👍 To be a top class Rugby five eighth (first five) or fullback you have to be able to kick well with both feet. In Association Football it is mandatory at this level.

    2. @GAI. You keep seeing things like odegaard diagonal passes to the left. if you can read that dont you think the opponents with there managerial experience will also see that and even more and counter it. we need players who understand the game and can make quick decision in a split second. if the opposition know that odegaard can do all you said they wont fall for it. I knew I wouldn’t as a player or coach.

      1. Anybody who paid attention to the tactical side of our games would likely know about it, let alone the UEFA Pro License holders. Despite knowing about it, the oppositions won’t easily counter the tactic

        Because those diagonal passes force the opponents to move closer to our left area and leave their left side open for exploitation. In the tight spaces on the left wing, we’re supposed win the midfield battle against smaller teams due to our technical players

        In theory, congesting one side with our players and the opponents will also make our defense safer, because of our technical superiority in ground duels. In reality, our players don’t have guts to make turns in crowded spaces and pressurize our defenders with their backpasses

    3. Gai
      This represents a lack of ambition from the top owners, Edu and Arteta himself. So we have to wait endlessly for top 4 except a oil billionaires buy Arsenal FC Club 😐

      1. The owner doesn’t seem to have the same financial power as Chelsea’s owner has and keeps making wrong choices, but I believe we’ll eventually be able to repeat the Invincibles’ success

  4. Look at Unai Emery. Is he not the same Manager that was at Arsenal. But because he didn’t fancy Ozil the player Mafia turned against him. We are making the same mistakes over again. Instead of looking at the senior players, yes the same players who think they now run this club. We keep putting pressure on the manager. Aubamayeng, Lacazette, Kolasinac, Maitland Niles, Bellerin must leave ASAP otherwise we will not get anywhere. We will sack the manager until they get new contracts and as soon as the new manager want to ring changes we will be back to square one. While Mikel Arteta would have moved on to success leaving us to scratch our heads. If the Manager leaves than the above mentioned players have to leave as well. So not only should the Manager bare the responsibility alone to turn it around, but the message must be clear to the players as well, shape up or ship out!!!

    1. And don’t forget they are the same players that caused Arsene Wenger’s demise. They have been around for way too long with their mediocre performances they only perform when they need new contracts.

      Aubamayeng Out!!

      1. I am a little confused with your well-meaning impassioned post Dboy. I hope you saw what happened against Brentford when not a SINGLE senior forward was present. After watching that are you still suggesting that Aubameyang and Lacazzette be kicked out? Then who scores our goals? Marty and Flo are talented, but according to the gaffer’s tactics, I don’t think they can flourish, unless they play off someone hulking, or Flo dramatically improves his physique or MA changes to two up top. In that case who scores our goals? Regarding the other 3 players that you mentioned, they are nowhere near the first team picture. And if we are to believe the popular opinion then MA has cleared the player mafia clique and neutered Kolasinac’s influence. We hardly see huddled-up groups now in the dugout. I think if UE was present now, he would have had an easier time, as the player power seems to have diminished quite significantly. If not then why are people praising MA and Edu for shifting out players by cancelling their contracts? Things that even toddlers can do in management?

        1. Agree Sid, Dboy’s premise is correct but the wrong players have been targetted. Aubameyang and Lacazette did not let down Emery, or Wenger for that matter.

    2. what you fail to realize, albeit I agree with the premise that some senior players have failed to perform up to their respective billings(Xhaka), Emery was an accomplished and well-respected footballing coach long before arriving in North London…btw Auba scored more goals than both Henry and Sanchez did in their first 150 appearances

    3. The criticism against our attackers is far fetched and unfair. Without an attacking mid fielder to provide balls to them how do you expect them to score. It is only at Arsenal where a striker tracks back to look for the ball, then he’s expected to beat 3 defenders to score.

  5. Very sensible article. Building things on strong new foundations takes time, effort, and a, long process of putting together the numerous parts of a mechanism until it clicks into place and begins to work properly. Sacking Arteta at this point would achieve nothing. Arteta is playing the long game and looking at the bigger picture. Fans should let him try to achieve his vision. If successful, we will all enjoy it. If not, at least he will have laid some good foundations to build upon, which has been absent at Arsenal for a long time.

  6. Have to disagree on odeGard.

    Nothing against him but what he showed in his loan spell wasn’t anything exciting (at least not for me). Went completely awol against city as did nearly all.

    A solid player but one who makes too many sideways passes and for a creative midfielder I don’t find him that creative..I mean he is no Santi is he now.

    RM obviously didn’t rate him either..

    As for expectancy please don’t mention that word alongside the present Arsenal as I have no other expectancy other than for the mediocrity to continue. Whilst Stan, and his Edu and Arteta are in place what other outcome could there be.

    We are a club building for a future that may never exist. A Dangerous game because as John Lennon once said ‘Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans’.

  7. Just like our management, the author seems to be clueless. First, the players were capable and the manager must be sacked, if the results don’t improve. Next, the club delivered a stronger set of players and the manager can’t make any excuses. And NOW, the manager is blameless because the players are not old enough.

    Articles from Ime (in the past)

    May 31 – “For example, we won our last five league games of the season, including a win at Chelsea.
    We were also unbeaten in our last six games of the campaign in all competitions and that says a lot about what these players can achieve.
    What we need now is for Arteta to get these players motivated to win every match or sack him and install a manager that can achieve that.” (sic)

    Aug 7 – “One excuse Arteta has had going for him so far is that he doesn’t have a strong enough squad. Now that the club is delivering a stronger set of players, he simply has no more places to hide.” (sic)

  8. We spent a fortune and didn’t improve out starting 11.

    We had Odegaard last season so he is not an improvement.
    It is yet to be seen if White is an improvement on David Luiz and Lokonga is not going to be a starting 11 player.

    In addition, w needed goals and neither improved our creativity nor our goal scoring.

    Right-back was a bigger need than CD or at least equal yet we have not improved on last season there either.

    To spend this much money without demonstrably improving your starting 11 is, IMO, a disaster.

  9. So we’ve finished our transfer business for the summer haven’t we? The squad is good enough as it is?

  10. Nobody can judge the squad now because of the off-field problems that have sidelined some players. However let’s be optimistic that they will be available after the international break.
    Any unbiased observer can see the efforts Arsenal is taking to improve the team. This team is not exactly of kids as some people wish to make us believe. How about Lacazette, Aubameyang, Leno, Chambers, Holding, Elneny and others? Perhaps the young players are now more but that is good for both the present and the future. We are not going to be spending in excess of 100 pounds every window.
    Let all of us support our team and see how far we go. We should not turn into perpetual malcontents without good cause.

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