Pundit rants at Arteta after Arsenal drops points

Gabby Agbonlahor expressed his dissatisfaction with Mikel Arteta’s decisions after Arsenal’s draw against Fulham, where the manager made tactical adjustments that resulted in the team dropping two points.

Arteta has introduced changes to Arsenal’s formation and system at the beginning of this season, with a notable alteration being Thomas Partey’s role as a right-back.

These changes are part of Arteta’s strategy to position Arsenal as strong contenders for the league title. The modification in formation is intended to create a distinctive and more challenging style of play for their opponents.

After the game, Agbonlahor ranted on Talk Sport

“Why is Arteta trying to do this experiment with Arsenal?

“Why are you playing no striker today? Why are you playing a false nine? Why have you not started Nketiah?

“Why are you playing Havertz? Why are you player Thomas Partey at RB?”

Just Arsenal Opinion

This new season is only three games old and we probably need to trust the manager more and be patient with the team.

It is not easy to see us drop points against Fulham, especially because we played well in the match.

However, things will improve with time, and we probably do not have to worry too much about this change.

Tags Gabriel Agbonlahor Mikel Arteta


  1. Think the gaffer is trying too hard to integrate Havertz into the team, the German did reasonably well against Crystal Palace.

    In my opinion he wants Havertz to have the same impact as Timber or Rice, but the German is a different player and he will be okay with a more timely integration.

    He should not be starting every games, today was the worst in an Arsenal shirt.
    Am not opposed to his inverted system, but we should be only doing it to one side at a time until further in the campaign when each player has developed a better understanding.

    The inverted right back role should be for a younger and mobile player, that’s too much work for Partey..

    1. In some ways you have a point.
      However, the injuries to Zinchenko and then Timber have limited the options in Arteta’s preferred system.
      It does appear that some players are not yet comfortable with the current iteration and that has led to some sloppiness.

  2. Terrible tinkering by the boss & ridiculous team selection. Playing poor set up, players out of position, better options on bench & Kai just gets a shirt despite being terrible
    Wake up Arteta

    No striker
    Partey right back
    White as CB with better CB on bench
    So many similar players on pitch
    No one has to earn their shirt

  3. Arteta needs to improve his game management – by ensuring that he is accurate with whatever tactic he is using against teams. We have Manchester United next week, he should get it right. No Havertz but full midfield. If I am the manager, I will revert Partey to the middle because Manchester United coach would have seen how slightly uncomfortable Partey was at defending as a RB. Partey/Rice in the middle will be good for Man U. Arsenal’s main striker is Nketiah because Gabriel Jesus is not potent as a striker should be.
    Arteta needs to stop imitating Guardiola in every way. He did that to lose his front position last season. Mourinho or Ferguson would manage the last season better with 8 points ahead of Man City. Why was he trying to impress by playing like Man City against Man City in the two home and away games against the team?
    Why is he now trying to justify the purchase of Havertz by using him when the team was at a disadvantage?

  4. Built a team that finished 2nd with a dominating, direct, and exciting style of play.

    Brought in reinforcements to strengthen the team, one would naturally think to push forward from last year.

    Nope, instead blow the whole system up.

    1. Take a top DM in the league and waste him as a RB.

    2. Take your top RB and play him in his weaker CB position, while benching Gabriel a better CB.

    3. Start Havertz as CM, and wow do I miss Xhaka after suffering through Havertz’s uninspired performances.

    Finally, top it off by criticizing anyone who questions Arteta’s decision and unnecessary need to reinvent the wheel.

    Many said this tinkering would bite us in the ass, so here it happened.

    1. Why doesn’t Arteta play ESR he is way better Havertz and we spent 200 mil and are playing worse no striker great

    2. You are free to criticise the manager of course. However, there are alternative views.
      The set up is not as bad as is being portrayed. Unfortunately, the overall performances have not been as good as they should. The new system has also allowed us to dominate games and create chances. However, we have not been sufficiently efficient. There has also been some sloppiness in defence that was not as apparent last season which a couple of teams have exploited.
      The team need to sharpen up but there is really no need for melodramatic negativity..

  5. Arteta is killing our team,White is always out of position he is used to RB, why start Kai,Trossard as a striker, why drop Gabriel out of defense yet Timber is injured and he is the only player to complete with Gabriel. You bench Partey if you can’t play him in midfield. Selling Xshaka and replace his position with Kai, To complete for trophies, win against small teams and fight for points with big teams.

  6. The moment we removed Partey from RB and Havertz from midfield and we went to a more traditional 4 at the back with White and Zinchenko as full backs and brought on a real striker, we became much better going forward.

    But the whole team was poor. For me, mainly because the temp was to slow. In the first half Martineli got some good balls played to him, but he was too cautious to take on his defender.

    It is time to go back to our normal way of playing and stop the Partey at RB experiment and bring Havertz in for cup games and games we have already won.

    What does ESR has to do to see game time?

    1. Wen was the last time you saw Saka actually “taking on a defender”. If Martinelli displayed a lack of confidence, what do we call what Saka has been doing throughout last season? If he was as offensive as Martinelli is on his wing, and not stopping play each time he gets the ball, we would be killing teams.
      I can’t stop mentioning Havertz though. His manner, nonchalance and lack of urgency in any situation reminds me of Ozil, except he doesn’t have any of the attributes that made Ozil great.

    2. I thought we simply misplaced too many passes, and some, including Saka’s that led to their first goal, were blind passes. Many passes found the target, but were slightly off, forcing the receiving player to stop or change their run to collect the ball – I suppose that is what made the tempo slow, or appear slow. There’s no easy games.
      Basically we weren’t sharp enough, and Fulham were really sharp.

  7. Admin Martin,
    How do you expect supporters to trust Arteta when his ideas and systems resemble “a castle built in the sky”?Fans are realistic and not just dreamers. Preseason is there for experimentation, but now is the time to collect points. Look at coaches like DeZerbi after bleeding players left right and center. He is Consistent, realistic and above all, maintaining ideological and systematic cohesion in the team. He’s got his eyes on the ball, at all times.

  8. To me it’s a case of Arteta trying to fix something that wasn’t broken and now if he carries on in the same vein, it will be beyond repair! We are being overtaken by teams considered second rate in spurs and West Ham and unless Arteta changes tactics it will be Arsenal forever in their shadow!

    1. Are we being overtaken by them?
      Its only three games into the season – new signings are bedding in at Arsenal and at every club.
      If the same situation is apparent after thirty games I would agree with you..

      1. If we are not convincing now what guarantee we will be after 30 games? Have you stopped to think that those who are complaining now are afraid we will be far behind after 30 games if things continue the way they are?

  9. Bad finishing and bad defending at key moments. Obviously the first goal was terrible, but fulham’s equaliser was unacceptable – we can’t allow the ball to drop like that from a corner.
    This “tinkering” idea is vastly overstated imo – the system worked in the previous games and if he plays the same 11 every game, people will criticise for not making use of his squad.
    Wrt havertz – he wasn’t that bad aside from his finishing.
    It wasn’t our day, Fulham played very well and made it difficult, but if I were arteta I’d be most worried about our defending.
    The biggest positive was Vieira – he looked the part probably for the first time since he joined, and that pass for Nketiah’s goal is exactly what I think we bought him for. If he can keep his confidence up, I think we’ll find he’s the most potent passer (ie the best at truly incisive passing) in our squad. Great to see Nketiah make a real difference again when he came on – his goal was great, but his movement and everything else has been looking really good recently.
    I thought we should have brought Gabriel on after going 2-1 up to see out the game, but I’m not sure if that was an option (don’t understand the substitution system any more)

  10. I don’t think those changes were responsible for Fulham’s goals, the players were just really lacking in concentration the goals were very sloppy to give away. You can’t put that down to the system. And F Vieira coming on and helping turn things around, fans would never have given him the nod. We should have won this game but for sloppy concentration. We’re on 7 from 9 if we can beat Manu next week then I will think right “We’re still on course for a good season

  11. I’ve been a fan of Arteta but the crows have come to roost. He squandered the epl league pole position last season & he’s making the same mistakes all over again.
    Let him continue experimenting with the arsenal first team; keep Ramsdale as no. 1 keeper whose clean sheet record speaks for itself, keep Tomiyasu in defense, continue justifying Harvertz heat map & touches. Let the players not fight for first team positions. At the end of the season let’s hear how he bottled up the league & various competitions after spending 200 million.
    You’ve been a fantastic coach but arsenal needs a proven world class coach

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