Should Arsenal scrap the new system for Aston Villa?

Arsene Wenger takes his battered and beleagured Arsenal team to Birmingham on Saturday for the Premier League clash with Aston Villa. And after what happened in Germany against Borussia Dortmund, on top of a pretty average start to the season, this game has taken on great importance.

I have seen people suggesting that the change to a 4-1-4-1 system it one of the reasons for the Gunners struggling so far, so should Wenger change it, or would that be hitting the panic button before he has given it a decent chance to work?

Well there is certainly pressure, but I am not sure how much of it is down to the system. I think a lot of it is due to fitness and the form of our players, not to mention that we are trying to incorporate new players into the starting XI.

At the end of the day, Wenger is one of the most astute managers in world football and a real student of the game, so if he thinks the new system, which at the end of the day is not too different from the old 4-3-3 is the right one for our team, then I think he should stick with it.

Maybe it is just a case of the players learning their new roles and I for one am willing to accept that the boss knows what he is doing. It is up to the players now to show what they are made of and make it work. That means Ramsey, Ozil and Arteta. Do you agree?

Tags Arteta Ozil Ramsey


  1. Arsenal has only played 4 EPL games.
    We don’t yet have an
    “established system” to scrap 🙂
    Injuries, form and new players
    means we are still a work in progress.
    Overall we have a strong squad but
    we are still searching for ways to
    maximise that talent.
    Right now its a matter of trusting in the old hands
    while filtering in the new recruits.
    Faith and patience for the next dozen games.
    Oh and crossing fingers and we will be ok.
    Touch wood 🙂

    1. Hi David, just wonder why the sudden change of tone. Your opinions was change totally when season start. I did remember you are so full of negative so why the change or you got multi
      Personalities. No offence, just curious.

      As to reply to your post, why every season we are work in progress? We should carry on what we achieved last season but Wenger totally changed it Bcos suddenly he want to help England by emphasis on wilshere. Maybe wenger did give instructions to ozil and Ramsey to help wilshere, let him have a run at the middle.

      1. @justsoccerfan.
        Yes I wanted all the deadwood
        off loaded and to buy quality.
        By and large this has happened.
        Sanchez Wellback Campbell are an
        upgrade while Chambers is a canny buy.
        Apart from being a couple light in defense Arsenal
        now has more depth and quality
        overall. So now I can’t really complain 🙂

        1. Yes I find this season we actually got qualities but the problem is Wenger still don’t know how to use them imagine a highly paid and experience manager In EPL can be that navies. From my observations, seem like he is concentrating on wilshere. He scrap last season achievement to build on wilshere, that how I see at this moment. We starting all over again and we only can hope it success.

          From the way he put up his first 11, we can see his intention. This set of players are for EPL and ECL if no injuries, he will play them full 90 mins. As for rest are the other competitions.

          1. Thats literally what it looks like, hes scrapping all of last seasons progress just for wilshere, hes moved ozil wide and ramsey further up the pitch in order to help wilshere and both have lost form and confidence as a result.
            On saturday jack wont play but ozil will still play wide and rambo will still play as an AM with santi taking wilsheres place.
            This new system is for wilshere and its destroying our team, also all the wingers we have like chamberlain, podolski and campbell cant get a game as ozil is taking up space outwide.

            1. Point precisely Wenger is trying to build the team around ozil and wild her instead of Ramsey like he did to an extent last season he is going through a tough time and I think he should remove his pride and actually listen at least then well know he tried and failed

    2. Our fullbacks are overlapping way too much leaving mert and kos exposed.l for one think we should bring lassana diarra back and revert to 4231 with lassana and rambo sitting back..ozil should be sandwitchd between 2 lightning quick wingers ala…walcott and the ox/alexis….every player should press to win back the ball and relish a quick counter…with such a system we wil surely score no less than 3 goals a game….arsene should rotate the squad and involve campbel poldi on the wings and rosicky carzola in ozils#10…finaly arteta should retire.

  2. Just type WENGER OUT and send. No point discussing who we should play, we are not Wenger. No matter how you think, he would not care. When 4th is out of reach than you will see him care, just the way you see him on the return leg of ECL qualifies, most of the time, he is at the touch line. He so scared that we are out of ECL cos that his own and board requirements.

  3. I can still remember very clearly how our fans were cursing wenger back in 2007 onwards, they were calling for Wenger to sign Mertesacker, “He is what we need, he is tall, strong, dominant and German international”, blah blah. To be honest I had only watched him play not more than 4 times.

    But the passion with most Arsenal fan toward Mertesacker when he was still playing Germany was so intense. On every blog, forum, News Paper site etc it was “You stupid Wenger, why don’t you sign Mert?”… So I had to check him out more closely, I think Bremen were playing in the CL so I checked him out. The first thing I noticed his awkwardness and lack of pace.

    Anyway first forward a few seasons and we buy him. After a few games the same fans were calling him clueless and that Wenger ain’t got a clue. Why did he sign such a donkey. After that Sunderland away game where he was left on his backside it was all curtains down. Mertesacker this Mertesacker that, sell that donkey etc.. Lol.

    They got over excited about Ozil, I had watched him play from his Bremen and Schalke days where he played mostly as a winger, his personality looked tired, slow, etc, we were linked with him so closely but I had a feeling his personality and physicality would struggle in the hustle and bustle of the EPL, he ended up at Madrid, I watched him having lots of 50/50 games, frustrating Madrid fans who used to call him lazy and would say he went missing in every single big game. Anyways last season I was watching MOTD when Leaniker said, We understand that Arsenal are in advanced talks with Madrid to sign Ozil for a reported £45 million and £150, 000 a week, my heart sank. Then were struggling in January and Arsene went for KIM Kallstrom.

    Then this summer speaks for it’s self. Wenger is plucking any available player from nowhere into the team with no definitive plan, he seems not have a plan at all, just buy whoever is available and put them into the team then hope for the best.

    1. This summer was better with Sanchez, Debuchy (we could have kept Jenko and everyone would ask for Wenger’s head for not replacing Sagna with class RB), Chambers (the best), Ospina (have no clue yet how he will fare) and Welbeck (jury still out on him). Sanchez was needed because Walcott is still injured. What I don’t understand is this : if we don’t buy a DM or a CB why not give game time to the ones we have in the team? Hayden, Coqelin etc? Bellerin had to play but he wouldn’t see game time if Debuchy was fit. Or Chambers. If you don’t play then you can’t develop. Experience is key. That makes you tough.
      BTW, seen the game last night I am happy Sagna left us. Same game, back pass, crosses stopped after 2 yards. The man had his best.

      1. True, but the summer would have been much better. I am a very big fan of Sanchez, the boy will run from minute 1 to 95, he will create, score and keep the defenders on their feet. Debuchy, Chambers, Welbeck and Ospina all good fine with me.

        I was so optimistic about us this summer, I was 100% certain we were out of the old wenger fiddling. I says after the Sanchez deal, if Arsene went out and bought us strong and quick DM, another CB and a Remy or Welbeck type, not world class but okay players that have pace and all. Those signing would have made me get even more delusional by implying we would walk the League.

        But it did not happen.

    2. Complete bollocks u were as excited about signing ozil as every arsenal fan, he was the nest number 10 in the world and madrid fans and players were all gutted when he left. And he used to turn up in all the big games for Germany and the classicos especially in his last season at madrid where he was top scorer in germanys WC qualifiers and player of the year 2 seasons running and where he tore madrid a new one in the supercup.

      1. Lol.. Sorry but you are chatting fart.. I was one of the only few fans who were p*ssed off when we wasted all that money on a bit part player.. If he was bought for about £20-£25 million then I would not have been so disappointed..

        We needed real PL players, DM, CB and Striker that summer, but then ended up being taken to the cleaners by Madrid..

        From refusing to go above £40 million for Suarez and then ending up with a player that we did not need, does not fit PL as he is the weakest player in the league..

        I am just waiting to be proven wrong..

  4. The only thing not working for our system is when the full backs don’t look to go to the byline. When they don’t do this, our wingers are stuck out wide and this goes against what our system is trying to achieve.
    If they do attempt to do this, there wingers will be drawn back and un-enable to counter us.
    There release is then limited to the CM who would be outnumbered with our 2 CM and our wingers who should be taking up these key areas of the field.

    This is what our system is trying to achieve. Sorry if this is too technical for the Wenger out/it solves the problem people. I am only interesting in real issues that need to be solved now and they are more likely.

  5. Change is good. But change just because of the sake of change is never going to work. This is only week 5 and I doubt we have a system in place (nevermind the injuries) for the rest of the season. I don’t think the system was the one who failed Tuesday night. One can question the decision to bring Arteta as the sole protection for the unfit Gibbs , bohemian Mertz and inexperienced Bellerin but the main cause was the attitude. I see the same attitude as in every big game away. We are there for the rape. And it pi$$es me off because there are teams we could beat if we turned out. Come to think we have to play at Chelsea in two weeks time. That will be some kind of a show with this attitude. Maybe Wenger can’t motivate these players anymore although I am not sure why they should be so complacent? They won only one trophy in a long period. Is not like they won UCL. I understand Mertz and Ozil, they reached the top of the top by winning the world cup, they did it, they made it there so probably there’s nothing in it for them anymore. But the rest of them? Ramsey? Wilshere? Gibbs? Welbeck? Arteta? and so on. They haven’t proved themeselve the trust given to them (and I include myself here).
    Ultimately is the manager task to motivate these players. But it takes the two parties here.
    Villa game will be a tough one. And if we turn out like we did in Dortmund it will be frustration all along. I reserve my judgement for Saturday.

      1. Podolski and Mertz yes. Ozil was one of the most played. Quite few assists and quite few chances created. But that doesn’t invalidate my point. It is even more actual. They are not the best anymore and there’s no higher trophy that a footballer can win.

        1. Yes, but playing does not mean anything if you are the most anonymous attacking player in that starting 11..

          The likes of Muller, Kroos, Gotze, Schurlle, Lahm, Schweinsteiger , Khedira etc were noticeable when they played..

  6. No matter what these are highly (nay ridiculously) paid professionals who should be able to put on some kind of show whatever the formation. Yes they may lose a few until they get used their new positions but each man has a responsibility to give it his best not just blame the system. If they try and lose they`re forgiven, but if they lose and don`t try it`s unforgivable.

    1. @Aussie Jack
      Thank you very much dude.
      The manager can give tactics and make selections of those players he might see fit to get the job done. And trusting in the abilities of all his players, he lets them loose on the opposition. Once they’re on the pitch, it’s up to them to make it happen or not…

  7. Have you noticed our players are prone to injuries more than any other in the premier? Reason being we send players to do a job in roles they are not familiar with. My suggestion is, Mr Wenger must employ a formation which suits (best positions/strength) of players he has at hand. He must also decide where he wants chambers to play. Shifting him around between the bench and anywhere else in the team will make him a mediocre player in the long term.
    NB:WARNING. Aston Villa (despite not being a star studded team) is quit strong, balanced and dangerous. Just like Lecester, they can tackle hard, attack & strongly defend their goal on their day.

  8. One gets the feeling they play to instructions too much in order to keep in favour. Players with natural flare will find this restriction frustrating.
    From my experience (coaching rugby) we had a broad game plan and it was discussed. The first 20 minutes or so we played a conservative kind of game then usually the brakes came off and natural ability took over. No, we didn`t always win but each man gave it his all.

    1. @Aussie Jack
      Not Alexis Sanchez. He plays his game the way he knows and wants to. The others look on at him as if he’s nutz. But I admire the dude.
      Him Rosicky, Campbell, Aaron and Ox playing together would eat “ANY” team alive…

  9. We need more strength, fight, directness etc from out midfielders. To me they are all too small, weak and slow. They are Very easily dominated by any half decent team with athletic, strong and direct players.

    Looking at that BVB game, non of them can read the game, they just seem to have no clue about hunting for the ball intensely as a pack. They just keep standing off the opposition, waiting and waiting some more just hoping the opponent messes up in possession then they we can get that ball back and start or slow, directionless, no purpose attacks, then give the ball away and can’t be bothered to run back. Goals galore on the counter for the opposing team.

    Until every fan stops sweet talking their favourite player we will keep being exposed. The Ramsey fans will say, Why Ramsey have to keep doing a 3 mans job, he is expected to dominate the midfield, he is expected to create, he is expected to score goals he is expected to keep defending and tracking back every game for 90 minutes, if he doesn’t then criticism kicks in.

    Wilshere fans will also say the same, Why should Jack be expected to do a 3 man job? He will be expected to run midfield, create chances, score, expected to defend, expected to track back each game for 90 minutes, and if he doesn’t do so criticism will kick in.

    The Sanchez fans will ask why should he play a 4 man job, operate on the wings, create and score goals, expected to track back and defend for 90 minutes etc..

    The Cazorla fans will say, why is Cazorla who is not a winger played in the wings. He is not good at tracking back or defending so he should be played in the middle where you have Arteta, Jack and Ramsey who should do the defending for him. blah blah. He is only good at creating chances and scoring.

    Ozil fans will say, Mesut was bought to just play as a #10 and he should just do that, he is not good at at defending or tracking back, so play him in the middle where you have Arteta, Ramsey and Jack who should do the defending for him. He is only good at creating chances.

    Etc.. Where Will it all end? Let’s defend and attack as a team. Every player should earn their over the top wages.

    1. Theres nothing wrong in letting the opposition play infront of you whilst you sit deep and wait to pounce when they get in dangerous areas lots of teams do it, the difference is after you win the ball you counter with players running down the channels and quick combinations or 3-4 passes to release them, not win the ball then do stupid tika tika against a team pressed so high up against our midfield as were sitting back and to make things worse we then commit BOTH fullbacks leaving us vulnerable for counter attacks ourself -.-, its a joke we literally have no strategy.
      Real madrid vs Bayern is a perfect example of how we should play away, they sat back and dropped off against bayern applying 0 pressure in bayerns half and sitting deep to allow nothing in behind. Forcing bayern to commit lots of players forward, and once bayern lose the ball the first thing they did is pass it to alonso or modric who then sprayed it to Ronaldo bale or dimaria who were running the channels whenever they won possesion.
      This meant that they kept a flat back 4 all game and never committed more than 5 players forward at a time.
      Why cant we do this?

  10. Should arsenal bother turning up? 🙂 its obvious to me whilst the defence is disrupted we need to go back to 4-2–3-1. Ozil dropped or at 10 and bring in some fresh legs in ox, campbell, poldi, risicky, cazorla etc. Start chambers at cb over per m. Heard today through the tabloid murmers we are looking at yobo, lugano, diarra. Id take anyone at this stage.

  11. Our fullbacks are overlapping way too much leaving mert and kos exposed.l for one think we should bring lassana diarra back and revert to 4231 with lassana and rambo sitting back..ozil should be sandwitchd between 2 lightning quick wingers ala…walcott and the ox/alexis….every player should press to win back the ball and relish a quick counter…with such a system we wil surely score no less than 3 goals a game….arsene should rotate the squad and involve campbel poldi on the wings and rosicky carzola in ozils#10…finaly arteta should retire.

  12. i have a question guys do u think AW dislikes playing rosicky campbell or podolsky coz they dont play to his outdated tikitaka style and are more like direct pacy players which AW dislikes??? just asking..

  13. we need to play our men where they are suited to play. AW also has to learn the habit of rotating our players –we have a massive squad but only about 14 players are used. Our manager isnot trying out new things. We havent seen any young lad bustin into the first team (they are only in the picture not on the pitch). How i wish players like Akpom, Cambel, Hayden, Coq, where given a chance…we wdnt be worried about injuries. Imagine if hector had been on the been for our PL games, and always came on later in the games etc etc…Personally i think thats what the Youth League (U 21) is intended for. Its supposed to feed the senior team–

  14. It has been a habit with Arsenal fans here on this site or anywhere else in the world to look for excuses or scapegoats to justify our teams bad performance. I think there is nothing wrong with the current formation 4-1-4-1. Whats wrong is the personal in the line up. Not naming names, majority of our starters are either giving way the ball cheaply,not closing down opponents quickly to recover possession and not working as a team and for each other. They improve on this and we will see a unstoppable team.

    1. It is still Wenger fault, he is responsible for selecting starting players and the substitutes during the match as well

  15. To goonster: Mertesacker is the only world class player from Arsenal. He is at the same level like Mats Hummels or Jerome Boateng. he is not the fastest but fast enough. Faster than Martin Demichelis from the British Champion. the problem is Mesut Özil. he is lazy and soft but too expensive for the bench.

  16. There has been so many articles here on the Aston Villa game that am starting to think that AFC fans are genuinly worried or even afraid…yes AFRAID……of Aston Villa..and then you tell me this isnt a team in perpetual decline under AW

  17. Ger rid off this buffoon manger get some 1 with modern mentality, who understand modern game not deluded buffoon like wenger whos milking 8 millions a year wage for his past glory.10 years still the buffoon can’t fix basic problem. Every year same excuse.them akb balls lickers always deffending ther loard are the reasons why we will never win big again.

    1. @yay4life
      Learn to string together a complete sentence, spell and get an original thought, instead of shovin weasels up your azz and gettin all excited dude…

  18. Over the years we have started to lower our targets, deep down we have lost our confident. Is the middle team excel or arsenal in decline, no we are no bad last season but Wenger wanna start over again, use different formation but he didn’t find players to suit this play, instead try to put donkey all over the place.

  19. It obviously does not work…!!

    Wenger has no “system” in place. He seems to try something different since the beginning of the season, but he does not have the players to implement it.

    It was the same problem when he played Ramsey on the wing or Walcott in central position… It just does not work.

    He is known to play players out of position and expect miracles
    Ozil is a “pure” number 10, simple as that. He does not track back and obsoletely defend…!! So what is the point?
    People are talking about him giving his all, but he cannot play there. He has no pace and is a distributor of the ball.

    What did we say when Wenger brought him?
    We did not need Ozil (we have assist specialists in the squad already)… What we needed was a top striker and a DM (at the time).

    We are now short of defensive cover, we have what seems a learner at the striking position and no DM.

    We have been dealing with the same problems season after season.

    Wenger seems to get rid off the deadwoods (his players by the way) and does not go the extra mile to complete the squad.

    When we lost Walcott (on top of 10 to 15 goals) he thought that we could find the solution within and not recruit…!! Another delusional move…

    Sometimes I wonder if he has a problem with “money” or “spending” (Well, he is not bothered by his astonishing and outrageous wages, which are undeserved).

    Each season, we seem to rebuilt… Each season we are talking about the same issues… Each season we are anxious when the transfer market opens because we know the guy is useless.

    On top of that, it is clear for everybody that he is not even a good “coach” and cannot put tactics right.

    We are, may be, the only club who does not send scout to observe opponents…!!!

    Our squad is full of skilled light weight players (most of them prone to injuries)… Wenger forgot how we won the league. The squad was powerful skilled and they were all experienced players.

    Wenger got rid off the strong characters and kept all the young “yes” cronies… Sometimes bringing some old guards (Silvestre… What the f*ck was that?) for a nip !!

    Fans are asking if he should leave?
    Well, they were not saying that when they were running behind the bus after the FA Cup (won by the players and the players ONLY) and thought that we were going to push on (naive!).

    A FA Cup loss would have, may be, been a blessing as he would have left.
    Wenger should have left 4 or 5 years ago.
    He has now signed a 3 years contract and he will honour it fully (64 years old… I think it is enough… We might have one of the oldest manager in position now).
    By the way he is too old to change, so get stuck in and deal with it.

    Even TF1 let him go as they have a policy of bringing new “blood” and fresh ideas.

    At the end we are at the “image” of this country… Change is difficult and sticking to the routine is best. I was watching the house of Lord yesterday and I felt horrified when you realise “grannies” and 90 years old stuck up brethren are making decisions for the youth in this country…!!

    Anyway, Wenger needs to do his job.
    We are already linked with free agents (cannot believe we have 6 defenders… And the guy thinks it is acceptable!!!) Yobo, Lugano and Lass Diarra…
    We cannot be fussy anymore, so he might as well get 2 of them.

  20. Did Wenger have any plan for the season? Did he buy players to suit his plan? Did he has a different tactics for different games? Did he talk tactics with his players? Did he know how to sub?

  21. there isnt really an injury crisis this the time where we need to start trusting the youngsters,
    we have coming through atm that they will fill in and not look out of place we have some very sound and talented players waiting to just step in at a moments notice like bellerin and hayden at the back.
    Plus we do have other young c/bs that are doing very well in under 21’s ajayi and o’conner and ormand ottewill all could could fill in, and do well no one knows until we try them,
    we have stumbled upon great youngster before by just trying them out why not again.

    lassa diarra would be a good addition to d.m sound enough to use in the big games and protects the c/b’s well mobile and good tackler be good for 1 season.

  22. Why don’t AW go up stairs with the money grabbers and stay there. Then we can get a new manager who knows the importance of having a world class DM with a world class back up who is getting on a little but can do that holding job. We the arsenal fans and funny enough pundits around the world are saying the same thing? But he AW can’t see this. He has not replaced TV lol that alone is a joke. And I’m sorry AW but you can’t buy. Strike and want him to be a left back? Yes stop doing this with players. Players don’t want to come to arsenal coz they don’t play where they should. 42mill man is a spent force at arsenal now coz AW won’t put him in the middle. We pay all this money out we dream but we once again are let down by AW and ARSENAL MONEY GRABBERS

  23. I think arsenal need to scrap the old system.. starting with wenger.. we just been repeating same shit for 8 years.. nothing new.. wenger is still going to do the same shit against villa.. so save your voice villa match

  24. Even if ozils moved centrally i doubt he’ll ever thrive under wenger, wenger just doesnt know how to utilize him.
    Ozil’s a counter attacking player, he was at madrid, bremen and with germany. And as a team we’ve abandon counter attacking.
    Ozil doesnt play for 90mins in big games, if you want ozil to press and run and track players tell him to do it and burn all his energy then sub him at 65-70mins. If you watch ozil under mourinho you would be surprised at the running he did for his team.
    At madrid when he got the ball players started running at arsenal this doesnt happen everyone just shows for the ball with our striker backing into the CB forcing ozil to pass sideways.
    You could slate his versatility but some teams are just not a good fit for players. Ozil would thrive at a more fast and direct team like liverpool or chelsea, or the pre-2006 arsenal.

  25. Hire Jurgen Klopp, Guardiola, Moyes or Martinez next Summer…..

    As assistant manage

    In Wenger I Still Trust

  26. Go with 4-5-1 when Walcott comes back.



    Walcott………………..Ozil……….. ………Sanchez


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