The Arsenal manager Unai Emery tried to put a sugar-coated view of yesterday’s defeat to Everton, by saying that Arsenal were better defensively in the first half (but conceded the only goal) and were better offensively in the second (when they didn’t score either). The boss said: “Today we had two different halves. In the first half we were consistent and we didn’t concede good chances to them, but they scored from one throw-in, unfortunately for us. In the attacking third, we really needed more.
“If the result was like we deserved in the first half… we couldn’t continue like that in the second half. We needed to take chances in the attacking half. In the second half we decided to change and play with a 4-3-2-1. Defensively, we lost consistency in the second half. They created more chances in the second half. We created better chances than in the first, but we couldn’t score and they also didn’t.
“We need this balance in the first and second half, we need to do it better offensively and defensively with the balance. It gives us lots of information. We lost a great opportunity today to take three points.”
If he really believes that we deserved the points, then I’m not sure what game he was watching, but it looked to me like Everton were doing all the attacking, especially in the second half. In the whole of the game Everton notched up 23 attempts on Leno’s goal in comparison to Arsenal’s 7. Six of those Toffees shots were on target against Arsenal’s two. Embarrassingly, Gylfi Sigurdsson had as many attempts as the whole Arsenal team put together! Only Lacazette and sub Aaron Ramsey managed a shot that actually went towards Pickford’s goal.
So when were Arsenal good offensively (or defensively) again??
The fact is that in away games Arsenal are a shadow of the team that plays at the Emirates, and lack confidence in attack and defence. The fact that we have conceded at least once in every single away game this season hardly inspires fear in our opponents when we are on the road. Not to mention that we have only won once in our last nine games on the road.
Can we make Top Four with this lack of confidence hanging over us? It would be a miracle if we do….