Blame the players, not Arteta, for Spurs defeat by Jonbo
Win, lose or draw, you do it as a team. Everyone is responsible, but at different levels. The Spurs defeat gives the “Arteta out” contingent a nice bit of ammunition to work with, but I wouldn’t say there was much Arteta could have done. The majority of the blame has to go to the players.
Arteta picked the correct team, even with Holding’s selection, which he couldn’t win with whatever he did. Holding’s sending off allows some to question as to why White didn’t start? However, drop Holding, Arteta then gets criticised for leaving out one of our most in-form players. Classic no win situation.
Everything else was fine with the lineup. We started the game on the front foot, causing a few problems. Equally, Spurs were working on our defence as well. Pretty even start… until the individual errors.
One can pick apart tactics, formation, starting lineup, and put that on the manager, but one thing ANY manager can not legislate for is individual errors. That’s what cost us!
Why Cedric decided to go with the exact same shove in the back as Mustafi did a few years back against Spurs, was ridiculous! Especially with the option of VAR as well. If that wasn’t bad enough, Holding manages to get not one, but two, braindead yellows in just 32 minutes!
The Davis yellow early on for bringing down Saka was what a smart booking looks like. He took one for the team because Saka was going to be in a really dangerous position. Both of Holding’s bookings were completely unnecessary, especially the second one.
Then just a few minutes later, before Arteta even had time to process the sending off, it’s 2-0. Game over! If we could have got to half-time at 1-0, we had a chance, but 2-0, with a man less, away to a top team, made it almost impossible. 3-0 right at the start of the second half killed any slim chance of a comeback.
Arteta blamed the ref for destroying the game, but what other option did the ref have? I disagree with Arteta on that. Holding lost the plot, and let everyone down. He had been warned, was already on a yellow, yet decided to ignore it all. The ref was spot on.
It’s not to say every time we’ve had a man sent off that Arteta’s blameless, but I have lost count the amount of times these dismissals have occurred at really crucial points in a game. It’s always when the scores are either level, or one goal in it, and always with plenty of time on the clock. We never seem to get red cards right at the end of a game, or when we’ve already built up a healthy lead.
So I cannot see how anyone can criticise the manager for this one. Terrible individual errors, the second goal coming right after the sending off, an hour with a man less, and away to an in-form, top team with a deadly attack. It was the stuff of nightmares!
Overall, defeat was a very real possibility going into this game, it’s just so frustrating how it panned out. I am so angry with Cedric and Holding! I cannot imagine what on earth they were thinking?
The only positive thing is that nothing has changed. It’s still in our hands. Win our last two games and it’s Champions League qualification. We just have to hope that our players have no more brain farts!
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