Typical Arsenal – Two steps back, one step forward

A win is a win but it’s only half a step forward! by Shenel

A great and comfortable win against Southampton brings back the smiles, yet all it does for now is paper over the cracks!

We are not silly enough to get ahead of ourselves after one win, although a 3-0 win is nice to see where we scored more than two goals and kept a clean sheet, things that have eluded us in previous games, but you cannot help but get frustrated at the fact that we could have done the same in the last two games yet faltered and shied away from it!

Altogether losing six points that could be valuable at the end of the season!

We know we are capable and have this sort of performance in the bag, but we cannot produce it week in, week out, and that is the most worrying and frustrating thing to see as a fan.

Again, it boils down to; you just do not know what Arsenal will turn up on each matchday and it shouldn’t be like this!

Like I have said many times before we have so much talent in the squad and so many experienced and young talented players coming through, yet each game brings about its own negatives and very few positives, we take one step forward and three back!

After a win like yesterday’s one against Southampton, questions are always going to be asked as to why we lost to Manchester United and Everton in the way that we did, and why we produced something against Southampton only a few days after losing to the Toffees – yet couldn’t do it at Goodison Park.

Most of the players over all three games were the same, yet the only difference is those games were away and this one was at home. But it should not matter where you play, you should be able to grind out the results if most of the players on the pitch are the same.

There are no excuses for losing our last two games, yet all we can do is look forward and enjoy this win and the three points for the weekend, before the next tough test awaits in midweek against West Ham!

Shenel Osman

Arteta asked if Aubameyang will still be captain

Tags Southampton


  1. We played well for the most part but it’s difficult to take anything away from that game because Southampton were so bad.

    If Auba hadn’t disobeyed our supreme leader then he would’ve started and Xhaka gave the ball away so often I lost count so no credit to the manager in terms of team selection.

  2. They just have to get maximum points against weaker oppositions and at home games. Other teams are not consistent too.

    I know I know we shouldn’t depend on other teams results but it’s where we are at right now.

    The next five games including the Man City one are winnable. If we as fans accept a defeat at our home ground one month in advance what is the point of even following the team?

    How funny our form is, always a winning run and Arteta in will come out in full force with I told you so. It soon followed by a losing run and Arteta out come out in full force with I told you so. It’s a circle.

    1. Unending Cycle. Arteta Ins come out loudly one time, Arteta Outs another week. It’s just based off the fact that Arteta somehow can’t get consistent performance for each game.

      1. What a lot of us are forgetting is that we were not world beaters when MA took over.. sometimes we attack him like he is the one who ran us into the ground.. I think we have improved especially this season but we are not the top team we once were fact.. but who can do a better job with this lot? Rangnick was the last available viable option but he is gone now 😆 🤣 maybe we should hire Carrick to replace MA.

        1. “What a lot of us are forgetting is that we were not world beaters when MA took over..”

          I don’t remember finishing 8th. I remember 4th was not good enough for Arsenal and 6th unacceptable.

          1. We were 8th when he took over. ESR had never started a league game and martinelli had started his 1st with ljungberg with Arteta in the stands. Short memories most people.

            1. Yes, and I seem to recall that our previous full time manager finished 5th in his first full season, then was sacked when 8th partly through the new season. Please enlighten us to why the same standards no longer apply.

              Also, were you one of those who had constantly claimed that ‘4th is not a trophy’, and that Arsenal should be better than that? What has changed?

      2. The circle ends where we finish. For the past two seasons it has ended on Arteta out. Coincidence? I believe we are going to have consistency in the second round of the league either in losing or in winning.

  3. Apalling love fest between manager and Xhaka, makes me doubt long term progress. But yesterday’s final 70 minutes or so was a sample of the type of football I would like to see from Arsenal, even when things don’t always go your way.

  4. Arsenal has been very consistent all season.
    Player selection, form and tactics have not been a factor. Results have been determined entirely by the strength of the opposition and where the game was played.
    Arsenal is exactly where we should be.
    After the two 8th finishes nobody picked Arsenal to make top 4 absolutely nobody.
    After the first 3 games people on JA were saying even top ten was beyond us.
    I predicted 6/7 by Xmas and 5/6 by May.
    Beating Southampton was totally expected.
    Arsenal played just as well v Liverpool Man Utd and Everton but Southampton is in 16th and we were at home. In fact 14 of our results have been as expected.
    Away losses to the likes of Liverpool Man City Man United even Everton were utterly predictable as was the home loss to Chelsea.
    7 wins were expected
    Norwich 19th Spurs 5th Villa 14th
    Watford 16th Newcastle 20th Southampton 16th
    Burnley 18th while Leicester 8th was not a big surprise. My summer prediction remains the same. Absolutely no chance or expectation of top 4. Top 7 is the target and we will be 7th or better. Westham will be tough but we should win because we are at home. We are right on target. Trust the process. COYG

    1. I have to say firstly you made some good points FF.. but this notion of Arsenal beating weak teams in the Prem befuddle me because there is no such thing as a weak team in the Prem.. teams we killed over the course of this season like Soton Villa etc who some here categorise as weak teams go to the home ground of the so called big 3 and get points something we could not manage.. I don’t think there are easy games I think your preparation is what matters.. I will take this win everyday when we lost to a poor Everton side I know what people said hear but I understand fan frustration and people change like the direction of the wind so it’s fine.. but a win against wolves and I will be confident about our European chances next season.

      1. Weak teams and weaker teams are completely different terms. There may not be a weak team but there will always be weaker teams!

        Or are all the EPL teams perfectly equal? You are trying to sound smart, it’s not working.

    2. You expected Arsenal to lose at Everton? Why? No win in 8 gnaes but you expected we lost against them? I ask again, why?

      1. Everton have a decent squad, a good manager, were desperate and were playing at home. They had to win to save their season. Same with United the game before because they have a world class squad were desperate and were at home. I expect us to beat both Everton and Man U at home in the New Year. That also goes for Brighton and Brentford in the returns. I also expect us to get at least a point when we host Liverpool and City because we will be at home.
        We should score at least 5 more points in the second round and get about 66 points by May which should be enough for 5th but definitely 6th. COYG

        1. Everton game for me is our worst game of the season after the first 3 games even those 3 games we started well against City but the Everton game was similar to the Bees and Chelsea game.. but in all honesty we are having a better season because of the new players I can’t wait for more introductions to strengthen the team.

          1. So fairfan, Everton and manure were desperate to show what they could do…. so why weren’t The Arsenal desperate to show what they could do?

            What an illogical argument you put forward in order to defend two terrible performances and, if you were truthful, then the ONLY game where we played the way we should for the full 90 minutes was in the NL Derby….. WHY IS THAT??????

            1. Ken, Laca was not in a desperate mood to score, Partey was not desperate to break up play and recycle the ball, only Eddie was desperate to hit the posts and not the inner side of the net. So what could Mikel do, lace his boots and sub himself at half time? Ken, we really do not have the players say like WHU to fight for 90 minutes. Leave alone the top 3, they are in the league of their own, we have to overhaul the entire system which Mikel has doing. Rome was not built in 18 months. After 16 matches, in 2019 we had 22 points, in 2020 we had 20 points, in 2021 we have 26 points (inspite of Laca/Auba/Eddie/Pepe still here?)

    3. I completely agree with the table prediction. 7th is realistic, 6th is pushing it. scum under Conte is a different beast and will probably stay above Arsenal, hence weak chance of anything other than Conference League. But hey, a chance for a “European” trophy.

  5. We actually still have the same problem, but our players simply outclassed Soton’s

    4-4-1-1 is a risky formation, because we depend on the CF/ the CAM to initiate the high press and Lacazette/ Odegaard are too slow for that. It’s good to trap the opponents because we invite them to penetrate our wings and we have won 10+ games with the formation, but our defense is currently too nervous to take such high risk in the back

    I’d prefer a more frontal formation, by pinning down the opposition’s defense. Liverpool, Chelsea and Man City have the guts to use three high-pressers, so we should also be able to do it with our youngsters

    1. And you are quite certain our youngsters are effective pressers? There is a craft to some of these things we demand to be honest and to be fair to MA somethings you can’t teach players who are unwilling except it is part of what the player is built for or their game.. we always say Chelsea Man City and Liverpool press better than we do but that is not because our players don’t press it is quite simple.. if you press out of sync it is ineffective and it leaves you exposed to the counter but if done right it could be an advantage we need players who want to press and dominate from the front until we have that I think we should not press like a bunch of chickens scrambling for crumbs.

      1. At least the youngsters are fast and have more energy to do it frequently. I agree that willingness to press and synchronization are highly important to do it successfully

        1. You get the idea got-an-idea being fast and presumably having more energy is 20-30% of effective pressing.. if there are spaces in between the pressing it breaks it up.. Liverpool pressers are Salah Mane and Firmino are all over 27 and they do it consistently and effectively.. Firmino is not so fast in my opinion but the synchronisation is mad.. they don’t leave any space between for the opposition to play out from.

          1. Pressing has more to do about cutting off passing angles and make play predictable than just running around like chickens with their head cut off.
            This why Salah and Mane/Firmino do it better because they are older and coached BETTER !

  6. This win doesn’t take away the embarrassment I felt after the Everton defeat. Our away form is poor and has been for a while now – why?
    So frustrating to watch.. I can see myself perched on the edge of my seat for the remainder of the season (or decade 🤣)
    I just hope we show up against the Hammers and don’t treat it as another training session. Points are precious…

    1. We are taking maximum points off the hammers Sue.. they have to pay what they owe.
      I totally agree with you on the Everton game because they were on a bad run I just felt like we didn’t show up at all to Goodison but wins over the hammers and Wolves can cleanse the sacrilegious loss to Everton. Coyg.

  7. It seems not to have occurred to Shenel that the team which she herself describes as many having young players coming through would be, by the fact of so many being young, inconsistent in performance.

    That is what happens with very young teams, in general. She also says that we have many “experienced players”.
    I say that is wrong and that we do not have many at all.

    How many of those who played yesterday could truly be called PREM experienced? Not anywhere near enough IMO. Inconsistency with the youngest Prem team is BOUND to be the norm.

    Time alone will cure that. Some of course have not patience to wait for time to come!

    1. Like many people on here, yourself Jon need to stop pushing the young team narrative and here why.

      Average age of Premier League teams in 2021/22
      1. Arsenal: 25.01 years

      2. Brentford: 25.42 years

      3. Southampton: 25.71 years

      4. Aston Villa: 26.17 years

      5. Tottenham Hotspur: 26.23 years

      6. Norwich City: 26.36 years

      7. Leeds United: 26.71 years

      8. Manchester United: 27.05 years.

      9. Brighton & Hove Albion: 27.09 year

      10. Manchester City: 27.12 years

      11. Leicester City: 27.28 years

      12. Newcastle United: 27.34 years

      13. Chelsea: 27.70 years

      14. Liverpool: 27.80 years

      15. Everton: 27.88 years

      16. Wolverhampton Wanderers: 27.90 years

      17. Watford: 28.13 years

      18. Crystal Palace: 28.19 years

      19. West Ham: 28.79 years

      20. Burnley: 29.3
      Yes we do have the youngest squad but people like you make it sound that our players are years&years youngers than other teams which as the table shows is not the case.

      1. Siamois that is the case when you consider the age of the starting XI.. how many teams start with a young line up like Arsenal.. Gk 23… Rb 22.. Cb 23 Cb 23 LB 24 yesterday.. save for Partey Xhaka and Laca who are over 27.. Saka Martinelli are 20 or below Ode is 22.. how many teams are starting with such a young side week in week out I will wait.. and are doing better.

        1. I have to admit that’s a valid point, I’m gonna and should have checked the number of minutes played by the younger players.👍

          1. No you made a valid point backed with data. In my opinion a player 20 and above should not be considered young in this day and age.

            1. I can’t argue with that HH.. there are countless world class players below 25 you are right.. hopefully a couple can grow out of these lot.

              1. This is a point personally I will not consider changing my view I am sorry. Football is a very short career with 30s considered old.

                20 is not young not only in football but in life. 20 is not young for anything.

  8. Hello my fellow Gooners, I’m new to all this & will add my points & reply to those where I can add another take etc.

    Good win yesterday & roll on WHUFC on Wednesday.


  9. Now that I think of it you are actually right HH,these days players in their early 20’s are no beginners and do have experience(KT, Ramsdale,White, Saka…)👍

  10. A win is a win. Hopefully we now go on a winning run and the first thing is to take care of the Hammers, they are certainly beatable. Consistency in winning games will go a long way in us finishing 4th, that should be the target no matter what.

    1. I’m not overly optimistic,not only WH can play football,they are also very physical,they wil try to bully us.

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