Typical Arsenal – “We made it hard for ourselves” against Olympiacos

Arsenal were superhot favourites to beat Olympiacos last night, after having an excellent run of form that saw us beat Leicester, Tottenham and Benfica, and then topped it off with a 3-1 win in Athens in the first leg.

But as usual, we nearly shot ourselves in the foot by letting Olympiacos take the lead just after half-time meaning us long-suffering fans had 40 minutes of nail-biting before going through by the skin of our teeth.

One person who was obviously not impressed was our German keeper Bernd Leno, who told Arsenal.com after the game: “I think we suffered today and it was not necessary,”

“I think because in the first 15 or 20 minutes we controlled the game but then we’ve made too many easy mistakes and in the second half we conceded the goal and then everybody was nervous.

“We made it hard for ourselves and, like I said, it was not necessary.

“In the dressing room it was quiet because everybody knows that it was not a good performance from us. We cannot change it anymore but the positive thing is that it was a warning.

“We need to be 100 per cent every game. If we play like today then we won’t reach anything this season.

“I think there are only very good teams in the quarter-finals and we need two perfect games to go to the semi-finals and two more games to go to the final.

“The Europa League is very important for us,” added Leno. “This is probably the closest way to go to the Champions League and also to win a big European trophy so we need to step up.

“We need to have the motivation to win every game, cut out the easy mistakes and go through to the final and hopefully have a big final at the end of the season.”

I am beginning to like Leno’s style of being honest, and he is certainly very honest in this interview. We won’t have a chance of winning anything if we play like this again, but this total inconsistency has been the Arsenal theme this season.

Let’s hope this is not the start of another bad run as we could really do with another three points against West Ham on Sunday….

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7 Comments

  1. SueP says:

    There was no point trying to pretend it was anything other than almost 90 minutes of very mediocre football and I hope in that quiet dressing room they took time to reflect.

    Poor games happen to all teams; the best have them less frequently. It’s now down to Arteta to prepare and for the squad to play with pride against West Ham at the weekend. I don’t want to be watching too much more of what transpired last night

    1. Goonster says:

      @SueP
      It was an absolutely disgraceful performance last night.
      It seems like we can’t trust Arteta and troops.
      They leave us disappointed the majority of the time.

      They just switch On and Off in a blink of an eye..

  2. Gede says:

    If we need to move forward let’s give armband to Leno or Tierney. Aubameyang is not a captain material neither do Xhaka or luiz or Bellerin. And these are the players don’t play with consistency causing team to look pathetic. Look how many chances auba missed, a whole captain? That’s a joke he should be benched if he plays like this. Last season he missed the same and we we’re eliminated by the same team. Nketiah can’t miss all that. Balogun the same . I’ve a feeling that Laca and Auba are letting arsenal down with the chances they misses during a game. As the matter of fact they are not lethal strikers needed for a team to move forward. Look at the spurs game, laca had wasted that chance if not for a penalty. And the same game during first half he blusted clean goals. Truth is Nketiah and Martinelli should be given opportunities to prove their talents. Pepe wasted chances too. Am not saying they are not good but they don’t play to win every match (laca,auba,pepe,Willian). Arteta must think of arsenal without these forwards. Very experienced but they don’t score enough. I thought we could be tearing teams with these players but even Manchesters team and Chelsea have many goals than arsenal. Auba can’t fight for a long ball? Then why select him. We sold Henry why not him? I hate a player being paid handsomely but showing no interest in games. Coach is to blame for this sloppy performances. Ceballos played at no.10 and esr played at no.11? Why all these experiments he brings on field, he should try them at training. Elneny and xhaka play the same, stuck at back. He should blame himself not players or if players vote to be selected not he who selects the team we fans we can understand his cry. But he’s the coach, he selects the team. He should have subbed players at half time. Starting with ceballos, elneny n auba period. Then another I get hurted is this section of luiz and Xhaka does they not need a rest or are robots? Or are untouchables error prones and they make him be an average coach. We need to change this coach. Enough is enough.

  3. Grandad says:

    Leno hit the nail on the head when he highlighted the need to cut out simple mistakes as evidenced by the fact that we have not kept a clean sheet in the last 11 matches?The number of “soft” goals we are conceding is appalling and not acceptable for a team who hopes to win the Europa Cup.The Greeks goal last night was a typical example, where we had four players back against their 3 forwards and still managed to concede. I don’t know who our defensive coach is but he is not getting the message across that’s for sure..I hope Holding and Martinelli start against West Ham .The former will be needed against the serial power of the Hammers, whilst the latter will bring fresh legs and enthusiasm to our front line.

  4. Shine says:

    Auba.

    If am Auba I will certainly handover the armband over to someone who can push the whole team n lead us instead of..

    Sometimes it’s the heart that says we need to do this

    He’s a good player no doubt but sometimes being good enough is just not enough

  5. Dunchirado says:

    Whatever happened to Arsenal yesterday.still yesterday was like Christmas

    (Orsiic) remember that name.

  6. jon fox says:

    The main problem was the constant passing mistakes and being caught in possession. Plus, as ever in a side including both Xhaka and Elneny, lack of speed in passing and lack of ability to even see a pass by those two donkeys.

    I have finally made up my mind – having previously being undecided – that CEBALLOS is not good enough and hope he returns to MADRID this summer. Or at least that he leaves us. Just not reliably effective enough and not of the special quality we need.

    IF he were already our player, I’d probably opt to keep him, as back up . BUT he is not worth having to spend even another loan fee on, let alone a transfer fee.

    But that being said, I expect a much improved perf at West Ham. We are these days slowly and steadily improving overall, but its two steps forward and one step back, constantly.

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