Was it just Sokratis red card that lost Arsenal the game in Rennes?

It was not a great result for Arsenal last night but before Sokratis got sent off for a second yellow in 20 minutes and then suddenly we were playing like a Championship side. Unai Emery thinks that the red card was the pivotal moment and it will all be different when they come to the Emirates next week. The boss said: “The first 40 minutes I think we controlled, we scored and we didn’t concede good chances to them. But after this red card, it’s different. It’s more than we wanted and I think we can do better.

“But the result is for the first match and for the first 90 minutes. Losing 3-1 is hard for us, but we are going to start the next match, next week with 11 against 11 and with the same respect we have had in the first half, the first 40 minutes. We are going to do that at home against them. But we need to also change our performance and I have the confidence with our players, with our supporters helping us to create one big atmosphere to give us a good spirit against them to come back.”

He is putting a lot of hope in us coming back at the Emirates, but he refused to blame Sokratis for his two yellow cards and thinks the players need to learn how to deal with being a man down, something we didn’t do very well last night. “I think we changed more than we want, but a red card can come. Two yellow cards and it’s the referee’s decision. After, I think we must learn to play – when it’s coming like today – with one less player on the pitch. Not a good experience today, because we couldn’t do our work in difficult moments, in difficult minutes, with one less player, like we wanted. I think we can do better.

“I am positive in the first 40 minutes because I think, with respect to them, we imposed our gameplay in these moments. We can maybe score a second goal because we deserved to, but after it is really very different in the match. I cannot say to Sokratis because he has very good commitment, he has very good behaviour and he received two yellow cards in two actions of playing.”

And then he yet again put his faith in us coming back next week. “But we are going to think, for the next week, we are going to start 11 against 11, without Sokratis and without Lacazette, but we have players. Like the first 40 minutes, we can do it with our supporters also, to have the possibility to come back. But we know this result is not good. It is bad and it is going to be tough for us. But we need to do with focus and with our players, this possibility to come back.”

We certainly do need to focus, but with this awful defeat we now have to pick ourselves up for the visit of Man United on Sunday. Another defeat and our confidence will be shot completely….



  1. Sue says:

    I’m so disappointed right now… every bloody time we have an important game to win, it all goes pear shaped!
    So next week we’ll be without Laca & Sokratis (who I believe is one of our better defenders !!!) Once again we’ve left ourselves a huge mountain to climb.. not only have we got to score, we’ve got to stop them from scoring! So you can understand why I’m not feeling very optimistic……
    Our season defining week hasn’t got off to a very good start!

    1. gotanidea says:

      2-0 should be a realistic target for a club of Arsenal’s stature, when playing against a lower Ligue 1 team at home

      If they cannot achieve it, it means there is no improvement on the attackers’ and attacking midfielders’ skills since they were barren against the ten-men Atletico Madrid in the last season’s EL

      If that’s the case, Arsenal should replace them next season and they had better get younger/ hungrier players only

      1. Sue says:

        It should be, but will it?? I’m beginning to wonder if we’re ever meant to win anything in Europe (EL or CL!)

    2. things are changing says:

      If you leave yourself in a hole sooner or later you will fail to climb out of it. Personally, I think the manager doesn’t go without blame for this one. I don’t quite get his reorganization after the red card.

      More importantly, we continue to be inconsistent in our performances which makes me worry about the Man U game. If we do not win that game a top 4 finish would require too much help from other teams.

      Finally, is it me or is Suarez starting to look like wasted money for a club who claim to have a shortage of cash? At £2.0 million loan fee, soon Suarez will cost us £200k per game. His use puzzles me. One would have thought if the manager deemed him added value and needed that he would have brought him into the team by now. It is one thing to say he is not ready for the PL and its physicality, it’s another to say he has nothing to add when we play against Rennes.

  2. Konstantin says:

    These players and manager are not good enough. Emerys future should be hanging on Sundays game. You either perform or you’re out! Oh wait… This is Arsenal where failure is a daily routine. Shambles. This performance was embarrassing! Hopefully the players and the manager realise, they owe us big time. Mental weaklings they are.

  3. Dudu says:

    ‘I think the problem Emery is having is he is not picking his best team. You have to pick your best team, I know Aaron Ramsey is leaving but if you have to play him so be it……..why this Guendouzi all the time and why moving Lucas torriera forward we are now average team,we can’t control games and I haven’t seen the high pressing football he talks about and if he subs we be come worst,I don’t understand our style of football…just look at (Manu) how may months did it take OLE…….Earlier the better he goes, i’m tired of his chit football no joy no attraction….#Emery out

    1. kev says:

      For all the hype Guendouzi has been given I don’t think he’s been that good.He might be 19years and from Ligue 2 but I don’t see why he gets so much hype. I also don’t think he and Torreira would make a great partnership.I’d like to see AMN given his chance at CM and Jenkinson brought back to the first team for Mustafi.Jenkinson is a better RB than Mustafi and AMN has the best potential of all our young CM’s.

      1. ozziegunner says:

        After Wenger has left after being unable to consistenrly motivate these and now people believe Emery has failed in less than a season, who next?
        Maybe it’s time to realize that the current Arsenal squad is not good enough to achieve at a level higher than at present.
        Let’s just sack Emery at the end of the season and see who Arsenal can attact to the Emirates, given the state of the current squad, the available transfer budget, the self sustaining financial model and Scrooge Kroenke as owner.
        People need to realize how much Arsenal spent to pay out Arsene Wenger and his associates. The next manager will be hamstrung by a similar payout to Emery and his staff due to cancellation of contract.

        1. kev says:

          Not calling for his sacking though.This season is crucial for Emery because he will be able to it as a basis to correct the mistakes of next season.We cant afford to being in another manager again this season unless things were really really downhill.The arsenal team is not as average as people make it to be but rather full of underperforming players.An average team is a team whose overall net quality is average regardless of players playing at their best.If I assemble this current Arsenal team’s best eleven and base it on how the players should be playing you’d realize most are underperforming and not average.

          1. things are changing says:

            Last season we had 45 points after 29 games, this season we have 57 points.

            This manager has brought improvements in results. Look at Guardiola’s first season in charge and you won’t find a dominant City despite its superior squad.

            Emery is no Pep of Klopp but he deserves time and respect. Yes, I see things that worry me about some of his decisions but in fairness to the manager, his obvious improvements in some area’s of the club including being meaningfully ahead of last season in points and results against other top 6 teams earn him time, money and respect IMO.

      2. things are changing says:

        I agree with Kev, it would be nice to see AMN finally get a chance in his best position. I do rate Guendouzie but recognize he is far from the finished product.

        It baffles me why Jenkinson doesn’t start ahead of Mustafi. I thought he put in a solid shift when he played at RB a bit more than a week ago.

  4. gotanidea says:

    It was because Sokratis’ red card, the players’ reluctance to put in extra effort and Arsenal’s inability to fight with ten men

    Arsenal are always weak if one of them is red-carded. This happens since Wenger’s era and nobody seems to be able to fix it, even the legendary Bould

    I predict we would see different motivation level when they face Man United and we could see the mentality of the players. They don’t seem to want to risk their legs and play safe when playing against a smaller team, but usually give it all when meeting a top team

  5. kev says:

    Sokratis has been good for us but just like Lichtsteiner he has a certain very hard edge to his game which he tends to overuse.He goes in too hard at times and sometimes gives away cheap could when there’s no reason to.Its just so annoying watching him at times.Yesterday,after the red card there was no plan in defence and attack evident in how theplayers played after the red card.Iwobi who could’ve helped us on the counter to protect the ball and beat his man was wrongly subbed off and his substitutions in general were very poor.Mustafi at RB is also a very poor move just like the use of Xhaka at LB and CB.Auba’s strength lies in his positioning and I’ve always said that he’s not very good on the ball when it comes to beating players.Thankfully he’s not being used at the wings.Ozil was good in the first half but average in the second while Mkhi played ok.All in all a game to forget but we are more than capable of going through.

  6. Pat says:

    I really don’t know what to blame. The red car, the players or the manger? But one thing I was really impressed about was Rennes’s motivation. Their desire to really have a go at us, Man for man, gritty fast display. A higher level than us and shear determination. And every time a time come against us with this qualities we end up performing badly. Our general play was lacklustre, formation was out of the window immediately Rennes showed a better plan. We are a very average team. Then I wonder if all our players are bad or average? I hope we do well on Sunday against Man U.

  7. AndersS says:

    The red card changed the game.
    But Iwobi and Guendouzi were absolutely useless and arrogant in their attitude.
    If they had worked a bit harder on defending, Rennes probably wouldn’t have gotten goal no. 2 and 3.

    1. Eddie Hoyte says:

      Why are you blaming Iwobi? What exactly did he do wrong yesterday?? I’m not his biggest fan but I was questioning why Emery had to sub him when we were looking for a goal. Clearly the player that should’ve been subbed was Aubameyang.
      Everyone played well in the first half, Ozil and Iwobi included but every time the ball was passed on to Aubameyang, it was a dead end, and I can count the number of chances and attacking moves that he ruined.
      He’s immune to all of you because he was in good form earlier this season so let’s always blame Ozil and Iwobi every time.
      Was it Guendouzi’s fault he was pushed to the wings to replace Iwobi? Because clearly he was playing from the wings when he came on plus wtf could a 19 years old boy have done yesterday when we had all our senior players on the pitch playing crap?

      1. Pat says:

        Eddie I noticed some people here are already set on who to blame whenever we play badly, no matter what individual efforts are. Iwobi scored the first goal, and we were properly set up for a great game. I think we have a manager who can sometimes be clueless on what to do once the tide of a game turns against us. Rennes were fabulous, gritty, strong, fast. But we continued to play the same way even in the second half when it was clear we needed a change of approach. Ozil is not good, iwobi is not good, Aubameyang is not good, Musta is not good, Guendouzi is average common I disagree. There are players of less quality in other teams playing like world class. There is a disconnection between the quality of players we have and the quality of our manger. One does not fit the other. Eddie do you honestly think we are a champions league team. Joke. Except someone will tell me that West Ham, Bates, Rennes, have better players than us.

        1. Pat says:

          We are supposed to be a team, work as a team, individuals covering for other individual mistakes, have great team formation, steady, not winning all games but playing like we are unto something greater. Instead we are just bunch of individual players (most carrying the blame). The role of a manger include bringing out the best from individual players, improving our football, improving results.

        2. Eddie Hoyte says:

          Pat we have players good enough to be in the UCL, I’ve said it before and I will say it, this squad is not as bad as people try to make it look, they’re different players with individual strengths and drive. Like you said, we needed a coach to bring em together, Emery ain’t doing that right.
          I’ve always spoke about getting a young and hungry coach, someone who wants to prove something to the world that’s why I would’ve loved Arteta to have gotten then job.
          He has spent years under Wenger and Pep, two of the very best, while he learnt principles and being a good human under Wenger, He definitely would’ve learnt man management, the drive and the ability to influence his players under Pep.
          So I never saw us going downwards with Arteta in the first place but I guess the fans just wanted someone with records.
          Once again OGS at United is the perfect example of manager we need in this club, someone who know the club and will let these players know Arsenal isn’t an average team.

    2. Kedar says:

      What are talking Shit?? Did you Monreal in 3rd Goal???
      He lost the in the final and then instead of tracking back Sarr he was jumping there in frustration…
      His 1st job is to defend

  8. Maks says:

    Disappointment, after disappointment…
    I think Arsenal went into the game with too much confidance, and they did not proove it on the pitch. Until the red card we were better side but our attack was frakked up from the beginning. I dnt know what is happening but Auba was totally out of it… his one-two passing was terrible, movement, … whole attack looked like they did not play with eachother much… and yesterday was very obvious that Ozil had nobody to play with.
    After the red card Emery lost it, and all his actions (tactically and subs) were bad bad bad… one thing after another, and why he kept Mustafi in? Man is poor, and was injured, and he left whole side just on Mkhi who is not use to that position. Mkhi had couple of good interventions but he couldn’t stop them all… Monreal on the other side as well.. unprotected… Emery!
    ….and then he takes Ozil and Auba out to protect 1:2 ?! Crazy…
    …ManUtd next… they are really lucky bastards, after 5pur2 failure and this, they are coming to town on high.
    Simple explanation for all of this will be that Emery forgot that he has Wenger players who can not press high whole season…. Last two months Arsenal look like lacking energy and spirit, and a Coach who understand what he got.

  9. GB says:

    The lackadaisical attitude of some of the players lost us the game. Iwobi scores a fortunate goal then spends the rest of the game trying to do it again but failing. He’s also got the first touch of a trampoline. Mustafi wtf? Guendouzi, who I really like got beat for pace by players 10 years older than him and passed like someone who’s forgotten how to pass. Sokratis was a twat. Nice goal by Monreal though!! Xhaka wtf? Emery ….. substitutions very puzzling, why take Suarez? Cech magnificent, man of the match.
    Rant over, I’m outa here.

  10. ozziegunner says:

    The big issue with Aubameyang is that for a player with his pace, he is unable to play off the shoulder of the last defender and constantly finds himself offside.

  11. qoni says:

    diappointed by emery, by papas, mustafi, monreal. 1. emery – to substitue guendouzi with iwobi was suicidal, i will not even consider guendouzi anymore cause he is still kid minding: mustafi from bad to worse with every match he plays, should be dropped: papas with his experience he should have avoided the second yellow cause he let the side down enormously; monreal besides the own goal, ok it was not on purpose, but we conceded the third goal because of him he kept moaning near the rennes corner flag and was out of position and no one covered his side. it will not be easy but i still beleive we can turn the result. – ġooner = for ever

    1. Gunnertz says:

      Same old shit,shame after shame,inconsistance performance.. Defender’s uncalculated decision,manager’s poor tacts & techniques.. Owner’s not providing fund to spend… Fans’s deeaming iwobi to became pires and guenduez be vieira next season…

  12. Dan says:

    We will overturn it at the Emirates think we will at least score 3 but not so confident about man u game think they will beat us espec after there champions league result they will be buzzing and could cause us a lot of problems!!

  13. Break-on-through says:

    The away goal helps, if we perform like we know we can we should be able to go one up, keep it up and physically dominate them, then I believe we will turn it around. We are merciless at the Emirates when we are on it. Sokratis is a loss though, but I reckon our superiority will be on show and I’d back us to turn it around. A first half goal and full concentration then Rennes will buckle. Need to not lose the manu game but hopefully the lads will want make up for this loss and put them to the sword.

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