Who’s excited and who’s worried? 3 big talking points ahead of Brentford v Arsenal

Hey lovely Arsenal family, the season is well and truly upon us and I am so excited! You can call me stupid,  but I can’t hide the fact that I am absolutely buzzing right now!

You might ask why I am excited, well I am proud to support one of the most prestigious clubs in the country, the only team with a golden title,  a club with a rich history and class, playing in the  most beautiful stadium in the world, playing in the best league in the world! There is so much to be excited about for me!
Now, I am certainly not oblivious to the fact that we have a lot to be worried about, but we can’t always dwell on that, there is still a global pandemic but still,  we continue to live our lives as we focus on the positives and try to be happy, that is what being human is all about.
Aubameyang is not in form, the team is still unbalanced, some do not like Arteta and want him gone, we don’t have a creative force yet, no back-up goalie, we need a goal-scoring midfielder etc all these are genuine reasons to be negative and angry but it is a new season and as fans we are to look forward with hope and optimism.
Even though I didn’t not intend to do this, I will touch on some of the above issues namely; Aubameyang’s form, the unbalanced squad and a goal-scoring mid.
Aubameyang’s form:
Aubameyang’s form, while solely not the only reason for a woeful campaign last season, is a major reason.  No one would have expected him to score just 9 PL goals last season, he suffered his worst scoring record in this DECADE! My question is, why did it happen right after his contract extension? I would refer you to Wenger’s response when asked if Ozil has lost motivation after his bumper contract;  “Most of the time now we think when we sign a player for five years we have a good player for five years. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that they practice, they play their best. Because they might be in their comfort zone”.

I believe the above is true for Auba and no one to blame but him.

Unbalanced Squad:
This right here, is a very big problem for us. The squad is still bloated and dis-jointed, right now we have 4 options for RB and none of them is good enough, in my opinion though, we can still manage with that, I think the front 4 is where the problem really lies.

Let me give you an instance of how I think a balanced front four should be:

__________Sanchez         Aubameyang         Sterling

                                      Cazorla/ KDB/Bruno

___________Sanchez          Lacazette             Sterling

                                           Cazorla/ KDB/Bruno

In the formations above, all players surrounding the CFs are goal-scorers and chance creators, this is how we should set up in my opinion. Using our players for the same set up, we should have:

____________Martinelli          Lacazette          Pepe

                                                    ESR
I would come back to this. Now, we have quite a lot of options but we need to get rid of some. When people say our team is good enough to compete, I ask them, “then why is it so difficult to sell them?”  Clubs would buy a player regardless of his wage if he is good enough. We have tried to move players but you can’t force the buying clubs.
Ideally, I would sell one of Auba or Laca, SELL PEPE, offload Willian etc but it is easier said than done. I wish Willian could be our Sanchez though.
 
 
A goal-scoring midfielder:
Reading a lot about Arsenal lacking goals from midfield (especially as Willock is leaving) which is true, but I also don’t think that, in and of itself, it is an issue, because:
Arsenal don’t score enough goals, that is the issue, where they actually come from is entirely irrelevant. So then it is a question of why you think that is, Is it because we lack scorers or we don’t create enough chances? Very much the latter for me. Auba has more than the 9 goals he scored last season in him, Pepe is a goal scorer and not a creator, there are more goals in Saka, Rowe and Martinelli. I think we have goals in the forward line.
Looking around the top 6 teams, Gundogan is the only CM that scores regularly, Kovacic and Jorginho don’t score (from open play), none of Liverpool’s or Spurs CMs do.
The goals should come from your front four (CF, 2 wide forwards and the 10). Front 4 of Henry, Ljunberg, Pires and Bergkamp scored most of the goals, Gilberto, Vieira and Petit were not regular goal scorers.
In short, goals from midfield would be nice but goals overall has to be the focus and that means getting more from the front four –  and that means getting the ball into good positions more often.
Last season, nobody moved the ball into the final third more slowly than Arsenal, THAT is the issue right there, solve that and there are more goals in this team in my opinion. I would add that, while ESR is good, he is nowhere near Arsenal quality at the moment IF we want to challenge for the top 4, he should not be a player we have to rely on!
It is not so difficult,  yet not that simple, l should add that, if we were able to sell and move some players, we would have been able to make some additions, players like Niles, Kola, Elneny, Torreira, Bellerin, Cedric are more than surplus to requirement, those are 6 players we can absolutely do without.  Manage to sell or offload them and we can have space for new arrivals in the team.
Having said all that, like a fool,  I am still so excited about the season, I so much look forward to seeing the boys in action tonight and I will foolishly predict a 3-1 win for Arsenal tonight.

To Arsenal’s faithful,  I would say; BE EXCITED!

Goonerboy…

14 Comments

  1. Reggie says:

    Looking forward to our new season our new look squad our new style of play and new optimism.

    1. SueP says:

      That’s the spirit Reggie

  2. Stephanie says:

    Im looking forward to the new season but so far there hasn’t been enough change to convince me that we can challenge for top 5

  3. RW1 says:

    Everyone and their long dead great great aunt looks forward to the season … though not in my bleakest moments did I think that we would Be in such a shambolic state come the start of this season … I’m going to wait for the end of the month before making a call on arteta but it’s not looking good!!!

    1. The-Real-Vieira-Lynn-4ever says:

      here, here on the whole shambolic state of affairs gig

  4. JW says:

    Well, here we are at the start of a new season.

    If you believe the statistics, Arsenal were the 3rd best team in defense in the EPL last season.

    So, we have spent the bulk of our transfer money, so far, on a CB and a reserve full-back.

    Arsenal were also criticized for not creating enough goal-scoring chances last season. Our answer to that is to try to recruit (for $30m+) the player mostly given the job of creating said chances last season.

    When we did create chances last season, both Lacazette and Auba struggled to convert them.

    So, is the $50m spent on Ben White going to make us the second best or even the best defense in the EPL?

    Is bringing back Odegaard as our creative midfielder going to magically create more chances this season?

    Are Lacazzette and Auba, both a year older, going to score more goals this season? Would paying $35m for Tammy Abrahams guarantee we score more goals in the upcoming season?

    I am very worried that we have not improved the team one iota, after potentially spending well over $100m in this transfer window .

    My heart tells me it wants Arteta to drag us screaming and shouting into the top six this season, but my head and my gut tell me no!!!!

    1. guy says:

      Let me give you another prognosis JW:
      Our defence was actually extremely poor. We were also very susceptible to the high press as both gk and CBs were not comfortable either in possession or progressive passing.
      As a result MA not only chose defensive minded CMs but also drilled the AM and forwards to track back to help out
      The result? Barring our usual errors a good defensive record but no attack because we had nobody upfield when we got the ball.
      White and Gabriel together will hopefully give the team confidence to play further up the park and MA the option to both choose AMs and allow them to play at the front not the back. Doesnt solve the scoring drought per se but we should at least play higher and create more.

  5. Theo says:

    Arsenal will be in champions league next season.
    Arsenal will start by not loosing any of their first 24 matches . I see this 90% chance of happening .

    1. Angus says:

      I’ll take 5+ points from the 1st 3 as a real positive start, things look pretty rosy with our run after that should set us up but we shall see.

    2. jon fox says:

      Ah! Bless his little naive cotton socks.!
      Still, at least he is not yet another self entitled child calling for MA ‘ s head!

  6. Jakes Mradu says:

    Take away the 6 players that are mentioned with Auba and lacazette and you get a very good team……Partly must remain fit…..what’s missing is another CAM…..watch our young strikers this season…….!

  7. Angus says:

    I’m excited. Not blind to our shortcomings and the style of play has to improve but you’ve got to at least have some cautious optimism. The board and squad are behind the manager, can the fans put the knives away until October at least? At least let the man actually have a run of bad results before shouting and hollering.

    3rd best defence all year, 2nd best form in 24 games, 5 game winning streak, top 4 without var (which has been relaxed this year so we wont be on the short end again), young players expected to kick on etc. Can’t say there is nothing to cling at least a slither of hope to.

    Yes the top 4 look good but lets see how it all shakes out, think we nailed on for at least 5th. Villa are overrated (we’d all be up in arms if we finished 11th sold Saka for 100mil and bought who they have but because it’s Villa it’s good business), Spurs have bigger issues than us right now, West Ham I doubt will repeat last year and Everton are going to need time under Rafa. Only really leaves Leicester who will be the other top 6 imo and Leeds who will probably just be a little short. If we crack the top 4 that would be fantastic and I don’t think Liverpool (especially if they pick up injuries with their depth issues, Robinson is already starting the season out) or Man Utd are nearly as bulletproof as people make out.

    1. guy says:

      Uncalled for Perry. Are you just on this site to insult Arsenal fans?

  8. Kieron Blandford says:

    Excited but worried at the same time!
    Baffled by the signing of white for 50m and rhe pursuit of Ramsdale for 30m when Johnstone could potentially be bought for much less.
    If we’re to end up with Neto so jo home grown then we could have stuck with Ryan.
    Are we going to take a punt on Aouarr last minute? If yes from what I’ve seen here he’s another ozil, incredible but only when he fancies it.
    This seasons success will hinge on the youngsters again such as ESR and Balogun, Martinez.

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