Manchester City Preview: It’s All About the Manager (Again)…

If London’s weather is anything like here, an already thin crowd will be sparser this evening. Highbury’s record low of 4k isn’t under threat but comfortably, if tonight’s match goes ahead, the attendance will be the lowest at the Emirates.

That’s no surprise. Arsène gave his usual line of defence at yesterday’s press conference. Basically, Arsenal owe him a living because he turned down everyone else down through the years. No names, no pack drill but we all know with whom he flirted every time a contract was due for renewal. He stayed for two reasons: control and security, neither of which came elsewhere.

So we reach the regular weekly convocation at London Colney. The questions came and the language is florid and evocative. Nobody expected him to resign but a little mea culpa goes a long way. We’re beyond that now.

Arsène quelled his Wildean spirit long enough to call for perspective. “We have lost a final”, he said, blaming those pesky fans for being used to “going to Wembley and winning.”

Wilfully obtuse or noodling into his dotage? It must be the former otherwise the players wouldn’t respond to him.

The pressure on him is immense and under these circumstances, media activities are surely unpleasant. That’s part and parcel of the £12m salary he is unable to walk away from. He gave Kroenke an out: “My job is to focus on performing and my job is to perform.”

It entwines with Ivan’s 2011 mantra about the relationship between Wenger and the fans. To paraphrase, the manager will be out if his relationship with us breaks down. No amount of superglue to repair it. Twice he’s ignored the opportunity to walk off into the sunset with a trophy tucked under his belt; there isn’t likely to be a third time lucky.

Sap Our Strength

The perspective Wenger wants isn’t one he is prepared to publicly agree with. Our form is awful this year with six defeats in 12 against opposition – Manchester City and Tottenham aside – which is distinctly average. Losing to Östersunds at home didn’t impact on the aggregate but it reinforced the negative aspects of our form. Another defeat to a team we shouldn’t lose to.

Gary Neville gave Sky what they wanted when he savaged the team on Sunday. It provoked the social media activists who proclaimed the former United man was a pundit because he was a crap manager. Or he loved City because of the money they spent. Basically, anything but admitting he was right when he criticised our style of play.

That was always Wenger’s Get Out of Jail Free card: Wengerball. We didn’t win much silverware but we looked good losing. The media had his back; they do now but only for stabbing practice.

It’s the reality of his situation. Tetchiness about journalists job security doesn’t stop the questions being asked. Wenger can feel the walls closing in on him and knows results are the only way to stop it happening. There isn’t an accomplice to help him. We face the consequences of our electronic echo chambers, he has the same with the coaching staff who are afraid to take his methods to task.

The result is a more ‘direct’ style of play. Simple passing and movement are no longer effective. Where we once laboured but eventually broke sides down with pass after pass, we now labour. The ‘out ball’ is a defender putting his foot through the ball and asking Cat to chase. It’s not an ‘out ball’ if he doesn’t get to it; it’s just a ball that is coming right back at you.

Lose the Truth in a Complex of Lies

Arsenal is a club in desperate need of revitalisation. We need fresh blood. Chips talking about breaking the club’s transfer record twice means nothing when the money isn’t spent wisely. A squad with gaping holes all over the pitch is not going to be repaired by two £50m strikers. They help but you still need goalkeepers, defenders and midfielders to come in.

And underpinning it all, you need an effective managerial philosophy.

Someone talked out of school later in the day. Jack Wilshere rejected the contract offer on the table and inevitably is heading for the exit. Tough-talking through the back pages by club and player. It’s the way of the world, mirroring the brinkmanship of the Brexit negotiations. How talks between Jack and Arsenal are going is anyone’s guess and within that, everyone has a view on whether the club’s stance is right or wrong.

Wilshere holds the whip hand. Arsenal staved off disaster with Mesut Özil staying but the England midfielder presents another problem. Not only for the midfield but in being homegrown. Reliance on youngsters to fill those quotas continues the problems of a dual-stream squad; we lack the depth when injuries and loss of form strikes. There’s a balance to be had and we’re heading in the wrong direction at present.

Anyway, to tonight’s game if it goes ahead. Sunday’s team with Mkhitaryan coming in. Defensively, we’ll switch to a four with Chambers making way. We’ll either put in a performance which makes you wonder why we play so awfully most weeks or get shredded.

The line-up:

Cech; Bellerin, Mustafi, Koscielny, Kolasinac; Xhaka, Ramsey; Wilshere, Özil, Mkhitaryan; Aubameyang

Enjoy the match (if it goes ahead) wherever you are watching it.

’til Tomorrow.

 

219 thoughts on “Manchester City Preview: It’s All About the Manager (Again)…

  1. Pete the Thirst says:

    Preparing for the journey to the stadium tonight. I reckon it will be like Shackleton’s voyage to South Georgia.

    Wenger Out!

  2. consolsbob says:

    Took him a long time to get home, Pete.

  3. Pete says:

    Every “big” – meaning top-4 fixture, these past few years brings on a sense of dread a week before the game. So that makes these past few days especially gruesome. However Arsene’s post match comments about “extra-time” and the ref’s reasons for not allowing it has deflated the feeling of being gutted entirely and left me eerily calm in the run up to tonights fixture. Why? because i can imagine post game a thoroughly beaten but serene Arsene Wenger saying the exact same thing.

  4. Orson Kaert says:

    Good morning all from a, so far, snow free Gatwick Airport.

    From what I’ve read the papers seem almost equally divided between “Wenger out” and “Don’t be silly, he’s the best thing since sliced bread”.

    Well sliced bread has been around since about 1950 and goes stale pretty quickly. Wenger has been around a lot shorter time but is about as stale as a sixty-eight year old pack of Mother’s Pride.

    Yogi, your exhortation to enjoy the game, might be a little hard to do, freezing temperatures, snow, and an embattled team lacking in confidence, commitment and leadership which would struggle against a pub team are unlikely to excite the fans.

  5. Phil says:

    Morning,
    Watching for updates before again venturing out to watch us. Batting 0 from 2 thus far.
    At least I can buy a beer there tonight, if the barrels don’t freeze.
    Have rarely gone to a game with such pessimism.
    I would expect Shitty to be ruthless in their approach, and Pepe would enjoy the victory in a stadium he once thought might have been his.

  6. Phil says:

    Where will our leadership come from on the pitch?
    We have none of it, off the pitch.

  7. andy1886 says:

    While a victory of sorts AFC may find that giving in to Ozil’s £300k/wk wage demands will ultimately damage us in the longer term. You can see why Jack would take umbrage at that while he’s offered a pay cut. Okay he’s had injury issues but Ozil is hardly a 38-game a season man either. The likes of Ramsey and numerous others will now be looking at their contracts and feeling short changed too.

    Ozil’s contract carried a large premium based on limiting damage to the club’s reputation. In my view he isn’t a £300k/wk player. That’s more then every single City player with the possible exception of De Bruyne. We could easily end up with a CL sized wage bill but an EL quality side, in fact that is exactly what we have. Poor financial management as well as poor football management.

  8. andy1886 says:

    I’d put money on Arsene being absolutely delighted if the game is called off by the way. A hammering tonight could be fatal, one at the end of the season when things have calmed down would be much less damaging to his prospects.

  9. C says:

    Stewart Robson has spoke:

    Did you see his interview yesterday?

    “‘I’ve turned down the world to stay at Arsenal’ – he’s so arrogant, it’s untrue.

    “The reason he stays at Arsenal is he can do what he wants, he’s not under pressure and he gets paid nearly £10million a year – that’s why he stays at Arsenal, not because he’s loyal to the club.

    “If he was loyal to Arsenal and loved Arsenal so much, he would have left two or three years ago.”

    “If you haven’t got a game plan, you can lose games badly and it looks like you’re not trying, and that’s what happened on Sunday. I don’t think it was a lack of effort, they just don’t know what they’re doing and that comes down to one person and one person only.

    “It’s been going on for so many years. They’re disorganised, they haven’t got a game plan or structure when things start to go badly.”

    The Gunners will seek redemption when they face Man City again in the Premier League on Thursday night.

    While many fans might fear another mauling at the hands of the runaway leaders, Robson would not be surprised if Arsenal claimed a shock result at home.

    “I wouldn’t be surprised if they beat Man City, because Arsenal play off the cuff and teams that play off the cuff with excellent players can win games,” he said.

    “It could go badly tonight, or the home crowd could get behind them, they could play with inspiration and go on and beat Manchester City.”

    Read more at https://talksport.com/football/hes-so-arrogant-its-untrue-former-arsenal-midfielder-amazing-attack-arsene-wenger#vMIvg0C7MfiKXXhT.99

  10. Phil says:

    Only way we win tonight is if Citeh don’t turn up.
    Our defence is always just 10 seconds away from a mistake.

  11. Phil says:

    Ok, just did a test run, it’s not too bad outside at the mo.
    In fact , considering going bare chested and painting a letter on.
    Actually , I can probably fit three there.
    So I will paint on OUT.
    I just need to find six guys for the preceding letters.

  12. wilberforce says:

    C

    “It’s been going on for so many years. They’re disorganised, they haven’t got a game plan or structure when things start to go badly.”

    Forget when things go badly, there does not seem to be a plan most of the time apart from to Charge!!!!

  13. Bill says:

    Great post yogi.

    I have always suffered from occasional bouts of unrealistic optimism so here goes. Don’t laugh to much. I would honestly not be totally surprised if Man City took their foot off the gas and we get a shock result. They might be over confident after Sunday’s and have very little to play for and if the conditions are truly bad it will decrease their motivation even more. The bad conditions prevent them from attacking us and bad conditions help to equalize the big talent gap and keep the score low. It all sets up to give us a better chance.

  14. Bill says:

    The conditions might help to equalize the talent gap tonight and someone could argue that on paper we have plenty of talented players. However if you examine the line up you propose you can see why we struggle so much and are so inconsistent.

    The back 4 are incredibly mistake prone and inconsistent.

    The midfield in your line has tons of technical and passing skill but there is zero defensive nous, very little pace and almost no goal threat.

    The 2 wide forwards Ozil and Mkhitaryan are both highly skilled technical creative players but both have a skill set more suited to central midfielders. Neither offers much pace and they provide almost no width and no defensive help and worst of all neither is a much a goal scoring threat.

    Our CF was very effective in Germany but his biggest asset is his pace and ability to get behind the defense. However our players don’t push the tempo of the game which allows the opposition defense to set up and cover the space in front of goal so there is no open space left for someone like PEA to run into which helps to neutralize his pace .

    We have talent of paper but the game isn’t played on paper. The squad is unbalance and over filled with technical players who don’t defend and don’t score. We are supposed to be driven by the foundation of technical skill and midfield creativity. However we do not defend and our talented midfielders have not been effective at consistent creating high percentage scoring opportunities for at least a couple of years. The new manager has some rebuilding to do.

  15. Bill says:

    I copied and pasted this from an article in ESPN and I agree 100%.

    “Ostensibly, Aubameyang was the replacement for Alexis Sanchez. Some have suggested that bringing in a more team-oriented player might improve Arsenal’s overall game. However, Alexis’ individualism was frequently his greatest asset to Arsenal. Even when those around him were underperforming, he could still produce something.

    Aubameyang is not that sort of player. He is principally a finisher, and subsequently reliant on service. After the matches against Tottenham and Manchester City, it’s clear that Arsenal have not yet found a way to provide him with an appropriate supply line.

    Perhaps Alexandre Lacazette is owed an apology. The Frenchman was in the midst of a dire run of one goal in 13 games prior to undergoing knee surgery, and that poor spell seemingly saw him demoted to second choice by Aubameyang’s signing. He’s suffered plenty of criticism, but perhaps it’s now becoming clear that he was simply starved of service. This is Arsenal’s worst and least effective midfield for a decade, so it’s not conducive to laying on chances for their frontmen.”

  16. Pete the Thirst says:

    Two years Bob…but there were no pubs on the journey!

    consolsbob:
    Took him a long time to get home, Pete.

  17. Pete the Thirst says:

    I’ll take the ‘W’, Phil.

    I reckon less than 20,000 tonight. Don’t blame the stay-at-homes one iota.

    Phil:
    Ok, just did a test run, it’s not too bad outside at the mo.
    In fact , considering going bare chested and painting a letter on.
    Actually , I can probably fit three there.
    So I will paint on OUT.
    I just need to find six guys for the preceding letters.

  18. Pete the Thirst says:

    Poking a hornet’s nest Andy! Ozil is a player that drives me crazy. He disappeared at the weekend, as tends to happen against bigger teams. His massive wages are a result of Wenger letting contracts run down, and desperation. We had the same problem with Walcott last time.

    In the whole time he has been at Arsenal he has never shown me that he is the player that can carry the team. Sanchez could and did on many occasions, Ozil can’t.

    andy1886:

    Ozil’s … In my view isn’t a £300k/wk player. That’s more then every single City player with the possible exception of De Bruyne.

  19. Phil says:

    Thanks Pete!
    Could be right re the crowd size.
    Players actually will earn their coin tonight.
    I am an OZil supporter, but if his wages really are £300k per week, then there is a risk of a massive disconnect with others.
    What does Jack think he is worth ?

  20. andy1886 says:

    Bill,

    So only Alexis earns more then. Is Ozil better than DeBruyne, Aguero or Hazard? Not in my opinion, it’s not even close.

    Pete the Thirst,

    True, it’s not going to be popular with many on this forum. Actually it’s not just Ozil per se, I’m not a fan of the play making #10 system, I prefer having two actual strikers in tandem supported by a B2B midfielder who scores goals. All of Arsene’s title winning sides had a strong midfield, two strikers, and wide players who chipped in with a few goals too. We’ve never had success with an Ozil-type player in that role, if anyone suggests DB10 I’d point out that he was far more aggressive, scored great goals (okay fewer in his 30’s but that’s usually the case with all players) and dictated play even against the very best opposition.

  21. potter says:

    Bill,

    I would go along with that , how many times do we get just outside the 18 yard box , stop and turn inside or back.Any forward would tear his hair out making runs and not getting the ball except Giroud of course as his hair is his most redeeming feature but even he would have scored more had we advanced and slung the ball into the danger area more often.

  22. C says:

    Not for nothing but looking at a contract purely based on weekly take home and not considering things like: length of contract, how much to replace said player, etc needs to be taken into the thinking.

    For instance, Ozil might make a bit more than De Bruyne but Ozil’s contract is only for 3 years while De Bruyne’s is for 5 year meaning over the life of the contract De Bruyne is actually set to make more than Ozil. Ramsey and Jack talk about wanting bigger wages but say we pay them, they are going to want longer contracts, etc. as opposed to the short-terms of Ozil’s contract.

  23. andy1886 says:

    C,

    Yeah I get the cost if a replacement argument but that only became relevant because of our terrible planning and contract management. Not Ozil’s fault of course. Of course the length of contract is relevant because in the case of De Bruyne for example he will still be contracted while we have to buy a replacement in three years time. That player may or may not be on such big wages but the fee would likely outweigh any wage saving. It’s a complicated calculation but it all come back to the first line above – terrible planning!

  24. Bill says:

    andy1886:
    Bill,

    So only Alexis earns more then. Is Ozil better than DeBruyne, Aguero or Hazard?Not in my opinion, it’s not even close.

    Pete the Thirst,

    True, it’s not going to be popular with many on this forum. Actually it’s not just Ozil per se, I’m not a fan of the play making #10 system, I prefer having two actual strikers in tandem supported by a B2B midfielder who scores goals. All of Arsene’s title winning sides had a strong midfield, two strikers, and wide players who chipped in with a few goals too. We’ve never had success with an Ozil-type player in that role, if anyone suggests DB10 I’d point out that he was far more aggressive, scored great goals (okay fewer in his 30’s but that’s usually the case with all players) and dictated play even against the very best opposition.

    Andy:

    That sort of contract for a player who is talented but whose actual production has dipped dramatically in the last 2 years seems like an act of desperation to save face rather then a coherent plan for rebuilding.

    I am not against having a creative player in the #10 hole but the squad has to be balanced and there needs to be a lot more firepower and defensive chops. Arsene has always overloaded with players whose skill set fits best in central midfield that has never given us the balance we need.

  25. Bill says:

    Trading Sanchez for Mkhitaryan and then making him one our highest paid players and then the gigantic contract for ozil has to limit our financial flexibility. It could be interpreted as Arsene trying to build the squad lfor 3 more years of Wengerball.

  26. Bill says:

    I dont think it matters as much which formation you use as long as you have adequate firepower and your creative play or players who don’t score in the central midfield.

  27. Bill says:

    The problem with having creative players in midfield is they need to defend

  28. C says:

    andy1886,

    It is terrible planning and that is what it all comes doen to. Signing Ozil wasn’t the problem but I think people kill the decision because it was Sanchez leaving but pepple are forgetting that Sanchez had agreef a feal and thrn wanted out, there was no way both were leaving. De bruyne’s contract will cost more as will honestly quite a few on that list including Pogba and others plus their enormous fees paid to get them. Ozil’s replacement will be expensive and poor planning before the new men came it is clear and hopefully won’t happen again.

  29. Phil says:

    Wenger won’t be around long enough to see through a rebuild.
    I hope.

  30. C says:

    Bill,

    Or you could just get actual midfielders who defend to play alongside Ozil. The problem isn’t Ozilbut yhe fact that since Gilberto Silva left we have never had a DM and while Song was good there, in his last season he went more box to box.

    So for all the trashing of Ozil that takes place, the blame lays squarely on Arsene for not bringing in players that do the defensive work(and when he does, he doesn’t use them unless forced too, cough cough Elneny)

  31. C says:

    Official team news:

    Cech
    Bellerin—Mustafi—-Kos–Sead
    ——–Xhaka—–Ramsey—-
    Welbeck—-Ozil—-Mhkitaryan
    ———Aubameyang

    Subs: Ospina, Holding, Chambers, Maitland-Niles, Elneny, Iwobi, Nketiah

  32. C says:

    City:

    Ederson
    Walker—Kompany—Otamendi—Danilo
    ————–Gundoghen——————
    —De Bruyne——David Silva———–
    Bernardo Silva—-Aguero——-Sane

    Subs: Bravo, Stones, Laporte, Jesus, Zichenko, Toure, Foden

  33. Wavey says:

    Xhaka and Ramsey were completely ineffective against City going forward on Sunday and neither player can provide any defensive cover at all. Let’s give both of them the chance to do the same thing tonight then. Wouldn’t it make more sense to give the defence more cover by playing Elneny and AMN instead? They may not be the world class DCMs we could do with, but they can’t be any worse than the Xhaka/Ramsey pairing. Ah, but Xhaka and Ramsey are more of a threat in attack some would claim. So why did they do absolutely f*ck all on Sunday, I would counter.

  34. Wavey says:

    They have 5 attacking players in their line up. We have got Xhaka and Ramsey in the midfield with the Chuckle Brothers in the middle of defence. You couldn’t make it up.

  35. Adam Singh says:

    Replace Elneny for Xhaka and this is probably our best starting 11?

  36. lari03 says:

    Close to kick off, clairvoyant predictions anyone ?

  37. DALM says:

    I thunk you could make it up – none of us are at all surprised !

    I’m surprised that I have bought a sky pass for the match.

  38. HenryB says:

    Is Wilshere injured? Sick? Ostracised?
    Is the rumour he has rejected the contract offer, and wants to leave the reason why he is not even on the subs’ bench?

  39. andy1886 says:

    lari03,

    Probably a draw – say 1-1 – as it’s the most boring result in terms of Wenger getting the bullet or claiming a triumphant victory which proves all is well again. Wouldn’t surprise me if we did win though and the old goat immediately gave us the smug “see, I do know” grin at the end.

  40. HenryB says:

    C,

    I have no idea why you said this; “The problem isn’t Ozilbut yhe fact that since Gilberto Silva left we have never had a DM”

    What has Ozil’s butt got to do with things? 🙂

  41. HenryB says:

    Adam, you realise you have ruined my theory!! 😀

    Seriously, I did not know that.

  42. C says:

    Wavey,

    Honestly, its something that I have been saying for quite some time. Elneny and Maitland-Niles might not be world class but they can be consistent and effective and sit infront of the back 4 and do a job. They don’t need to be world class or even join in the attack in they can sit and put our fires and let our attackers be free to attack and not have to constantly think about getting back or covering for another midfielder, i.e. Xhaka or Ramsey, who has bombed forward and is now out of position. I also don’t think that Ramsey and Xhaka are as effective going forward as people think. Sure Ramsey gets forward and makes loads of runs into the box BUT he is wildly inconsistent and that is being kind.

  43. HenryB says:

    Adam Singh:
    lari03,

    Arsenal won’t win the league

    Damnit Adam — there you go again — destroying my hopes — you’ll tell me next Santa is my dad — and I will make sure he does not bring you anything next Xmas!!

  44. consolsbob says:

    Wtf was Wenger saying to Pep then? Looked like Pep was thinking, ‘wtf’.

  45. Adam Singh says:

    Looked like Wenger was trying to have a go at Pep before kick off. Lost the plot. #.

  46. C says:

    HenryB,

    I made that comment about the DM because Bill was getting on about defending and what not and the point I was trying to make and something me and you have talked about before is that; we have never had a DM and while Ozil will always have defensive responsibilities, he like all creative #10’s work best when they have that DM behind them to help balance the midfield.

  47. Dukey says:

    Bob,

    Wenger was telling pep he could have had his job but chose to stay at Arsenal.

  48. Bill says:

    C

    We already had Wilshere and Mkhitaryan so we would not have needed to spend a big transfer fee on an ozil replacement.

  49. andy1886 says:

    Anyone got an estimate of the size of the crowd?

  50. C says:

    Bill,

    You do realize that Jack can’t stay fit and hasn’t signed a new deal right? You also realize that in order for other quality players to come to Arsenal we will need to keep quality players right?

    Anyways, we can discuss another day, I’m watching the match

  51. Bill says:

    I agree that a better DM would be a really good thing. Le coq gave us about a 1/2 of solid defense and it certainly helped.

  52. C says:

    We actually look like we give a shit and are better than we looked in the Final.

  53. C says:

    Just like that Bernardo Silva scores a brilliant goal.

    Sane disrobing our midfield pivots. Its funny because Bellerin actually does the right thing and takes him back inside not on his favored left foot.

  54. C says:

    Funny enough, I was actually quite optimistic about this match.

    I have to say, for a midfielder, Ramsey is really shit at passing

  55. Viceologist says:

    So… it sounds like things are going good then? I am in the Bahamas with no access to the game

  56. HenryB says:

    Do you want to swap next time, Vice? 🙂

  57. HenryB says:

    I was just kidding you earlier, C.

    Neville made a good point earlier that Otamendi and two others before him were prepared to take out an Arsenal attack by hook or by crook, whereas theArsenal defence allowed Sané to just run thru them.

    0 :2 — a wonderful Citeh goal and says everything about that Arsenal defence.

  58. DALM says:

    very wise !
    for that one Sane beats Mustafi all ends up at right back – WTF and Bellerin is in the middle….

  59. C says:

    Sane undresses Mustafi with quickness and pace, finds Aguero at the top of the box (where was Ramsey and Xhaka at?) who slides it to Silva who buries it.

    The biggest difference in quality: Ramsey gets behind and instead of having the composure and quality to pick somebody out, he goes for power; Sane gets behind the defense and has the composure and quality to pick a pass and find a teammate and Citeh scores.

  60. Wavey says:

    Citeh likely to give us the trouncing they should have on Sunday? Good to see that our midfield pairing is so effective.

  61. DALM says:

    oh well. team bereft of ideas and confidence. and competence.

  62. consolsbob says:

    You still here, Henry?

    Shouldn’t you be with your mates over at the positivistas’ place, or have they sussed you for the wum that you are?

  63. Colts says:

    I’m done. Hopefully Wenger will be soon.

  64. C says:

    HenryB,

    Neville is EXACTLY what I was thinking; why didn’t one of our midfielder take him out or how come they weren’t in position to!

    I am normally a optimistic person but this is just really really sad actually with how poor is our defense and midfield pivots to not even get close to them. What the fuck was Cech doing there, why didn’t he tell Bellerin that Sane was behind him and why the fuck is Cech diving!

  65. Wavey says:

    Pathetic.

    It looks like the players have been told to press higher up the pitch without any guidance on how to do it. They end up running around like headless chickens.

  66. Adam Singh says:

    Dear me. This is embarrassing.

  67. C says:

    My God, this is fucking sad, really there is NO WAY back for Arsene, literally he just needs to leave at half-time.

  68. poodle says:

    hum, when did we last score a goal?

  69. C says:

    Wavey,

    But even if they do press high up the pitch, its not about that, its about what happens when Citeh get past our front 4; its like our back 4 and midfield pivots aren’t even there to offer any type of defensive speed bumps!

  70. Wavey says:

    C,

    Agreed, but still embarrassing to watch forwards running around chasing shadows.

  71. G4E says:

    Hahahha……Get the fucking man out of his misery, I just don’t understand what’s this obsession with keeping him on?

  72. C says:

    O yea, and for all those that say Pep only does attack; well he has made Walker, Otamendi and De Bruyne good defensively. He has played a midfielder in Delph and a RB in Danilo at LB and they both have been really good there.

    O yea and the effort that his players give defensively is brilliant!

  73. Colts says:

    Dam another record. Well done…

    Superdooch.

  74. Wavey says:

    Wenger the record breaker. First time Arsenal have ever conceded 3 goals in the first half in a PL game. And that was nearly 4.

  75. C says:

    Wavey,

    It is but then again, they aren’t known for defending and then add that to a manger that clearly doesn’t give a fuck nor know how to teach how to press and you have this

  76. Wavey says:

    If they want to go for it the 8-2 thrashing could well be beaten tonight.

  77. Wavey says:

    C,

    That’s why I said it looked like they had been told to press without being told how to do it.

  78. C says:

    Wavey,

    I was agreeing with you.

    Sorry, as a former DM/Sweeper/CB I tend to focus more on that and FFS I would rather have Maitland-Niles and Elneny offering NOTHING in attack other than getting the ball to the attackers ASAP then pushing forward and offering a little bit of a goal threat from midfield.

  79. andy1886 says:

    Not watching it but it sounds like the natives may be finally turning. A bad atmosphere at home should make Kroenke take notice, any sign of any Arsene love-in banners?

  80. agunloye seun says:

    if i Am given the chance and a very Good gun, i will gladly kill kroenke, arsenal Board and arsene wenger… very useless club… the Old fool will still have the temerity to talk nonsense in interview after the match… in any Other club, they will announce his sacking at half time… Fools

  81. consolsbob says:

    Ah, I see that you have been there today, Henry.

    They didn’t seem to find you very amusing. Perhaps you should revert to your praise for Arsène?

    That always goes down well over there in lalaland.

  82. DALM says:

    Sky pundits raving about how great Citeh are – but, ffs, if we were set up properly, and if we had a structure and half an idea, then the goals MIGHT have been stopped – just clueless….

    have said it before but WHAT is Steve Bould doing ? We added Jens Lehmann – but what does he do ?

    Ramsay -I love him – but not fit – so don’t play him……Xaka hasn’t played well in ages (if at all) and is kept on….Elneny MIGHT offer a shield but isn’t on – in a game where we need to be able to defend….

  83. C says:

    O yea and one thing that doesn’t get enough talking about is how poor Kos has been and honestly, he needs to take quite a huge brunt of this because as Captain he needs to be better and his play has been shit.

  84. Bill says:

    Our midfield has always been poor defensively and we can’t even say that at least its good at creating. Unfortunately our other options might be even worse. Elneny and Maitland-Niles looked bad against Ousterands in the home Europa league game and Elneny looked terrible against Nottingham Forest when we dropped out of the FA cup. Imagine how they would hold up against Man City.

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