Wolves Review: Emery on the Brink?

Arsenal 1 – 1 Wolves

For the umpteenth game in Unai Emery’s reign, Arsenal dropped points from a winning position as Wolves took a deserved point.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang grabbed his 50th goal for the club to break the deadlock. A simple pass from Alexandre Lacazette gave Auba the simplest of finishes. 

Lucas Torreira forced a good save from the Wolves ‘keeper but that was it. The second-half saw us fail to register a shot on target and our defensive frailties were once again exposed. It simply isn’t good enough. Unai Emery isn’t good enough.

It led to another bizarre post-match press conference. Unai “thinks” the players understand what he wants despite another 90 minutes when it was evident they do not. 

Arsenal don’t resemble the team Emery talks about. Today was a match which ended in a “bad result” (true) but “tactically I think we worked how we wanted” which is just a weird statement. Essentially, he says our plan was to score first the commit hari-kari.

We aren’t protagonists, we’re somnambulists sleepwalking from one bad performance to another. The most disturbing aspect is how ineffective Emery’s coaching is eighteen months into his reign. By now, the players should be absorbing the weekly tactical tweaks but it’s like they are learning a whole new system every time.

Worst of all, he seemed accepting of the draw. “The players tried, they worked,”Emery claimed. “So now we need to finish that match and focus on the next one.” Or to paraphrase, “We didn’t win. Oh well, better luck next time, eh?”

The question is where we go from here? Change was waiting until the end of the season last week.

Another match ending with jeers, however, signals the season is ending well before May.

One Step Beyond

The flaw in the plan is that Emery is a useful fool. His failings are a shield of steel for Raul and Edu, at the moment anyway. When criticism flies in their direction, he ceases to be useful.

Next weekend’s trip to Leicester suddenly takes on greater importance for Emery. Crystal Palace face the Foxes this afternoon and then Chelsea.

We’re reliant upon them doing us favours otherwise defeat at the King Power sees us nine points off fourth and with Emery in charge, that is an irretrievable deficit.

His natural caution prevents us from taking hold of games. Yesterday saw an attacking substitution in bringing on Saka for Torreira but why was Pepe not used? 

The Ivorian is in his best Arsenal form yet we dropped him yesterday to the bench. Maybe the stats say he needed a rest but putting him on the bench isn’t paying heed to those numbers.

What will we try in Portugal on Wednesday or Leicester next week? Stick or twist, Unai; do you even know?

That’s if we wait until then. There is little to gain and no guarantee of a short-term bounce with an interim coach. 

In my view, Freddie Ljungberg, the people’s favourite, might get a bounce for a game or two but that defence needs some serious work carried out on it. Is the Swede the man for that job?

We’re not the draw we once were but only for the very elite coaches will a season or so without Champions League football matter. A good coach might turn this season around but keeping faith will just see a continuation of the mediocrity so far.

There’s no guarantee of success with a new coach, of course. There’s more of a guarantee of failure under Emery, however.

Nature Abhors A Vacuum

We always hoped Arsène’s departure would leave us with a better situation than United found themselves in when Ferguson departed. As they found, getting the right person in is a tough job for the Recruitment Team.

Their predecessors made a bum choice so we’re back at the start once again. There will always be hipster choices which I have no problem with. Ten Haag from Ajax will feature high on the list. It’s time for the football connections to payoff.

There’s a moral superiority abroad which claims Arsenal aren’t the sort of club to hire and fire coaches. Witnessing the post-Wenger era, I’m surprised some still cling to the notion of a coach being in the job for five years or more. 

Modern football dictates that all but the most successful coaches will depart in years 2 – 3. Unai as an unsuccessful coach fits that pattern.

It’s close to a convenient time for the change to be made. There’s an international break coming up which gives time for a behind the scenes reshuffle. Get new staff in, get them settled while the players are away.

Will we take the opportunity or drunkenly stumble on?

It’s Arsenal so what’s your poison…

‘Til Tomorrow.

83 thoughts on “Wolves Review: Emery on the Brink?

  1. jonnygunner says:

    Paper talk- I appreciate it is YW, but Jose and Raul were spotted having lunch very recently.
    Its made the rags for well over a week now-and I genuinely wouldn’t be at all surprised to see the Grumpy one in charge before too long.

  2. Michael says:

    Morning all
    To me he is patently unsuited to the job and needs to go soon, after losing to Leicester would be appropriate imo.
    The question then, who? Apparently Moaniho had dinner with Raul recently, what can I say, besides I hope not, but the options aren’t that big, given who is available and who would fancy it…Troubling times ahead methinks.

  3. Las says:

    Morning. Great and equally sad post. Unai rein is over. This is not transition this is covardience at best mixed with limited knowledge. Unai has a small team mentality (he scared) which actually resonate to Arsenals general lostness (ne real leader in the pitch). I am not surprised that we are loosing ground avainst anybody in the PL.
    We need a mamager who has clear football phiosophy, vision and who is also brave enough and clever enough.
    In his first year Emery had a good vision how to change the team at half time (I never understand why he had to wait for HT and why we hadn’t started … but it worked somehow) but now he seems to lost his touch we even doing the opposite starting well and falling on face at the end.
    It is a pity though that we lost two season in a row.
    Buuut, Enrique is free, we might go for him it would be a win-win, the lift what we are waiting for years now.

  4. phil says:

    There was at the beginning, some high hopes under the new manager.
    Turn the page on the book of Wenger, and start a new chapter.
    But he has regressed , the team has regressed.
    The talent is basically there to be top 4 , but it’s pointless when the manager is clueless.

  5. Spike says:

    I’d get rid of Emery today, put Freddie in charge for the next 2 games while the directors/owners sort out a proper replacement.

    As many have said, thetes little point in keeping Emery on.

  6. Bill says:

    Great post yogi

    Dropping xhaka and adding Ozil and Torriera to the line up didn’t change anything about our performance or the result. I understand that people would watch the league cup game against Liverpool and believe we have a lot of potential in the squad but future potential does not equal current production. The last 15 years has proven beyond doubt that league cup performances are not something which can be replicate in league games. Those 15 years have also proven beyond doubt that those games greatly overestimate how good our players really are. The other problem is future potential does not equal current production. I think most would say that in the last 2 seasons Guendouzi has been our best player not named Auba or Laca. It demonstrates how little talent we have in the squad because I doubt Guendouzi would be an every game regular starter on almost any of the teams who currently lead their group in the champions league. We are better then about 70% of the teams in our league but as on Nov 2 2019 we don’t have the talent on this squad to be more then Europa league team.

  7. Spike says:


    I wouldn’t go for Enrique, hed be an even bigger risk than Emery, imo.

    I really hope it isnt Mourinho as well, although if they gave him a contract to the end of this season, hed probably get us top 4 and a cup!

  8. jonnygunner says:

    Great post yogi

    Dropping xhaka and adding Ozil and Torriera to the line up didn’t change anything about our performance or the result. I understand that people would watch the league cup game against Liverpool and believe we have a lot of potential in the squad but future potential does not equal current production.The last 15 years has proven beyond doubt that league cup performances are not something which can be replicate in league games. Those 15 years have also proven beyond doubt that those games greatly overestimate how good our players really are. The other problem is future potential does not equal current production. I think most would say that in the last 2 seasons Guendouzi has been our best player not named Auba or Laca. It demonstrates how little talent we have in the squad because I doubt Guendouzi would be an every game regular starter on almost any of the teams who currently lead their group in the champions league. We are better then about 70% of the teams in our league but as on Nov 2 2019 we don’t have the talent on this squad to be more then Europa league team.

    Guendouzi had a match to forget yesterday Bill-he nearly cost us on a number of occasions.

  9. Spike says:


    Bill, it wasnt just a matter of dropping Xhaka (finally) and putting in Torreira and Ozil though.

    Tactically Emery fucked things up.

    He didn’t play Torreira in his best position, he wasnt told to shield the back four. Likewise he played Ozil and Ceballos, which was a mother bad idea.

    We have a very good squad and I’ve no idea what tou see when you watch football mate?

    Tierney, Holding, Chambers and Bellerin is a solid back four yet we still haven’t seen that. Because the manager is scared and inept.

    Guendouzi/Whillock/Torreira/Chambers/AMN could all play in front of them.

    I mean, Chambers played there last season, did really well and Emery hasnt even given him a go there!

    I think we are struggling creatively in central midfield, Ozil and Ceballos are our best options at present, so this needs addressing.

    Out wide and up front we look fine.

    But players will not look amazing if they lack confidence in themselves, the coach and the system.

  10. Bill says:

    I have seen a few people suggest that ozil would improve teams creativity in the final 1/3 but we did not look like a more dangerous team which was more likely to score goals yesterday because he was on the pitch. The reason Emery has not been using him is because he is no longer effective in the creator in chief role we need from him. Mesut has always been a flair player who does not add anything to the team outside of the final 1/3 but in the past his ability to make special things happen in the attacking end outweighed his liabilities. However now that he no longer can dominate or control the game upfront there is not a good reason to use him.

  11. Spike says:


    It’s about ta tics and formations as well as personnel man.

    I think Ozil should be given the next 2 games in his favoured position, so we can see if he can be a creative spark.

  12. Wailesy says:

    I think I will vomit if I see Mourinho at Arsenal. He is shit. To not have a single shot on target in the 2nd half with all our fire power is embarrassing. We are the laughing stock of the league right now.

  13. Spike says:


    Agreed, it simply cant be Mourinho!

    Hows Vieira doing in France???

  14. Bill says:


    We are more talented then 70% of the teams in our league but that still leaves us as a Europa league level team. Which one of the players not named Auba or Laca who have been part of our regular 18 for most of the last year would be regular players on the 16 teams who are leading their group in the champions league. The correct answer is almost none. As of 11/3/19 there is zero evidence to suggest that Tierney Bellerin and Holding can be difference makers either individually or as a group. Chambers was the DM last season for the worst team in the league last season. Is that really the type of player you want? Right now Guendouzi is our best central midfielder and I doubt any of the worlds other big teams would be using a U21 player who has a grand total of 0 goals and 1 assist in about 3500 league minutes as one of their regular starters. The jury is still out on Pepe and may be he will come good and live up to his potential but at least so far he has been highly underwhelming in our league games. Saka, Nelson, Willock Smith-Rowe, Martinelli might or might not be good someday but the possibility of future potential does not help us right now. The bottom line is as of today we don’t have the talent to be more then a 5th place team.

  15. Bill says:


    Ozil was in his favored position for almost 2000 minutes last season and he gave us nothing and now he is 1 year further along the downside of his career arc. His days as a special player are long past.

  16. Wailesy says:

    I’d take Vieira Spike.

    Emery’s formation just isn’t working. Sok and side show are his signings so he’s going to continue to play them. He needs to start playing 3 at the back OR play Sok and Holding in a 4 with Luiz in front. I’d rather see Ozil play than Ceballos. The front 3 pick themselves Obviously with firepower on the bench.

    I agree there’s enough quality in the squad for top 4 but Emery can’t make it click.

  17. Spike says:


    Simply saying the same thing slightly differently isnt really a proper rebuttal man!

    Our squad is definitely top 4 and with a decent coach, we could also nick a few extra points here and there as well.

    We dont do that any more, we dont smash teams, all our games are a struggle, because of this coach we have.

    Leceister aren’t a better squad or team than Araenal, nor is Chelsea. The spuds have a good squad but look how they’re struggling.

  18. Wailesy says:


    He’s only 31 Bill. David Silva is 33 and dominates in the same league. I’m sure Ozil would look a different player in a team under Pep

  19. Ras says:

    Emery is your Steve Bruce Of La Liga Futbol. He should never have been considered, given the job. Sadly nepotism helped play a part in his appointment.

    I have to ask exactly what is Edu an ‘ Invincible with the Arsenal DNA coursing through his veins actually doing ?

    I personally don’t have any faith in Raul or Edu..

  20. Spike says:


    Not sure that was even up for a debate? It’s like you’re trying to start arguments about stuff that isnt being disagreed with man?

  21. Ras says:


    It truly highlights how low We have fallen. We are having to rely on a 20 yr old in his 2nd season at Arsenal. Guendouzi was not great yesterday but as usual he did not hide.

    As a young developing Player it’s normal he’s going to have indifferent matches on occasions. Yesterday was not one of his better games .

  22. Bufallo says:

    Emery has appalling judgement and is weak. Not qualities ideal in a manager. He cant even speak decent English at this stage of his Arsenal career, its laughable, is he stupid or just not taking enough lessons. Bizarre. Guardiola Klopp etc etc bloody etc have no problems but Emery… Its actually quite embarrassing.
    He simply must go now and not at the end of the season but I doubt very much Arsenal are capable of that level of competence at board level.
    Mourinho? Well if he becomes manager I find it a mighty odd choice and doesn’t again say much for the running of the club.
    But I imagine we will drift along until the end of the season unless things become completely untenable.
    if Emery was the outstanding candidate then Raul ought to be derived his p45 too

  23. SV says:

    Apart from appeasing some fans to buy a few more weeks, playing Ozil makes no sense. Dropping Xaka was done for the same reason. Emery is in survival mode. But, causing instability and canfusion, it hurts the results.

    Please no Mourinho.

    The replacement should be someone with experience of building a team with young players who are our main asset at the moment.

    But I still expect Emery to stay till the end of the season.

  24. Spike says:


    I think Emery was ultimately Gazidis’ choice.

    Not a surprise really, Ivan being impressed with waffle and bluster!

    Isnt that the name of a PR firm?

  25. jonnygunner says:

    Apart from appeasing some fans to buy a few more weeks, playing Ozil makes no sense. Dropping Xaka was done for the same reason. Emery is in survival mode. But, causing instability and canfusion, it hurts the results.

    Please no Mourinho.

    The replacement should be someone with experience of building a team with young players who are our main asset at the moment.

    But I still expect Emery to stay till the end of the season.

    He won’t get as far as Christmas

  26. Bill says:


    Part of the downside of the career arc is the loss of the mental edge along with the fading of physical skills. Different players hit the downside of their career arc at different ages. Ozil has 4 total assists in our league games since he signed the big contract about 2 years ago. I would argue the evidence that he has hit the downside is undeniable

  27. Bill says:


    We are competing for 4th place and we will go deep in the Europa league. The idea that we have an incredibly talented squad which should be competing above that level is not realistic IMO

  28. Bill says:

    I am fully in favor of sacking Emery at this point and I think we could be playing better. However I am not sure any manager could turn this group of players into a free flowing team that is a heavy favorite for one the top 4 spots

  29. Spike says:


    We have a good squad, I’d like a decent CB and a number 10, but that’s for future transfer windows.

    You keep making arguments up! Who said it was “incredibly talented”?

    You did Bill, you did that! 🙂

  30. Spike says:


    Wed be an amazing and incredibly talented counter attacking team, with the pace we have! 🙂

    Maybe the Wolves manager should be an option for Arsenal?

  31. Spike says:


    Let’s look at the squad…
    GK Leno I like him, hes good enough.
    Back up not so sure.

    Left backs: Tierney and Kolasinac. Excellent 1st choice, decent back up.

    Right backs. Bellerin and Chambers. I think with Chambers recent form, we have 2 excellent RBs. CBs. Holding is the only one I rate, although Chambers is also decent in this position. However Due to Holdings injury he needs wrapping in cotton wool, which is not ideal when we gave Luiz n Sokratis as our 1st choice pairing. This is probably the next managers priority: finding a decent CB pairing. Then again, with decent coaching and organisation, this would improve things.

    Central midfield: Torreira or Chambers and possibly Luiz can play DM. But we could do better in this position. In the mean time those 2 should be given a go here.

    B2B: Guendouzi and Whillock. Lots of promise and they wont improve if they dont play. I’d rather stick with them than replace them. Ceballos can play here, but he’s not as mobile. AMN too can play either midfield position. I rate him, although his confidence has been shaken.

    Wide forwards. Pepe, Auba seem our 1st choice and they are good enough I feel. With Nelson, Martinelli, Saka as back up.

    Number 10: Ozil or Ceballos? Not much more to say on this. I think we need someone to come in here.

    Lacazette, Auba and Martinelli. Excellent!

    So, we can definitely improve the squad, but it’s good enough for a decent coach to get much much more out of than Emery currently is.

  32. Adam Singh says:

    Another poor performance. His team selection and formation completely baffles me – why play Torreira in an advanced position, why saka instead of Pepe?

    I’d be happy with Jose for the rest of the season. Ok he isn’t going to play the most attractive football (although his first Chelsea winning teams played good football and scored loads of goals) but I’m pretty sure he’d get more out of this team than Emery.

  33. Sam says:

    Emery is a white flag coach who does not possess the ability to set his teams up to impose themselves on the opposition. I gave him the benefit of the doubt for most of last season, but the away from home (in particular) surrenders towards the end of last season did it for me; compounded by the capitulation in the Europa Final.

    We seem to have a back foot stance from the outset in most matches- almost an inferiority complex. We used to get suckered after blitzing teams for a spell and not making our superiority count (later Wenger years- not the final ones- then we just impotent all too often). Now that was frustrating, but I would take it all back just to see the Arsenal have a go at another team. Impose themselves on these sides. We should not look frightened when playing away at Sheffield United or Watford. We should not be feeding on scraps of attacking possession away at an average and ailing Manchester United.

    We have a reasonably balanced and talented squad. The time is now to get somebody/anybody in to make that count for something. “Something” could still be a top four spot and a decent cup run (or two). I genuinely believe that is still possible this season.

    But it will not be possible if Unai is allowed to sleep walk us into mid-table mediocrity and, before you know it, half of the season has gone and we’re already looking at the Summer rebuild (again!).

  34. Dukey says:

    Emerys birthday today. Apparently he has had a poll with the players to find out what he wants for his birthday.

  35. JonJon says:


    the problem isnt the players, mate..

    its pointless discussing who we need in our midfield to bring balance and control to the way we play.

    we could have vieira, pires, gilberto and ljundberg in our midfield and emery would still tell them to stand off and give it up.

    the tactics are deliberate, weve discussed this many times on this thread.

    every game against every team, emery wants them to come at us – the man said it himself yesterday – 25 shots against us at home and as YW quoted in the post – tactically it worked as he wanted!!!

    hes a bellend

    pointless discussing it. vieira would look shit in this set up…

    emerys the problem….simple as that.

  36. Woolwich Freddie says:

    “somnambulists“ 😂

  37. Woolwich Freddie says:

    Oh, and I didn’t think this was even a discussion, but since the story seems to be gathering momentum, can you just put me down for a “Mourinho? Fuck, no!” This should require no explanation.

  38. JonJon says:

    i concur wholeheartedly
    i’d rather lick a donkeys arsehole

  39. Dukey says:

    I really did think Emery could do something with us and a little part still does. But we are going to keep playing like a bunch of clueless twats until he starts deciding on a first bloody 11. I don’t know if he is trying to be smart and keep everyone on their toes with the constant chopping and changing or trying to keep everyone happy or what but it’s not working. How are we supposed to play some fluent football with a different line up every week. We currently look just like that, a bunch of strangers with no clue what any fucker is going to do. It’s only when auba and laca get the ball that we look like we actually have a clue.

  40. Las says:

    Many of us (maybe except Bill) believe that our team members are good enough for the top 4 finish. We have no proof for this but with Emery, we are not. That’s for sure. Within the team no cohesion, no strategy, no tactics. Really very painful to watch us.
    I am not sure if Emery would start to listen to YW that the players would be able to play the required system. Confusion is the word.
    A new gaffe has a lot to do. From man-management to lifting the moods, from developing tactics to develop personalities.
    No Mourino, please.
    But Enrique will be good (I think Spike will think again 🙂
    We desperately need someone who gives us shape.

  41. Las says:

    This is the point!
    Thanks Sam!

    We should not look frightened when playing away at Sheffield United or Watford.We should not be feeding on scraps of attacking possession away at an average and ailing Manchester United.

  42. C says:


    My mate Bill doesn’t believe in tactics and/ or formations.

  43. C says:


    Robertson was the LB for a TERRIBLE Hull City team who got relegates. Tielemens was playing in midfield for a Monaco side that was absolute shit in France, I could go on and on but I think you get what I’m saying.

  44. Spike says:



    Thanks for the heads up!

    I remember Rodgers was sneered at as a possible replacement for Wenger.

    It doesn’t seem such a daft idea now.

    Rodgers wont come to Araenal now though.

    The club would rather a so called big name foreign coach.

  45. Woolwich Freddie says:


    Don’t worry: we’re probably too tight to pay the exorbitant fee he would command to be sent away after three months.

  46. Paulie Walnuts says:

    Unai is under pressure & now Maureen is lurking around like Buffalo Bill.

    I don’t see a way out for Emery. There seems to be little improvement in any of the areas where Arsene’s later teams struggled & he won’t get 10 seasons to parrott away about how lucky we are to have him in charge.

  47. Woolwich Freddie says:

    Are the players good enough for top four? Yes, given the weakness of the other candidates for 3rd and 4th. It would require some sort of cogent strategy, however. They would have to be consistently motivated (somewhere Wenger failed, too, so probably a deeply rooted problem). Obviously, we’d do more damage once we qualified if the two glaring and perennial gaps in recruitment were addressed but, even this slightly imbalanced squad could do better than this.

  48. Spike says:

    Where the hell is Mavraponas by the way?

  49. Michael says:

    By way of a change, I made a rare visit to Untold, to see what their take was, but there was an article on match fixing, which Uefa said was out of control, however it’s not being reported in UK press….us v Palace anyone.

  50. Spike says:


    Well, if someone wanted to fix a match, the best way would be to I once decisions on the outcome, without having to justify those decisions.

    Hiding behind VAR And more specifically the way the PGMOL are allowed to use it, would be the perfect way to fix games.

  51. Blue Yonder says:

    The whole “Wenger replacement” problem was caused by the scant amount of time Gazidis et al gave themselves between when they decided Wenger must go and when Emery was hired. They should have begun the process long before, even if it meant letting Arsene in on it.

  52. Blue Yonder says:

    Mourinho’s time in the sun has passed. And I’ve never liked the man as a person. That said, he could work at Arsenal but only as an interim choice (which he wouldn’t accept anyway.)
    If Arsenal were to fire Emery now and frantically put someone new in charge, it’s not likely things would change much. And we would then be stuck with the same problem.
    An interim coach would make more sense but then we’re probably writing off the season.
    Tough choice.

  53. consolsbob says:

    Spurs and Manu must be delighted with VAR. No one else is, but it works for them.

  54. JonJon says:

    alex iwobi has to be one of the worst singings of the season.

    shame. always knew he had zero end product but without top players around him its looking increasingly like hes nothing more than a lower league player.

    and if everton dont sort it out he could be playing there as quickly as next season.

  55. Bill says:


    Look at the comments and you will see how many people suggest we have an incredibly talented squad.

    To my eye, We need a creative midfielder and a defensive mid. Ozil is well past his prime and Ceballos has not been the answer this year and he is not even our player. Torriera xhaka and Guendouzi are not the answer at DM. We need Pepe to come good. He has the talent but so far he has been underwhelming. Holding has been on the team for 3 years and we don’t have any evidence other then hope to make us believe he is a no doubt long term answer at CB. He has to fully recover from his long term injury which isn’t a slam dunk and even if he does what has he done during those 3 years to suggest that he is a really good player? We clearly need at least 1 CB and perhaps 2. Hector is a great attacking RB but even before his injury his defense was suspect.

  56. JonJon says:

    theres a massive difference between having a squad good enough to win the league and having a squad good enough to not let shit teams have 20+ shots at us.

    we dont know if torreira etc arent good enough at DM because we dont play with one and we dont know if ceballos isnt good enough at ACM because we dont play with one. midfields a joke we might as well not play with one. 5 defenders and 5 attackers – its dogshit

    squads good enough for top 4 – not under emery.

    i think thats everyones veiwpoint.

  57. Conan says:

    So, I’ve read this blog for probably ten years but I think this is my second post….

    For all of a lot of people on here thinking torreria isnt the answer as a dm, it’s obvious he is the best we have.
    The opportunities we gave up before he was subbed off were a lot less dangerous then the ones after he was removed. Dropping ceballos in with Matteo was absolutely stupid when we are up a goal.

    3 minutes off the field and they tied it up. And that’s considering he was playing to far forward. Emery obviously doesn’t know how to protect lead. Our midfield is to young and inexperienced to already have learned how to protect a lead, so they need instruction. Emery obviously cant coach them into it. How many leads have we thrown away?


  58. Spike says:


    It is scandalous how the PGMO has been allowed to ride rough shod over VAR! The refs were terrible before and now they are using VAR as an excuse to over rule the refs when they actually make correct decisions!

    It’s all so very dodgy and secretive as well.

    I’ve never trusted Mike Riley, ever since he refused that game at Old Trafford! The cheatin bastard! 🙂

  59. Spike says:


    But in the mean time, we are stuck with the players! 🙂

  60. Bill says:


    you are the one who has been telling us all along that Emery is an excellent manager. If you are going to blame poor managerial tactics and poor choice of formations then you have to accept that he is not a good manager. You can’t have it both ways. Which is it?

  61. Bill says:

    It depends on how define a talented team. If you define talent as `a team that is going to compete for 4th place and go deep in the Europa then we have a talented team. If you hope that we can compete with teams like Liverpool or Man City and compete with the other top 16 teams in the world then we have a long ways to go.

  62. C says:


    Yea, been trying to tell him about formations and tactics for years and he just sneers at it and calls bullshit.

    I think the thing with Rodgers was never his coaching, just think it was most thought he didn’t fit the bill.

  63. consolsbob says:

    PGMO is a big problem.

    Either make refs more competent and fully responsible for their decisions and forget VAR or make it fully independent and run by people who are impartial, professional and understand the bloody rules!

  64. Bill says:

    Jon Jon

    Iwobe is a perfect example of something we have debated on here for years. 3-4 years ago most people on the blog thought Iwobe was a fantastic talent and would be a top player. We as fans tend to see what we hope to see and we almost always over rate our own players.

  65. Spike says:

    Bill</stroncome on, it's not as if Iwobi is a pub team player! He is a decent PL player. That's not too shabby.

    Sure he hasnt got to the levels we hoped. But that's hardly his fault.

    It's good that we produce players, hopefully we will see Whillock, Saka Nelson and AMN progress and succeed similarly or better.

  66. Woolwich Freddie says:


    Yes! To a large extent, the VAR debate isn’t relevant until either the referees are improved or made more accountable.

  67. Bill says:

    We are better then 75% of the teams in our league. I agree with the sentiment that we should be good enough to be closer then 8 points to 4th place. Clearly things are not working out with Emery and I agree it’s time to move in a new direction. However the idea that we have so much talent that better manager would have us sitting in 3rd place and heavy favorites to finish in the top 4 is not realistic.

  68. SV says:


    >>> people, who are impartial, professional and understand the bloody rules>>>

    You must be talking about angels, not people. Who knew?

    VAR out!

  69. Bill says:


    Every player who is a professional is talented, however, this is an Arsenal blog so when someone on this blog says a player is talented the assumption is they think the player is good enough to play regular minutes for Arsenal. Iwobe Is not close to being good enough to play regular minutes for any team whose objective is to be on a level where they can compete with other champions league teams. If you define iwobe as a talented player then you have different definition then I do

  70. Spike says:


    Christ Bill

    It’s like you’re only motivation is to be obtuse and/argumentative man.
    Yes, this an Araenal blog, but we also discuss wider football related matters too.

    I dont wish Iwobi any I’ll will. He wasnt good enough, but he was an academy product and I wish him well

    Youd have no one playing at Arsenal anyway, as no one is good enough! 🙂

  71. Anderslilya says:

    The best way to protect a lead is not to replace a defensive mid with an attacking winger! He should’ve taken off Ceballos and put on Holding. In that way dealing with their crosses. Even Wenger did that towards the end. Back then we lost the most points to teams parking the bus after scoring on the counter and getting ahead.

  72. Bill says:


    We all hope iwobe does well but the reality is that he was not nearly as talented as most of us believed and the same thing has happened with literally hundreds of players in the last 10 years. The point is we consistently over rate our players and IMO the same thing is happening again with this squad. That seems rather straightforward to me.

  73. C says:

    On a plus note, Saliba has been nothing short of superb and since his return from injury, his club has gone from 19th to 8th. He is getting RAVE reviews after each and every performance he puts in. Saliba and Holding(if he can get and stay fit) are looking more and more like our 1st choice CB pairing for the future.

    They have to get Holding full fit and firing, as simply put, Luiz and Sokaritis don’t work. Personally, I’d have Luiz and Holding with Bellerin and Tierney at the FB’s.

  74. C says:


    There is a difference between overrating a player and a player not making it at the top level. Making it at a big club takes SOOOOOO much more than just being physically talented, it takes a mental strength that the vast majority of people will never know nor understand. You constantly talk about our youngsters not making it, but look at a player like Malen….supremely talented, yet at a young age coulen’t break through, moved to play regularly and is not one of the best Dutch talents and a regular in a supremely talented and young Dutch National team. Look at a player like Pique who was deemed not good enough for the PL and Man United, how wrong were they or even Gnabry.

    Its not, nor will it ever be simply about talent….its soooo much more and until you grasp that, you will continue on your comments.

  75. Spike says:


    That would be my back four too mate.

    But also Chambers has definitely gone up in most peoples estimations. I always liked him, his versatility is possibly a reason why he hasnt nailed down a position like CB or DM. I think he could play either, or at least given a run.

  76. Spike says:

    It’s funny that Leceisters CB pairing of Evan’s And Soyuncu could have been Arsenals yet again though the notion of Evan’s was sneered at by lots of Gooners ( why are we so arrogant when we’ve been shite defensively for so long?) Although Freiburg were quoting Arsenal £50m when we were after him while the Foxes signed him for a couple mill more than our Greek tragedy!

  77. Noon Gunner says:


    (Love your ‘Greek tragedy’!!

    Have you noticed the difference between Chambers’ close handling of the ball under pressure and quick vision for off-loading a decent pass, versus our Greek tragedy’s?

    I’ve often drawn comfort from Sokratis’ defensive will and he’s often got us out of trouble with a last minute tackle, but too often he reminds me of a small-town (even village) wannabe gangster. That faked mortal injury on Saturday was embarrassing and revealing. If we want to play amongst the very best we want defenders with a masterful frame of mind, not a loser’s. Can you imagine Van Dyke pulling such a stunt? Or Tony Adams?

    My point about Chambers is that now he’s evidently settled down, his skills are showing up in every game and having them at our disposal in the centre of defence provides healthy competition for places…once we have a manager who likes to play to our strengths.

  78. Alex Ice Cream says:


    Yes, who wouldn’t take Soyuncu and Evans now? The last time we looked really solid at the back was in 2006 during the CL tun with Kolo and Senderos! Yes, he was good for a while.

    I called Emery out last year “early doors”, I didn’t rate him at PSG either and its clear that that the proper due diligence was not carried out when finding a successor to Wenger. Its a disgrace as the board had long enough but made the fatal mistake of allowing us to fall out of the top 4 before sacking Wenger who should have gone years before he did.

    Klopp, Pep, Ancellotti we all available during the time that Wenger should have gone but by letting these opportunities pass, and being a Europa club, we limited our ability to get some of the best candidates, leaving us where we are. Wenger, Gazidis and co’s Legacy.

    Emery should not have been appointed. He needs to be sacked today.

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