Solid and stolid but no cigar as Walcott takes a day off
Striker number 2
By Boris Mellor
December 18 2011
Arsenal fans were pleased, or was it relieved, that the team only lost 1-0, clearly a far better performance than the 8-2 defeat at the other Manchester. Before hand some journalists teased Wenger with if Man U beat Arsenal 8-2 and City beat Man U 6-1 then Arsenal were in for a mighty beating. Wenger replied yes we could let in 14 goals, but Arsenal beat Chelsea, who beat City so it doesn’t work like that.
A good reply Arsene, and I never expected a drubbing, and I never expected us to win either. Why? Because you can’t beat a team like City when you only have one striker, and what is more that striker needs more chances than RvP got today. Unfortunately we have become too Robin reliant.
We could moan about the defence, it was a real mess for the goal, but overall the defence was solid, lesser teams than Arsenal would have conceded a bucket full, and indeed even better teams have let in more. No defence isn’t the issue, you don’t go to City and not concede, it was the ability to attack that was the problem. This defence is solid, but it’s also stolid, if Santos had been available maybe we would have been quicker out of the traps. Most times the build up was too slow, and the crosses too poor. We are missing the speedy overlaps and good crosses.
When Djourou took a blow to his manhood his replacement Miquel struggled to get into the game. Meanwhile watching on TV it was hard to detect what Walcott was doing, if anything, this meant that RvP was less effective. Gervinho had a better game, but his inability to score anything other than a tap in leave us woefully short of sharpness in the final third.
Man City might have scored more but Chesney had an excellent game, unfortunately so did Hart who made two great saves from Vermaelen. Perhaps it’s time to put Vermaelen at Centre Forward and Chamakh at centre back.
Yes a creditable performance, but not good enough for league champions and it will be a fight all the way for 4th place. From 15th to 5th is far easier than from 5th to 4th. I like this team, it will beat the teams they should beat, but will find it hard to beat the top teams. Yes they beat the Chavs, and that was great, but they got them at the right time.
The next few months will be a real test of character.
Very good performance by us, close match, it could easily have ended in a draw, City never killed us off as they should have done. I'm pleased enough with that, it's our toughest match of the season, we wouldn't normally expect to win it.
So now we've played United, City, Chelsea and Spurs away, and lost 3 of them, but it means the second half of the season we have them all at home, and if we play as we did today, we'll win 3 and lose 1.
We're playing much better than we were when we lost badly to United and narrowly to Spurs, the players we've bought have largely integrated well and we're showing far more unity and confidence.
Couldn't agree more regarding Walcott's "performance". Thought Ramsey was nearly as dreadful, how many times did he try a cute flick that didn't come off? Gave the ball away when we were in good positions to counter. Why is he an automatic selection from Wenger? I'd like to see Benyaun get a run w the first team. Wilshire's return will be a big boost.
Also thought this was a good opportunity to give Ox a late run rather than Arsh. Nothing to lose at 1-0 w the Meerkat clearly struggling for form
I think despite Walcott having a poor game, it was a mistake to take him off, we should have took off a midfieler at that point and gone four up front, putting walcott next to RVP with AA and Gervinho on the wings
*Signing Ozil is a signing Bergkamp type moment for Arsenal. It changes things utterly.*
when i saw AA on the sidelines, i expected Ramsey to be pulled off but it was Theo... we hv seen AA frustrating us time and again in the wings .... wld hv been worth a try to give him free role in the last 20 mins...maybe just maybe he cld hv given more to the game ... Ramsey tried to be cescilious with his cute one touch flicks and unfortunately failed miserably tdy and more often than not slowed down our counter attack....
another thing about Mert.... whenever he has the ball on his feet hes most comfortable sending a backpass to Woj... hes jittery when it comes to passing it forward and everytime it gives a feeling the opponent will intercept the pass... opponents dont attack him but stay back and cover the players around him to whom he cld pass thus making him go back to Woj
Ramsey shouldve been the first to go off and shouldve been replaced with rosicky. Also, it was wrong to take off walcott, and even at that he shouldve been replaced by aoc or benayoun and not arshavin. If arshavin must play it shouldve been in place of ramsey too.
I don't know why coquelin wasnt on the bench, cos he wouldve just slotted in at rb instead of reshuffle everything when we lost djorou.
But i warned u about that bergmars when you posted that stupid thread. I told you ramsey will struggle this season after that horror injury, but you wouldnt listen. Why don't you just bow down to the real genius? Say hello to the genius...
thought we played well, especially compared to the last time we went up to manchester, look how far we've come since then!
the worrying thing is the general lack of creativity in the side, which has been the case since cesc and nasri left. without RVP we would be mid table at best. so many times this season he has saved us wiith individual brilliance.
I hold my breath for a new contract for him. Gazidis - earn your fuc*ing corn you cu*t.
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