Arsenal Message Board
If there is anything we learned about the losses to Chelsea and Dortmund it is that we rely heavily on a disruptive defensive midfielder in the mold of Flamini (Artata can do a job but is not naturally that guy, and to me is left wanting in this role at the highest level but he is still crucial at PL level), that we are bit thin in depth at the moment, we looked particularly tired against Dortmund who I believe out worked us by more than 10km collectively and that Chelsea should be favorite for the PL title.
Finally I think if we have any money left in the kitty we would be foolish not to buy a top striker to give some depth because Bendtner doesn't have what it takes and Giroud can not be our only option.
Getting Walcott and Podolski back to add some much needed width and depth to our squad will provide a big lift.
It was nice to see Vermaelen out there and I also thought that Wilshire played one of his better games.
- Govinda Govinda Oct 31, 2013 11:08 Flag
It is not great to be missing Arteta and Flamini but I am still optimistic. In their absence we can not be considered favorites in the next few games but we are not really underdogs either.
Arteta can play against Dortmund which is a plus and a draw there would be a good result IMO.
We should have a chance against Liverpool despite them having the best combo upfront in the PL. Giroud and Ozil had a little rest and Podolski is close to returning.
I think the next 3 games are 50-50 now before flamini's injury I would have slanted them in our favor 60-40.
If you cant enjoy the journey don't make the trip. I am enjoying this one at the moment. An unlikely loss at Old Trafford would not change that. At the moment the wins against Liverpool and Dortmund on the road are much more meaningful. It will take a while before United become the threat Liverpool were until last weekend.
I think United have to be realistic and forget about the PL this year. They have an inferior squad and a manager trying to find his footing. They should be happy to qualify for CL football. In my book that would rate as a result for them.
I still think Chelsea are our biggest threat.
- Govinda Govinda Nov 12, 2013 13:31 Flag
If you think Man U would have won the PL last year without RVP you must live in a nice world. At least I have no qualms about identifying him as the main contributor to our CL qualification in his last season with us.
I lover the "respectful" comment particularly. I can only conclude that you find it disrespectful if I think a Man U player is over rated or of I think your team is not so special as in past years? That is a very interesting definition of disrespectful worthy of some soul searching on your behave I would dare to suggest.
To ease your apparent pain and discomfort with my opinion, just because I think Rooney is over rated doesn't mean I think he would not be an asset to most teams included Arsenal, ceterus paribus, but at his current salary I don't think he would be worth the money, and there are many equal or better striker out there, RVP to name but one :-)
The idea that my friendship with prof would be tied to my opinion on Man U is laughable, as is the idea that friendship requires identical opinions on football.
- Govinda Govinda Sep 20, 2013 08:28 Flag
away wins in the CL are big. No matter who the opponent. Ramsey was key last season in the last 10 or so games and has stepped it up an other level, great to see.
I do hope we soon get some bodies back since we can't keep playing the same 11 all the time, we need to rotate in order not to fade in the 2nd half of the season.
Has Moureen lost his touch? Can't say I am looking forward to the media circus if they don't get a few results soon.
- Govinda Govinda Sep 23, 2013 10:38 Flag
I definitely was not against the Flamini signing although I admit our summer window was not complete for me until we signed Ozil. I think that signing gave the players a lot of extra confidence and did a lot for the fans as well.
Ramsey has been crucial since the last 10-15 games of last season and is now the box to box midfield player we needed. At the moment only Yaja can be said to be as important to his team. Most importantly Ramsey is bringing it every game and if you want to win anything your key players have to bring it every game. A good sing.
I thought Vermaelen is back? I am not so worried about our defensive cover (if he is back) as much as I am worried about an injury to Giroud. As Wenger said said himself he has to rotate and he needs to rest players. If Giroud picks up a longer term injury we can not rely on Walcott for too many games since he to needs rest. At the moment that leaves Bendter as our only central striker in absence of Giroud (I don't think Sanogo is ready for the big games) and I don't think that is a great option, particularly when it comes to last months of the season when hopefully we are in the knock-out stages of the cups etc.
- Govinda Govinda Sep 23, 2013 14:38 Flag
Once Pod is back he is a good option since he does not seem to be a starting 11 player so lets hope he will back before Feb-March. Although Ozil could play as a central striker I think it is sub-optimal to sacrifice games of starting 11 players. If it is a one or two game thing maybe it is not too bad but if it is for a prolonged period of time it changes the shape of the team too much for my liking.
- Govinda Govinda Sep 30, 2013 15:15 Flag
I actually feel bad for United fans. There is real chance they finish outside the top 4 although the season is still long. What puzzles me is the media. On the one hand they wrote how special SAF was, and there is no doubt he was the best manager in England during his reign IMO, on the other hand when the next manager - Moyes- proves how good SAF was by not being able to raise an unspectacular squad above the sum of its parts, they slaughter the new manager?
Either SAF was a genius for winning the PL last season with this squad and Moyes is human, or the Man U squad was so good that claiming SAF was great - last season - is rubbish in which case Moyes is rubbish as well.
It is hard, at the moment, to see them retain the title. Having said that niether Chelsea nor City have looked convincing. At the moment Spurs might be a real threat on the back of the depth of their squad and Liverpool look great as well. Every time Giroud goes down I shudder but if we stay healthy and get Pod and Ox back we have a chance as well.
At the moment between Man U, Liverpool, City, Spurs, Chelsea and ourselves I think they all should have equal odds for a top 4 finish. Maybe the odds to win the PL are less even?
Look it is only a matter of time before you will be back . I have been hurting since our last PL title nearly 10 years ago, for you it has been a few games. You can't lose a manager like SAF without a bit of pain. Even at Everton Moyes used to do better in the 2nd half of the season as far as my memory serves me. You just don't want the worst case scenario which IMO would be for you to miss out on a top 4 spot because that would either mean having to sack Moyes and start over, if you keep Moyes, having trouble signing great players. It is too early to think like this but, believe me, if it gets down to it you will be as happy as I was to #$%$ forth on the last day of the season.
I was happy for Wilshire but I did think he went down too easily hoping for the ref to protect him. He acted a little like a child looking for Daddy to hrlp him out with the neighborhood bullies. He should have stayed on his feet once he realised the ref was going to allow a lot of contact.
I agree with Fab that is hurts us that we have no true wide player and Wilshire is certainly not that.
I don't believe that Wenger will buy a striker in December/January. We do need one, Giroud is solid but misses too many chances and should have scored one this weekend, but I rather wait and get a Ozil type impact player (I think Higauin would have been that player) than sign an other average striker. Might as well give Bendtner some minutes.
If we do sign one perhaps Benzema would be the most likely of the big name strikers available but I am not 100% convinced about him and his attitude and work rate. If Wenger does buy Benzema I would be excited.
To me you are no different than all those United fans who took joy out of our misery. I feel no desire to be so obvious and kick them whilst they are down, for a moment or a few seasons.
To me real football fans have respect and can exchange on respect whether supporting different teams or not.
All the negative stuff towards other clubs is a waste of time and shows a small mind.
I can look forward to beating Spurs whilst at the same time have respect for the way they run their club at the moment and for their manager and squad.
And just because some where happy when we suffered, why should I be happy when they suffer?
I just hope this is our time.
Take a chill pill and just enjoy the period we are in.
This is the best squad we have had for a while. It is reaching maturity and has a great balance in experience and between effort and fines. We are passing many tests easily and it is a joy to watch. Spurs, Swansea and Napoli, to me, are three solid wins and underline this really might be the season that puts us back in an upward trajectory.
I don't even care if we win the PL or not, if we play like we do now, with the confidence we have now, this will be a great season to follow and (IMO) where we can for the first time in years still dream realistically about winning a trophy.
For me we lacked balance over last eight years in terms of experience and grit. Perhaps that caused a lack of confidence, inevitably.
By Rob Draper:
Arsene Wenger has a reputation as one of the game's aesthetes, so it seems odd to witness him laud one of his players as a master of the dark arts in midfield. But to hear Wenger on Mathieu Flamini offers another indication that Arsenal may be changing from a side with a soft centre to genuine contenders.
'Flamini has given us a balance between attacking and defending,' said Wenger. 'He is somebody who accepts doing the dark role in the team and you need that for balance.'
Wenger's best teams have always had an ability to impose their physicality on the game through the likes of Patrick Vieira, Gilberto Silva, Tony Adams and Martin Keown.
In the eight-year trophy drought at Arsenal, the balance between the creators and the enforcers appeared out of kilter. 'We looked a little bit frail defensively sometimes on the big occasions,' admitted Wenger. 'Flamini gives us something more on that front.'
Although we might assign different contribution factors to the reason for our failings in the past many years, I can agree that as a result of a lack of depth we suffered more from long injuries that deeper squads.
One can only wonder what would have happened if Rasmsey and Eduardo did not have their legs broken. On the other hand neither you nor I claim that injuries where unique to our squad - I say this to avoid people coming on here claiming we think we are the only team that had to deal with injuries.
What I believe is the main reason we were not competitive, and I am very happy about this, is a lack of available financing. It is not Wenger having changed his understanding of the game or his willingness to adjust his views any longer. We finally seem to have a balanced squad and Wenger seems more than willing to buy ready to contribute world-class players at top prices.
This to me has restored my faith in the club and Wenger. I think they miscommunication to the fans their financial strength. Hill Wood and the board coming out each summer saying their was money for Wenger to buy players if he wanted, wrong footed the fans and me into believing Wenger didn't see the needs of this squad. Whilst in fact Wenger might have been the good company man towing the part line and in the process making himself seem out of touch.
It is only in recent interviews that he admits his hands were tied in the transfer market. In the passed I have said that I believed the club would have been better of if they where more transparent with the fans. If there is no money there is no money. I don't believe Arsenal would have lost any fans had they said that and the the supporters would have been more behind the squad.
But non of the interpretation of the passed matter today.
We have a good looking squad!