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I think we will qualify but we are making it closer than we should be.
Just one of those games - this is becoming more amd more of a familiar response to our total failure to finish off inferior teams. How many times over the last couple of years have we had as much as 24 shots and 60+% possession and not gone away with 3 points?
Yes we played well, yes we had players missing but I cannot help feeling there is something wrong - especially when we play at the Emirates.
We have great players of amazing technical ability but in some games, we cannot put the ball in the back of the net, sometimes when it seems almost impossible not to do so.
We could really do with another Wrighty. RVP when he scores gets goals that are candidates for goal of the season but he cannot score simple tap ins and none of this team can score from corners.
I do not want to be too critical of a team who plays such beautiful football but we must be the most wasteful team in world football in front of goal. A team like Bolton gets 3 chances - they will usually score 1 or 2 (no, I am not advocating playing like them).
I do not think I have ever seen a game where so many clear cut chances were missed - is it down to confidence? bad luck? some lack of a certain something between certain players? (Yes, there are extremely serious personality clashes in this team)
Whatever it is, I hope they sort it quickly - those "just one of those games" situations are becoming far too frequent to be put down to chance or plain bad luck and they are going to cost us dearly if it carries on.
I still think this team is brilliant, will get better and we will qualify but something needs sorting, fast.
Couldn't have put it better myself Dave. Quality football, brilliant chances and no goals? I was absolutely disgusted after the game last night. How can a team be so good and so piss poor at finishing? And you're right, it's been like that for years. There are very, very few games in Wenger's reign when we haven't created enough good chances to win the match, even when we haven't been the best team.
We got to the final last year after missing a hatful of chances against Real, against Juventus, against Villareal, and then two absolute sitters against Barca in the final. Thank god the defence was so brilliant. We often look 'a division better' (as Wenger said of CSKA) than many of the teams we play, then get beaten or draw because we can't score. It is sickening that we are seemingly inches away from being one of, if not the greatest team in Europe for a number of years. But we've always been a centre forward away from that! Andy Johnson, sign for Arsenal please!
And who is the main culprit for missing gilt-edged chances? Our captain and top scorer. He isn't a centre forward, he never has been and he never will be. It's not fair on him and i've even started getting on his case because he doesn't challenge the centre backs for headers nor does he shut them down. But then he never did because that isn't his game. That isn't what we should expect from him, but the role he has been given demands that he does all of the bread and butter things a Wright, an Andy Johnson, or an Alan Shearer would.
So Dave, in short, I think your post was spot on. Please give Arsene a call and tell him how to get the last piece in the jigsaw so that we can get on with starting the North London dominance of all things football. It's high time we stopped poncing around and justified these over-inflated salaries our players are getting (not that they are the only ones!)