The Sun will Shine when the Habits change
Better players will certainly help. A balanced team is imperative. We as fans could always offer more patience.
Regardless of all that though, Arsenal have had the habit of self implosion for a long time.
That game was certainly swinging City’s way as it approached half time.
I didn’t blame Arsenal for that though. We were playing City away and had been disrupted twice by injuries.
Then the self implosion.
I’m quite honestly not sure if there was much we could’ve done about it beyond what we did anyway.
Here’s the thing….. Arteta dropped Luiz, I think, because he broke a non-negotiable. Against Brentford he made a mistake (that’s fine) but then he barely gave a token gesture in recovery. Additionally, he is yet to fully commit to completing the season by signing the temporary renewal.
So, he was benched. He would’ve no doubt stayed there too if Mari hadn’t gotten injured. There’s a decent chance that if Xhaka would’ve stayed on, he would’ve been moved to LCB rather than Luiz. Arteta had no choice. With Sokratis and Chambers injured and Holding not ready we couldn’t have dropped Luiz like we did to Ozil either. Arsenal lost to City mainly because David Luiz has always been a very good player when he’s happy and a regular liability (borderline vindictive) when you upset him.
So, in this situation the only blame can truly be in signing him in the first place.
Either way, it’s one of many ways Arsenal Football Club self implode.
The huge upside is that we seem to have the perfect coach to fix this.
Mikel Arteta is changing our habits.
He seems to have rightly started with mentality.
In time he needs to address many details.
Here are a few I spotted during the City game…..
1) We too frequently ignore the first open pass we see.
2) Our movement is delayed. City move as the ball is moving, we don’t.
3) Due to these two our tempo is too slow as we don’t take/have the options.
4) This is seen in transition as we have the players but not the eyes.
5) Ideally, players should’ve been taught to scan (look for colour before you receive the ball).
6) All of the above is healed by training with 1 touch only. You can’t not scan or not move earlier as you have no choice in order to progress the ball.
In the medium term you don’t sign mistake ridden players.
In the long term you hold onto a coach that needs time to implement culture change.
Arteta will be upset but he won’t be rattled as he knew he had to cleanse Arsenal Football Club.
We have to be patient whilst the cleansing takes place and be glad we have a coach who is finally making ALL the players accountable regardless of reputation.
* In tighter games Bernd Leno will win Arsenal the game. Such quick reflexes.
Our best player by far.
* I saw a better compact block whether at midfield or low
* I liked the game plan. I saw that both coaches were hoping to win it the last 20 minutes.
Pep ran our legs off and has top class subs.
Mikel kept a very strong bench but his plan was ruined by injuries and Luiz.
* Eddie had a far better physical effort than previously. Held the ball up better too. He was extremely unfortunate not to earn a free kick on 18 mins. His movement is far better than Lacazette so he will prevail when he gets chances.
* Willock and Auba ran hard and pressed well. Not so easy to notice as they arguably played the world’s best possession team.
* It was good to see Ceballos wanted to be more progressive and penetrative in the first half.
* Did we expect to win? No. This wasn’t a ‘free hit’ to me as this demeans our club, but it does come with the added benefit of seeing how certain players handled the swing from excitement to play, to huge adversity.
* If Luiz plays again he is fortunate that there will be no fans.
* We need to get Mari, Sokratis and Holding fit.
* Little concerned that Mari doesn’t move his legs at the same speed as the attacker when being dribbled at.
* Willock needs to watch DeBruyne and the spaces he takes up.
Willock was hard to find when he broke from his 4-3-3 duties to his 4-2-3-1 attacking midfield duties.
* We need to be more aware of the ‘transition player.’ There is often a player floating in no mans land when we lose the ball.
* Firstly, that Garcia is ok.
* Mari and Xhaka too.
I now see that game for what it really was.
After calming down I see a team who have got their hardest game out of the way. I now see a result that as far as 95% of the team were concerned, was a result of bad luck then self implosion by a player that wasn’t being planned to play at all, rather than a poor plan or performance.
If you disagree that’s fine. I think any team in world football would struggle at City playing with 10 men and 0-2 down.
The habits will change and the sun will come out.