The Great Arsenal Conundrum (Again!)
A lot has been written and spoken about Mikel Arteta and considering the disastrous start to the season accompanied by backstage happenings regarding Laca and Auba, much of the criticism is well deserved.
But is Arteta really to be blamed? Would changing the manager yield different results for The Arsenal? I don’t think so. The next manager coming in would have the same players, would he be able to get a result away from home without the top 2 strikers in the team? Would he have fared well while playing with debutants in Lokonga and Ben White?
Years of inactivity followed by hyperactivity in the transfer market without any significant increase in quality of players being hired is an issue that needs addressing before passing a judgement on the manager. Going by the preseason news reports, Bellerin, Xhaka, Willian, Maitland Niles, Reiss Nelson and Lacazette were being let go off. As of now, all of them are still at the club. The closest to the exit door was the captain against Brentford!
As for the incomings, it seems that we have bought only 1 player who can start every week – Ben White. Lokonga and Navares are only a good backup for now with a potential to be regular starters as they get more experience.
Last season we all saw the glaring holes in the Arsenal lineup. Arsenal lacked a creative outlet and there were very few chances created for a world class striker like Auba. Long gone are the days when Arsene Wenger used to play 4 attacking midfielders in the lineup. To address this issue, the club has bought no player who can play as a #10. Emile Smith Rowe is not a #10. He is a creative wide forward in my opinion who can dribble and cut in from the flanks to overload the middle of the park when required.
The other issue that may crop up as the season progresses is the lack of aerial ability in Ben White. To address this, I see Arteta playing a 3 at the back with Ben White getting license to move forward when required. The club may not buy a new RB for this very reason.
I can only pity Arteta for the situation he is in. He still hasn’t got a team which he can say that “Yes, it’s mine” but the way players showed up is a cause for worry. The players just seemed not ready to fight. It was something the Arsenal fans dreaded but like my, many were not surprised.
In the end I would like to summarize by saying – the mediocracy starts at the top and permeates to the team, expect no drastic changes even with a change of manager if the ownership does not change its attitude and becomes ruthless.
GT would like thank today’s guest blogger, Divijay who you can follow on Twitter @Grogu01