Previous names: Dial Square, Royal Arsenal, Woolwich Arsenal

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Arsenal's history of implosions and collapses rears its ugly head

By 1970's Gooner

Every team goes through a bad patch in a marathon season that is the PL. But Arsenal's bad patch may last a little longer or it might even result in another implosion. This is because the team has no history of success in the last 8 or so years. Rather it has a history of implosions and collapses.

And this preys on the players minds, especially when they have to play against the big teams. This explains their nervous starts (and negative results) against Man Utd, Manchester City and now Chelsea. It's obvious that they are lacking confidence in themselves. And that is why they were able to put in that remarkable run last season to finish in the top four after that confidence boosting away win at Bayern Munich.

If they can manage to shake off this negative thinking then we can see this Arsenal team6 challenge Man City for the title.

They can win the title if Wenger splashes out on another big money signing to add another viable attacking threat. Giroud showed in the last few games that he is not the same man as at the start of the season. The new signing will also have the same invigorating effect on the rest of the players that Ozil brought with him.

Ozil I fear is a one paced player. And by this I mean is that these languid even paced performances will not change by much. He is a "wysiwyg" "What you see is what you get". He is not the type of player who will get the game by the scruff of the neck and lead the team to the promised land. He is an assist master which means that the rest of the team have to play well for him to perform.

And like against Chelsea when Ramsey and Rosicky were not performing he couldn't lift the team.

Both Ramsey and Rosicky let the team down. Their passes were going astray, there was no combination play and no through balls to the forwards. Also Ramsey was playing too far up the field leaving poor Arteta to battle it out against Chelsea's three man midfield.

Wenger needs to pick the players up and pick the right team to beat West Ham. He should stick with Giroud but if he is not up to it then he shouldn't hesitate to sub him. Ramsey and Rosicky should be rested with Cazorla and Podolski given a start. Ozil needs a rest but it should be in a home game probably against Cardiff.

A win at West Ham could get the team confidence and spirit going again. All you need are a few wins and before you know it you are top of the League again!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

A starting eleven to beat Chelsea

By 1970's Gooner

This encounter is massively important to Arsenal. Win it and we not only go back to the top of the League but we will be reinstating our title credentials. To everybody but more importantly to the players minds.

I would not play Sagna in central defence. At the moment he is slightly more effective at that position than Vermaelen but we will be losing much more in our right back defensive capability and more importantly from our forward penetration on the right wing.

Stats are showing that 46% of Arsenal's attacks come from the right side and this is no surprise as Sagna is usually the full back who ventures forward and Gibbs stays behind. And this statistic was with Walcott's absence.

Both Flamini and Arteta should start. This will add more protection for the defence, something that was so evidently lacking at Man City. And if we need to chase the game then one of them can be substituted by a more forward thinking player.

On the wings obviously Walcott is a no brainer and Ramsey should occupy the left side instead of Cazorla. He could interchange with Ozil by coming in to add numbers in midfield both for defensive and attacking purposes as the need may be.


Sagna  Mertesacker  Vermaelen Gibbs

            Arteta   Flamini

Walcott      Ozil       Ramsey


We can all choose a starting eleven to face Chelsea. And of course Arsene Wenger will. Whoever that eleven are they need to be hungrier than the Chelsea players. They need to want it more. Without this hunger no combination of eleven will win us the game.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Walcott's return boosts Arsenal's title bid

By 1970's Gooner

Theo showed us all last week what this Arsenal team have been missing.

The first is lightning fast running behind the opponents defence. This forces the full back marking Theo to drop back thus forcing the rest of the defenders to follow in tandem. It therefore opens the space allowable for the Arsenal midfielders and forward players to move further up the field and push on from there.

The second is that his positioning widens the pitch stretching the opponent's midfielders and defenders thus creating even more space for Arsenal's creative players to take over.

Thirdly it allows Wenger to select the right players to play in their natural positions. Squares will fit into squares and not into round holes as has been happening so far. Typical examples are Wilshere and Ramsey who were being asked to play out wide. This didn't show up as a major weakness until we came up against the bigger teams.

And lastly Theo scores goals. He was our top scorer last season! And he showed that quality last week with his two very well taken goals. Theo has got everything.

He has pace, crosses intelligently, defends well and scores the goals.

Expect another sparkling performance against Chelsea.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Wenger`s decisions cost Arsenal

By 1970's Gooner

Arsene Wenger contributed a great deal towards this heavy defeat. Two choices he made, in the starting line up, weakened our midfield and the defence.

Firstly the decision not to start with both Flamini AND Arteta was very wrong. He should have known that City's midfield was very strong with Toure in its centre. Wenger also knew that the Arsenal players were exhausted.

What he should have done is to play a little bit more conservatively and hit them on the counter attack. But no he had to play all his creative midfielders bar Flamini in order to prove his words right, that our midfield was as good as theirs.

Secondly he started with Monreal. What a wrong decision. Monreal was not up to it. He was off the pace, mostly out of position. He was always being by passed by Nasri and Silva and that's where the most decisive goals came from (the 2 1 and 4 2).

What a sorry sight Nasri was. So desperately trying to score a goal against the club and manager that made him into a player of high standard. I bet he would have celebrated like the little boy he is!