Arsenal must take advantage of superior possession

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1. Arsenal suffered another defeat this season at the hands of FC Porto albeit with several key players out but being the “strength” in depth more is expected. Not taking advantage of the superior possession stats and being undone on the counter was the story once again. Passing the ball and keeping it is the Arsenal way but in the end goals is what will win matches. There needs to be more of a cutting edge and more risks around the penalty area.

Barcelona were defeated 3-2 by FC Shakhtar Donetsk also on matchday 6 and also played their second string. One can argue whether the Catalan club is technically superior to Arsenal however what was interesting was the number of players that were willing to support the man in possession and get in the box behind the defence when the opposition are parked in front of their own area.

The ball was slipped out wide to Pedro who played the ball back to Gudjohnsen. The Barca players had already entered the box when the ball was on the left but as Gudjohnsen looks to play it in all those
The ball was slipped out wide to Pedro who played the ball back to Gudjohnsen. The Barca players had already entered the box when the ball was on the left but as Gudjohnsen looks to play it in all those marked in yellow look to get behind which results in Busquets scoring to make it 2-3.

Contrast to Arsenal who were static and too functional; looking to make an impact from their own position.The movement weren’t good enough and although the Gunners got into similar positions at times couldn’t make anything out of it.

When being one on one with defenders it is not one’s dribbling ability that allows them to take best advantage of the situation it is by having support to bring doubts into the markers mind regarding whether a pass will be made. Lack of shooting is also a problem though technique wise are they good enough?

2. The squad has a lot of potential and no doubt the majority playing yesterday can become top players but at the moment they are not ready. There is more depth as the youngsters are better than last season however the strength has decreased. It seems likely a signing will be made if Arsenal’s situation worsens unless Arsene decides to develop the players further. After wins against Chelsea and Wigan sandwiched in between was defeat to Burnley and now this defeat. This could be Wenger’s weakest squad yet somehow they are still in the title race so lets see where we are at the end of the month.

Lets see what Wenger and his scouts can unearth as the extent of talent they see far excedes ours. I will put two potential signings forward though they may be unlikely.

Dario Srna is another player that could change our league fortunes as he will be cup tied in Europe. Great with both feet, clever and versatile; an underrated player and captain of Shakhtar he may not be too cheap though Elano was sold for £8m and Castillo £10m on loan paid by him. May cost a  similar amount.

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Scott Parker may be available at £5m; tenacious, tireless and possesses great technique though injuries have restricted his potential.

3. On an entirely different note, following Roy Keane’s sacking ex-pro’s must be required to undertake more coaching experience before managing a club. He spent a lot of money which shows his relative lack of skill as a manager; identifying good players. Along with this top managers must be able to motivate, be tactically astute and make the most of what they have.

Non playing coaches are finding it harder to get into management or top level coaching even though they have worked themselves up and earned their badges, understanding all levels of the game. Of course some ex-pros have this ability but time is a virtue in coaching.

How much scouting went into David Healy apart from the fact he scored goals for Northern Ireland but played little otherwise. Chopra and Jones where signed from the Championship where he managed first and signed ex United players. He made some good signings such as Malbranque and Cisse on loan but overspent on others. Similarly Southgate, £13m on Alves with little to no competition for a striker who scored45 goals in 39 appearances in Holland.

These abilities for the most part come over time and coaches such as Pearce has no doubt gotten better since going under the tutelage of Capello and coaching the U21 side. What is to justify Alan Shearer being fit to manage Newcastle after sitting on the couch after retiring? And don’t get me started on Flavio Briatore….

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5 thoughts on “Arsenal must take advantage of superior possession

  1. Just discovered this blog, read all the articles, very insightful and different to everything else out there, well done, keep it up.

    Two points i’d like to also contribute if i may.

    1) Defence: We play a very high defensive line, which in principal is good, in practice has not come off for us, we lack the dynamism in midfield to pursue for much longer with this strategy. A Deeper line may give us time to organise our shape and regroup.

    2) Creativity as you state has been a problem. Fabregas has got the ball lots, but the movement around him has been below the quality required. If he was deployed a bit deeper say like Pirlo or Albelda/Gago in Spain, then we can hope that Nasri can dictate the attack from midfield higher up the pitch.

    What are your thoughts on that?

  2. Hi FrenchGooner87. Thanks for the support.
    1) A deeper defensive line could be an option though compared to last season I feel we are playing slightly deeper though if we are pushing for a goal we get higher. I like a high line as it allows us to be a bit more compact and closer even though movement is slightly lacking. A deeper line may be good as it may force teams to rethink when defending against us and may push more higher. Interesting point.
    2) Another interesting option however he is our most creative player so most of his work will be done deeper. Maybe he could do more dictating like Xavi at Barca. Anyway if we had a left sided winger maybe Nasri could play behind the forwards.

  3. Scott Parker? Are you kidding me? Just what we need another English “runner” with no ideas, creativity or technique….he would struggle with AFC Reserves….dude, you’ve lost all credability and i will not be visiting here anymore….

    Scott Parker??? What a joke!

  4. Mark: Do as you please as it is your choice. Parker has got creativity and technique and would get into the England squad if he didn’t get those injuries. He is a clever player and I’ll agree that his ability is not yet proven at the higher level enough.
    Anyway if u think I’m wrong then surely I’m allowed to get one thing wrong. Seeing as you remained on my site until now that must mean things were going well before then. If I’ve lost all credibilty then Wenger must have already lost it for you too.
    Also I’ll give u another player that maybe we should try and sign and lets see if u agree. Hernanes from Sau Paolo. Classy playmaker.

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