City 3-0 Arsenal; the Good, Bad, and Ugly

I’m publishing this today (Saturday) because I’m taking tomorrow off to gather my thoughts, regroup and start fresh on Monday. After this week’s events, Arsene Wenger might want to follow my lead.

The Good

Here’s what I learned today…

  1. Stephen Ireland was great today.  His work rate and commitment in the match eclipsed the thrashing around of Alex Song and Denilson. Arsene Wenger surely saw that, which means that a change has to be coming, right?
  2. We only lost 3-0, the way that those guys played we probably should have lost 5 or 6 to nil.
  3. If you watch an Arsenal match with Yakity Sax playing in the background the game is much more enjoyable. Turn down the commentators and turn up the Boots Randolph — it’s the only way to get through the rest of the season.
  4. Does anyone still doubt the value of Adebayor? Seriously?
  5. There’s no question now, the experiment has failed. It was audacious to try and kudos to Wenger for having the balls to try it but a youth team just can’t do it. No hard feelings for Arsene trying it — he gets all the leeway he wants from me — but I suspect that he knows that the experiment has failed and will now move on.
  6. Tactically, Arsenal have been found out as well. Teams are now playing the same defensive scheme over and over against us and it works perfectly. Let Arsenal attack, there’s no teeth there, and since the defense is comical, prone to mistakes, and likes to dribble the ball out you don’t need much possession to get a goal. Once you get the first, just sit back and counter, more goals will come: Arsenal play a comically high line and with with 8 Arsenal players in the opponent’s box, you just wait and lob it out to a speedy attacker who will get you a break away goal.

Learning things is always a good but only if you capitalize on what you learned.

The Bad

I totally want to rip Song here but what’s the point? We all can see his limitations.

Same with Bendtner, Arsene says that the sign of a great player is that they know what they want to do with the ball as soon as they receive it and Bendtner hasn’t a clue. That’s pretty much all you need to know about Bendtner. But so? Adebayor can’t play every game, so I guess we’re stuck with Bendtner until Eduardo rides in on his white horse and saves the world.

The Ugly

So, what the hell happened to Clichy? Last year he was a revelation and over the last few matches he’s been completely unreliable at back. Today he had one of his worst matches I’ve ever seen. I’m not mad at him, I don’t want to fire him or anything, but rather, it makes me sad. What the hell is going on at Arsenal that we’re burning out so many talented defenders?

In my mind this whole bizarre defensive merry-go-round started with Campbell. When he walked out after shipping 2 goals against West Ham and we all said that maybe he just didn’t have the mental strength it took to play for Arsenal.

Then we lost Senderos and we all said that maybe he didn’t have the mental strength it took to play at Arsenal.

Then Toure…

Then Gallas…

Now Clichy?

What the living hell is going on with the Arsenal defense? I don’t have an answer, but I suspect that the “total football” approach exposes the defense to attacks that require 100% from our defenders. Since no defender can be perfect, these players are occasionally exposed, then they make a mistake and that leads to them doubting themselves and so on. I hope Arsene sees this and starts making some changes tactically.

Anyway, that’s enough for the weekend. There will no doubt be stories and quotes from the boss but I’m just burned out.

There really isn’t much more to say right now, is there? Try to have a good weekend, I’m going to take my frustrations out on Sunday — I’ve got a match.

14 Responses to “City 3-0 Arsenal; the Good, Bad, and Ugly”

  1. 1 tee
    November 22, 2008 at 11:48 am

    well at least now we knw the value of ade.. but no 1 person can carry a team. these players should be embarassed.. and hopefully want to prove people wrong.. they need to grow up fast!

  2. 2 Stu
    November 22, 2008 at 11:57 am

    Senderos is a confidence player. I think we should bring him back and say a first team spot is his to lose. Not just one mistake and he’s out, he deserves the same chances which our established players always got. Game after game he can be really fucking good and with the extra experience he’d hopefully iron out the occasional fuckups. And dare I say it if we hadn’t lost Flamini last summer we would not be in half as much shit now. Fabregas looks crap now. The odd good pass or turn in 90 minutes is shocking for someone who is one of the best players around normally. With Flamini behind him it would be a good start to solving his problems. So I must begrudgingly admit that IO actually think we should buy Flamini back. Unless things have changed recently then he might not be that happy on the bench at Milan and seeing us offer him a great contract and first team football might be enough. As for Ade. He’s a useful player, yeah but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. He’s currently one of our best strikers and yet he is extremely inconsistent, very often anonymous, often refuses to make basic runs into the box, is usually offside, has a crap shot on him unless it’s set up for a volley. He might be much better than Bentner right now but frankly he’s really not good enough either. Rather than being a positive, he is simply the lesser of two evils. And let’s not forget his arrogance where he takes all the credit even after simple goals with amazing assists.

  3. 3 Rob91
    November 22, 2008 at 12:15 pm

    Don’t worry lads, a win against the Chavs next week and we’ll be back on top with that spring in our step. Of course we’ll then be let down horribly the following game (as usual) and it’ll be de ja vu all over again.
    I saw in an interview that AW doesn’t think there is any deep problem with the team, funny man isn’t he (shame he was being serious)

  4. 4 davi
    November 22, 2008 at 12:20 pm

    we miss flamini so much and the reason is purely his attitude
    denilson has the talent to take over but will only perform when its against man utd
    i say we break the bank to buy flamini back and make Him the captain because to be honest thats All thats missing from out team, and he was basically doing the real captain work last season anyway

  5. November 22, 2008 at 12:50 pm

    Hang in there Tim, Arsenal will turn the season around.
    they are too good of a club!

  6. November 22, 2008 at 12:54 pm

    Didn’t even watch the game. Watched Pursuit of Happiness instead, and wished our players had the same determination that Will Smith had.

  7. 7 barnaby
    November 22, 2008 at 1:15 pm

    Guys, let’s do some reality here. Flamini is gone and we can improve on what he offered, we need to bring in the right players. Flamini is not coming back, we screwed him over making him prove himself year after year in different positions while paying below market rates. Swallow your pride and understand that Flamini has bid US GOOD RIDDANCE. All is not lost, but a cl spot is very much at risk and our problems can only be solved in the transfer window. If you can’t see what’s needed now, you never will in this lifetime. We need to think about wholesale changes to the squad and dreaming about denilson coming good doesn’t help the cause. There are at least four players that shouldn’t be wearing the shirt, but the good players that we have need to be better complemented. As for rvp, if he’s the one causing issues within the team, he should go with gallas, cancer is cancer.

    A final thought, the captain and the manager are a partnership – what on earth has Wenger been doing and more importantly what has he been thinking?

  8. 8 CaribKid
    November 22, 2008 at 5:42 pm

    Spot on Barnaby.

    The bigger problem which comes to mind is the self-denial of Wenger that we have problems. In the post match interview he indicated we have no problems but lacked a little maturity. Duh Arsene, that’s what you get when you have a horde of young, immature players with very few veterans to guide them.

    If Arsene had filled the gaps left by the departures of Hleib, Flamini, Lehman, Gilberto and Diarra with mature, similar players we wouldn’t be in this pickle today. His experiment has failed miserably and he needs to understand that and take mitigating action immediately or the negative effects will be felt for many years to come.

    Not spending 25-30 million over the transfer window could easily see a 40-50 million loss if we don’t retain a CL place.

    HHHHMMM, brings to mind the phrase. “Don’t be penny wise and pound foolish”.

  9. 9 Gooner
    November 22, 2008 at 6:23 pm

    The problem is despite you saying that Adebayor is valuable. The games he has played this season have been pretty woeful. The whole team is to blame.

  10. 10 Frenchie Gooner
    November 22, 2008 at 11:49 pm

    Adebayor sucks. He suck, suck sucks. He owes his goals to Rosicky, Fabregas, Hleb, RVP. The man doesn’t do shit to get his own goals he only gets them gifted to him.

    There’s so much more I want to say, but who gives a shit. You’re all going to lose faith in Arsenal regardless.

  11. 11 dan
    November 23, 2008 at 3:15 am

    didnt watch the match…as expexted…i think arsenal can still win something…that feeling cheers me up.. :)

  12. 12 T-town Alex
    November 23, 2008 at 4:26 pm

    As I’ve said before, it’s the curse of the Flambino.
    The team is cursed. We need to hire an exorcist or a voodoo doctor. Or study what the Red Sox had to do to overcome the curse of the Bambino. I hope it doesn’t take us as long as it took the Red Sox to win something.

  13. November 24, 2008 at 3:18 am

    Mr T,

    There was curse placed on the Australian soccer team in the 1970s. We were playing Mozambique (I think) in a World Cup qualifier, and we got a witch doctor to curse the opposition. However, we were too cheap to pay for the service, and in return, the witch doctor cursed US to never qualify for the World Cup ever again. And over the years, it DID seem like we were cursed. We went down to Iran on away goals in 1997, after being 2-0 up in the 80th minute in Melbourne. We went down to Uruguay in 2001 after being 1-0 in the first leg. It seemed like we were never going to make it. It wasn’t until John Safran went over, hired another witch doctor to lift the curse that we qualified for 2006.

    Maybe there’s a digruntled witch doctor out there in Ghana who’s pissed off at Arsene Wenger for pinching Toure from ASEC?

  14. 14 Sean
    November 24, 2008 at 4:38 am

    Bring me Podolski, drop him into the midfield.

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