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 Post subject: Re: 2017-18 Squad Analysis
PostPosted: Sat Sep 02, 2017 1:58 pm 
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DUSTCORE wrote:
Team South East wrote:
Looking at our squad as things stand our strongest 11 IMO is as follows:

========CECH========
Mustafi===Mertesacker===Koscielny
Bellerin===Ramsey===Xhaka===Kolasinac
===Ozil=============Alexis====
=========Lacazette===========

On paper that is actually not a bad team at all now for our backup options:

========Ospina=========
Holding===Chambers===Bielik
Debuchy===Elneny/Coquelin===Wilshere/AMN/Jeff-RA===Monreal
===Iwobi/Walcott========Welbeck/Nelson====
========Giroud/Akpom========

Again we have good options in reserve. That's not even including Cazorla who is not registered for this half of the season. The loss against Liverpool escalated the negative feeling amongst fans and the media have fed off that and caused even more controversy with the transfer deadline day drama. 3 games in and fans are carrying on as if we are on the brink of relegation. :lol: :lol: It really is laughable how our fans are wound up so easily by the media. That's a decent squad there, probably one of the best in the league. If we can find a good balance tactically to get the best out of these guys, which we are close to doing, then we can most certainly make that extra step up.


You think a midfield of Ramsey and Xhaka will get you top 4? That's midfield got more leaks than a damaged bucket


That's the same midfield that beat both Man City and Chelsea a few months ago though? I admit they both lost discipline against Liverpool but everyone played crap that day period. If we need to shore things up then Elneny and Coquelin are there (I rate Elneny, I think he is very underrated and had a good agame against Chelsea in the Community Shield). Once we find that balance in midfield we will be firing on all cylinders.


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 Post subject: Re: 2017-18 Squad Analysis
PostPosted: Sat Sep 02, 2017 6:14 pm 
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muckygooner wrote:
We move from top 4 to outside top 4 - clubs income goes down, Arsenes income goes up. He is not in it for the money? I guess he is here for the love of the club - that's why he has worked so hard to make this (and other transfer windows) a real success!


I question the board as to why they have made him such an offer. At this stage of Wenger's career, I cannot imagine a million or two would influence his thought process. I think the salary is irrelevant and cannot be used as a basis for an argument about the manager's incompetence. Once Wenger accepted the contract, I can certainly believe that he did it mainly because he truly believes he can do a great job at Arsenal - and not because he needed a few million more in his bank account. Regardless of what others think about his abilities, it appears that Wenger is stubborn and in denial. However, these are qualities any person who accepts a contract should have.

I feel that it is the board that has to be blamed for first, offering a new contract, and then improving his terms - although while the latter sends the wrong message to fans/media, it is not a cause for the issues at Arsenal. It seems that the owners/board are risk averse, fearful of change, and perhaps not interested in finding a replacement mainly because their objective, i.e. making money, is met.

I would actually go one step further and say that the board had no choice other than to increase the pay package to let Arsene feel that he is still very much wanted at the club. It is very hard to imagine that anyone knowingly would sign up for 2 more years of the current level of abuse - if it is clear from the onset that no one at the club appreciated their efforts.


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 Post subject: Re: 2017-18 Squad Analysis
PostPosted: Sun Sep 03, 2017 1:34 am 
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Team South East wrote:
3 games in and fans are carrying on as if we are on the brink of relegation. :lol: :lol: It really is laughable how our fans are wound up so easily by the media. That's a decent squad there, probably one of the best in the league. If we can find a good balance tactically to get the best out of these guys, which we are close to doing, then we can most certainly make that extra step up.


I can't speak for anyone else on here, but I don't let what is printed in the media influence my opinion and I think you're being a little condescending to some of the excellent posters left in the dwindling remnants of the forum. For what it's worth, I found it laughable when you posted after the Leicester match that we could well score 100 goals in the League this season - we all have different opinions and yes, on the other forum I visit, there are some ridiculous views we will get relegated but that's equally ridiculous as saying we will win the League (not quoting you there, just making a comparison).

One of the best squads in the League? Certainly in the top 6.

Close to finding the right balance tactically? What evidence do you think supports your notion?

What for you quantifies the extra step up? Right now for me, it would be to get back in the top 4, or in other words, go back to exactly where we were before. One small step for the season, but not exactly a huge leap for mankind.


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 Post subject: Re: 2017-18 Squad Analysis
PostPosted: Sun Sep 03, 2017 2:48 am 
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Emperor wrote:
Team South East wrote:
3 games in and fans are carrying on as if we are on the brink of relegation. :lol: :lol: It really is laughable how our fans are wound up so easily by the media. That's a decent squad there, probably one of the best in the league. If we can find a good balance tactically to get the best out of these guys, which we are close to doing, then we can most certainly make that extra step up.


I can't speak for anyone else on here, but I don't let what is printed in the media influence my opinion and I think you're being a little condescending to some of the excellent posters left in the dwindling remnants of the forum. For what it's worth, I found it laughable when you posted after the Leicester match that we could well score 100 goals in the League this season - we all have different opinions and yes, on the other forum I visit, there are some ridiculous views we will get relegated but that's equally ridiculous as saying we will win the League (not quoting you there, just making a comparison).

One of the best squads in the League? Certainly in the top 6.

Close to finding the right balance tactically? What evidence do you think supports your notion?

What for you quantifies the extra step up? Right now for me, it would be to get back in the top 4, or in other words, go back to exactly where we were before. One small step for the season, but not exactly a huge leap for mankind.


I'm not referring to the posters on here at all as I know the quality of posts on this forum are measured and reasonable and generally very good. It just seems that the media tend to blow things out of proportion when we lose which then makes it seem like there is a complete crisis at the club. With a frontline of Alexis, Ozil and Lacazette with Giroud/Welbeck/Walcott in reserve, yes I actually do think we can hit the 100 goal mark if they can click. :D

I think we are close to finding tactical balance based on our peformances against City and Chesea in the FA Cup and Chelsea in the Community Shield. Playin 3 at the back provided us with defensive stability and seems to suit the players we have at our disposal. The loss against Liverpool was because we lost control in the midfield. We have seen however both Xhaka and Ramsey boss the midfield in the final against Chelsea so they just need a bit of tweaking tactically. Maybe go 3-5-1-1 if we play games where we need a bit of extra control in the middle of the field. I think we can most certainly get back into the top 4. I also think we will surpass our points total from last season. The top 6 will most certainly all take points off each other. Liverpool didn't look that great against Watford and I feel they will drop off once the Champions league kicks in and injuries start to take effect.


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 Post subject: Re: 2017-18 Squad Analysis
PostPosted: Thu Sep 07, 2017 12:00 am 
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I'm just not convinced a midfield of Ramsey and Xhaka will take us to the next level. After all that's what we want right? Or are we happy with pushing for 4th again? That's not a dig at anyone but that's where Arsenal fall short. We accept 2nd best.


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 Post subject: Re: 2017-18 Squad Analysis
PostPosted: Thu Sep 07, 2017 7:36 am 
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Quote:
I think we are close to finding tactical balance based on our peformances against City and Chesea in the FA Cup and Chelsea in the Community Shield.


Every season, nearly every team have a few games where they get everything right. We played well in the FA Cup semi and final where nearly every aspect of our game was spot on. But have you forgotten alll the other games where we were rubbish? Heck, just a few weeks later we have gone back to the 'typical' performances we expect from Arsenal.

Laugh all you want. but last season like many before we have had a squad that has been goid enough to win the title - even with the unbalanced squads we have had over the past 10 years. What has always let us down is poor tactics and preparation across 50 games in a season. Every good performance seems to papers over the cracks.

We will bounce back and perform against Bournmouth. Maybe even beat Chelsea. But where will we be at the end of the season? Wake up! Nothing will change under Wenger.


Last edited by muckygooner on Thu Sep 07, 2017 7:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: 2017-18 Squad Analysis
PostPosted: Thu Sep 07, 2017 7:38 am 
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Team South East wrote:
DUSTCORE wrote:
Team South East wrote:
Looking at our squad as things stand our strongest 11 IMO is as follows:

========CECH========
Mustafi===Mertesacker===Koscielny
Bellerin===Ramsey===Xhaka===Kolasinac
===Ozil=============Alexis====
=========Lacazette===========

On paper that is actually not a bad team at all now for our backup options:

========Ospina=========
Holding===Chambers===Bielik
Debuchy===Elneny/Coquelin===Wilshere/AMN/Jeff-RA===Monreal
===Iwobi/Walcott========Welbeck/Nelson====
========Giroud/Akpom========

Again we have good options in reserve. That's not even including Cazorla who is not registered for this half of the season. The loss against Liverpool escalated the negative feeling amongst fans and the media have fed off that and caused even more controversy with the transfer deadline day drama. 3 games in and fans are carrying on as if we are on the brink of relegation. :lol: :lol: It really is laughable how our fans are wound up so easily by the media. That's a decent squad there, probably one of the best in the league. If we can find a good balance tactically to get the best out of these guys, which we are close to doing, then we can most certainly make that extra step up.


You think a midfield of Ramsey and Xhaka will get you top 4? That's midfield got more leaks than a damaged bucket


That's the same midfield that beat both Man City and Chelsea a few months ago though? I admit they both lost discipline against Liverpool but everyone played crap that day period. If we need to shore things up then Elneny and Coquelin are there (I rate Elneny, I think he is very underrated and had a good agame against Chelsea in the Community Shield). Once we find that balance in midfield we will be firing on all cylinders.

I admire your optimism TSE I really do. You keep going on about it being the midfield that did this and did that months ago, it was also the midfield that was utterly inept against Liverpool and Stoke. I grant you it is a decent squad but that's about the extent of it, it is decent no more. The problem is actually getting something out of them. What evidence do you have from the last maybe 10 years (possibly longer) that Wenger is actually capable of doing that. There never appears to be any plan, no consideration of what the opposition might do. I take a fairly simplistic view on this. Surely a tactician will analyse the threat posed by an opponent and set up to neutralise it, equally doing the same to expose their weaknesses and exploiting them. I dont think I can think of a single occasion, ever, where it could be claimed that Wenger has done this. Neither Xhaka or Ramsey are disciplined enough to be the shield that we desperately need to sit in front of the defence, Ramsey's best position is the one that Ozil fills. There is nothing to suggest Sanchez will do anything other than go through the motions until he gets his move, I agree it doesn't seem to be in his nature to not give 100% but we don't know. I agree Wenger was on a hiding to nothing with him but instead of maintaining this charade that he didn't really want to go and would sign, the bullet should have been bitten early and the deal done, Lemar got on board as a replacement before our shocking start to the season which made us look not such a good proposition. Also it is one thing having a decent squad but lacking any tactical plan and constantly fielding inexplicable line ups is another entirely. Why does one pay 50mil for a striker and play Danny Welbeck in his place. Why do we sign the best left wingback in the Budesliga and play a right back in his place. Why do we bench probably our best central defender (because he has the audacity to criticise the tactics, or lack of them, of the manager) and play a left back in his position? This is why fans get upset, and it doesn't need the media to stir them up at all, the manager and the club hierarchy are doing a good enough job of doing that on their own. Let's not forget that had we not got very lucky against Leicester we'd be sitting pretty with 0 points after 3 games! I don't think there is much cause for optimism there to be honest!


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 Post subject: Re: 2017-18 Squad Analysis
PostPosted: Thu Sep 07, 2017 9:28 pm 
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I don't think I can ever remember in my lifetime of supporting Arsenal a team so torn and dysfunctional internally as the one we have today. We've a bunch of players out of contract at the end of the season, and as it stands even more the year after. You wonder how many we will re-sign, and how many actually want to stay here anyway. We have players that have left and some that stayed reluctantly (bizarrely in some cases), we have two players in that seem like they're the kind of calibre player that add to a team but at the end of the window some gaping holes have still yet to be filled. We have a manager who has made some frankly bizarre decisions with the team this term so far, and just watching them for 5 minutes shows you that on the pitch they're not comfortable and cohesive.

To feel like this season is a lost cause/damage limitation exercise when it's barely begun is an awful one. Even in the space of a few months I've gone from relishing the prospect of going further than the 1st knockout round in a European competition and probably ending up best of the rest outside of the CL to wondering if we could end up 10th or below. That's how fractured the situation appears from here.


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 Post subject: Re: 2017-18 Squad Analysis
PostPosted: Thu Sep 07, 2017 11:14 pm 
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Things weren't great in the mid 90s and older fans will remember the barren run of 1954-1969. I agree, this seems to be the most shite things have been for a while. Mid 90s, over a season and a bit we had a complete lack of signings for ages until we got John Hartson and Chris Kiwomya (which wasn't exactly awe inspiring), Tony Adams unknown to us was struggling with alcoholism and Merson had already broken down in front of the press, there was the sacking of George Graham followed by Ian Wright wanting to leave because of Bruce Rioch, who was then sacked himself.

On the brighter side, Bergkamp came in during that time along with David Platt and the legendary back 4 were in place with plenty of time left in their legs.


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 Post subject: Re: 2017-18 Squad Analysis
PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 10:27 pm 
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I have been a long time supporter of Wenger and his ability to keep us competitive without huge spending, the kind of football we played and the whole new stadium thing but when I look through the squad this year I am very concerned he has dropped the ball somewhat.

I think Lacazette is a great signing but I dont know why we sold Ox and I may get slated for this but I dont think it was worth selling Gabriel for 10 Mil either, we need better squad and to do that you need decent squad players, when I look at the squads of the teams we are supposed to be competing with we are severely lacking in terms of strength in depth and those top players we already have seem to be unsettled and or running out of contract.

Can anyone give me any source of encouragement? :-)


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 Post subject: Re: 2017-18 Squad Analysis
PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2017 11:06 pm 
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Encouragement? Not from any Arsenal fan these days. :lol:

One thing I guess is that while having someone like Gabriel on the books looks solid on paper, I don't think we really got much use out of that depth very often. Ironically Monreal coming in CB has done a better job, Gabriel had some good games but also bad ones, and I would say that our defence, disorganised and exposed it is, has always been about "does it have Koscielny to bail us out or does it not". I don't think a whole lot changes there with the departure of Gabriel, even though I liked him and hoped he'd push on.

Doesn't seem like Arsene had a choice with Ox - I don't think we should have offered him a massive contract early in the summer (arguably the 180k offer at the very end, if Ox took it, we might live to regret), and I don't think we could afford to promise him a CM role. It seems like Ox really set his mind on leaving and crossed the rivers himself.


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 Post subject: Re: 2017-18 Squad Analysis
PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2017 4:02 pm 
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So, We are reaching the halway point of the season. We are curently 5th place, 1 point off 4th, 5 points off 3rd, 8 points off 2nd and an inredible 19 points off top spot. We have the 5th best attacking record and joint 6th best defensice record with Liverpool. 2nd place is achievable as I believe the games over the Christmas will come thick and fast and some of the top teams will drop point but we really do need to step it up both defensively and going forward. We need to be more direct and hit Lacazette early as there have been plenty of opportunites to do so and we have chosen to play short. He does look for the ball over the top on occasions so we need to use that option if the opportunity presents itself. Defensively we need to be more decisive. There have been too many occasions where we have lapsed in concentration which has either led to us conceding a goal or coming close to conceding. In some instances, it has led us to lose the game (Stoke away). I don't think we need to do much in the transfer window. We should however be looking at a replacement for Mertesacker and also maybe another CB. I think it's quite telling that our best defender this season so far is our LB who is playing at CB!! Positives for me so far this season are Kolasinac who has looked good so far but seems to be dropping off a little and needs to step it up again in the 2nd half of the season. Ramsey who has been our leading assist maker and has also chipped in with 3 goals, Mustafi who has been pretty solid this season showing a good level of aggresssion and has been very commanding at the back, Lacazette who is our top scorer and has shown a good game all round in his CF role especially his movement off the ball. Good to see Wilshere coming back into the squad and slowly getting back to his best, long may this continue. It's also been nice to see some of the youngsters given an opportunity competititively in the Europa League competition especially the likes of Reiss Nelson, Ainsley Maitland Niles, Eddie Nketiah and Joe Willock who have looked impressive. Ozil is slowly starting to step up his game but needs more consistency which really shouldn't be a problem at his age. Negatives so far........ Alexis has not been his best. Rumours flying around that he is becoming a disruptive influence in the squad and is a bit of a diva. Xhaka hasn't been that great and needs to step up his performances. He does however have 3 assists so far this season so there is opportunity for him to turn things around in the 2nd half of the season. We are still in all domestic and european competitions so hopefully we can make a big push to bring more silverware come the end of the season.


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 Post subject: Re: 2017-18 Squad Analysis
PostPosted: Thu Dec 21, 2017 4:00 am 
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Yep, the halfway point is nearly here, we're 5th and closer points wise to 18th than top. We have the joint 5th best goals scored with Spurs and currently concede over a goal a game on average.

2nd place is achievable as is 1st mathematically. However, as we have been 2nd once only in the previous 12 years, it is doubtful. Not to mention the fact that there are (at least) 2 teams in the league who are better than us.

Defensively we have been as per - no pun intended. Slow to start, quick to switch off.
Mertesacker should have been replaced when his retirement was announced (arguably before)and it would have been worthwhile remembering Koscielny achiiles problem.

You didn't quite lose me with the 100 goals and 76+ points prediction TSE, but to say we don't need to do much in the transfer window is the precise reason we are no longer challenging for the League and haven't been for a while.

It's good to see younger players getting a chance even though they're being played out of position. We clearly haven't learnt from Eboue in defence or Diaby as left winger or Bendtner as striker and are now trying to make Ainsley a left back a la Flamini in 2006. It's a little excessive to say Nketiah has looked impressive when he has made 5 appearances for the 1st team in his life, 2 of which were sub after the 85th minute. Granted, would rather see him than Walcott or Welbeck especially after the double against Norwich but even so.

Ozil is stepping up his game which after costing over £40 million and being paid millions a year is very nice of him and is in no way linked to the imminently open transfer window. That said, he has really been surrounded with some dross.

Sanchez looks like someone who doesn't want to be here because he doesn't. Xhaka is looking like the waste of money, space and time that he is and has probably assisted the opposition more than us. Alarm bells should have been ringing when other Bundesliga teams weren't chasing him. Hopefully he will turn things round by being on the bench.

We are still in all domestic competitions and I'm grateful we avoided City in the Carabao but still expect a City v Chelsea final. We're still in the Europa but now so are Dortmund and Atletico so not expecting too much there.

4th place is achievable but unlikely as the club from owner, to manager to the team are not good enough. I'd trade it to see little Santi play, one last time. On a day when another midfield maestro had to retire due to injury, injury which robbed him and us of some wonderful Arsenal moments, seeing Santi back would be enough for me this season.


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 Post subject: Re: 2017-18 Squad Analysis
PostPosted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 3:00 pm 
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It looks like Wenger has changed his formation to a 4-3-3. With Ozil in a free role from the right wing. I think Mkhi will play from the left wing with Auba as a cental striker. Lacazette, Iwobi and Welbeck as back ups.
Then our midfield. I truly believe that we need a new defensive powerful midfielder who can play behind Ramsey and Wilshere. A central midfield with those 2 is a dream come true for me and I really think it can work out, but only if we have a strong defensive midfielder behind them. Xhaka, Elneny will back ups.
And then the defence. Still not consequent enough. Sometimes brilliant, sometimes aweful. I have the feeling that Koscielny is not physcial strong enough enymore to play week in, week out. Mustafi is okay, but Chambers will never be a top class defender. Holding could be a potential one. With Per stopping this summer and if we can sell Chambers then we have space for one extra topclass defender. Then you have Koscielny, Mustafi and the new guy fighting for 2 positions. Holding will be fourth choice.
At left back we are pretty solid with Monreal, Kolasinac and even Maitland. On right back I think Maitland could do the same when we are without Bellerin.
Goalkeeper. I think Wenger made a big mistake of letting Szczesny goes last summer. We need to have a better goalkeeper than Petr Cech. He is making to many mistakes and I think we need to have a better goalie to compete for the trophies.


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 Post subject: Re: 2017-18 Squad Analysis
PostPosted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 8:11 pm 
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I cannot imagine Lacazette becoming a permanent benchwarmer. If we take a minute to take stock, we've actually lost Walcott, Giroud, Ox, Alexis, Coquelin, and Cazorla has been delayed further as well. We actually don't have a huge amount of bodies in the team!

Aubameyang, Lacazette, Mkhitaryan, Ozil, Iwobi: we only have 5 competent players for the forward 3 positions.

And then, even in CM, we have Ramsey, Wilshere, Xhaka, Elneny - 4 players for 2 positions, and one of them I would struggle to label 'competent' at the moment.

In any case, Aubameyang is EL-tied. I've been relatively impressed by Lacazette until the last few weeks, and we'll need him to bring his qualities out in this team-under-transition if we're going to have a sniff at CL, whether by league or cup.


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