Team South East wrote:
A much needed win against a Middlesbrough team who are by no means poor. They just can't score. Most of their games I have watched this season, they have looked pretty solid defensively but lack a goal scorer. As for the change in formation, it was about time we moved to a back three. We have looked way too vulnerable defensively with both our attacking fulll backs so high up the pitch so going with three at the back made sense add a bit stability if our full backs were beaten in 1v1 situations. I felt it also gave us more attacking options. We seemed to have more players overloading the box when the ball was out wide. Ox was the man of the match for me. He was tirelessly up and down that right flank, made some nice crosses and was unlucky not to score at the end. Credit to Wenger for trying to change things up. It will take time for the players to get familiar with the new shape but i'm sure we'll see it come good over time.
My impression of Boro is Karanka had them well drilled defensivly, a decent set of technical players in front of the backline but he smothered the attacking ability of the team+I'm not convinced by some of the creative players. When Agnew tries to rebalance the team, that lack of confidence and lack of balance hits. Negrado is a good striker but eventually his confidence took a thrashing, Traore is exciting but final ball? Rameriz has rarely cut it at Prem and Downing, now picked by default, looks past it.
I think there is merit to the new system. It leaves us three at the back which, once our players recover confidence, will help leave us less open on the break, Ramsey and Xhaka seemed to like it, we got bodies in the box when Oxlade crossed. Our wide players particularly need to adapt to the system for it to really work