NO IDENTITY, COHERENCY OR SECURITY
The same failings and issues that Emery inherited when he took on the Arsenal job in May last year are as stark today as when he joined
The team play with an inconsistency that is unsurprising given how often we change system and personnel
Individual errors remain characteristic of a team lacking character when the chips are down.
A laissez faire attitude rings through the club, even years after it became ingrained in a completely different squad
Defensive structure and focus continues to be a holy grail. By rewarding names and repeatedly rewarding error protagonists game after game, Emery now risks sowing the seeds of irrecoverable discontent amongst the fan base
The meritocracy that defined his selections at the start of last season and even this season, quickly dissolving in favour of selection of big name “experienced” options…older to know better, but clearly not too old to learn new ways of letting the side down
So many games under Emery now defined by
– just one good half of football at most
– lack of consistent selection
– lack of coherency as a unit
– defensive fragility
– persistence in selecting error-ridden individuals
as well as the collective dysfunctionality, individual areas for development show no indication of effective coaching
– AMN, looks worse defensively with each passing RB appearance
– Torreira- regressing?
– Holding aside, all centre backs remain liabilities
The spacing and lack of connection often defining of our staccato attacking play is coupled with spacing off the ball that is defining of porous defending, often accompanied by too many caught the wrong side of the ball, moments after gifting possession away cheaply
Our redeeming features becoming more and more stark and perhaps at the mercy of individual brilliance of our two marquee strikers
When you have a head-coach as opposed to a manager and strip them of responsibilities off the field that might otherwise distract, you would by now, 16 months into the job, expect a certain level of imprint and a platform that defines their strengths.
Where is it ? Or perhaps the question is, have we now seen it?
And THIS is it…?
For a while I was energised by Emery’s willingness to use change and unpredictable decisions to shake us from a stagnancy borne out of rigid adherence to beliefs that Wenger swore by. Now his constant changes of system, personnel and approach appear more of a desperate search for something to click rather than a grand stratagem. Indeed, what bemuses is that his changes are in increasingly misplaced in areas that don’t require amendment, while
Ignoring other areas that need change. For example: dropping Chambers, Willock after good performances; retaining individuals in the side who err constantly; opting for a dysfunctional combinations in midfield that even the amateur coach can infer are unlikely to work.
Worst indictment of Arsenal under Emery is that we more often than not, perform worse than the sum of our parts
The squad at his disposal today should be more than capable of not allowing 30+ chances conceded against us, let alone holding a 2 goal lead
Yesterday felt like a watershed for me. Patient with Emery for so long. The moment has arrived where he has contrived to permit justifiable questioning of his value.
Many thanks to my friend Adam, who can be found and followed @RationalArsenal who submitted this frustrated guest article today.