#POSITIVES, NEEDS AND HOPES!
I saw the sea again
POSITIVES, NEEDS and HOPES
Once a year my wife and I enjoy a short trip. We miss our children but revel in the few days of no responsibilities. We go to the beach. I don’t like sunbathing like she does. I just sit and look at the sea. So relaxing.
Once in a while, quite a long time ago, watching Arsenal was a fairly relaxing experience. Six or seven times a season we’d stroll through the game in second gear and score 3,4 or 5. There were even times I remember when we scored 1 or 2 and won and I felt relaxed.
Over the last many years I can count on half a hand the number of times I could enjoy the game and relax.
I suppose the issue has been the back door. How can you relax if the back door is wide open?
Arsenal can’t fail this summer to identify the needs. It’s obvious to everyone. They’ll attempt to shut the back door, no doubt.
For right now though I’m going to thoroughly enjoy July 1st 2020. The day Saka signed, Cedric scored, Auba got his groove back and Arsenal gave me back the rare feeling of enjoying my team play and even a little relaxation.
I wasn’t sure when I was going to see the sea again.
* Dani Ceballos’ performance is either a reminder to us to not jump the gun of judgement or simply evidence that he can run the show against Burnley and Norwich at home.
Either way, you can see drive, tenacity and progressive ability.
* Could we ask for a more solid back up goalkeeper? He’s athletic, he’s got clean hands, great distribution and his size makes him perfect for the league. Hope he stays.
* Aubameyang was two things for me yesterday. One is that he is the only striker in the league that presses goalkeepers at that speed. He could comfortably have been a 100m sprinter.
Secondly, his future is in doubt but his attitude is not. He might be the captain and expected to work that hard but most wouldn’t. No wonder he is popular everywhere he goes. Maximum respect to Auba.
* If and when Arsenal get a CF option that is aerially dominant and has a greater desire than Lacazette to make defenders life difficult, we will capitalize on Tierney’s ability to pick out a man. Accurate crossing is a dying art. Tierney is one of few.
* Mustafi was so impressive in the air yet again. This is his main strength. I wonder if he was subbed as he’s hurt, simply played too much or because he was edging towards returning to the Mustafi of old?
* It is going to be hard to coach against Mikel Arteta. Team changes are one thing but we see something new each game. Yesterday we saw Hector overlapping rather than inverted and Lacazette checking deeper with Xhaka and Ceballos occasionally pushing on. It worked perfectly for Xhaka’s goal.
The request was for the midfielders to add goals and the coach makes his own wish come true with a clever twist. It also pinned back Norwich’s creative players in Buendia and Cantwell in the first half.
* So happy for Cedric that he scored but more excited honestly that he is two footed. As I mentioned in my last blog, we have so many totally one footed players (as do all teams to be fair).
A wide player only gets a half second window to cross without being blocked and if you reject your weak foot you are super predictable and easier to block.
* Did you notice that Norwich didn’t get behind our defence once?
Not going to make the back pages but that takes defensive discipline.
* A part of the success mentioned above was the body shape of the players in cleverly blocking passing lanes. Didn’t go unnoticed.
* Arteta has been working behind the scenes on body position. This is everything in football. Most players can make most passes but many players don’t see the passes they could make.
I also believe that when we have more recovery pace in midfield, our players won’t use the secure pass back to the defenders quite so much. They overuse this as they are afraid of the ‘what if’s.’
* Bellerin’s final product was poor again but his timing of runs behind was very good.
* Did I see a few 1 touch sequences? Swagger!
* Arteta has a 45% clean sheet record in his first 14 games. I normally let others talk about stats but that is a statistic that won’t get mentioned by the media unless we say it.
* Two games running that we pressed for 93 minutes. This is one separation that we are seeing from most all the other teams in the league.
* I’ve still got a concern when we play in a back three. When they counter we are not taking responsibility for the striker floating in front of the back four.
* I wonder how many more chances Nelson will get? He hasn’t had many so trying not to be unrealistic but I worry that he’s not willing to show his personality on the pitch. He has so much skill but seems to lack belief when he’s 1 on 1. On most occasions he passed the buck too.
* I’m watching Chelsea as I write. I don’t understand the opinion of those who think the idea of Willian on a free as being a bad idea.
He may be over 30 but he plays like a 24 year old, is still lightning quick and in short, he can do everything.
I hope we sign him. He could add so much in so many areas.
* If you read my last blog you will have heard of Teun Koopmeiners. Kudos to you if you knew him beforehand!
We have now been linked with him. Are Arsenal paying attention to GunnersTown?!?!
Giggle over, but I’d strongly recommend you watch the video I posted.
* Whilst transfers are the talk I see lots of sense in the Memphis Depay link. He is in the last year of his deal, would be less than £20M apparently. He could play LF if Nketiah is proving a success at CF.
I like the idea of a highly technical CF. Let’s remind ourselves that this is what Liverpool have.
My only concern is a major one. He’s a part time rapper. Doesn’t that lead to interviews, performances and split focus?
I love that Guendouzi and Ozil weren’t included. Not because i dislike them. I’m loving the accountability.
I do wonder if this would’ve happened so quickly if we weren’t hugely embarrassing vs City at home. Arteta saw the tragedy that we were first hand.
We are now seeing the fruits of this accountability.
Back to the beach. Shades on!