Wenger: Elneny has learnt a lot today

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Arsene Wenger says Mohamed Elneny will have learnt a lot from his debut in English football as the Egyptian midfielder played the full 90 minutes of Arsenal’s 2-1 win over Burnley.

The 23-year-old, who signed from FC Basle two weeks ago, cut an energetic presence in the centre of the park alongside the returning Francis Coquelin and came close to opening his account with a couple of decent attempts on goal.

“I felt he [Elneny] started a bit cautious, played a bit secure,” said Wenger after his side progressed to the FA Cup 5th round.

“He became more adventurous, he had some good shots on goal. His mobility, his work rate was exceptional and for the rest, he needs to adjust to the power of the game in the Premier League.

“This was a good welcome today and certainly he has learnt a lot today.

“It will take him some time to adjust to the power side of our game here, but the intelligence, the mobility and the technical level are good.”

The boss was also pleased that Alexis Sanchez and Francis Coquelin came through the game unscathed.

“Coquelin was quite available for the Chelsea game but I thought it was a bit early. Today he looked quite comfortable and without any problems.

He added: “[It was Alexis’ first start] for eight or nine weeks. When I saw Derby against Burnley, I had a little hesitation to pick the three [Alexis, Coquelin, Elneny].

“But the fact that we played at home, I thought we could manage to get away with it. Alexis I was not too much worried about on the fitness front because I kept him out two weeks ago and he was already there physically.

“We had some worries about his muscle but today he came through well and you could see that physically, he is ready.”

45 COMMENTS

      • Hahaha its a line from DJ Khaled, one of the worst “DJ’s” here in the states as far as making actual good music is concerned. His persona, inspirational quotes, and one-liners however are hilarious and he has blown up on the internet the past year because of the fact that seemingly everything he does is meme-fodder. See other such classic Khaled lines such as his “major keys to success”, “They dont want us to win …. but I CAN”, and “Anotha One …” Just make sure not to listen to any of his mixtapes for your ears sake.

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  1. It felt so reassuring having a safety first centre midfielder as opposed to Ramsey. I think he could work well with Ozil.

    I was very impressed with Iwobi. Tidy and intelligent for one so young.

    Is there anyway of getting a personality transplant between Theo and the Ox?

    Ox is way too harsh on himself if something doesn’t come off. Conversely, Theo shows absolutely zero awareness of his shortcomings. It’s painful to watch sometimes.

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    • Elneny looked quite good in our team. I feel he offers a similar, yet more concentrated, role to what Ramsey does. Basically he seemed to do what we all want Ramsey to do. Keep things simple, not too many unnecessary risks. Still managed to find himself in decent scoring positions too without looking like he was abandoning his post.

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    • I don’t even read what me so hornsey writes, he/she automatically gets a tick from me because the user handle is so perfect lol

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  2. I have learnt a lot today also.
    No more easy games in England again and chambers will certainly ALMOST get into the England squard before Walcot.
    Campbell and Alexis should keep their places in the starting lineup against Southampton.
    Am I the only one w/ butterfly in my stomach when Rosicky came on?
    What a great man he is!
    Hope to get better side of our “S” factor on Tuesday.

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  3. Fantastic to see the Coq back as wellHow we have missed him! I’d forgotten how composed he is with the ball too.

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  4. So Coquelin and Elneny were both available for the Chelsea match but we still chose Flamini who is an emergency option. I know it’s easy to use hindsight,but I doubt we’d have lost to Chelsea had they started. Hopefully we can go on a run with Sanchez back and scoring.

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      • Yes but the point is Wenger said he was ready. Him alongside Elneny we would’ve been ok.I think a win in that match could’ve been pivotal to our title challenge.

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        • You seem so sure. What If coquelin had scored an own goal? And then limped off with a hamstring problem. Then it would have been a disaster. Hypotheticals can be negative too.

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      • Wenger said that Coquelin has been in FULL TRAINING for past 2 weeks. Full training is started when doctor practically says, that you absolutely healed enough to be thrown into Football game.

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    • And then if either of them got injured, you would probably be the first to have a go at Wenger for risking them in the firstplace.

      No one likes a Captain Hindsight.

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      • Any player can get injured in any game. Just think the inclusion of Flamini played a massive part in that defeat. We’d been getting away with it to some extent, but our midfield has looked disjointed since we lost Coq and Caz in November.

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        • This much is fair, but I think Coq’s rusty first touch and turnovers today would have been punished much more heavily against Chelsea. Same goes for Elneny’s indoctrination to the physical side of the league.

          A couple more weeks of match fitness and experience in the league respectively and I’m right there with you though.

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        • And now it’s almost February and we’re still only 3 points off the top. Instead of complaining I think we should be relieved that we haven’t fallen away, given the injuries.

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      • Cautious about what? 9 changes today. A keeper that doesn’t handle high balls well against a championship side with a big man and a relatively big speedster, and a midfield trio of a new guy, a guy just back from injury, and a 19 yo as the creative attacking mid! And that with our 2nd choice fullbacks and right winger.

        Seems pretty adventurous to me for a manager we all know would love to win 3 straight FA cups.

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        • You mean he switched 9 players for 9 other first teamers or former first teamers*. Against Burnley of all teams.

          Silly me.

          *Iwobi being the exception.

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    • Nah, let’s aim for the full 26.* About time a real team won the treble.

      *Prays to Gods of Math in hope counting ability not impaired by celebratory beers.

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  5. Fair assessment by the boss. I thought El Neny showed a lot of promise & looked more and more comfortable as the game progressed. It’s already evident that he’s much more of a box-to-box player than a holding DM so it’s good that Coquelin is making his way back at the same time.

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  6. I hope Kos is ok too, he looked injured at the end.

    Ramsey or Campbell on the right if everyone’s healthy? (Assuming a combination of Coq, Elneny, and eventually Santi as the sitting 2).

    Walcott needs a bloody goal to get him skipping again.

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  7. Umm I for one would take the 1-0 loss against Chelsea over a Penile fracture due to a low blow by Costa on our Coq.

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  8. Was really excited to see Elneny today and was not disappointed, very confident and composed plus as Wenger said active and mobile. Picked his times well going forward (like when the outside back was still back) vs Ramsey who seems to fly forward at the wrong times often. He also recovered quickly when upfield and easily covered the most ground of any player today in my opinion. Needs to get tested physically more as he didn’t have many physical challenges, but that will come for him. He has a good frame and will adjust, though will take some time as it does for most players (it did for Ozil).

    Of course the win is most important, but seeing our new signing and the LANS Coquelin and Rosicky back was right behind the win in my book.

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  9. Flamini is really a liability in d defensive side of d game because he doesn’t stay in front of the back four like Coquelin does. ESPN wrote a piece about Flamini’s inability to stay in d defensive side. I can’t wait to see d Coq back in d middle of d midfield

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  10. Still very loose defensively and we rode our luck a bit.

    As mentioned Elneny is in both as cover for Flamini until Coquelin returns (as he has) and more importantly as another option to Ramsey in the link role (particularly with Jack suffering another set back)

    Anyone who thought he could suddenly be ‘better’ than Flamini is dillusional. He needs time to settle and these people are setting him for a fall on their own ludicrously unrealistic expectations.

    What Elneny needs to get acustom to is the physicality aspect, he was pushed off the ball a little too easily on a couple of ocassions. He will learn from it and get better.

    Meanwhile, one thing we can say about him is he is not afraid to have a pop from distance which could come in handy. Work rate is also key.

    In that respect, I actually thought the output from Iwobi was impressive. He was everywhere today.

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  11. Another big mistake by Kos in this game, I really like him but he does seem to make a lot of errors, I can’t quite understand why he gets rated so highly.

    I know I’ll get a lot of red ticks for saying this but just calling it as I see it.

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    • All major defenders have howler mistakes. You just are painfully aware of his because you watch every minute he plays on your team.

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    • You know who is rated as the best defender in England? John tucking Terry. You’ll be surprised how many mistakes he makes but I bet you won’t see through it. Nobody is immune from making mistakes mate. That doesn’t mean they’re not good. Having said so I see your point, Kos does seem a bit tired the last few games. Maybe a rest will do him good.

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  12. Elneny is tidy with his passing, holds position well, is not afraid to shoot from anywhere but doesn’t get many shots on target.

    He’s Cazorla!

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