Wenger reveals reason behind Walcott introduction

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When you’re chasing a game away from home, with an opponent that sits deep, it’s difficult to see how sending on Theo Walcott will make much difference.

The England international is at his best exploiting the space behind defences, but when there’s no space his impact is limited, to say the least.

However, Arsene Wenger explained his thinking when he brought on Walcott as the Gunners chased an equaliser during the 1-0 defeat to Stoke on Saturday.

“I wanted to put Walcott on because he can cross for Giroud,” he said. As it was Walcott made no crosses and his only involvement were three short passes in the 15 minutes or so that he spent on the pitch.

And the manager urged people to retain a measure of calm despite the disappointing nature of the defeat.

“Let’s not go overboard,” he said. “We lost one game. I can understand that but overall I believe there were a lot of positives in the game as well because we created many chances.

“We had great domination and unfortunately we dropped three points.”

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177 Comments on "Wenger reveals reason behind Walcott introduction"

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Mesut Ozzle

Correct officiating decisions and the mood would be so different right now though we are alarmingly easy to play through

Chris

We’re easy to play through for so many different reasons too. Personnel, shape, tactics… as per usual we’re insistent on doing things the hard way.

Anonymarse

Mostly it seemed to be crap tackling

Sancheezy

That goal was scored on the right flabk that was suppose yo be defended by our right back, which you see him strolling down the pitch nonchalantly. Ox should have done better covering him. Ship him out! He is another passenger on this team similar to Theo. I’m done with the Ox!

GoonerJust

Don’t worry Alexis will be fully fit for Anfield, he will start alongside Monreal and Kolasinac in the back three.

Koscielny will also available, meaning he can play upfront with Chech and Mustafi.

Holdings was awesome in fa cup final, he can play in mid field with lacazette, wellbeck and Mertesacker.

Ox is so versatile, so he can play as goal keeper.

Soon we’ll be in the 4th place…from the bottom.

Mein Bergkampf

I don’t see what the huge fuss is about. I probably would’ve taken three points from the first two games. Let’s get some perspective over what this team is truly capable of and then we won’t go hurting ourselves and might actually get some enjoyment out of the game we claim to love. We all know deep down this team is just about capable of pushing for top four. Three points from two tricky games is fine. A draw with Liverpool and we’re sitting pretty.

rugrat

three points from first two games would have been acceptable if at least one of the opponents was a top 10 team

James

“We all know deep down this team is just about capable of pushing for top four”

No, we don’t. That’s what all the fuss is about. Not the result, but the terrible performance and the awful tactical decisions.

Mein Bergkampf

Sorry, maybe I should have said, we all know that this manager is only capable of getting this team to push for top four.

Hate to say I told you so but been saying it all summer to thumbs down and abuse from you lot.

Weirdbowski

as is, we have no hope of top 4

bdagooner

Join the club…good to see reality has finally hit home for some.

We are no longer a big or competitive club.

Noni

6 points from the first three games will be acceptable. Now we’ll have to claw it back with a victory away to Liverpool. Tough.

Big Afo

Agree; no need for early stress!

Heavenly Chapecoense

Remember the neat dive Ox made in front of goal to push the ball out with both hands two years ago, against Chelsea?

IamaGoober

Walcott came on and literally did nothing, he got pushed over like a toddler, that was all he offered in the last 10 minutes.

As I’ve said so many times he just isn’t good enough for Arsenal. We should’ve moved him on years ago.

Weirdbowski

struggling to remember the last time Theo whipped in a half decent cross

Dan Hunter

He bought him on to cross to Giroud… did he forget to tell him that is why he was brought on? Here’s an idea, how about play players in their natural positions? Kolasinac is a brilliant crosser of the ball – how about play him on the left wing?

David C

it’s as if we’re sucking up to Ox by accommodating him, but having said that Bellerin is the guy that needs to sit.

We should try this:
Cech
Holding Kos Monreal
Ox Xhaka Ramsey Sead
Ozil Welbz
Laca

Heavenly Chapecoense

Welbz ? And you want us to score goals ?

Daniel

Maybe the only change I would make from the above Heavenly C is to take out Ozil or Welbeck & chuck Giroud in there ………..

Gudang Pelor

I’d play laca as right forward in expense of welb and giroud as main striker, from the start.

PepKlopp

Agreed, but dump Welbeck and add Giroud or Iwobi. Welbeck is the poorest finisher in Gunner history. Headers bounce harmlessly off his shoulders, balls bouncing off his shins as he scrambles to get on his right foot. Most of his goals are “bundled” into the net. Sell him quick before teams realize how poor he is. Maybe it’s too late…

Bryanclayden

We not even putting Sanchez in our starting line up now?back for next match.

Gunner786

Not Welbeck, no fucking way with him anymore. That guy has the pace to upset the opposition, but the opponent surely loves him in front of goal. Can’t hit sitters that my grandma can with her stick.

Zico zico

Lucaz instead of welbeck

Daniel

Spot on David …..

Dan Hunter

Cech
Kosc Mert Mustafi
Ox Coq Xhaka Kola
Ramsey Alexis
Lacazette

OR

Cech
Bellerin Kosc Mustafi Kola
Ox Ramsey Xhaka Alexis
Laca Giroud

Dan Hunter

And, no, I have not forgotten Ozil

garrett

try against Seville the only decent cross in the whole game! idiots will remain idiots

rugrat

mention walcott and cross in the same sentence and even my auto correct recognizes the error!

Heavenly Chapecoense

Love Walcott but loved your comment even more.

Kosoxzil

I have tried to type cross and Walcott.
And it came out to this
❌ Walcott

Oly

Join the discussion
Try Wal*cross…….
same old same old, already the unaddressed weaknesses are apparent!

Dr Whale

What about the year he had 12 assist? Most were crosses to Van persie. I also remember his cross against Van Gaal manure that led to goal.

PepKlopp

Wenger out, Walcott out, Welbeck out!! What a useless lot.
Futility year after year: same as it ever was…same as it ever was…same as it ever was…

UlsterGooner

Best cross I remember was Eboue for an Henry goal. Can’t believe you sold him Arsene if he could cross that well! I wasn’t aware Walcott was on the pitch.

greg

It’s the same fucking mistakes time and time again! Learn change adapt you fucking dinosaur

Greaves

Xhaka this comment was for you.

Anonymarse

Bit disrespectful

Julianski

Reporter: Why did you sub on Walcott?
Wenger: Because I’m a tit

Vnet

What was he thinking bringing Walcott on ?
https://youtu.be/gWJIQm9qH-w

Mart

Besides the penalty claims and offside goal, our XG was 1.8. We were very unlucky and Stoke were very lucky. It happens. The reaction has been over the top.

Nick

If this were a one off you’d be right but it’s just a continuation of the same old mistakes we make season after season! Change? WHAT CHANGE!

Mart

We’ve won 11 out of 13 games since changing to three at the back. We were the better team in both league games this season so far but luck screwed us. And we’ve Sanchez and Koscielny to come back. People are getting carried away

Rambling Mind

Noooooo… No way! The “WengerOut” brigade is always right.

I’m being sarcastic to the fu**ing knobs

Sullivanus Hex

We should be beating teams like Stoke without Sanchez or Kocielny. That’s the whole point isn’t it? Having a squad strong enough to challenge. Not just a decent first 11?? No leadership, players going missing, players playing out of position. Need I go on?

Faisal Narrage

This whole “we won 11 out of 13 games with a back 3” exemplifies why people hate stats sometimes. Folks focus on the external outcomes, rather than the internal influences.

11 out of 13 sounds great, but anyone that watched us could see we still looked Shakey and feeble in most of those games.

It’s like those who shout “Theo had 19 goals last season” without any mention of his actual performances during games.

Mart

Regardless of how shaky we were, we still won 11 out of 13. You seem to be looking for perfection. Every team has weaknesses and looks shaky at times. Even Chelsea looked ordinary in some games on their winning run last season. City drew tonight even though they were the much better side. This happens in football.

Jay

3 at the back need players who can play in such a system. The players at stoke couldn’t. In most of the games we won with three at the back, we had adequate personnel to play in such a system.

I think monreal and kolasinac are good players, but maybe not good in the way they were deployed at stoke.

I think he should have stuck to something basic like a 4-4-2 when the players were not suitable for a 3 at the back.

But anyway this team is shite compared to the top teams, and a top 4 trophy is the best we can hope for I guess. I would be surprised if arsenal win the league this year.

We were lucky against leicester and unlucky against Stoke. The problem is we are more dependent on luck than the top teams I guess.

Mourinho is a cunt, but his tactics and defensive organisation is brilliant.So maybe we can take a few pointers from there.

Stuck on repeat...

Now 9 seasons where we have not won our first 2 games. We seem pretty consistent. So yes, I have to agree – change? What change?

ClockEndRider

In isolation it is just 3 points dropped. However it is a continuation of a theme. West Brom and Palace away and Watford at home last season.bbit is no use Wenger bleating in about how we only missed out in CL by a point when the points we give up are regularly against dross. Stoke are the epitome of dross. Same old same old. No progress, no learning.

Mart

Not really. We were outplayed away to West Brom and Palace last season. We weren’t outplayed to Stoke this weekend.

The arsenaut

Excuse me? Just how are they lucky?? Lucky they have proper defenders, and we don´t? Lucky they had a gameplan? Lucky they came up against a soulless team with a manager that thinks we “dominated” and played well??? “LUCK” is what we had during that unbeaten streak last season…but as metallica woud say “luck runs out” and were out of it…and helpless…if we don´t get in another singing of some repute, were f*ckd…

Up the Arsenal

“Luck runs outtaaaaa”

-Hetfield

Mart

I explained what I meant by lucky when I said our XG was 1.8.

Sullivanus Hex

Sorry but have you only started supporting Arsenal since August? This inept tactical management has been happening season after season.

Mart

Been supporting them since 1993. We were the better team and we lost. We move on.

Gooneropolis

It’s hard to disagree with the boss on this point. The fluidity of the attack is promising around the box, the group is still learning Lacazette’s runs. Sometimes it doesn’t come off for your attack and you expect your defense to hold a clean sheet in what was a fairly putrid attacking game from Stoke.

The backline and player positions have been talked to enough. It speaks to the need of having a partner for Xhaka that can win the ball back and hold a defensive shape. Elneny can do that against teams 11-20, but we don’t seem to have that player on the roster for the top half of the table. That to me is what will determine our season.

The backline is what we’re going into the season with once Koscielny is back. If we can find that energetic, harassing center mid – then the attacking group can work amongst them to create chances and the backline can hold their shape while Xhaka pings from deep. Whether this happens, who knows – it’s Arsenal.

If it did, I’d be much more optimistic with our campaign’s potential as we will have addressed 2 fundamental weaknesses this summer: an athletic forward who finishes and runs the line & a buzzsaw of a CM. One can hope.

The arsenaut

Im sorry.. I would really like to get on board with the positives, but I just can´t see none. Top teams draw at worst when in this scenario, cuz they dont relay on luck or dodgy points here and there…
Also does the Manager think of Kolasinac and Monreal as boafide cb´s?? does he have in mind for Wilshere and Cazorla to play a significant role in the midfield this season??? If so he need´s his head examined..
Is Wenger oficially the Vilan yet??? If not then how long can we keep accepting this kind of ineptitud…how long can we think of ourselfes as a great club, with this kind of systematic failing.

I guess all the endless positivity hope and silly faith the manager has toward´s his players, and the bord toward´s the manager, has spred through the fanbase. If so then what is left from the glory day´s ???

Denis Eagle

I’m afraid that reasoning shows how foolish his thinking is.Walcott is not a good crosser of the ball and lacks the skill to beat a man in a one on one situation. He panics and most fans know this. The Ox or the new youngster are far better. Our new French striker should never have been taken off. Finally, what was the reasoning behind that line up. Ridiculous, players not in their natural positionstone and so much more.

Trez

This man is much more clueless than I gave him credit for…how about you Keep Xhaka for that?? Walcott should’ve been the last guy to come in yesterday.
You took out Xhaka and expected Ramsey and Ozil to dictate from deep. Unbelievable from Wenger.
Don’t give me the Iwobi came in to do work on the final third while Ozil did the build up play. Welbeck should’ve been subbed first, not Lacazette.
This isn’t an overreaction. You’ve been doing this for years now.

Dawn

Anybody with half a brain would know why Theo came on, so who had to ask for an explanation?

greg

Still waiting for why we played a rb with no left foot at lb with 2 lbs in cd with a cb on the bench

Sanchez\'s Wattage

And if that was the end of it, that would be shite enough, but to then criticise Montreal for not being a commanding centre half is a fucking joke, maybe he’s not a prem quality centre half cos he’s spent 14 years playing as a fullback?? Or does our wengeresque total football not think there is any difference in the positions, which would explain a lot as to why he can’t coach a defence to save his life, or seemingly hire any one who can. 74 league games to go ….

Nick

Only someone with half a brain would have brought Walcott on in a scenario like that! Theo is and never has been a proper winger and his crossing is generally poor !

Araj

Absolutely shit.
Not poor, absolutely shit is the word you are looking for.
Also, there is a bigger problem with this explanation. Walcott doesn’t like to cross. He doesn’t even like to go wide towards the touchline let alone put a cross in.

Wie

But still the answer surprise us all. Maybe someone need to check if he is still Arsene Wenger or alien in disquise

40 Million +1

His hairstyle is better this season. That must have been it, because it surely can’t have been his ability to create chances in the last 15′ facing a 1-0 defect against a defense as organized as Stoke’s.

Possession

You just get on my fucking nerves Wenger.

I AM ARSENAL

I know this game had nothing to do with him but its time to sell Walcott..
The guy has been at Arsenal for 10 years and played with some of the best players ever yet still struggles to trap the ball and hold a man off..
As a coach of under 14s its mindboggling to watch how long he has been allowed to get away with his lack of footballing ability..
Cue someone giving me his goal stats etc…I dont give a shit..The guy has never made a concious decision on the pitch.
The very best things he has done have been purely instinctive (Run vs Liverpool in the champs league 2009 iirc).

Dr Whale

Goals win you matches. Supposing we scored on Saturday, there will be little or no negativity by the fans. It therefore means his goal stats is relevant. His ‘ instinctive’ display has been consistent in big matches. He has record goals over Chelsea, was a super-sub in 2008-2009 and 2011-2012 season, destabilizes Guardiola Barcelona defense and we equalize from 2.0 down, was always the first to score if he start, mesmerizes tottenham defense in our 2.0 win (F.A) and we went ahead to win the cup first time in many years, contributed massively to our recent F.A trophy, scored wonderful goal against man city in our 6-3 loss, scored another wonderful goal against them 2 season ago and was instinctively involved in our 3-0 demolition of Chelsea. 103 goals averaged 10 goals per season from a winger. Can you name 6 wingers that can give you that consistently? Based on instincts, I will love him to remain in the squad. He will not complain if not given chance. He will rather give his best whenever call upon

Stuck on repeat...

Yes, goals win you matches. But goals conceeded loose you matches. We dominated possession in both of our first 2 games. But, it was a close run thing in the first game (being honest), & think the fact we dug deep & won probably masked a few concerns. We lost game 2.

dennis

He is not a winger! Wingers can beat their man and provide good deliveries to teammates in the box. Walcott can.t. He is a poor striker being played out wide bcos his touch is not good enough to play in the more congested central area

Araj

So since goals win you matches and Walcott is a “goalscorer” what has this team won since he joined?
Its not just a coincidence that the only player who has played through the entirety of the past decade of “almost there” football is Theo Walcott. There have been properly talented players like Fabregas who gave it their all and then moved because they realized the club wasn’t willing to match their ambition and there have been talented buy money hungry ones like Nasri who were poached by others but there has been just one constant: the guy who does not have the ambition to improve and who no other top level club will give the same wages nor the same importance that Arsenal does. Even Gareth Southgate can see that Walcott, despite all his goals last year, just does not give him anything (he preferred Ox in his squad who couldnt get a game under Wenger then)
He is a blight on this football club.
In just the last 3 seasons, Arsenal lost Campbell because he couldnt get game time behind Walcott and Gnabry because he couldnt move up the pecking order while Wacott was there and now on the verge of losing Ox because Wenger can play him as a RWB but never gave him a consistent run on the right wing since Walcott was there. For almost 5 years the club didn’t seriously invest in a speedy dynamic striker because Walcott was supposed to be that (a role now being filled just as uselessly by Welbeck). We didnt buy Draxler last year because guess what, we have Walcott.
What in the world is the purpose of giving 100k+ per week to a player who is 28 and not only cant get into your first XI but who does not even fit any role in the formation you prefer.

Dotman

Wenger will have us believe he is prudent with money and spending, but when you really look at it, his economic management has been poor. 100k for a player like walcott, purchase of who become dead wood, inability to move deadwood on, inability to get right prices for good players who want out and the list can be longer.

Ricky D

10 goals a season for a forward at a top club is shite! Let alone a forward who was supposedly bought to be moulded into Thierry’s fucking replacement. Doubt he’s even really made up his mind what his favourite position is. Couple of good goals and memories over the years and he seems a decent fella but we all know at the end of the day he’s been a disappointment and never fulfilled that perceived potential. Could’ve/should’ve sold him years ago when we would’ve got 20m-25m and reinvested. Tbh I’d still take that now even in this crazy market but no one would pay it – shows how his stock has really fallen. Speed merchant found wanting in other areas so often.

Jaesus look at my rant on Theo and he barely had anything to do with the loss at Stoke. Fucking Arsenal I love you but you drive me fucking insane. And Arsene I rate you highly but God knows what goes through your head on the touch line these days

I AM ARSENAL

I suppose Walcott is better than Hazard because he scores more goals.

Brendan

Sums up Theo pretty well….

PepKlopp

+ welbeck. Pathetic finisher, he just runs around, that’s not enough.

dennis

Totally! Come on Everton or WHU take this guy off our hands.

gooner

Yes. Who needs goals from an attacking player when all you need is basic athleticism?

Sell Theo. All he does is score goals which doesn’t earn you points. Keep our Darling Welbeck and keep giving him a full 90 minutes. He won’t score much but he’s strong, runs a lot, works hard( basic athletic requirements) and despite failing to bury that chance when put through and opting to use the shoulder instead of the head,we should all be happy he’s our hero.
That’s what wins you games not goals.

We should be appealing to the FA for a point at least because we had players who run all day, ” have an engine” and who needs goals to earn a point or three anyways.

As an U 14 coach explains above.

I AM ARSENAL

Where did i mention Welbeck as a better alternative.Welbeck IS a far better footballer than Walcott just a terrible striker..Bet you can’t work distinguish the difference. You know nothing about football excpet Football manager and opta stats…I said nothing about Walcotts contribution to the team i was talking about his actual ability…
But while on the subject What important goal did Theo score last season out of the 19…I guarantee Lucas Perez’s/Girouds goals were more imporant with half the playing time.
The u14’s i work with understand the basics of trapping a football and holding it up unlike your hero Walcott…Hes a nice lad and smiles alot.

Adam

‘A lot of positives’? So overwhelmimg to think of all of them. Can we please keep it a little bit less self- demanding and try to go for one positive only each game – like 3 points for instance? I truly hate listening to him after the defeats.

Maniac

“Let’s not go overboard. We lost one game.”

You’ve got to be joking. Last year that one game cost us top 4 and a Champion’s League place. This year could very well be the same. Throwing away 3 points against mid-table opposition, especially so early in the season, is worrying to say the least, and Wenger not realising this is even more so.

bazza_wicks

its funny how with Walcott and the Ox coming from the southampton academy they have both never gone to that next level with Arsenal ? when the opposing team is chasing the game then walcott can come on and use his pace to get behind teams, but ii would like to see his stats in ten years on crosses maybe there are none even ewhen he plays wide he always comes inside tactically wenger got it so wrong in many ways then blamed the lack of cohesion from the defence ? of who were all fit and sat on the bench wondering the same

Olalekan

Walcott was not supposed to be in that team

Dr Whale

Olalekan was supposed to be in the team

santori

Walcott lacks craft.

He can’t operate in confine spaces because he chases the ball where Ox tends to be better with ball at feet at pace.

I mean, Theo’s chief asset is going to start to wane and he remains too predictable.

I’d sell him (particularly if we are losing Alexis as well which looks likely) and use the money to buy Draxler.

PLUS we also need a central mid.

rogerbij

Look, Im not Walcotts biggest fan either, but he did score 19 goals last season, and when you need a goal, put on another goalscorer. It wasnt going to be Welbeck was it, he had enough chances to sink a battleship. I wouldve taken Welbeck off for Giroud, moved Laca to the left and still brought Walcott on. He was the best attacker still on the bench.

Faisal Narrage

What about that Spanish striker that looks decent but is never given a chance?

santori

Jesse?

he scored.

rogerbij

You know full well that Lucas a) wasnt on the bench, and b) is being either sold or loaned this week to Deportivo, as reported on Arseblog.

Araj

All you said makes sense but unfortunately according to the manager you are wrong.
He didn’t bring on Walcott for his goal threat. He brought him on to give crosses and that is exactly why this makes no sense. I dont think Walcott should have been brought on but at least as a goal threat it makes some sense. As a crosser this is just pure lunacy.

gooner

Why use logic to ruin a party started by a stupid question from a daft reporter who didn’t realise that we were chasing the game and needed an attacking substitution?

PS. Why bring Theo on when the opposition is sitting deep? All his 100 goals have come when he’s put clean through.

Stuck on repeat...

“Let’s not go overboard,” he said. “We lost one game”.

True statements.

However, we’ve chased in both games having had by far the biggest percentage of possession throughout both. Yes we’ve scored 4 goals so far this season, but we’ve also conceeded 4.

Think it’s going to be a long long season…

gooner

I suspect the boss knows we are fighting for fourth too.

Much as defeats piss me off, my instinctive reaction was not too disastrous for fourth place.

Call me deluded if you like but I believe we are just about good enough to be in the mix for 4-6th place.

If we finish higher at least I will be very pleased. But if we finish 5 the or lower you’ll be losing your hair. And probably more next season with Arsene.

And I love that man. Not his stay though

Zelig

All this talk of change was clearly BS. It’ll just be a repeat of the last few seasons unless the owners decide to show some ambition to compete in the modern era of football. Until they do we will continue to stagnate. We are in danger of becoming a sleeping giant as we get replaced by Chelsea and Manchester city.

Here’s a thought. Alexis wants to play for Guardiola so instead of selling him to Man City we could bring Guardiola to Arsenal & invest in the squad so we can challenge for the title & in Europe.

Zelig

Who is downvoting this comment? The truth might hurt but we are in danger of being overtaken by more ambitious clubs like Man City & Chelsea.

Look at how Man Utd have reacted to the challenge of man city & Chelsea. They have invested heavily in the squad because they refuse to become also rans but we seem happy to become also rans.

If we showed some ambition I’m sure Guardiola could be persuaded to join us. We have a much better history than Man City, we have a great stadium in a great location that doesn’t have a club the size of Manchester United on our doorstep.

Who wouldn’t want us to play the attacking style of football that Guardiola plays?

A9amus

What a ridiculous comment. Yeah.. Guardiola is going to turn down an unlimited budget. Right. Additionally he’s been incredible with which team that wasn’t the far and away most talented team in their league? No way Guardiola would be a success at arsenal… Look how great his ridiculously expensive squad was last year. Bayern was better the year before he got there.

Zelig

Despite not winning the champions league Bayern’s players & owners have said Guardiola’s tactics & methods took them to another level which they continue to employ.

Arsenal are currently worth the same as Man City. Yes their revenue has overtaken us but if we’d had their recent success I’m sure our revenue would overtake them again especially with our stadium & location. They are not a bigger club than us yet so we could invest just as much as they have in our squad to help us compete for the league & in Europe.

Yes you do need great players if you want to play attractive attacking football but I don’t think any of us want to go back to a defensive style of football so yes we would need to spend money on better players. The club charge a fortune for match tickets & make a fortune from TV & sponsorship deals so they should spend it.

Putting the club’s wealth on the pitch so we can be successful increases it’s value more than having it sat in a bank vault.

Zelig

Just because the 20th century belonged to us, Utd & Liverpool doesn’t automatically mean the 21st century won’t belong to clubs like Chelsea & Man City. Leeds Utd were a big club once.

ClockEndRider

Their revenue is massively increased by a sweetheart deal with their owners. Their costs have been massively reduced by government giving them a stadium that UK taxpayers paid for. Fuck me they’ve won the lottery haven’t they? And they still can’t fill their stadium. Perhaps they should transfer some plastic fans. Perhaps they can get a grant.

Zelig

Yes they got a free stadium years ago after an athletics event when they were skint & their old stadium was falling down around their ears. No point moaning about it now. Since then they have built their stadium up & spent £200m developing their training & academy facilities.

Yes their owner did spend a fortune getting them to a point where they could compete with us, Utd, Chelsea, etc but with the new TV & sponsorship deals & global popularity Man City’s revenues have grown massively. They now have the second largest revenues in Britain due to their on field success not due to sweetheart deals with their owner. Those days are behind them same as with Chelsea. We criticise Liverpool fans for living in the past but some of us are starting to as well. We haven’t won the league for a long time & Man City & Chelsea have caught us up with their on field success. To deny this and just put it down to their owners bankrolling them is naive & frankly a bit ignorant of reality.

Man City have a waiting list for season tickets so it is a myth that they can’t sell out their stadium. Similar to us some season ticket holders don’t turn up for certain matches which makes it look worse than it is.

We can either moan about these newcomers showing ambition & trying to replace us or we can fight back like Utd are doing by investing in their squad.

No club has a divine right to remain at the top. We spent the 20th century at the top. Now we need to show some ambition if we want to stay there instead of becoming a sleeping giant like Leeds Utd (remember them?).

DennisElbow

Personally, I want my team to WIN! I don’t particularly care if we play exciting football or defensive football, what I want is to FUCKING WIN GAMES!!

Martin

Are you saying Aw plays defensive football ?

Zelig

Definitely not but playing attractive attacking football that is successful means spending money on top players.

Given the funds I’m sure Wenger could build a successful attacking team but he’s not getting any younger so he’ll need replacing soon. I mention Guardiola because bringing him to Arsenal would solve the Alexis problem because he wants to play for Guardiola.

ClockEndRider

He wants to play for whoever pays him the most. Wake up.

dennis

In danger of being overtaken?? That ship left port a long time ago

Zelig

I disagree. They haven’t overtaken us yet. We are worth as much as Man City, have a better history & stadium. A more attractive location & we don’t have man Utd on our doorstep. If we showed some ambition to compete in this modern era of football instead of allowing ourselves to become also rans I’m sure we could see off their & Chelsea’s challenge.

Nick

It’s NOT just ONE defeat is it ? It’s how it happens and the underlying reasons for it ! We’ve seen so many of these defeats over the last ten years where we have massive possession but end.up making stupid mistakes while IN position giving goals away and losing! ! The team selection the playing of personel out of position, right footers on the left, left footers on the right ,substitutions that are baffling I mean just how many decent crosses has Walcott EVER put in ? Why not move Bellerien to the right side the Ox to the left take off Welbeck for Iwobi and Giroud at the expense of either Koslainic or Mustaffi? ? The subs he did make made no sense ! Plus against an 11 man defence playing two strikers ie Giroud and Laccazette would hardly be revolutionary ! The problem is and has been for a decade WENGER! !

Alexander_N

I dunno why, but I would like to see Alexis, Ozil, Walcott and Laca up front. Yes Theo is inconsistent but he can score goals and he’s staying… And yes 4 at the back please, Sead is LB not LCB ffs -.-

Nelson

See your point and it’s a good one but I would love to give this lineup a chance against Liverpool

Cech
Ox Koscielney Mertesacker mustafi kolasinac
Ramsey xhaka
Ozil alexis
Lacazatte

Fireman Sam

Not bad but I’m not convinced of Ramsey+xhaka pairing. Maybe ElNeny instead of Xhaka to start

Faisal Narrage

I’d really like to know what Wenger has against starting our 3 most senior CBs with Per the leader and tallest in the middle? Literally solves so many tactical problems and also means Per’s speed isn’t exposed anymore.

dennis

We.d get murdered with that team. Not a huge fan but El Neny has to play just to provide some sort of defensive stability in the middle of the pitch.

Reginald

It usually start this way. Let’s not go overboard I know it’s the first or second game of the season but that is usually our story before eventual collapse around Dec-January. Different season same Arsenal

Olalekan

No about losing a match but it is about the manner the attitude of the manager and the players the hunger for winning. Any team can lose a game it’s normal

California Gooner

Theo came on because Wenger gets emotionally attached to his players. And that renders him incapable of seeing Theo is an, at best, avg footballer who makes a ridiculously high wage. Sadly, the money we waste on Theo, Gibbs Wilshere, Banks, Chambers and the like prevents us from making serious bids for real players. #wengerout

Nelson

Who’s banks ? You’re right though it’s why I think he took our two new players off over welbeck and bellerin the poor performers

Probably why Perez didn’t get a chance either

California Gooner

Jenks (auto correct)…I only add him go the list cuz he’s a perpetual loanee. We need a squad of players who can actually contribute-not just fill a shirt and and a seat on the bench.

Fizh

Average footballers don’t score 19 goals from the wings. Average footballers don’t have career total of 100 plus goals. Compared to the the wingers from the top 4 teams last season none of them did better than him. Too lazy to check but don’t think any of them have 100 plus Career totals too. I like Theo, but the manager doesn’t utilise him well enough, and I’ll put him in over welbz anytime.

Spy

You have to be kidding right? Goals or not Theo is nowhere near the class of Debruyne, sane, mkhyrt…., to name a few. He is on par the Raheem Sterling… bench warmer at best at a top club.

Faisal Narrage

100 goals as a forward in Arsenal over 10 years is about 10 goals a season.

Decent, but nothing earth shattering.

gooner

10 goals a season might look poor but ask the guys ahead of him in the pecking order, welbeck and ox ( till he moved to defence where he doesn’t fancy),if they have ever scored 10 in any season in their career?

Faisal Narrage

So your logic isn’t that because we accommodate dross like Welbeck, keeping Theo is okay?

FYI, I’ve made it clear that Perez should be starting over Welbz.

dennis

Theo has played in some great teams and had a million opportunities. Are you seriously saying you wouldn.t swap him for Coutinho, Mane, Sane, Hazard, De Bruyne, Sterling, Willian?? Fuck me, i.d swap him for Chris Brunt!

dennis

19 goals from the wing last season…and not a single club seems to be after him even tho he is clearly surplus to requirements. Nuff said

gooner

Let me get this straight, are you saying those players would swap their starring roles with Theo’s arsenal bench role?

Why not compare him with their subs and them with our starters like Alexis.

As subs both Theo and Giroud scored double figures in the league. Something some of those starters couldn’t manage.

California Gooner

Consider this: Theo has never not had Champions League football. That’s an extra 8-10 games for him to play. So when you say 19 goals it’s a little misleading. It’s not like he’s doing that during league games. Theo is 29(i think) and we’re still talking about his potential. I think I’ve seen enough. It’s long past time to sell him!

felix

the issue is that wenger should think of lwobi before walcot
you had alex lwobi as yur best in preason last year wn he was dropped arsenal started lossing. why dont yu give time to your best preason player

Dr Whale

We lifted F.A and he was our highest scorer. He was highest scorer in league when he played alongside alexis before he got injured. On returning, wenger limited his playing time because welbec who just came back from injury was preferred. Even at that, he finished the season with 19 important goals. GO AND SELL HIM.

temu

Yes, we lost just one game but the problem still remains. We don’t seems to get III t write. Wellbeck was wasteful in front of goal.

Joe

A cross? From someone who doesn’t really cross? SMH

AndrewG

Blogs you couldn’t have made this heading up. Surely? I thought we were just about scoring when Giroud came in and actually scored through lacazette then all of a sudden he brings in Iwobi and Walcott for Lacazette and Sean, this is ineptitude at its highest peak. More like a trial and error manager.
I think the pressure is getting to Arsene and he is making panicking decisions.

johnnybud

Taking off Laca made my head hurt. WTF is he smoking

Gooner Joe

We need to introduce Wenger to tactics.

Anonymarse

Jeez this place is seriously depressing when we lose

greg

Is that you Paul?

Anonymarse

Nope

DennisElbow

That’s because a lot of people only comment on here when we lose. When we win and play well, most of the people commenting on here are nowhere to be found. It’s like they only want to vent anger at Wenger and the team.

Big Dave

Xhaka has his good points but on the whole he’s a very average player playing in a key position. In both games he’s given the ball away in very sloppy fashion one of which led to a goal against Leicester. We need to splash out on the nearest thing we can can find to Patrick Viera… That’s Patrick Viera Mr Wenger….. Not Abou Diaby!

Tanned arse😉

I like our boss. I want him to succeed. And I genuinely that think if he was ruthless and concentrated purely on winning football matches then he’d still be capable of winning the league. But he continually tries to keep certain players happy and shoehorn them into the side at the expense of what is best for the side. The team played quite well and probably could’ve won that game on the balance of what went on but regardless of winning or losing, we simply didn’t give ourselves the best opportunity to win. I’m not fussed if it the ox or Bellerin on the right but just because they feature higher up in the heirachy of this squad than kolasinac and monreal doesn’t mean they should ever start on the left ahead of either. He tried to get them all in the team to the detriment of its function. That’s so annoying from an intelligent man who us just making emotional decisions.
Theo should come on when the game suits his obvious skill set. If even he’s judged to be a good crosser (which I don’t think he is) he simple doesn’t know how to get on the ball when the opponents sit deep.
Drives me mad. Take away these emotionally decisions and we could really achieve something. Utter waste of 3 points!

Zelig

I think our attacking play was pedestrian which gave them plenty of time to get men behind the ball. I know we are missing Alexis & Carzola but we look very ordinary without them.

ClockEndRider

Cazorla. It’s Cazorla. The R is before the L. Please don’t sink to Redknapp Minor/ Hoddle levels by getting his name wrong.

Zelig

Thanks for pointing out my typo.

Faisal Narrage

Since when has Theo been a regular crosser of the ball?
Wouldn’t have been better to keep Sead and play him in his actual role as a LWB for crosses?

Whilst we’re at it, I’m still waiting for conclusive evidence that Welbz is genuinely a better striker and scorer than Perez, and why one always gets a by from the manager and the other doesn’t (other than one was chosen by the manager and the other by StatDNA)

John Ralphio

Can’t help but feel a Mahrez or Sanchez coming off the bench would have made a bigger difference than Theo. We missed so many chances. I don’t blame Wenger’s style of play here, yes our defence failed but Stoke created zero chances so surely that is a major positive of our defensive work? Our attack was to blame IMHO I do blame Wenger’s decision making and continued trust of players who are not performing and it is sad because it seems this is going to damage his legacy slightly. He’s putting other peoples needs before his own.

Mohd Gunner

We had many positives ie dominating possession.more shots at goal than,Stoke,blah,blah. Yes its only one loss.
The problem is it could get worse if the defence goes to sleep against Pool.
Frankly I have enough of his excuses . His tactics are easy to counter.
Its one dimensional and too many passe es and intricate build up near enemy’s goal.
Why must there be som any passing sideways ,etc?
Weng,er,pleasee watch how other teams score . They don’t waste time.
BTw,too much time has been wasted already.

AndreiArshavin

Nothing has changed, now we are down to discussing Theo and his crossing ability. Only difference this is Eason is, it’s still August not even September..

santori

Put cross into Giroud so he takes Granit off…which also means Ramsey plays deeper and away from the box.

Leaves on Welbeck who can’t hit the side of a barn door at point blank.

Take Lacazette on, the player Giroud effectively provided an assist for a goal ruled off side which should have stood.

Hmmmm….interesting.

Remember how pissed off RVP was when Wenger took off the Ox who in that game was our most effective player. I think that was the straw that broke the Dutch camel’s back.

I don’t think Alexis is staying.

We should get Draxler. Ozil is not the sort of player to do the heavy lifting, maybe his German junior will spark him into good form.

Also Pastore. Push Ozil (and provide ready replacement) but also replicate Granit and provide for someone who can dribble through the middle.

One loss can cost us a CL spot never mind the title. Fine margins again this season. Only one loss…

MYST

Welbeck should of scored two goals. We wouldn’t be having these conversations if he had. Three mistakes in one passage of play (Xhaka, Ozil, Monreal) cost us a goal, cost us the game. Otherwise… stay calm everyone.

ClockEndRider

But he didn’t. If my aunt had a dick she’d be my uncle.

He\'s got no hair but we don\'t care...
He\'s got no hair but we don\'t care...

If he bloody says the same old crap about not going overboard we’ve only lost one game I’ll scream louder than I already am! This will NOT just be one game if you carry on like this/the last 10 years!
Your ideas have gone but your excuses remain.

garrett

we didn’t lose because of Walcott, we lost because of the idiots on the field!
Ox is garbage, just opened up arsenal to a whole other sort of problems! a 125k a week for a non goal scoring attacker! boy that’s like being the CEO of a fast food joint demanding a fortune 500 company salary! Bellerin is garbage, wellbeck garbage, ramsey is garbage all with multiple attempts to score and 0 in result in fact adding up all last year goals between welbz, ox, ramsey, iwobi, bellerin and yet you still harp on Walcott who actually produces you are all idiots at the highest level!

Random witness

I’d rather Wenger explained why he did not start Mertesacker or Holding as CB than explaining why he put on Walcott. Why play players out of position & undermine the team’s confidence with a loss so early in the season?

Bechemagbor Samuel

Foolish talk by Wenger. Its just one game as he says that is lost, when we loose against Liverpool as usual, what would he say. Mr Wenger we are carried overboard knowing who our manager is. No one trusts u except you are out. So sir simply lieave Arsenal.

Cesar

Is it just me or is Bellerin not looking as promising as he did 2 seasons ago? Its scary. His first touch is still not improving. His defending is not getting better either.

Big Dave

If we’re gonna continue with the back three I think I’d rather see the Ox at RWB, and playing Bellerin on the left is ludicrous. I wouldn’t be that disappointed if Barca came calling for him again and we cashed in. His game is better suited to being a RB as part of a back four.

Tabby

Trade Walcott for Mahrez.
Please, please, please.

So depressed

I want WENGER SACKED BY DECEMBER. I’m sick off him. I’m not even sure if he likes Arsenal and he’s just taken us all for a ride. He’s a lot older now but he’s no Fergie. He’s just a manager who used to manage the likes off Henry, piers, overmars and vieira but now weve had mediocre teams for the last 10 years he’s quality as a manager has been tested and he’s failed us time and time again. I feel like I’m in a domestic relationship with Arsenal. The keep on kicking means slapping but I just keep on coming back for more. Please Wengerjust leave.

The arsenaut

It´s bordering on a hostage situation is´nt it? How much responsability is there on fans to help redirect the club to the path of greatness?? Keep that pressure mounting this season I´d say…and yeah those who have still blind faith in him at this point, either dont get the game or have just accepted to support a “nice” club “high” up the table..
Sure as hell aint what got me in to supporting Arsenal.

Kunle

Same excuses Wenger!

NEParse

There’s no such thing as going overboard in Arsenal FC. From the board, manager, players. Not even when you lose 10-2 on aggregate. It became a norm several years ago. What is Wenger talking about ? Shameless man.

Kels

Ffs!!! What’s wenger on about? When was the last time Walcott crossed a ball in a game?

NEParse

It’s called chances wasted when you don’t score them. Being dominant but losing is not a positive aspect. It’s an illusion, you think you are good but they are actually better. Proof is the win.

Malaysian Gunners

Arsenal is past, no futy

Ooooh Santi Cazoooorla
Ooooh Santi Cazoooorla

Why Is everyone in Theo’s back. I’m sure first of all he didn’t approach Wenger to say “stick me on”. Yes he didn’t do a lot in the 15mins but some players didn’t do too much in the 90mins to be fair. Personally I think Wenger just got it wrong. Lacazette’ first away game in the prem to start against Stoke was the first issue. This is nothing against Lacazette obv but there’s away games, and then there is Stoke. Giroud should of started that game. 2 left backs as centre backs didn’t work v Leicester and didn’t work vs Stoke. Let’s not pretend that even if we had any 3 from Koc, Mustafi, Holding, Merts, and Chambers, that we have a side capable winning the title.

Mootilated

Yes. We lost one game. But this isnt’t game week 20 it’s game week 2. Hence why people lose their calm, sir.

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