Saturday, December 3, 2022

Wenger: We can work on the goals we conceded

Arsene Wenger declared himself more pleased with the 4-3 win over Leicester than concerned by Arsenal’s defending, but says that the team can work to cut out the kind of goals they conceded on Friday night.

Two set-piece goals, and a mistake deep in our half which the visitors exploited well put our chances of winning the game in danger, but in the end goals from Alexandre Lacazette, Danny Welbeck, Aaron Ramsey and Olivier Giroud saw us take three points on the opening day for only the second time in the last eight seasons.

Afterwards, the Arsenal manager was asked about defensive concerns, but seemed more relieved his attackers had bailed the team out.

“Well if you were a manager you would have been on the bench when you are 3-2 down with 20 minutes to go and you win 4-3, you are more happy than concerned,” he said.

“I feel as well the goals we conceded we can work to get rid of. Because one was a corner, one was a ball that we lost in the build up and the third goal was on a corner again.

“So we conceded two goals on corners. We were quite good last year on corners and I believe overall that with a bit of work we can get that out of our system.”

It might also help if we actually had some central defenders to use in the back three, as we went into this game without Mertesacker, Koscielny, Chambers, Gabriel and only had Mustafi on the bench.

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Re SizC: The Arsenal vote is somewhat split over the 3 goals. I’m sure most folk will anyway, but you should vote for Dennis Bergkamps’ wonderful, defining goal against Newcastle, (or there’s a danger we could let Rooney take it and that would never do).


Actually agree with the Prof on this one. Today’s screw-ups are the kind of thing that can be corrected on the training field. The key is to make sure that happens – the fact that these are recurring issues underscore the fact that they need to be directly and effectively addressed.


I am hopeful that having the Boss and Mustafi back will help fix some of these errors. That said this zonal marking system on set pieces is a trainwreck year after year. The number of set piece goals we concede just borders on ludicrous – and it happens over and over and over.

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Poor Lacazette was instructed to do this zonal marking.


Yeah, whats the number/%?


If my memory served me correctly, we only conceded 3 goals from corners last season.


We will work on corners. Make Koscielny, Mustafi and Mertesacker play. Done.


Koscielny, Mustafi, Virgil Van Dijk?


haha that would wind up the mugsmashers!


At times shambolic defending. HOWEVER, we got the win and our best central defenders are coming back soon. Great result!


Is chambers injured?


In that case, is Wenger mentally challenged?


Yes. Ridiculous to have 3 full backs and a midfielder in defence and a perfectly good cb sitting in his suit in the stand. Wenger’s a muppet. Chambers had a cracking season at Boro and a great summer with England u21s but hey he’s not good enough for arsenal apparently in a game for which we had no cbs. As I say, wenger is a muppet. You don’t win leagues this way.

Cliff Bastin

We are Leicester’s bogey team lol.


Man that random Kos red card last year really still sucks. Gotta get through Stoke still.


Mustafi in for holding against stoke and koscielny in for ox/belerin against Liverpool.

I think the 1st choice back three will be koscielny, mustafi and nacho now that kolasinac is undroppable.

Maybe we should keep Gibbs for cup games?


As for me… I think the back three should be mustafi koscinelny and kolasinac, that’s if sanchez is playing, I prefer chamberlain on the right flank instead of belerin, belerin has pace but lack technicality… And if sanchez is not playing, chamberlain should still play at the right and kolasinac at the rest and mustafi koscinelny and Montreal or chambers should be the back three. And I don’t know why he prefers Walcott to Alex iwobi anyways….


Yes, yes we can.

First step is to stop thinking that 3-X-X gives a free licence to play a bunch of out of position midgets at the back without consequence.

Second step is to ban Holding from making any passes other than dumping it off to anyone not named Holding.

Patrick Ahern

2 and worse defence in league top six last season and we don’t buy a top class defender
What a shit manager not to notice that and we have 5 centre backs that would have no
Chance playing in a top championship team OMG same old same old


you can’t be serious

Terry Neill - never again

Patrick Ahern, a Spurs intruder, haven’t you got better things to do?


Join the discussion
I couldn’t AGREE more, I told a friend we need someone like ManUs Vidic or Rio, plus either Nzozi or Kouyatte of W-Ham 6’4 to help with our shambolic defending esp. at set pieces. Can’t see him winning the league again!


During Vardy’s 2nd goal, how come no Arsenal player(s) stand in the near and far posts? Elneny seem did not mark anybody. And that crossing for Vardy’s 1st, that should have been easily intercepted by Kos or Mustafi, luckily we came back to win the gane, something that very very, rarely happen. Don’t get use to this situation, Laca and Sead!!!

Stuck on repeat...

Some interesting comments from AW. Yes, we can work on the goals conceded, & indeed we SHOULD & pronto, as it’s a case of the same old same old when it comes to corners. Fair play however on that Vardy goal, yes it was a give away, but much that i dislike that muppet I think we’d be happy if we’d scored that goal. Thought Leicester actually played quite well too overall. Some weak defending at times (it wasn’t our strongest line up either at the back), but overall thought the team did great. Fair play to AW for actually… Read more »


First goal we were very slow to react with only Ozil (I think) making any effort to attack the short corner and then who knows what the heck happened with four players wide open after the first header while everyone other than Xhaka stood around watching.

The zonal marking system drives people crazy for good reason. It can be very successful, but needs to have some aspects of man marking as well like a hybrid of the two.


yes, these are all known weaknesses.
1. Long cross/corner to the far post


If Sanchez stays our attack is sorted. Sign a DM & CB & give us a chance of competing for the title.


These are the goals Arsenal have been conceding by the bucket.
Blame Wenger. His insistence on ball retention and passing to eternity
is to be blamed.
If he aint careful, the defence could come back to haunt him when Pool are the next opponent.


He said the same thing last year after defeat against Pool.


If AFC concedes 3 goals at home to Leicester City. Just imagine playing against teams like Liverpool, Man Utd, Man City, Spurs or worse Bayern, Barca, Real Madrid. I imagine it would be embarrassing…


When we play Liverpoo in two weeks’ time, our back three will be Mustafi-Mertesacker-Koscielny, not Holding and two left backs. And Liverpoo will have lost Coutinho by then.

The only way we play against Bayern, Barca, or Real is if they somehow contrive to finish third in their CL group.

So maybe save the doom and gloom for some other time. You do realize we won, don’t you?


Mertesacker was apparently available for the first game too, so was Chambers.

Koscielny has a chronic injury, he simply can’t be relied upon.

I have no idea how Wenger thought THAT back three was a good idea. It looked terrible on paper and worse in action.

I fear the old man is becoming a bit “weak mentally”.


The key takeaway is we scored 4 goals against a team which for most part looked to sit back and play on the counter.


I imagine the Orcs are licking their lips, not to say their eyebrows, at the prospect of playing the usual catastrophe of a defence that is Arsenal. And as usual Wenger talks about improving the defence but actually does nothing about it. If he actually intended to do anything then he would have used the pre season. Words butter no parsnips, Wenger.


When we play the orcs we’ll have Mertesacker and Mustafi back in the squad. I don’t see them licking their lips too much at that prospect.

As for our defence being a “usual catastrophe”, would you care to look at last season’s table and name six teams who allowed fewer goals than Arsenal? Hint – you can’t. Only five teams out of nineteen allowed fewer goals than Arsenal. So I guess the other fourteen teams’ defenses must have been even more catastrophic than ours. Or, perhaps, you just need to get a dictionary and look up the definition of “catastrophe”.


We concede the same crap goals season after season and there is no progress defensively. Perhaps catastrophe was strong but not learning from the past and downright refusing to work on defensive drilling condemns us to producing sub optimal outcomes each year. It’s not difficult. It just requires some focus. Otherwise what is the point of having Bould in the setup at all other than as a pr exercise.


And while I’m there: Hint- the four teams who finished above us all had better defensive records than us.



Its a makeshift defense with Monreal at Cback, young Holding, thge midfield as I have said is still not fixed with Elneny next to Granit.

Of course there will be issues.


Defense needs sorting – Monreal in the middle clearly ‘makeshift’, elneny next to Granit clearly not where we want to be.

But Lacazette, Welbeck AND Giroud scored.

And Ramsey.

No complains in that department.


Agree on Wenger for this situation. Monreal Holding and da Tank not really central defenders. I just hope they work on the midfielders defense inclination as well.


Obviously Wenger didn’t learn of the consequences of fielding makeshift defences. The same thing happened against Liverpool in the first game last season. Many other coaches would have fielded Mertersacker or at least Mustafi but not Wenger. Almost all the Leicester goals could have been avoided if Mertersacker played, with his aerial superiority and positional savvy. Luckily we escaped.

A different George

Do you think the reason he left Mertesacker out might have had something to do with medical advice? No, I forgot, Wenger is just stupid and doesn’t know anything near as much about his players as we do.

Cultured determination

Looks like we are a goal threat from anywhere on the pitch. Also happy that we have so many strikers at the club. Last time we had henry bergkamp wiltod and kanu we didnt do too bad. Now we have lacca welbz giroud alexis theo. Very useful.

Cultured determination

Oh we will definitely be working to cut out those goals. Cos mad jens will be speaking with them real soon. Would love to see MJ on the bench

Stephen Vallins

Steve Vallins
Any manager seeing Arsenal’s make shift defence would attack them with plenty of crosses not much height
Only one other commenter mentioned no defenders on the post at corners would defineately prevented Vardy’s second goal


Join the discussion
Agree 100%
Why Wenger hates tall CBs now is a mystery to me.
BFG is tall but way too slow, where are the new Adams/Sol or even Sanderros?!!!


The last time we scored direct from a corner was Per v Villa in the cup final … maybe … we are going to win the league. It’s an omen, even Mikey Dean was on our side. The football gods have aligned. Early days tho but this side could be the ONE.

Giroud Sandstorm

Agree with AW- don’t think those back 5 actually played together in any of the pre season games. Plus Montreal and Kolasinac played full back last season so only had one real CB on the pitch. Also no height between them which seemed like an issue on the set pieces. Should be fully rectified by bringing Kos and Mustafi back in. More important that we managed to score 4 and come back from behind twice, especially without Sanchez!

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