Wenger backs Lacazette to find form again

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Arsene Wenger has backed Alexandre Lacazette to return to form soon after admitting the summer signing’s lack of goals is taking a toll on the player’s confidence.

The France international, who moved to the Emirates for £44 million last summer has gone 529 minutes since his last Premier League goal and has netted only four times in his last sixteen games after promising four goal return in his opening seven games for the Gunners.

Lacazette looked particularly isolated in Wednesday’s Carabao Cup semi-final against Chelsea and was substituted around the hour mark for Alexis Sanchez. On Friday, the boss appeared to corroborate suggestions that he’d not been at his physical peak, reports had suggested he was ill.

“It has affected him a little bit [his form],” said Wenger ahead of Sunday’s trip to Bournemouth.

“He was a bit diminished physically on Wednesday night. He was very isolated and it was a difficult game for him. I don’t worry that he will come back.”

Given Arsenal sit sixth in the Premier League, five points behind the Champions League spaces, the boss recognises that there is no margin for error at the Vitality Ground this weekend. Last year, the stadium played host to a thrilling match as the Gunners secured a point after coming back from 3-0 down.

“There’s a massive importance for these kinds of games, of course,” noted Wenger.

“We have been distracted a little bit by the cups, but now we have to come back to the Premier League. It’s a very, very big game.

“Last year was a spectacular game, when it finished 3-3. They are a team who have a bit more difficulty this season but down there they can make it difficult for anybody.”

On his memories of last season’s game, Wenger added: “Well the nightmare, after the relief and then the frustration, because we could have won the game in the end.

“Basically what can happen in the story of a game is that you can go through all kind of states of mind. We showed character again in this kind of game. We had a slow start and they were absolutely storming out. They were full of confidence at the time and they were difficult for everybody. I think they beat Liverpool last year as well. Overall they had a good home record.”

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Dreamcast
Dreamcast

IMO, he didn’t lose form. We’re just not playing to his strength.
Get the right supplies and see if the young man doesn’t bang in the goals.
Not good days to be a gunner.
COYG.

SantiSandler
SantiSandler

It’s frustrating to watch him consistently make good early runs, only to have no one actually play the ball into the channels for him.

santori
santori

Rubbish.

He was presented a perfect opportunity by Wilshere last game and he fluffed it.

This sort of excuses manufactured for favorite players of the moment makes me sick.

Granted I’m not saying eh has been poor but considering the ‘world class’ label so many like to put on him, his return hasn’t exactly been awe inspiring.

World class means you make your own opportunities and make your team mates play you those passes.

He can be a lot better even regardless of Wenger subbing him off early.

Stuart_Ten
Stuart_Ten

Hope he smashes in a hat trick this weekend..

Not least because I’ve had him in my Fantasy Football team for months and would be nice if he repaid back that faith..

Alphie
Alphie

Not leaving him out due to loyalty. Simple. His been my captain.

Get gutted when he’s subbed to early. He’s so technical and clever movements but we are aren’t playing to his strengths. Jack’s return had started giving us that fluency.

I wish Nelson would get more runs as he’s dribbling and passing are top notch. He’s link up with AMN is on another level.

Voldermort
Voldermort

it would help if we stopped playing balls to him as if he’s giroud, play to his strengths before he’s another player that loses faith and falls into the malaise thats seems to afflict so many other players at the club

antgoon
antgoon

Soon enough, Lacca is going to regret joining this club. It’s you who needs to find the way out Mr. Wenger.

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

“the summer signing’s lack of goals is taking a toll on the player’s confidence.”

I imagine constantly subbing him doesn’t help his confidence either tbf.

Bould\'s Eyeliner
Bould\'s Eyeliner

Honestly, I think Wenger is being overly cautious with Lacazette’s physical endurance, rather than worrying about his current lack of goals. We know Wenger’s philosophy with strikers is to anticipate the flow of goalscoring form–he says so explicitly many times. I think he’s really relying on Lacazette to mold the starting central berth to carry us to fourth, and Deschamps is aware of this, publicly urging Giroud to do better.

GreekGunner
GreekGunner

Just change the formation Arsene.

Howstiger
Howstiger

He cant find form if nobody knows how to play a through ball through the center. Even ozil just Playa to the wing. Noticed how many times Chelsea played through balls and over the top balls to create chances while arsenal kept playing side ways

Third+Plebeian
Third+Plebeian

The last time we had a player who could reliably split the defense with a through ball was when Fabregas played for us. Ever since, it’s been sideways passing around a packed 18-yard box.

Oae
Oae

Carzola did that too

NYGunner92
NYGunner92

If/When Alexis leaves or even if he stays (he hasn’t done much). We should play Giroud and Lacazette upfront together.

Puff Puff
Puff Puff

People are quick to forget how Giroud can be absolute sh*t at times…

Maul Person
Maul Person

As much as people forget how good his link up play is…

Bendtnerschristmastree
Bendtnerschristmastree

How can you not have a tough game when the one’s supposed to give you scoring chances are Iwobi and Welbeck?

Christopher Wreh
Christopher Wreh

He’s a really good player. Better than I expected him to be if I’m totally honest. Link up play is nice, his movement is top drawer too. Just needs one to go in now, shin, knee, bollock, anything. But he’ll start scoring again for sure.

I really don’t get the constant subbing though. Winding me up now.

santori
santori

This sort of striker issue really is dependent on confidence.

He is a bit tentative at the moment and taking the extra touch. He needs to find a way to operate on instinct again.

The other thing to note is as much as some people lauded him as “world Class” we see this sort of thinking easily exposed as fraudulent.

In the same vein people will say Giroud is not “world Class” even if he scores more goals per minutes played.

And we then see the rubbish about how Welbeck is better than Giroud because he possesses pace and mobility.

Giroud is plan B they say. That would well make Welbeck plan C?

Its all nonsense.

we need different tools up front that’s what they are there for. No plan A or B or C.

Considering we stand to lose Giroud in the summer, we would be wise to bring in a replacement for Alexis who can also have function up top.

Draxler I like because we haven’t had a player in market who can mold into the RVP hybrid type striker. These sort of of talent is extremely rare and comes on market only once in a while. He has the requisite skill, power, height but also his two footed ability is good ingredient for Wenger to work his magic and convert him into another (different) asset for us up top (plus he can still cover left flank)

We need to be thinking about striker as much as Alexis replacement IMO. We cannot risk on just Lacazette (its too much pressure/risk) or a clueless Welbeck next season.

caligunner
caligunner

I’m stunned right now

Nothing about Mahrez???

Tennis Perkgamb
Tennis Perkgamb

Damn, this just hit me, considering how Sanchez has been playing this season, I would really like us to go 3-5-2, with two CM-s, Özil as CAM and Giroud and Lacazette up front together. For starters I think meta of one striker and two wingers covering the space defensively has no real advantage with a 3 CB system, if you already have 3 CBs, two wingbacks, and at least one of your CMs more defensive. And on the other hand, Özil would relish playing CAM, Ramsey/Wilshere and Xhaka would also benefit from having a third one in the middle of it with them and it would really suit Lacazette and Giroud, because neither of them really have the whole shebang to play alone centrally. Giroud would really benefit having someone run off him, while he is contesting for first balls, and Lacazette very often instinctually goes for the second balls anyway.

Charvakan

Makes sense, Tennis. Alexis will be leaving anyway.

A.B
A.B

It must be tough going into every game thinking that you need to score inside of 65 mins because the manager is going to sub you regardless of what is going on.

Oae
Oae

That’s not a problem, if given the right balls he needs just 10 mins to do damage to any team.
He needs defence splitting passes and diagonal over the head balls.

A.B
A.B

He’s not getting what he needs in terms of service but he also has the added pressure of knowing that Wenger is going to sub him around the same time, every time.

santori
santori

As we can see, adaptation from France isn’t easy.

Those satisfied with a Malcolm purchase should take very careful note.

Koscielny took a year of mishaps to find his feet. Giroud also had a season or two before he started to hit his stride.

The playing field isn’t as easy as before when Wenger first took over and the French contingent ran riot. Defenses are much more sophisticated complex and continental now that many British teams have inexplicably shed their xenophobia with foreign purchase and foreign management abound.

Lacazette will find form but those who simplistically branded him “world Class’ and Giroud “Plan B” never understand the pit fall of expectation over reality.