Koscielny urges hard work to restore Arsenal’s rock-bottom confidence

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Laurent Koscielny admits this Arsenal side is massively low on confidence as they come to terms with yet another disappointing defeat, this time going down 2-1 to Brighton on Sunday.

The team’s form is poor, and individuals are suffering too with the normally reliable French international looking a shadow of his usual self at this moment in time.

The 32 year old insisted the players wanted to win the game and did try, but such is the situation that nothing worked.

Speaking after the game, he said, “We know we’re in a bad situation, a bad period,” he said. “We tried but nothing is with us. We tried to fight and play football but you could see the confidence is very down.

“It will come back slowly. It is a bad period but we need everyone at this club – players, staff and fans – to be together and to fight to stay the highest we can.

“It is very difficult but football is like this. Now you focus on the next game, to prepare well. You need to put your head down and work.”

The loss on Sunday was the eighth in 2018 alone and left the Gunners 13 points off the top four with just 9 games remaining.

“It will be very hard to finish in the top four,” continued Koscielny.

“We’ve had a bad period and have not had the results we wanted. We lost our confidence a little bit and on the pitch we didn’t have the confidence we need to push ourselves more and to play well with the ball.

“We miss a lot of passes but we need to stay together, to fight together. We need to win to have more freedom on the pitch and we need to stay together.

“We try on the pitch to play but we can feel the players aren’t this confident to be efficient on the pitch so we need to get back, train hard, work hard and then the results can come back and give us more confidence for the rest of the season.

“The players have the responsibility on the pitch, the boss has responsibilities to and we have to be together.

“It is difficult to say if it is his fault or our fault. The club are together and we need to stay together.

Arsenal travel to Italy this week to take on AC Milan on Thursday, in the first leg of the Round of 16 Europa League tie, and unless we rediscover some form, it could be another bad day at the office.

Check out today’s Arsecast Extra

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Mootilated
Mootilated

Ok mate.

Too Drunk To Be Offside
Too Drunk To Be Offside

Just enough of these bromides Kos. End this fking endless PR drive to tell fans how sorry you lot are. The truth is you aren’t and you don’t care. If you or the clown who is called the Arsenal manager, did then things would have been stopped well before it got this point to begin with.

Just fk off the whole lot of you.

Gooner223
Gooner223

The anguish is painted on ALL their faces, for all to see. To suggest they don’t care is foolish. Sure, it’s PR and PR is mostly bullshit – the Club simply just cannot stop communicating to the masses …. but to suggest no one cares? Sorry mate, spurned or not, I don’t subscribe to that.

Too Drunk To Be Offside
Too Drunk To Be Offside

Its easy to forget the anguish when they are paid what they are. Its just about the $$$ and not the pride. Its clear as daylight. They have no pride in them. If they did they would show some fight, but they don’t.

They are happy to turn up and cash in the cheques at the end of the game. This attitude starts from the over-rated overpaid crap Wenger and filters down to the rest of the team.

Have you seen any of the recent games. Does that lot look like they give a fking sh!t on the field.

Mein Bergkampf

It’s interesting how in today’s podcast neither party could foresee us losing upcoming games against teams like Newcastle, Stoke and Southampton. I think this is the problem inherent at the club. As much as we fuck it up, we all secretly believe that we are going to witness a miracle. And I’m guessing the powers that be do too. If we just keep trudging along, it’ll come right as much out of law of averages than any kind of rejuvenation. This attitude has infected our club and now we just hang around waiting for things to come good without any real application to do something about it. In this culture, Wenger will never be fired as we are only ever one game away from turning that mythical corner.

Runcorn Gooner
Runcorn Gooner

Meaningless words….show us action on Thursday

Jean Ralphio
Jean Ralphio

Arsenal fans and those of other clubs often say the same about Wenger. That he is overpaid and doesn’t care if the club doesn’t do well because he is very well paid. That is also an unfair argument too. Wenger may or may not be a good manager. But when teams don’t do well it’s usually a lot of factors that come into play. Just to be clear I do think we need a change of manager.

clins
clins

I dont think we should feel sorry for wenger . He may care that arsenal are in a rut but he can try do something to change that. Tactically he is no longer capable to manage arsenal , but its the other issues like not rotating the player that are outof form and not buying players that we need that I am truly amazed about. I meAN with all the goals we were conceding at the beginning of this season wengers priority was to buy a striker and an attacking midfielder. no baackup to bellerin who has ran to ground this season no goalkeeper and certainly no defender other than a 20 year old one. wenger is truly incapable of understanding the basic problem with the team or he is not even trying that hard.

Twisted cuntloks
Twisted cuntloks

Don’t the players already work hard Kos?

The Loon Ranger
The Loon Ranger

Got to say that what bothers me more, no in actual fact pisses me right off is the feeling that the people on the pitch who are paid very well to carry my hopes and aspirations haven’t tried to turn this around before. I can take losing to a better side like City but the teams we’ve lost against this season shouldn’t even get close to our skill and talent.

SharpasFc
SharpasFc

Wow with fans like you who needs enemas?

IamaGoober

I think whats really interesting is you constantly hear this team and the manager talking about confidence. That seems to be nailed on the route cause of all our issues.

For me, there is a huge correlation to our performances under Wenger when we are playing ‘with’ and then ‘without’ confidence. The differences are truly remarkable.

Which sadly does speak to the detriment of Arsene’s management style. When your backs up against the wall, and the pressure is on, you need to be able to deliver. This is where the ‘go out there and express yourself.’ philosophy hits a glass ceiling.

Because in high pressure situations you need something to fall back on, so everything becomes second nature. There’s a reason why special forces train for hours and hours and hours on their weapons training and other drills. Because when they’re in that moment they know that fear will potentially play a role in their actions, and the way you deal with fear of failure, is by being well trained to handle any situation that may present itself.

And that is the reason why at Arsenal we always seem to fall apart at the majority of these mental hurdles. Its because we don’t have that well drilled methodical training running in the back of the players minds to help them deal with the adversity of encountering problems. We just basically say, good luck, you can figure it out.

Take Man City as a prime example. Everyone lauds their build up play and precise passing into the oppositions half. Their build up play is exactly the same as when Pep was at Barcelona. It may look like it, but it isn’t this off the cuff free flow passing. Those players under his instruction know what to do when they pick up the ball and exactly who to pass it to. If Kyle Walker is on the ball, 10 yards into the opposition half, Pep has drilled him on what to do. He know’s he has to look for player X. If player X can’t take the ball, then he has to look for player Y. If player Y cant take the ball he has to look for player Z and so on and so on.

And likewise for the defensive off the ball work as well. He will know as per Pep’s instruction that if he loses the ball in that same position, he knows what he has to do in order to resolve the issue he has caused. He knows whether to drop off; squeeze the ball; call for help.. whatever it is. He again is drilled on what to do.

At Arsenal, there is none of the above. Nobody really knows what to do on the ball, and off the ball, its all just go out there and let your quality dictate your decisions, and as much as that used to work back in the late 90’s and early 00’s – that doesn’t fly now, because most of the top sides under the top managers now drill their players with similar ideas, not the same as Peps of course, but the whole principles behind using the ball, and working as team when not on the ball.

Thats the difference. A

Highbury
Highbury

Exactly the point i wanted to make, and well put. Cheers.

Mayor McCheese
Mayor McCheese

Agree. Well said. B

GoonerN16

@Goober,
I 100% agree. Its obvious that there is no form, no structure or structural foundation to fall back on and consequently the team flails around, looking clueless.. and inevitably no team work (Wenger and Bould’s call).
City’s team work is a joy to watch whereas Arsenal are painful to watch 95% of the time nowadays..Its sad..

Billy Bob
Billy Bob

Top quality comment, I still can’t believe the slump that followed the 49 game unbeaten run came to an end!!!! Totally ridiculous it was one game and getting beaten was going to happen but why one defeat in 50 had such an impact smacks of fragile confidence!!!!

Piesporterfootie
Piesporterfootie

I wanted to say, i am sick of hearing the word “confidence”! Just play some damn football, don’t LOSE the football constantly, and learn how to defend.

ChrisGoona
ChrisGoona

In any professional sport, job, and in life, confidence plays a huge role. You can’t simply ignore it. Every player from every team has a level of confidence which fluctuates. Ideally you would keep everyone’s confidence high, but you would need a good foundation to fall back on when confidence is low. The way I see it, Arsenal lack structure and organisation, and rely on free-flowing confident football. When we are on form, and confident, we can beat anyone. This a fault with the coaching setup you have to say.

loose_cannon
loose_cannon

Spot on

IamaGoober

Cheers lads.

PersonFace
PersonFace

The way we’re playing, I don’t think we can get 13 points from 9 games, let alone make up a 13 point gap. I have zero idea how things are going to turn around in the short term, and I don’t think Arsene does either. Jesus, this season is incredibly depressing.

Made Arsenal Great Again
Made Arsenal Great Again

How about not making school boy errors. Let’s start there and see how far it goes

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

“It is difficult to say if it is his fault or our fault.” You expect Kos to say: “It is our fault, we must fight for the manager. He deserves that”. A proof that dressing room is lost.

EZD
EZD

Very good point.

I can’t remember a player ever publicly saying that a slump in form might be the manager’s fault.

B-O-T
B-O-T

Interesting reading about Keown’s theory on Aubameyang getting dragged down by the mood around the team. Imagine what himself and Mkhit must have made of that player meeting when player[s] broke down in tears. The Milan game is huge now, these players need to stop messing about and become difficult to beat.

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

It was Arsenal habit to get eliminated in CL after a first game where they got beaten badly by the likes of Bayern or even Monaco and almost win enough the second game to go through. In that second game, they put everything they had. A high tempo game from the beginning to the end at all level on the pitch. This is the second year where that motivation has completely disappeared in them. Why knowing the risk is high they do not make the top four, we haven’t seen only one of these throw-in everything games ? Why ?

Heiku Staude

Ive noticed arseblog does not report on these supposed dressing room “leaks” like the story about the player meeting, but they do report on other unsubstantiated rumours regarding the manager and transfers. Does anybody know why? I am not familiar with the UK press outside of this website.

Sam
Sam

Honestly I think we have individually great players but the sad thing is most of them have lost their way under AW. Bellerin was one of the best RB’s around not so long ago Kolasnic voted the best in LB Germany last season… Auba, Mihki, Ozil, Wilshere, Ramsey Kos. All of these are really good individual players maybe not ‘title winning’ collectively but definitely a team of individuals who should challenge at least, we just need a manager who can get them going and sadly that’s not AW.

Charvakan

Sam, you have it right. Not only is this a talented bunch, but we have a lot of hard workers with a will to win. People focus on Xhaka, Mustafi, and Ozil for their (real and perceived) mental lapses or lack of effort, but there’s no doubting Koscielny’s commitment, or Ramsey’s or Monreal’s or Cech’s or Bellerin’s etc. This group could be in the top four with a different manager. Wenger gets his tactics wrong, does not make required adjustments, and obviously is not preparing the team properly. I have no idea what Steve Bould is there for; the defense is terribly disorganized. How are the players supposed to overcome all that? Ignore instructions and agree amongst themselves to play a different formation? And when they do get into bad habits or fail to play as well as they can, Wenger takes no steps to correct it. Even the benching of players is explained as a phantom minor injury so as not to hurt the player’s feelings. These are young men who have always excelled; they’re apt to accept excuses such as Wenger serves up for poor performances.

Even an inexperienced manager could get more out of these guys now. Wenger was never a master tactician. He has only gotten worse in that department over the years. Where he excelled was in man management and developing talent, but now he’s lost those abilities. What’s left? Just a fading reputation, and it is not enough. The players respect him as a man but not as a manager, and it shows.

Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia
Eternal Titi Berg Pat Nostalgia

Good points, I always expect some of the former players who played under Wenger when he was winning to say he is (or even was) an extraordinary coach but all you hear is that he is a great man. Gallas said training sessions at Arsenal were about ”little games”, Clichy and Nasri: Training sessions are much harder at City. A long time ago (before he worked under Pep), a journalist was trying to curb Henry to say Wenger was the greatest coach he ever had but he responded Capello who in fact didn’t treat him right. Players are not impressed by Wenger’s technical side as you would expect.

Newxieland
Newxieland

Past few weeks reminds me of Spurs under Ramos… its uncommon but massive slumps in form does occur.

Please just let this season end…

ramgooner
ramgooner

Just drop Xhaka in away games and we’ll be fine. The guy is single-handedly disrupting our football. Sell him and buy a couple of midfielders. We’ll see an entirely different Arsenal in midfield and attack.

Alex
Alex

And when a manager puts an Özil aside to let a Xhaka shot all the FK, then something is wrong.

Charvakan

To be fair, Xhaka’s free kicks were not the problem Sunday, and I don’t see Elneny doing better offensively. But yeah, despite the assist, he wasn’t very good on the day.

BringBackSeaman
BringBackSeaman

…and Iwobi… I like the kid I do.. but this level is WAY above him.. he constantly loses the ball.. all the time.. every game.. he did it twice against Brighton, the first time let them in 1on1 with cech who made a great save. (From left back position). But his inability to complete a pass means moves break down and we get attacked.

Igor Stepanovs
Igor Stepanovs

He looked quality when he broke through. I don’t believe he’s playing above his level but his confidence looks in the gutter. He’s a young player and Wenger doesn’t trust any of his more senior options there so he won’t drop him.

Berlingoon
Berlingoon

They’re all crying out for support from the fans. Maybe the fans should think a bit about the fact that they’re making the situation worse with their constant whining and abusing of players and manager. But no, can’t be true. We have the best fans in the world who would deserve the CL trophy every other year based on their fantastic support, right?

Berlingoon
Berlingoon

Form is temporary, class is permanent. Wasn’t that our motto over the years? Which fucking class are you talking about? The class that whenever an arsenal player posts something on social media there are thousands of “fans” telling them they’re shit and need to fuck off? Yeah, we’re such a classy club.

kaius
kaius

The ‘blame it on fans’ bandwagon is over mate. We’ve gone way past that point. And social media abuse is a generational problem, not a club problem.

Our issues will only be solved by manager, players and the board. Don’t think Arsenal fans writing love letters to Xhaka on instagram or 60,000 fans turning up at the Emirates with pom-poms and doing North Korea-style synchronized cheerleading in the stands is gonna help much.

Berlingoon
Berlingoon

Yeah, what a silly thought to expect support from our supporters in hard times. Really. Everything bad is just a general problem. Our fans are responsible for nothing.
And you’re right. Only 30.000 fans in the stadium that are going to boo every bad pass helps way more. And always good to compare support with dictatorship. Oh lord.

BringBackSeaman
BringBackSeaman

kaius : “…North Korea-style synchronized cheerleading in the stands is (not) gonna help much”

… Give the fans who go to games something interesting to watch.
…And give another thing for that prick Gary Neville to say is disgraceful about us.

Berlingoon
Berlingoon

There where times when “you’re only singing when you’re winning” was an abuse for supporters. You guys seem to be proud of that. We are only supporting the team if they play good. Yeah, that’s when they need the support most. But it’s a general problem in understanding what being a supporter means. You’re not there to have a good time. You’re there to support your team through good and bad times. If you’re not able to do this, you haven’t deserved good times. Period.

Charvakan

You make valid points, Berlingoon. The criticism of the players is over the top and more than a little nutso. They’re wearing the shirt, they’ve devoted their young lives to being the best footballers they can be, and of course they want to win. But the supporters have gotten used to an Arsenal that plays closer to its potential, one that does not get bullied by teams with a quarter or less of their wage bill. Some anger is justified. I just wish people would focus it on the only guy who can do anything about it: Stan Kroenke.

kaius
kaius

‘Let’s keep supporting the club and the players’ is something we can all get behind.

‘Arsenal are not a classy club because idiots abuse Bellerin on social media’ is just daft.

I’ve supported Arsenal for 28 years. Some fans have probably put in twice that time. I’m not gonna tell other people how to support their club as if they’re kids who don’t have minds of their own.

We’ve had two decades with this manager. Over the years he’s been given more support by our fanbase than 99% of managers will ever get from a football club.

To be honest I don’t think you understand Arsenal as a club very well. We’re not a Bundesliga club, where everyone cheers because the fans part-own the club and tickets and beer are cheap. Our stadium literally raises more match-day revenue from fans than ANY other major European football stadium. But “we don’t understand what being a supporter means” right??

We’re a unique club with unique issues. Don’t bother trying to fit us into your fantasy cookie-cutter vision of what ‘proper support’ should be.

Berlingoon
Berlingoon

The only argument why arsenal fans have the right to be more harsh with their team is always the ticket prices. I come over 2-3 times a year. I pay more for these visits than a fucking season ticket costs. So don’t tell me a shit about spending money. But I do that on a free will. So I have no right to complain about the money spent, when the results don’t get our way. The quality of the support has nothing to do with how much money you spend.

Donald\'s Trump
Donald\'s Trump

Support the club. Not the manager, he’s not bigger than the club.

Chippys chip
Chippys chip

Get the motto and the chants right or feck off. Wenger out kroenke out.

SharpasFc
SharpasFc

Do you actually care about what Gary Neville has to say…I mean his managerial career didn’t exactly go very well did it?

SharpasFc
SharpasFc

I agree with your comments. I’m as frustrated as the next person with how we are playing and where we are going, but it rarely works out well when fans continually criticise the players. My home town team are in similar dire straits this season. Calls for the managers head have been met with a stony silence and the fans have got ugly and started booing the players home and away. I’m pretty certain the team will get relegated. Those players came out on social media calling for backing from the fans to similar derision etc. I’ll support Arsenal no matter what but increasingly it worries me that fans have such tunnel vision and it feels that nothing will ever be good enough.

jon fox
jon fox

I would have said the fans have been more than supportive, considering the rubbish we have played and the lack of motivation shown REGULARLY by so many players over many years now. Til very recently the ground has been full and frankly this lot in red shirts DON’T deserve great and over patient fans like us. I have passionately wanted Wenger out ever since 2007-8, and since I STARTED ATTENDING IN 1958 TIL LAST SEASON , WHEN I FINALLY RESOLVED TO GIVE THESE MANY HALF HEARTED PLAYERS NO MORE MONEY WHILE WENGER STAYS, I CONSIDER MYSELF-AND I AM TYPICAL- more than patient. The club is broken while Wenger stays, as all sensible fans well know but, pathetically, there does not seem to be the will to repair it, by sacking Wenger. In life ,financially hard pressed fans should NOT be giving support to pampered multi millionaires, UNLESS those spoilt rich kids start earning respect. By fighting for the shirt!

Berlingoon
Berlingoon

In 2 of the 3 seasons before Wenger arrived we finished 12th and 10th in the league. But surely a 6th place is the worst in our entire history and Wenger has ruined our club. Muppets.

kaius
kaius

And in the 7-8 seasons before that we had won 2 league titles.

But some of you act like Wenger arrived and constructed the club brick by brick and we should keep kissing his feet as long as we’re not in 10th place.

berlingoon
berlingoon

The fact is he has won 3 championships and 7 FA cups, which makes it a total of 10 major trophies in 21 years. Thats basically one every 2 seasons. Before he arrived we won 10 championships, 6 FA cups and 2 European trophies. Makes a total of 18 in 110 years. One trophy every 6 seasons. Additionally we never had such seasons in between where we finished 10th or 12th what we always had in our history. That’s why a sixth place, his worst season in 22 years, is seen as a disaster. Plus we have managed to move to a bigger stadium and have financed that by ourselves during that time. So where in hell is he ruining our club or anything? The only thing he’s maybe ruining is his own legacy to a certain degree. But that’s his decision. If he’s willing to take that risk, so be it. But the club he will leave behind one day will be way better equipped for the next decades than the one he took over 21 years ago.

berlingoon
berlingoon

And please don’t tell me that the FA Cup isn’t a big trophy anymore. That trophy is so deep in our history that I really hate those fans who are dismissing it as Mickey Mouse Cup or anything. Same with the Europa League. As if we should be ashamed to win that. We have won one UEFA Cup and one Cup winners Cup in our whole history and our fans act like the Europa League isn’t worth winning. I really don’t know where that comes from. When in our history have we done something that justifies this kind of thinking? We are not Bayern, Real or Barca. I know Gazidis once said that we are on the way becoming like them. And in terms of wages and spendings we actually are almost there. But that would be the first time in our history that Arsenal would be a real european giant. We’ve not fallen from there. We have never been there.

Kwame Ampadu Down
Kwame Ampadu Down

‘That’s why a sixth place, his worst season in 22 years, is seen as a disaster.’

But that’s just not true…the reason it’s seen as a disaster is because it was so predictable. Last season clearly wasn’t a one off out of the CL places : it was the start of a number of seasons out of the CL places unless the major issues in the squad were addressed. Which they weren’t. (& will not be with Arsene in charge) The FA cup win was glorious but it could not hide that fact.
Believe it or not I actually admire your optimism & your loyalty and I do agree with quite a bit of what you say….but you ruin a lot of it with this whole attitude of ‘anyone who wants Arsene understands nothing at all & isn’t a real supporter’..
As an example…me personally…I love Arsene. It will be the saddest say in my 40 years supporting the club when he goes….but the later it happens, the sadder it will be because every season he stays on he is both reducing the goodwill toward him & making his successor’s job even harder. He is simply not up to the job any more. I don’t even understand how anyone can think that’s worth debating any more.

(actually, I take a bit of the above back. Rocky dying was my saddest day as a Gooner…but Arsene leaving will be second)

Kwame Ampadu Down
Kwame Ampadu Down

I meant ‘anyone who wants Arsene out..’ obviously….

berlingoon
berlingoon

It’s not about Arsene in or out. It’s about the bahavior of the fans. It’s about raising “Arsene Out” banners as soon as your team goes 1-0 down to an individual error of one single player. It’s about saying every week that the league campaign is over anyway and then wondering when the players find it hard to motivate themselves especially in such negative surroundings. It’s about abusing the players on social media whenever they post anything and then wondering when the players dont come to the fans after the games or don’t want to extend their contracts. It’s about thinking about what you, as a supporter, could do to actually help the team instead of always complaining how shit they all are. Everybody can have his opinion. It’s about how we present ourselves to the world. And at the moment the quality of our support is well below the quality of the team’s performances.

Kwame Ampadu Down
Kwame Ampadu Down

I think it is though. Maybe it’s sub conscious… I think after 3/4 years of arguing that those who wanted Arsene gone were utterly wrong, it’s too hard to accept they might have been right all along & so turning the focus on to them is a distraction from the real issues & allows the anger to be aimed on the same direction.
In terms of Arsenal’s problems…our support is an issue (as it is at EVERY club)…but the Board, Manager & player failings are far, far, far more damaging than that of the supporters.

berlingoon
berlingoon

they haven’t been right because Arsene has won 3 FA cups in these 4 years which is for me a fantastic achievement. And I’m very happy that he’s the most decorated manager in this cup’s history. Makes me as proud as the fact that we are the record cup winner. Because I know our history and that it’s not normal to win things. Get it?

Kwame Ampadu Down
Kwame Ampadu Down

Get it ? Really ? Ffs. I give up.

berlingoon
berlingoon

Maybe you should stop telling people what they actually think and why they think it and just make your point. I write about how I feel supporters should act towards the team and the manager and you are trying to tell me that I feel that way because I don’t agree with the Wenger out guys, which is complete nonsense. I for example never was a fan of Xhaka. Thought he was overrated already when he played at Gladbach. Don’t find him any likeable as a person, too. But as soon as he has the shirt on I fucking support him because my personal opinion is not important. The success of the team is.

Superfrog
Superfrog

Unfortunately , getting Wenger out as you wish out will not propel Arsenal to be PL champions – Apart from Leicester and Blackburn , who won it once , the only teams which have won the PL more than once since the PL was founded are – guess who ? And if you look at the other 3 teams which have done it , check how many times they have finished outside the top 4 in AW era – the record of AW —2 years in 22 years outside the top 4 and 20 years in the top 4 – name one other team to have that record in the PL . The nature of football is that many things need to go your way to be champion – budget , players wages , coach , FAN SUPPORT , luck and form ….. whether you are Barcelona , Bayern , United , Milan , Real , Chelsea , Arsenal , you willl have bad seasons once in a while ….if fans turn against their team and manager , that is no way to achieve trophies …now is when you get behind your team ….

Chippys chip
Chippys chip

Feck off. Wengerout

Joe Bloggs
Joe Bloggs

We finished 12 in 94-95 and 5th in 95-96. Not 10th. GG won 2 league titles in 9 years, AW won 3 in 22+ years. Arsenal is not Wenger and we have had better managers in the past.

kaius
kaius

Well said. I have a huge amount of respect for the fans who fill up the stadium and especially for the band of warriors that travel to away games.

I was done with Wenger after that 2008-9 season because I thought he had tactical blind-spots that would keep holding us back in European games. But I’ve continued to support my club and respect the reasons why many have kept the faith with him for so many years.

In Gazidis’ own words, it’s now the club’s job to win back the fans. They made a huge mistake giving Wenger another contract and it’s their responsibility to fix it.

Greg
Greg

By all accounts he was crying in the team meeting. Fuck me

Joe Bloggs
Joe Bloggs

At least he cares, Ozil was probably leafing through the holiday brochures for his next trip away.

Toure motors
Toure motors

Talking like djorou, and unfortunately defending like him too

Stuart
Stuart

There are a lot of players in this squad that I doubt, but not him. I know his current form is dreadful, and as a senior player he carries a large share of responsibility for the poor team performance, but this player has been a significant force for this club for many years. The fact that he is being dragged down with the rest of them reinforces what a bad state this club is in.

A Different George
A Different George

I don’t think Koscielny can play two games in a week anymore. He is a much different player when rested–still looks like a first-rate defender. Maybe never vocal enough to be a captain on the pitch, organizing the defensive play (though apparently well-respected and a leader in the dressing room). But not deserving of some of these comments.

ididntpay
ididntpay

“Lads it’s Arsenal”

That is how low we have sunk…

lula
lula

Not exactly taking full responsibility here. It’s the manager, I’m sure they want a change too.

QMantis
QMantis

We have way to many fragile players in this squad every season they loose confidence. Not at your best or bad form I understand and happens to everyone but collectively and consistently imploding at some point regularly season after season is something completely different. Players that can’t pass, mistakes littered across the pitch, team loosing it’s shape, charging forward with out a care for defending, crabbing side to side slowly going nowhere, can’t keep a clean sheet, struggle to create chances ect…the list is endless.
The team has an unbalanced midfield that neither supports the defence or feeds the fowards and is to light weight.
We’ve got problems that go back years and years but by building unbalanced teams around theses types of skillful but weak players has proven not to work over the course of a premier league season.

Joe Bloggs
Joe Bloggs

He should say what he really thinks – ‘he has a dodgy ankle and plays in pain and does not have the physical abilities he used to. Plus he is paired with muppets and he has never had any decent coaching because his myopic manager wont let one of the best defenders of his era (Bould) do anything more than put out cones’.

A Different George
A Different George

And you know about Bould’s role (or any other assistant) because?

Joe Bloggs
Joe Bloggs

various rumours and the fact that he seems to just sit there and do bugger all. Same thing happened with Pat Rice.
Maybe i am wrong, but since Keown got some credit for the CL clean sheets run, with a back 4 including Senderos, Wenger seems to want to restrict influence of anyone else.

Flashman71
Flashman71

Understand what you are saying but I disagree about pat rice who was a far better assistant coach than bould and I believe had far more input and impact than him. I would have felt far more relaxed and positive with pat rice having to take over in any caretaker manager role than I ever would bould. I don’t think the latter is that bright to be honest. Rice (who I met twice on Arsenal coaching camps) was a top coach (read some of the past wenger era’s player’s comments on him and his input).As an Arsenal man through and through who was at the club for many many years before wenger arrived I really feel pat rice was a far less “yes man” than bould is and a far better and more experienced coach.

Igor Stepanovs
Igor Stepanovs

Come on… Wenger deserves heavy criticism for the way things are right now but don’t act like Wengers tutelage has been anything but good for koscielny.

Robins Boost
Robins Boost

Still too much talk. Juat stay away from the media. Focus. Get out of this shit. Can start by dropping mustafi.

Rectum Spectrum
Rectum Spectrum

oh god…the Arsenal PR machine. pick a fan favorite and hope he can distract them from the reality.

Not your fault Kos – but they’ve set you up to look like a mug.

There is only one thing Arsenal fans want to hear now…and it usually comes from the Chief Executive. “……and thank him for all his years of dedicated service, wishing him all the best for the…..”

santori
santori

Arsenal PR sucks.

Koscielny has been poor last couple of games.

How he escapes critcism and Mustafi draws the lightning rod is typical of the same mentality that use to blame Flamini.

Look where our midfield is now without Flamini.

We were poor as is with Flamini but we are abject now (although admittedly Granit and Jack have been semi- decent last two games, our issues now coming from the flanks)

Coquelin the same voices touted as solution leaked 14 goals in 7 games in concert with Ramsey (whom Flamini had to play with and presided over wins against City and Olympiakos away in that season…and without a number of our bigger guns)

The same simple voices now want AMN in midfield.

Daft.

Stuck on repeat...
Stuck on repeat...

The poblem is that “hard work” & a “focus on our next game” plus “preparation” unfortunately really doesn’t seem to be working. We consistently are slow out of the gate, look out of ideas, unprepared, & just desperately slow & pondorous. Predictable from the get go & unable to change. This all indicates that there are deep issues at foot, & for most of us these start at the top with the silent owner, & now equally silent & invidible board.

The owner & board either support the manager (in which case say something to protect the man)…or they don’t (in which case again fot the love of Arsenal say something to prevent this misery). As for the players, again you’re professionals. If you believe in the manager then deliver performances worthy of this & him (because you’re not)…If you no longer believe in him, then keep up your ineptitude as it will only lead to one outcome. But don’t be surprised with the fan base treating you with equal contempt. Regardless of how much there is the need for AW to go….he has delivered & given more for Arsenal FC than any of our current line up ever will – even combined.

A complete shambles both on the pitch & off of it.

santori
santori

The whole balance and shape of this team is fundamentally poor.

We have ceded pace and some creative strength out wide for Mhkitaryan who is the same as Ozil and Ramsey.

Hence we prefer to pass through the middle or go side to side.

There is no Giroud either because we were distracted getting Aubameyang rather than work on Lacazette.

Nor do we have players who can beat a defender or two on their own to open space up for us and drag the other team out of shape.

We need instead fullbacks to provide the pace which leaves issues in the spaces they vacate as they are often caught too high up (and that includes Monreal)

This is the problem.

Granted Wenger is tactically allergic to critical intervention during a game, we are not providing him with the sort of tools he needs to play an self interpretive game either.

Hulk
Hulk

It is total crap, we have all played some form of sports before.
You can create it by putting in a hard tackle, getting hyped up, shout at the other players to get stuck in and immediately change the momentum or…you can just wait for some random act of kindness to change it for you.
This team from owner to goalie, including the manager, need to grow a pair.

A Different George
A Different George

With respect, I think this is the sort of “analysis” that comes from (a) ex-journeymen defenders for clubs like Stoke and Boro who have managed to achieve a commentary position in the gantry, and (b) Americans who watch the NFL.

Hulk
Hulk

So when Sangna said f*ck this and just went for it against Sp*rs that was a reaction that the team and fans couldn’t get behind?

santori
santori

I will always put Sagna on a pedestal.

He was a MASSIVE player for us if anything for that moment.

Looking for a new excuse
Looking for a new excuse

Didn’t they ride the whole “lacking confidence” horse last season?

santori
santori

You get to experience it over and over again.

Money back guarantee.

UpNorth
UpNorth

Working hard is only good when you work on the right things. Underperforming have a lot of reasons,it doesn’t need to be lack of will, but mental factors.
Typical for Arsenal now are that the players don’t want to do errors, hence all the safe passes sideways and backwards and they don’t want to get the ball. If somebody have the guts to watch the Brighton game again, see all the passes which could go forward with ease, but went side- or backways. See also the movements when we try to play from behind, no movement upfront, specially midfielders.
Work hard on a rough defensive structure, then pass and move and finally told the squad that the season is f*d anyway, lets try to play proper fotball

santori
santori

It goes sideways because of the make up of the team.

We do not have the sort of players out wide now who can add pace or creativity.

We do not have players like Santi or Alexis who can beat a player or two on their own, take the shape out of the opponent’s defense.

When you take out Bellerin, we have no pace out wide. Bellerin is tasked with too much.

Because we don’t have the pace, we end up bombing our fullbacks/wingbacks forward and we get caught out with the space they vacate.

The Cbacks have to cover and that in turn creates a panic particularly as well since our midfield is slow coming back.

Granit has been actually decent last couple of games and Jack has been OK. we have not suffered as much through the middle but now the problem comes from the wide areas.

215Arse
215Arse

Yawn

gunnertron
gunnertron

Our rapid decline began when we lost tow of our key players in some shape or form. Cazorla, with his injuries and We have not seen the same Koscielny after that Bayern game. The biggest shame is that we have had no one able to step up and take some of that burden in defense and hindsight. Chambers and Holding are miles away and Mustafi… well. Getting in a defender in the January window should have happened, would probably have saved us many points. Fuck we are in such a mess.

santori
santori

Sad to say but Mustafi is our best defender.

He has come up also with some huge blocks for us but there are lapses in his game.

Koscielny (we should have expected) is on the decline. Why we let go of an improving gabriel is beyond me (not saying he was the best of course)

Instead we placed (foolishly) trust in Holding, Chambers, neither of whom have shown sustained delivery on promise

For the kind of SHITE thinking that pervades some fans, see the crap spewed against mustafi and then the corresponding lavish praise on Holding.

Its the same nonsense frankly that revolves around giving AMN “a chance” in midfield because it can’t be any worse…yes it can.

then there’s the addition of yet another 22yr old in Mavropanos. Again another brilliant January buy when we needed frankly a more experience player that is not Johnny Evans.

How Mavropanos is to develop by polishing the bench is anyone’s guess.

I just feel Wenger has to settle on either back 3 or back 4, let the Cbacks and fullbacks work it out together as a unit.

BUT our problems are much more than simply defense. Defense starts from the top.

Last couple of games, the centre (with Granit) has actually been decent.

The problem is the wing areas.

As I have mentioned many times, we are an unbalanced team thanks to January window (arguably before, January exaccerbated the problems)

Because we were forced to take on Mhkitaryan (a player similar in mold to Ozil and Ramsey) we have shed pace and creative players able to take on 2 or 3 at a time, help pull apart a defense (see what Sane and Izquediero did to us, what Alexis use to help us with)

That means the width in the team is provided by overlapping fullbacks.

Again against City, the Mancs did not have to fully commit either of their fullbacks because they had genuine wingers able to occupy the space left vacant by our fullbacks bombing forward.

Its a big ask for both Bellerin and Kolasinac (or AMN or the aging Monreal) to cover the space. Indeed Monreal has on more than several occasions been caught too far up at detriment to our defensive shape when facing a counter.

This is a problem.

We need to fix it.

When we press in unison, we can cover for our shortfall in wide areas. Whether we can sustain this press of course is the issue. It just takes one or two players to drop their levels and gaps start to appear.

Charvakan

Maybe if he played the accordion in the dressing room before games it would cheer the lads and inspire them.

santori
santori

He’s been poor last two games but somehow rates higher than Mustafi.

santori
santori

We get no proper instructions from Wenger and Bould.

Too many changes to the backline. Not enough sync with the team defending as a whole over a sustain period. Too many details not carefully followed.

The whole vibe from the bench seems like one of resignation.

We had 7 minutes of injury time but on one on the bench stood up to communicate this to the team, get them to play quicker and move the ball forward.

Watch Adrian Clarke dissect the match against Brighton.

Said the same thing regarding our fundamental issue which is a lack of speed.

Aside from Aubameyang (who gets hammed in because of his position and the opponents we play), we have bled pace and creativity out wide.

We have not replaced that instead were forced to take Mhkitaryan who is a similar player to Ramsey and Ozil.

As a result, the whole game for us gets funneled into the middle which is easy to defend against.

We don’t have the sort of player to pick apart defenses from an angled run out wide nor do we have ANY player who can beat 2 or 3 players on his own accord. We have plenty of pass and move merchants which means when we hit a wall, we go side to side or try to go through the eye of a needle.

AND we sold the sledgehammer that could nominally have given us a different approach in breaking down teams packed deep in their half.

The lack of width means the full/wing backs have to push forward to make the difference. OFTEN times (And YES Monreal has been guilty in this too), they are caught too far up and the Cbacks are then dragged out of position to cover.

With that sort of duress on the defense, something will give.

Contrast City (and even Brighton) with Sane or Izquediero. They don’t need to commit the fullbacks as much.

This whole team has got worse since the January window.

It was foolish to let Mslintat and company a free hand at no consideration to actual team balance or strategic implications and WE ARE NOW PAYING FOR IT.

Sure the manager is also a problem with his lack of incisive tactical intervention but the whole new set up does not compensate for his bad points.

It was a rubbish January window to say the least.

santori
santori

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zb-ZAkpRJdw

Interesting overview on AC Milan and Gatusso peddling new ‘tactics’

Two things :

1) Strikes me how similar issues are between them and us particularly in lack of wide options, needing fullbacks to overload, problems with space between the line and counters behind the fullbacks when committed. Understanding them may also be key to understanding our own faults and merits which may bear on success in forth coming game.

2) Its almost as if we need a 3 at the back to be fully secure in pushing our fullbacks up. OTOH, Milan have (much like us) been doing it with a four at the back but with the Regista in Biglia dropping to form the third defender when the fullbacks are commited. In our case, we are more careless with Granit not as disciplined in role. If we can keep him more restricted, it may be more beneficial to us because he can switch play for us quickly. Jack or Ramsey and Mhkitaryan can then push forward. The alternative is the more limited but diligent Elneny.

AC Milan have improved under Gatusso but not tremedously either and still have faults.

BUT the difference between them and us would be in conviction. They have better faith in Gatusso at the moment where we have a lack of belief in Wenger.

This could be critical but we need to find a way to have some mental resilience.

santori
santori

At the San Siro :

………………………………Welbeck……………………………….
………………Ozil………………………………..Mhki………………
……………………….Jack……………..Ramsey……………………
Kolasinac……………………..Elneny………………………Bellerin
………………..Koscielny………………….Mustafi…………………
………………………………..Ospina………………………………..

1) Welbeck just has to concentrate on his first touch. Secure that and try to take on the Milan Cbacks on the break with pace and power thereafter. They are not the quickest. When defending, he needs to assert pressure on Biglia their DM.

2) Jack(or Granit) and Ramsey need to interperate their responsibilities . Milan play 2 in front and 2 behind in midfield. Ozil and Mhki can put pressure on the back pair but Jack (or Granit) and Ramsey must understand when to push into the gap and when to hold back in caution. This is the most difficult role in the team as it requires a bit of concentration and thought. Taking turns, they have to cover the middle because when the ball gets turned over with our fullbacks committed high up, our Cbacks will be drawn wide.

3) Elneny I almost prefer to Granit in an away fixture where we have to exercise a bit more caution. The Swiss provides more girth going forward but Elneny may be useful rotating in with the Cbacks to cover any lapses. It may mean us being slightly lighter up top but also more cautious which isn’t necessarily a bad thing by any means given current form.

4) Not sure how recovered Monreal is. Kolasinac did some good things going forward. he needs to be covered better by Ozil or Jack if he should be caught high up (ditto Mhki and Ramsey on other side). All this formation is moot if we do not have application and the trouble is we have dipped in concentration on occasions which have led to overall drop in effort. When we apply pressure in unison, we have been decent but how to sustain this effort (and concentration) has plaqued us all season.

Midfield has got to come back quickly into shape to help the Cbacksd. Often times, we just don’t.

Bottom line is we need to make sure no player is isolated. Its popular to blame Mustafi for everything but frankly he should not have been put in a position where he is the last man on a one on one with no cover. Mistakes will happen but how we cover is key.

5) Overall composure. Things have gone pear shape for us but we need to retain composure and regain a bit of self belief. Gatusso’s team has improved lately but they have similar issues to us and pound for pound, if we play with belief and a bit of common sense (in short supply), we can turn them over.

Jack4343
Jack4343

Arsenal Media Guy: Hey Kos, why don’t you throw this bucket of water on that dumpster fire that is our current club situation.
Kos: Sure thing mate, hey wait, I don’t think that was water!

JustDoneIt
JustDoneIt

Wow hard work, who’d have guessed it…

Podb
Podb

The last decent defender recommended to Arsenal by heaps of fans and experts was Virgil van Dyk while he was at Celtic. He went to Shampton for fuck all. A fool could see he was top top quality. But not Arsene or Steve. we got
Gabriel and then Mustuffuparsy. Le Prof could have gone out in a blaze of glory with FA Cup v Cheatski. Love the man but he has lost his edge cos of cunty board and Stanley K who both need a half empty stadium to make their move for a new boss. Stay away and make them very afraid. Still want a gd result v Milan tho.

Xhakalaca
Xhakalaca

I don’t understand what’s going on! With Players having WC at the end of the season, they will give all they can to get into their National squads but what I see here is just opposite..

leavemyarselona
leavemyarselona

every body is well paid in top flight football .. so to blame it on money is wrong .. Wenger isnt the only Manager on squillions .. The blame lies in buying the wrong players , especially defenders , who at best are bang average .. when a team plays the same way for 20 odd years it doesnt take too much working out how to beat them .thats why Wenger should go.. not because hes a bad bloke or doesnt care etc