Desi Gunner Archives for January 2010

Communication, Leadership, Organization – Is There A Magic Wand Somewhere?

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In his post match comments after the defeat-like draw against Wigan Arsene talked about the lack of communication at the back.

We need to communicate much better. That's something we need to rectify.

Nobody is taking charge on the organisation side, there is no voice when the focus drops a little bit.

Wigan 2 – 2 Arsenal: Match Thoughts And Individual Analysis

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If you want to understand why many fans think Arsene Wenger makes major tactical mistakes watch this game again.

Eight changes to the starting line-up from the win against Chelsea showed incredible squad depth but it also showed Wenger's tactical weakness. There were just too many players who had either been out for a long time, or were out of form, or haven't really gotten games this season despite being fit thus showing their place in the pecking order.

Thoughts On The Tactics And Starting Eleven Against Wigan

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Ideally, I'd have preferred a week's break after the Chelsea win just to soak it in. That would have been a nice way to celebrate the festive season. I can't quite take my mind off that game. Hopefully, the players will not be in the same state.

I guess the best way to move on from a big win is to win the next game.

Arsenal 3 – 1 Chelsea: Match Thoughts And Individual Analysis

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If you didn't understand Arsene Wenger's faith in this team, watch this game again and again.

If you didn't believe the earlier games between the sides were close and the first goal made a big difference, watch this game again.

I don't want to get too excited over one win. That's not in my nature.

Thoughts On Starting Eleven And Tactics Against Chelsea

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Arsenal can go up. Arsenal can go flat. Arsenal can go down. It's that time of the season and the League table is set up nicely. Come April and May we won't have five teams so close to each other at the top. One or two of the top teams are now going to push on, some will carry on with a stop-start season, and one or two will lag behind.

Benitez’s Woes Highlight Wenger’s Quality

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Rafa Benitez is a very good manager. He's won the Champions League, UEFA Cup, La Liga, FA Cup, and probably a number of other less significant titles. If my memory serves me right the Spaniard also had the upper hand in his battles with the Dark Lord of Anti-Football when the Portuguese was at Chelsea.

Of Man City, Shots From Distance, Crosses, And Defending

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In India, particularly in the north, there is a saying, "sher kabhi ghaas nahin khaata hai". A loose literal translation would be, a lion (no matter how starved he might be) doesn't eat grass. For a football hungry person like me a weekend disrupted by weather spells disaster when the Arsenal game is postponed.

Wilshere Makes A Telling Comment

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The other day I read this article about Wilshere that had a few quotes. A couple of lines stood out.

You never get ahead of yourself, you just can't. Take the boss, for example. He won't say too much but he's never completely pleased.

Even if you've had a good game he'll always say, ‘You could have done this better'.

Is This The ‘Lucky Break’ Arsenal Needed?

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While the postponement of the Stoke fixture has led to a rather boring week for fans, I feel it could just turn out to be the lucky break Arsenal needed.

In terms of personnel, Arsenal will probably have the best team available for the big one against Chelsea. I've not checked the details but it could be the first time in a long while that a full strength Gunners side will meet one of the rivals.

JFK Would Have Understood Arsene Wenger’s Predicament

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A few days back, during the course of some random web surfing, I came across a quote by former US president John F. Kennedy. It took a few moments to sink in but since then I haven't stopped admiring the wisdom captured in just a few words. Moreover, it's extremely relevant in the context of Arsenal FC.

Thoughts On Tactics And Starting Eleven For The Stoke Game

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Arsenal must break this habit of losing two in a row. I realize that it doesn't happen all the time but we've seen successive losses far too often for any fan's liking. This time however, I do feel we should be able to bust the trend on Saturday.

Stoke. What can one say about the Potters? I fell asleep thinking about their game and then woke up with a start due to a nightmare in which another Arsenal player had been Shawcrossed or perhaps more generally, Stoked/Pulised; couldn't see the details as it was a hazy vision and thank God for that!

Analysis Of Arsenal’s Real Defensive Weakness Against United

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I don't think anyone will argue against the fact that Arsenal are defensively weak down their left flank. And as far as mindless criticism goes, it's hardly surprising that Clichy has taken over from the goalkeepers.

Having watched the game again and after looking at the facts there is no doubt the game against United was quite close and could have gone either way.

Szczesny: “We are the best side in the Premier League”

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I often find Player interviews on ATVO offer something interesting. An insight into a player's psyche, thoughts on the spirit within the dressing room, opinions on various issues, or even some personal tidbits; there is something in these that we don't get from regular media coverage. And after listening to his last few interviews, Wojciech Szczesny is fast becoming one of my favourite players.

Tevez Transfer Request, Big Sham Sacking, Fabregas Key To The Season

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I haven't had the chance to look at the United game again or to even study the chalkboards and there is plenty of chat on the internet about that, most of which is just zero-value noise, so I thought it's best to leave that game aside for a day or two. I do want to discuss how Manchester United have a much better organized collective defensive system (best in the League if not the best in the world) but it'll take some work.

Manchester United 1 – 0 Arsenal: Match Thoughts And Individual Analysis

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What a boring game of football.

Manchester United came with a functional defensive approach. Not a surprise there at all, it's something that's worked for them in the past and did so again. So one might safely say their's was an intelligent result oriented approach.

Arsenal clearly made some tactical changes but didn't get the balance right.

Thoughts On Tactical Aspects And Starting Eleven For The United Game

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I'm finding it a bit difficult to make up my mind for this game. I can see Arsenal scoring three goals and I can also imagine us conceding three or four. Goes without saying that anything in between also seems quite possible. We could get a tight win, an exciting draw, or another in the string of bad losses against United.

Arsenal’s Defence Is Actually Much Better This Season!

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All of last season and even at the end of the summer transfer window I was one of the few who maintained that Arsenal didn't need a new Keeper. Almost halfway through the season many fans have come to accept this while some still go on about a Keeper signing with complete disregard to facts and what actually happens on the pitch.

Arsenal 3 – 1 Partizan: Match Thoughts And Individual Analysis

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When I was growing up we used to joke that the Indian Cricket team always provided the audience with value for money in terms of thrills and chills. In those days the Indian cricketers had the ability to turn the easiest of wins into nail-biting encounters. Seems to me, Wenger has been inspired by that lot.

Arsenal V Partizan: Time To Be Solid At The Back

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What should have been a practice game is now a real fight thanks to the lacklustre performances by the second string in the previous two Champions League away games. But I'm confident we should get through to the next phase.

Interestingly though, I'm wondering if getting knocked out of the Champions League would be that bad!

Arsenal V Fulham: Analysis Using Chalkboards

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I was hoping, based on his excellent first attempt, that Stuart Robson will provide interesting insights into the Fulham game in his tactical analysis on ATVO. This time it seems to me that the former Arsenal man got his observations right but his analysis wasn't at the expected level. Still I'd say the show is a fantastic addition to the ATVO subscription service and adds a bit more value for the money.

Arshavin’s Law: “If you do not score, you’ll concede”

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Arsenal's Andrey Arshavin has just created the First Law of Football (the ones created by FIFA don't count, after all even the ref's don't always implement them!)

When asked about Arsenal's failure to turn the early advantage into a game winning score Arshavin said,

Yes.

Arsenal 2 – 1 Fulham: Match Thoughts And Individual Analysis

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Samir Nasri take a bow. Whaddaplaya!

I normally don't go hyper over one player after a game but this match belongs to Nasri. More on this in the course of the write-up.

Top of the League. And a goal that deserves to be first. I almost had three heart attacks in this game but I'm loving it!

Thoughts On Tactics And Starting Eleven Against Fulham

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I used to like Fulham till last year. They were a decent side and played better than many other teams around them in the table. Hodgson was a good manager and tactically he knew how to trouble Arsenal.

Now it's impossible for me like them. And that is down to one man – Mark Hughes, who in my book falls in the same category as Pulis, Brown, et al.

Thoughts On Van Persie’s Position And Formation Change

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Ever since Chamakh signed for Arsenal there has been a question, how will the Moroccan play with Van Persie in the same team. Arsene has in the past mentioned that he will look at various options including a change in formation, something that many fans have been demanding.

Intriguingly enough, we saw Van Persie in a deeper role against Wigan in the Carling Cup.

Do Arsenal Really Need January Signings?

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Arsene Wenger has come out and unequivocally stated that he doesn't see any room for January signings. I'm sure many fans are unhappy with this proclamation by Le Boss. If we make a sum total of the players Arsenal need to sign, based on various opinions on the internet, we need a GK, CB, LB, RB, DM, AM (to replace Fabregas because he is surely going!