Arsenal goes up against Brighton & Hove Albion at the Emirates Stadium this evening, in hopes of putting an end to our six-game Premier League winless run. Whilst the Seagulls are not doing much better, coming into this game on the back of three straight defeats.
Good day all. Despite not doing very well this season the Gunners are just four points off fifth-placed Wolves. However, we got to pick up the pace before the top-four starts getting to far away from the chasing pack.
Freddie Ljungberg had his first run as Arsenal interim boss at Norwich last Sunday, while we did not play particularly well overall, we came from behind twice for a share the points. Of the issues we struggled with during Unai Emery’s tenure were still there. As we still seem too likely to concede regardless of opposition, as well as the over reliance on Bernd Leno at one end of the pitch and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang at the other to keep us in the game.
The Swede noted at his pre-match presser that he identified few areas we need to improve on in order to produce better performances to keep hope alive of ending the season in Champions League spots. Of his main concerns were transitions with the defense being left too exposed, flat-footed if we lose the ball. So whilst adjusting he need to ensure the boys stay switched on in order to get wins in our next two games to help ease some of the pressure ahead of the very tricky festive run.
Since winning away at Watford on the opening day Brighton have not win any of their following six games on their travels (D1, L5). So with defeats in their last three games as well as their last four on the road, Graham Potter will be well aware that his side need to end their losing run or risk being dragged into the early relegation scrap; they’re currently hovering just one point above the drop zone.
Potter may feel that this North London trip came at an opportune time to get out of their rut. They also have recent history on their sides, being unbeaten in the last three meetings between these sides (W1, D2). However, his cause for concern will be that his sides defense too are lacking in patches; having conceded at least two goals in five of their away games. Meaning there are vulnerabilities for our attackers to exploit as well.
Dani Ceballos remain out till at least end of this month, alongside Rob Holding.
Having already dropped too many points against sides in the bottom half of the table, this game certainly goes into the “must-win” bracket. Hopefully Freddie’s first game in charge in front of the Emirates faithful will give the Gunners an advantage, but this won’t be a cakewalk though. Given our issues we got to take our chances if we are to get our first win in a very long while.
That said, Arsenal for the win with goals coming at both ends.
‘They want to do well and they feel the pressure’
Rob Kelly 05 Dec 2019
Freddie Ljungberg was understandably disappointed after we were beaten by Brighton at Emirates Stadium on Thursday night.
Afterwards, our interim head coach faced the media and discussed the performance, our confidence levels and more.
Read on for a full transcript:
on the defeat…
We’re disappointed to lose at home. The main thing is we didn’t show up in the first half. We were very passive and we had a chat at half-time, made a tactical change and all of a sudden we looked like a team. For 20 minutes or so we really pushed them, scored goals and thought we could win the game, but VAR was correct. That’s how we have to play the whole game. I said to the players that you can’t give away a whole half to any team in the Premier League. That’s what we need to learn from.
on how to change the mood…
That’s the tough part. They look very short on confidence. In the first half they were scared to get the ball and a bit scored to move, they were just standing still. That’s something we need to talk about. They need to have a win, we need to dig out a win and get them some confidence. They can do it because they showed it in the beginning of the second half and they did it really well for 20 minutes. It’s hard to say that when you lose at home, but they were very good in that little spell.
on the nervousness in the crowd…
It’s obvious that nervousness from a crowd can affect footballers, it doesn’t matter what quality you have. They’re human beings like everyone else, they want to do well and they feel the pressure. That’s something we need to work on and I feel like if we just dig out a win, we can get there. They showed it in the second half.
on transitions in defence…
Like I said against Norwich, if you score the first goal you don’t have to chase the game, you don’t have to open up as much because you can control the game so that’s something that, in my opinion, we need to change that a little bit. We won the balls but you’re right, when they ran at us it often ends with a shot on target. We’ve had one training session but we’ll keep on working.
on how much of a job he’s got…
It’s never easy when you sack a manager and you’re low on confidence. We started really well at Norwich. We started the second half really well and I was sure we were going to win the game and get going again. We get a sucker punch on a counter or as they play down one side. It’s hard to take but we keep plugging away.
on the table…
[The result] doesn’t change our position but hopefully we can change that quickly.
on the gap to top four…
I know of the gap but all we can do is work.
on whether the club will benefit from a permanent appointment…
It’s up to the club and what they want to do. There’s nothing I can get involved with I said I love this football club and I’ll help them with whatever they need help with and it’s up to them to make a decision.
on Aubameyang coming off temporarily…
I actually don’t know [why] but he ran off and then he came back three minutes later. Maybe you should ask him about it but if you feel bad, you feel bad, there’s nothing we can change.
Copyright 2019 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to http://www.arsenal.com as the source.
media reporting that Arsenal are this week interviewing coaches who are currently available, but it seems Alegri not one of them, but Poch might be.
Freddie hasn’t been allowed to form a proper backroom team, that speaks volumes, more change coming soon.
They need to get this right
Can’t think of many coaches that are available, perhaps Carlo soon? Expensive though
Poch, just cannot see it, unless he really likes a defensive challenge
Sad times. I really hoped we would have got Klopp five years ago. But such ambition seems an anathema at Arsenal. We’ve been cruising on thin ice for some years and the cracks are now critical. I can’t see us beating anyone at the moment. I remember the Arsenal of the mid 70’s and that was bad but back then there seemed to be more fight in the team.
Kolasinac is playing pretty well at least. Also, there is a lot of sense behind putting Aubameyang wide, because he’s not much of a link player – as was said above, we have a real problem with creativity in attack, which makes Pepe all the more essential to me. Other than that, Xhaka was as good as I’ve seen him for a while, Torreira’s interplay was pretty good, but it was pretty grim elsewhere. This situation is harsh on Willock, because it’s the worst environment for a youngster. Better to work him in when/if we find some cohesion.
As it is, there’s a possibility Ljungberg is trying to get us to run before we can even crawl. We’re in a crisis, and when AW had rough spells there would be a dour game towards the end of the run when we would tighten up defensively but offer almost nothing going forward. It was like the team was calibrating, and as grim as it looked it always seemed to presage an upturn.
I know people tend to pine for players when they’re out of the side. But I think Ceballos might have more to offer the side under Ljungberg when he’s back.
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Cebaillos , in the absence of Ramsey of course, the less said the better about him leaving,could be vital for this team if he finds his form, no real link between MF and attack, the gap often too big.
Losing so much experience last summer was not smart, no wonder the team are rudderless and struggling. You would assume they had a well structured plan when losing 4 captains, and trying to force another one out, seems they weren’t that smart.
Making it up as they go along springs to mind
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Yes MD, it’s mental to me to talk about more transfers in January. The last thing this squad needs is yet more strangers. It feels like loss chasing and I think we did enough of that last summer.
A new post is up, sorry folks