By 1970’s Gooner
January was a better month for Arsenal FC when compared to December where the first defeat of the season was inflicted by Middlesbrough and points were also dropped against Newcastle at St James Park.
In January we saw a rejuvenated Arsenal helped by the return to fitness and the first 11 of Fabregas and Flamini. The low point however was the 5-1 defeat by Tottenham in the semi final of the Carling Cup.
In the League the only points dropped were at home against Birmingham but there were wonderful performances against West Ham, Fulham and the two games against Newcastle.
During these games we have seen certain players that have been outstanding and stood out from the rest. These are my top four for January.
4. Eduardo da Silva
The real deal; the real fox in the box that we have been missing. What a goal he scored against West Ham. Control with the chest a little swivel of the feet and bang one nil up!
Eduardo is really coming on at a much faster pace than one could have anticipated. They say it takes 6 months to a year for a non British player to acclimatize to the football in the premiership. He is doing it at double the pace.
He obviously got a lot better the more games he played which have allowed him to get acquainted with his fellow players and the ferocity of the Premier League.
These are his highlights during the month:
-has scored against Burnley in the FA Cup (in that relaxed style he adopts in front of the goalkeeper),
- laid on a beautifully weighted assist for Walcott to score the equalizer against Spurs in the semi final of the carling Cup at The Emirates,
- created the third goal against Fulham for Rosicky,
- won the penalty from which Adebayor scored against Birmingham
- it was the rebound from his shot against the post that Adebayor picked up to score his first against Newcastle in the Cup
- and finally it was from his screen on the Newcastle defender that allowed Adebayor to race through and score his second against Newcastle in the same game
Not a lot is it?
Eduardo stats (for all league games so far)
Total passes 259
Accurate passes 198
Passes successful 76 %
Attempts at goal 18
Attempts on target 6
Tackles won 7
Tackle success 64 %
3. Gael Clichy
He has got a very deserved call up in the France squad at last. Domenech has finally realized what us gooners have been witnessing week in week out.
Clichy is a young gun but he keeps putting in performances like a wise old head. A consistent performer at the top of his game putting in top quality defending coupled with offensive forays and penetration on the wing.
He plays well with either Hleb or Rosicky on the wing as they tend to come infield to join the midfield thus allowing more space for the young defender to surge forward.
What a find by Wenger. I have said it before: Ashley Cole, thanks for leaving Arsenal mate….
Highlight of the month for Gael is his wonderful cross for Adebayor to score his first header against Fulham
Clichy stats (for all games so far)
Tackles won 83
Tackle success 84 %
Total passes 1125
Accurate passes 933
Passes successful 83 %
Attempts at goal 7
Attempts on target 2
2. Emmanuel Adebayor
Adebayor showed glimpses of what was to come in January during the pevious months with the wonderful goals he scored notably at Aston Villa and Newcastle away and against Spurs at home.
But he exploded in January. Not only has he continued his scoring streak he has improved his all round play enormously with his control and lay offs to fellow players improving enormously.
These are his highlights during the month:
- a goal against west Ham from an acute an angle as you can imagine
- his two beautifully headed goals against Fulham away
- the three goals he scored against Newcastle at home (for the league and the Cup)
This guy is hot. He keeps scoring and once you get into the habit it gets easier and easier as the confidence level soars.
Adebayor stats (for all league games so far)
Total passes 800
Accurate passes 629
Passes successful 78 %
Attempts at goal 73
Attempts on target 27
Tackles won 11
Tackle success 73 %
1. Mathieu Flamini
He's not just been amazingly awesome; he's been our most consistent player and hasn't had a single bad game all year.
When he doesn't play the midfield always seems to look weak. We give away more cheap goals, seem to lack pace and there's no bite.
Not only has he been defensively brilliant this year, he seems to be much sharper and quicker on the ball and a technically more skillful player.
He runs a thousand miles more than his colleagues, sweeps up in defence at dangerous moments and also goes forward when required.
His assist of a precise cross onto Adebayor’s head for him to score Arsenal’s first and decisive goal against Newcastle in the recent League game was outstanding.
But the goal he scored in the same game was beautifully struck from 25 yards and the moment the shot left his boot you knew it was going to fly in the top right hand corner.
Flamini stats (for all league games so far)
Total passes 1157
Accurate passes 997
Passes successful 86 %
Attempts at goal 28
Attempts on target 8
Tackles won 34
Tackle success 62 %
Choosing between these four has been very difficult. Clichy has been quite impressive and Eduardo has really come on. But for me the real difficulty was choosing between Adebayor’s goal scoring and Flamini’s all powerful box to box performances. A very difficult choice indeed.
You can “voice” your opinion by leaving a comment and also vote on the poll we have set up on the matter.