Previous names: Dial Square, Royal Arsenal, Woolwich Arsenal

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Abject performance against Kiev can be blamed on the choice of formation and Fabregas’s position

By 1970’s Gooner

The attitude of the players for this away Champions League game in the Ukraine looked to have been set by all the comments by Arsene Wenger prior to the game.

His attitude had been to talk up this game as a “very difficult one” he even called it “a massive one”. There was talk from the Arsenal camp which considered a draw as a point gained!

In the end it was a point just gained but in my opinion it was two points thrown away. And I can only blame the choice of formation chosen which resulted in two Arsenal players having to play out of position and their effectiveness badly impaired.

Cesc Fabregas the little maestro pulling the strings from the middle of the pitch was a nonentity throughout the whole of this game.

The reason? Wenger’s choice to play a 4 3 3 formation which meant that Denilson and Song were clustering the central midfield areas with no space for Fabregas to weave his magic.

His instructions were obviously to play further up the field just above the two central midfielders in order to offer support for Adebayor who was playing the lone man role in attack.

The result was that Song who was doing his job kept passing the ball sideways or backwards and Denilson who assumed the more creative (Fabregas) role in midfield was not at all creative. I do not recollect any incisive or penetrative pass he made all game.

So without any creativity in midfield our only hope left of scoring a goal was from some good play from our front men.

Oh but wait a minute..We only had one front man and that was Adebayor because Robin Van Persie was shifted to the left wing so that the 4 3 3 formation could be accommodated.

But it was obvious that what was needed was the pairing of Van Persie and Adebayor in attack. They proved in all of Arsenal’s previous games so far that when they play close to each other they can create space and threats to opposing defences.

Van Persie also tends to drop a little bit further back from the front to receive the ball and play one twos with either Fabregas or Adebayor. But alas he could do neither tonight.

And all this because Arsene afforded too much respect to the opponents.

He deployed such a formation so as to stifle the midfield and stop them from playing rather than rely on Arsenal’s strengths and a formation that usually brings the best out of the players now at this club.


Almunia 5, Sagna 6, Clichy 6, Gallas 5 (it would have been a 4 if he hadn’t got the goal), Toure 6, Song 5, Denilson 4, Fabregas 5, Walcott 6.5, Van Persie 5, Adebayor 6.


George said...

FFS u realy are pathetic...all u bloggers need to reflect on the positives...even though tonight there wasnt that many, atleast we got away with a point, atleast we didnt loose, atleast theos gettin somewhere...u may as well go support the spuds if ur gonna be this pessamistic!

Anonymous said...

Arsenal often slip up in Eastern Europe - I don't think they played particularly badly tonight. Admittedly it wasn't vintage, but the performance was ok and 1-1 in Kiev is a decent result. To say the it was 'abject' is a desperate and poor attempt to get attention.

Anonymous said...

Absolute crap! Please God, spare us from these amateur experts!

Anonymous said...

where did you get that 4-3-3 from?

To me it was obvious that it was:

Sagna Toure Gallas Clichy

Walcott Song Fabregas Denil

Van Persie Adebayor

Anonymous said...

honestly....every prat with broadband thinks they are an expert!

Anonymous said...

Playing away in Eastern Europe has been pasticularly daunting for us. I am glad they came away with something. Eboue, for me was the MOTM. He provided the spark and urgency when he was on the field. Surprising!!!

Anonymous said...

good game for us..if you rate us so low..then what the hell do you rate dynamo

Anonymous said...

couldnt have said it better especially on gallas and arsene mind set b4 the game as it reflected in the way arsenal play...too much respect

Anonymous said...

@ Anon 11.49

Did u even WATCH the game? if u did u must have been blind. It was a 4-3-3 or rather a 4-5-1 before song was subbed off for bendtner.

its like farking obvous van persie and walcott were playing on the wings and fabregas was right in between and slightly ahead of denilson and song.

And i do agree with the blogger that its 2 points lost if u all watch the game u would haf seen how crap kiev was. their lack of confidence in themselves can even be seen in the shoot on sight 25 - 30 yards shots which were nv in danger of hitting the net.

wenger overestimated their midfield really and by playing a conservative 4-5-1 it was stifling fab's creativity and limiting van persie's skill to the flanks, not to mention van persie seldom tracks back to defend, neither can he tackle well.

Anonymous said...

I agree the formation wasn't the best as the link wasn't there but Kiev were very cautious and defensive. Fab tried to make things happen in otherwise which was a static Arsenal midfield. The movement wasn't as good from the wide men but once again it didn't help that kiev were defensive. We were also probably tired though this was a decent result if u look at the face of it.

Anonymous said...

It's so easy to bandy about words like 'abject' and 'sorry' to describe the performance. I just do not understand some people. Unless Arsenal play their fluent flowing football and score a minimum of 4 goals they are considered to be below par, or they are accused of failing to be able to grind out results with 'ugly' performances when their 'A' game is not working. You can't have it both ways. Had you commented on our failure to convert our early chances, thus making things harder for ourselves, I could have agreed, but to describe the performance as 'abject' shows no understanding of reality. The team were clearly tired, and had to put up with some industrial challenges from the opposition players. A dodgy penalty as the result of out and out cheating was the only way the opposition were able to score but we still managed to rally ourselves to gain a point. This is not the time to be negative. We all would have preferred 3 points, but it wasn't to be. We got a point and an away goal. That is something to be thankful for at the end of the day.

Joe Mbugua said...

Kiev congested the midfield and WENGER failed to respond in time. He should have brought it EBOUE at half time sacrificing either Sagna or Clichy

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