Previous names: Dial Square, Royal Arsenal, Woolwich Arsenal

Monday, September 28, 2009

Arsenal’s three worst players against Fulham need to shape up and soon

By 1970’s Gooner

I was as delighted as much as I was frustrated last Saturday in that uncharacteristic one nil to the Arsenal win against a very spirited Fulham side.

I was delighted that we won the game which kept us within distance of the top, especially as Chelsea dropped points. I was also pleased that the win was obtained when not playing at our best.

It’s quite funny really in that a lot of the media usually criticise Arsene Wenger’s teams for not being able to rough it, play badly and win ugly. This is exactly what Arsenal did yet this is labeled a lucky win!

Stop reading the tabloids I say and stick to blogs….

Yet I cannot but ponder on the reasons for Arsenal’s lackluster performance. This is because I feel that if we carry on playing like this we are bound to come unstuck sooner than later.

Winning ugly gets you out of jail once or maybe twice but then you simply have to revert back to your brilliant best.

A lot of the pressure that Arsenal faced against Fulham originated from within itself rather than created by Fulham’s play.

Uncharacteristic mistakes were made in the passing of the ball and the giving away of possession and free kicks in dangerous areas; way too often.

In the offensive area of the pitch Arsenal did not create much and there was not enough fluidity and slick passing as we have become accustomed.

For all the above I blame three players in particular and I hope that they get back to form pretty soon starting tomorrow in the Champions League.

3. Fabregas

Yes he did after all provide the brilliant assist for van Persie’e goal and put a few excellent passes for the forwards to score. But you must agree that the little maestro is below par when you compare him to his brilliant best.

He has been misplacing passes and lacking that dynamism and dexterity that he has shown in previous years for quite a few games now. Something is bothering him and I hope it is not Barcelona.

Nevertheless if he doesn’t tick Arsenal’s clock stops ticking. And his below par performance affected the rest of the team.

2. Arshavin

He has been out for a month after taking that silly decision to play for Russia when he was clearly injured. This showed against Fulham. He was below pace, did not get much involved and generally did not contribute enough for the cause.

Add to this the lack of penetration on the other wing from the average Bendtner and you can see that poor van Persie did not get much of a service.

We need a fit Arshavin in the side and I hope that he can get back to full fitness quite soon.

1. Diaby

What an idiot. Who does he think he is? Maradona in his hey day? This boy has to be taught to play the simple game. Win the ball and then pass it. Full stop. At this stage of his development he should concentrate to get this right.

All he did last Saturday was to give possession to the other side. He did this by passing them the ball, trying one dribble too many or and this was more dangerous, giving away silly fouls in dangerous areas outside our box.

Abu Diaby you have the potential to become an Arsenal great but you have to learn to play simple football for the team. Not for yourself.

Fabregas and Arshavin will improve I am sure. But Wenger needs to reconsider whether to keep persisting with Diaby.


Spike said...

I think I need a lie down and a rub down with a damp copy of the Racing Post...

I actually agree with you, for once!


Anonymous said...

Thanks for starting to post more often, I love your site and hope you keep it up!

I must say I was very happy with the game in that van Persie started to score and he should be our main match-winner this season. Diaby was very bad but then again he is playing in Nasri's place and come the next tough games in november and december Samir should be available. As for Arshavin, we can rotate in the wing positions quite well when Walcott is back, so I'm not too worried. Andrej just needs someone breathing down his neck and some matches and then he'll be great. I still feel we will win the PL this season.

Anonymous said...

i know this isnt fair but i'm gonna say it anyway.. I think most blame must go to diaby.. Fabregas and arshavin are still out of form and have had their mistakes. But..

When you play with 3 midfield, each one needs to know their roles fabregas is to thread passes to forwards, song is to protect the back four and diaby?
Half the time he looked clueless. At least denilson knows what he is supposed to do.

So we have fabregas doing 2 person's job. And sometimes even song trying his hardest to babysit diaby..

Pass to him and he losses it, and it starts all over.

The more baffling thing is wenger playing him every game for mostly 90 mins. I'd rather see a 17 yr old wilshere than a 23 yr old diaby making school boy error.
Just my opinion though..

Anonymous said...

Nice post. Yeah, new formation and all but Arshavin is wasted on the wing. He's not a winger and even less of one when he's half fit. Stick him in the advanced central mid role just off the striker and we'll really see what kind of damage he can do.

Diaby can fuck off. He'll have been at Arsenal four years by this winter and what has he done in that time to justify his inclusion in the first team? Apart from the odd goal against relegation fodder and keeping the physio busy that is.

His only contribution this season (aside from gifting Man U 3 points) becomes less and less impressive with each passing week as Portsmouth sink towards oblivion.

nicosian said...

I scoured the Arsenal blogs in vain for a mention of just how poor Diaby was on Saturday. He is the only one of Wenger's trumped-up midfield triumvirate (Song and Denilson being the others) to have failed to improve in the off-season. Wenger has got to admit his mistake here and offload him in January; whenever he's on the pitch it's like playing with ten men.

Boris Godunov said...

I picked Denilson as the one to blame for Arsenal misfortunes this season, but as soon as I did - Diaby became more regular. He's not bad in the final third, but in the center or holding midfield he transforms into a headless chicken. One of the worst performances from an Arsenal player in recent memory. I say drop the bastard, put Rosicky and Arshavin in the same starting eleven with Edu in the center and RVP on the right and the game is won. The Great Arse should be concentrating more on outscoring the opponents as apposed to defending for dear life as they did at Fulham. One defensive and one central midfielder are more than enough cover. We have to get back to our attacking ways and players like Diaby, Denilson and Eboue are the main obstacles to glory.

Anonymous said...

codswallop........waste of fuckin time analysis.....

Anonymous said...

boris, ur a fool, denilson might not be worth £50m but he is very important to the team, and it has shown in the last few games where he has been injured.

but diaby is awful and should be dropped. wenger should realise this and play ramsey in the middle with fabregas and song. then play arshavin rvp and rosicky up top.

Anonymous said...

Ashavin has been out for how long so he doesnt need to be on the list.

Cesc will come good, I do agree he is not up to his best though.

Diaby is an enigma, he will play one game great and you feel he is on his way and then he playes 3 stinkers in a row. However I have been enlightened by his breaking up of play.

Anonymous said...

How long is six weeks in the life of Wenger. Nasri shud of been back 4 weeks ago.

Anonymous said...

Diaby only made one stray pass against Fulham.

Fabregas and Arshavin made over 25 between them. So who was the dead wood in that match?

Anonymous said...

Believe it or not. I think we are missing denilson.

Anonymous said...

Dun quite agree that we are missing Denilson. He is a stable player, nothing too flamboyant, just short passes. On the other hand, Diaby tried to dribble but mess up the short passes. He and Denilson are really opposites. What we really need is a person who has the explosiveness and strength of Diaby and the stability of Denilson.

joshuad said...

Diaby has never been a good passer and when a game gets tough, young players will do what they do best. For Diaby, that's dribbling. The boy is powerful and has exceptional technique but if you know he's going to dribble, it makes it easier to defend him.

I also agree that we will begin to miss Denilson. In the Man City game, their chances only began when Wenger took off Denilson. Against Fulham, when Song went forward, Denilson wasn't there to cover and we got overrun. Time will tell.

8 inch knob said...

I think Diaby should be a centre forward.

He has the perfect blend of skill and pace to suit such a role. He is perhaps our most skillful player and no one in our squad other than Arshavin can beat 2 or 3 players with a bit of skill.

His skill and trickery is lost in midfield where there are a lot more bodies to navigate. A midfielder requires greater vision, awareness and quick passing and inter-changing. These are areas he is falling short on but that isn't neccessarily a promlem.

..................Van Persie.......

Fabregas was poor, our worst player by far and Arshavin was also subdued but he was coming back from injury (nevertheless I still feel he should have played Rosicky).

Anyhow, the point is you cannot solely blame Diaby because he was limited on choice on who he could pass to. Fabregas was just awful with his passing often causing his teammates to brack track and work for the simple passes. Arshavin was just lazy so you can see that Diaby was plain alone in midfield.

I just wish you fab4 fans boys could wake up from your gay daydreams and realise that he has been shit since coming back from injury. He only puts any effort in when he plays for Spain.

In my opinion, I think he should be sold this January. We have an abundance of talent that Fabregas will not be missed.

Harshal D said...

I would say Clichy should be put in that list instead of Fabregas.

With Flamini's loss, Fabregas has been virtually doing a two man job for the team. That's how poor the left side has been for us this season.

Clichy, Diaby and Arshavin have been all to be blamed for the same.

Anonymous said...

bad news.. i think we would still need to stick with diaby for another 2 months as denilson would be out for the next 2 months.

If diaby does impress wenger these 2 coming months, then he might even replace denilson, even when he is back and this is damn bad news.

I really dont understand why is diaby playing in the first team. We can simply replace him with ramsey or eboue and i think they will do much better.

Hopefully when denilson and nasri is back, diaby can go back to where he belongs, the reserves!!!

Gunnerboy said...

I feel this is a little harsh on Arshavin, he was in some great positions but never got the ball and could have scored a couple if given the chance. I would like to see him play as the second striker!

Fabregas was awful in the first half, passes were going astray and needed a kick up the backside however the 2nd half was better. Still missing Flamini as Song doesn't have the pace and fill him with the same confidence as Flamini so the captain is making sure he does more than his share because of Diaby.

Diaby can be great but more often than not annoying, trying too much and not always coming off so need to get him back to basics.

Still looking forward to challenging for the title, Champions League, FA Cup and League Cup. We have some good players to come back and in January Mr Wenger needs to sign a DMC with pace and who can tackle.

Anonymous said...

Agree with you. But the final blame lies with the manager who picks the team. Just what does he sees is anybody's guess. Should dump diaby to reserves team.

gazzap said...

CEsc isn't off form - his game is being affected badly by having to cover for Diaby's inability to do anything. Diaby is meant to be covering the defence in the Denilson role but Cesc found he had to cover all the gaps that Diaby left. Cesc cannot get on and play his natural game. Once Diaby is dropped the team can progress again.

Arshavin didn't look fit to me and probably shouldn't play against Olympiakos.

Anonymous said...

Diaby - the 'fans' latest hate figure - from a long-line that includes Eboue, Senderos, Gilberto, Wiltord etc - no matter how the team plays you've always gotta have one!

Paul Kwalia said...

Yeah, I agree with you, Diaby is a total waste. I wish he were the one injured, not Denilson. As for Fabregas, at least ane moment of a genious gave us the lead.

Anonymous said...

Because he really played bad the last few games consecutively.If other player,he must've been dropped already but not him.What does Wenger sees in him I don't know.

Gary said...

Not sure why Diaby plays ahead of Rosicky when fit.

Gary said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Moan Moan Moan Moan Moan....

Nothing of any real substance here, just an excuse to single out a few bad passes and slag people off.

You're just a retard.

Anonymous said...

clichy has been overlooked for so long but trust he's cost us alot, sagna is not better than eboue in any way diaby is no doght a headless chicken not arsenal material, arshavin can use boyh feet, y play him on the wings,and cant vela deliver more than bentner look at his goal scoring tally...

Anonymous said...

...............Van Persie..........
Subs: Walcott, Eboue, Eduardo, Denilson, Mannone, Wilshere, Senderos

If ever the cunts got fit.

Anonymous said...

Our perfect eleven is:


Sagna Gallas Vermaelen Clichy

Fabregas Song Nasri

Eduardo van Persie Arshavin

Some could argue that Eduardo or Arshavin aren't good enough in defence but with this team we would be dominating play against any team pushing the opponent back into the box. I'd rather have the fullbacks play a bit more defensively than put Bendtner on the wing, he's the first backup for forwards or a late substitute to give aerial strength and extra power in a tight game.

Greg76 said...

I believe the main man to blame is Arshavin. He was by far our worst player Satarday.
Diaby I believe will come through to be a fantastic holding midfielder.
Have u wondered if maybe he is instructed to play the way he does by AW?
Dont forget this is Diaby who not long ago everyone was comparing to great Vieira...

Anonymous said...

I would pick eboue 10 times out of 10 over diaby.

Anonymous said...

reading all these posts I'm slightly disturbed at the almost hatred of Diaby (as a footballer)that seems to be coming through. I watched the game and he didn't have a good game (the only midfielder who really did was Song however I believe (and the stats back this up) he wasn't the most wasteful with the ball. Both Arshavin and Fabergas were more wasteful. I thought Arshavin did nothing positive in the game however is a great player and coming back from an injury a poor game may be understandable. The midfield and structure of the team are designed to suit Cesc however he needs a better passing/touch midfielder alongside him to take the pressure off him (that would be either Nasri or Rosicky when fully fit). Diaby has nearly always played in positions not suited to him. Basically he needs to be further forward and central where he can dribble at the defence better. This is where he has had his best performances for us. He is not and never will be good enough consistent passer especially when teams like Fulham give the midfield no time on the ball. He is a good member of the squad and with others injured I was happy that he played on Saturday. Let's not have too much hatred for our own players please.

Anonymous said...

I believe at least 5 times against Fulham, Cesc played a team mate through on goal with only the keeper to beat, sometimes from tight angles, sometimes not. Only Robin took his chance. Arshavin (ball bobbled), Bendtner (shot over), Eboué (wide, twice).

Cesc had a great match and his pass to Van Persie was something to behold.

Arshavin has been out and wasn't match fit.

Diaby was just plain horrible.

bluemoon said...

Relax , be cool and enjoy in the pitch are the thing that this team needs because in front of goal ,RVP still looks for the promising land for goal and looked nervous in front of goal because he still hasn't found it. But I believe in RVP and Fab4 can bring the bright way to this team.

bluemoon said...

Diaby and Theo14 can be great but they should sit and think how they can do for team not how the team can help for them ? Diaby has the good technique to hold the ball and Theo14 has great pace but in this stage of football art is not keep the ball more than 3 sec in our defensive area (give and go in this area) ,3 touches in one procession and run and dribble in the critical offensive area to make the space and time for difference. In the finally ,they should learn their teammate' love to use the left or right foot for first touch. ONE FOR ALL AND ALL FOR ONE. sorry to say to Theo in this topic

Anonymous said...

I think the larger problem that Arsenal faces is the inability to cross the ball into the penalty box. For all the flamboyance that dribbling the ball into the penalty box offers, this does not always give the desired result. I think Clichy and Sagna should take a large portion of the blame for this. I have never seen killer crosses from them..... Song and Denilson are good defensively. But where is the creativity from them. Some might argue that is not their job. But I think it is too much to ask only Fabregas to conjure up those miracle passes.

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