Arsenal News Blog

fact and opinion intertwined

Character to fight back but more dropped points

Posted by James Dall on 17, December 2006

Argh, the frustration of more dropped points at home. I did not see the game, all I have to rely on it snippets of Charlie Nicholas on Sky Sports News, and highlights on match of the day.

My first surprise yesterday came about when I saw we were playing 4-4-2 hurrah! However accompanying van Persie up front was Aliardiere. Now the other day I was saying how I just didn’t think the Frenchman has what it takes to cut it at our club, and I can appreciate Wenger giving the guy chances, although what about Baptista who clearly needs games to adjust? Plus with the Carling cup game midweek, a match I would much prefer to see us draw or lose that the league match, is surely a game Aliardiere should be given a start.

Now I do not want to comment on individual performances as it would be unfair for me to do so. We seemed to create a couple of chances in the first half, van Persie missed a super chance. Then we conceded before half time. A brilliant delivery from Taylor from a set piece cannoned off the post and fell to Paramot who had an empty net to knock into. Disappointing – the crowd were rightly restless. Wenger copped at the ref about how it was not a foul, it probably was not but that does not make up for an apparent lacklustre first half display. The second half began and we almost conceded instantly, Eboue fancied trying to dribble out with it from the corner of the area, got disposed the ball cannoned about a bit then Taylor hit a dipping shot into the far corner. Now I am all for trying to play football, especially playing it out the back however there are times when you need to put your foot through the ball and clear your lines. He must learn.  Adebayor came on for Aliardere and seemed to have an immediate impact, we scored through a wonderful reverse ball by Hleb, Theo burst through and crossed for Adebayor who powered home an excellent finish. From then we seemed to create chances a plenty, Gilberto got the second but the third did not arrive. van Persie spurned a superb chance after skinning Sol and Flamini blasted just wide. Frustrating – more home points dropped.

There are of course eyebrows raised that Adebayor did not start but I can see why the manager did rest him. Mainly because he has run his heart out in every match he has played in and also was apparently carrying a groin problem. He did not look like he had a problem to me. I do agree with the manager in that Adebayor would not have stopped the two goals, which is clear that the problems lie in a possible lack of urgency. For instance in the Wigan game, there was not pressing and no real drive to go forward. Why? I cannot answer that. I wish I could.

Arsene’s reaction is here. So two points dropped. And yes do not worry I am not forgetting that we showed fantastic spirit to dig in and come back but why are we waiting to go one or two down to get our arses in gear?

The only other story I can find is this from Fabregas – basically saying how much of a prat Ashley Cole is. Agreed.

Liverpool next on Tuesday in the Carling Cup, a youthful starting line up? or will Wenger realise this might be our only chance of silverware? I wonder.

Enjoy your Sunday.

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