How Arsenal Got Their Groove Back

What have we here? Five straight wins in a row in the EPL, four consecutive wins coming from behind. They’re calling that a new record.

So what’s happened to make Arsenal get their familiar groove back? Here’s six reasons why I think they’re dancing up a storm:

  1. Robin van Persie – 26 goals scored already in the EPL, some of the most stunning I’ve seen. Need I say more.
  2. Tomas Rosicky – His resurgence of form has changed the dynamics of the midfield which was starting to look rather lacklustre without the two who left and who shall remain nameless. And off course, Alex Song remains a steady force to guide things along; his brilliant passes are beginning to tell.
  3. Theo Walcott – Seems to be maintaining consistency, getting better at making quick decisions,  and is starting to pick out killer passes.
  4. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain – a breath of fresh air. His inclusion in the starting line-up has infused a new energy in the team. What a pleasure to watch a youngster making his mark on the game.
  5. Thomas Vermaelen – his return has bolstered the defence, which was practically non-existent in his absence. I should also give a shout out here to Laurent Koscielny who is improving remarkably, Bacary Sagna whose return gives us that extra dimension on the right wing, and Wojciech Szcezesny whose goalkeeping skills keep on improving.
  6. Arsene Wenger – the manager’s pig-headedness in the face of massive pressure from the fans is a measure of his principles, and perhaps a blessing in disguise.

So what’s going to keep this momentum going? More of the same. The new-found energy and confidence must convert to relentless pressure for the whole 90 minutes. And it wouldn’t hurt to see the backs of Marouane Chamakh, Johan Djourou and Andre Arshavin for good, and a certain German striker joining the ranks instead.

In defence of Arsenal

There is none! It’s that simple.

The defensive is a shambles. It’s like watching a bunch of headless chickens running around, stumbling into each other and falling over. And oh, how painful it is to hold one’s head in horror, watching the comedy of errors at the back, week after week.

The regular injuries to the players at the back point to a clear lack of training and focus in that area. Either that, or Wenger has spent a lot of money on clearly incompetent players.

Even Vermaelen, who everyone hailed as the saviour for Arsenal in defense, makes far too many mistakes. Perhaps that’s in large part due to the hopeless team-mates he has at the back. And even though Szczesny is constantly improving in goal, he is still far from the sort of confident take-charge person that is required in this position.

And let’s not even waste time discussing Johan Djourou. He does not belong in any position in any football team, let alone in the Arsenal defense.

Arsenal’s defense does not strike fear into any advancing opposition. In fact, every team in the league must surely be licking their lips in glee, knowing that scoring against the current Arsenal team, is liking taking candy from kids.

And it was never like that.

What’s changed? Has the pursuit of profits taken precedence over the brilliant football that Arsenal are were legendary for?

And will the fans stick around in the future to find out?

8 and 2 for the Arsenal…or maybe not

Arsenal supporters hold up cards that spell ou...

Image via Wikipedia

I set out to write another scathing attack on Arsenal after their dismal performance on Sunday against Manchester United, but I think there will be many of those already.

Instead I decided to look at the positive side by finding 8 things that suggest there is still a prospect of good things to come [I do despise the word hope]:

  1. Arsene Wenger is among the best two Managers in the Premier League, if not the best
  2. Arsenal have consistently been one of the top four sides in the Premiership, with a sound financial situation and a marvellous stadium
  3. Die-hard Gunners fans…around the world
  4. Jack Wilshere and maybe Aaron Ramsey to boot
  5. The makings of a world-class goalkeeper in Wojciech Szczesny
  6. Some good experience in Robin van Persie, Alex Song, Bacary Sagna and Thomas Vermaelen
  7. Good future prospects in Emmanuel Frimpong, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ryo Miyaichi, Theo Walcott and Chu Young Park
  8. Per Mertesacker, if Wenger manages to sign him on

And 2 things that still leave me exasperated:

  1. The laziness of players such as Bendtner, Arshavin and Chamakh
  2. The lack of passion displayed on the field

So there you have it: 8 for the Arsenal and 2 against…