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Arteta definitely sounded pissed off and that's not a good thing for Pepe as he's already shown (Ozil, Guendouzi for example) that if you don't do exactly as he requires then you're out. Wages, price tag or potential isn't going to count for much.

 

I think we are going to have to be very patient because Arteta is building something which will flow and work perfectly if all the parts are doing exactly as required. A bit like a formula 1 car. So finely tuned that even if the smallest thing is slightly off then you're not going to get the best out of it but when it all clicks and flows as it should you could get a Liverpool from the last couple of years or so.

Like I said, we need to be patient because we are very very far away from that at the moment but I honestly believe Arteta can pull it off. There are still a lot of things wrong with the team/squad and until a few players are gone and replaced with a few that Arteta thinks will fit then it's going to be pretty much hit and miss.

 

There's definitely room for improvement with some first teamers like Bellerin, a partner for Gabriel, Xhaka, Laca for example.

More too.

Is Ceballos the creative player we need? Surely we need better, plus he's only on loan for the year isn't he?

Elneney looks like a different player since he came back but surely he's a squad player.

Willian can only be a bit of a stop gap.

Laca simply doesn't put the ball in the back of the net when he simply must. I know he does a lot of work for the team but if you're a number 9 you need to put the chances away when they come. Chances that he keeps missing at the most crucial moments.

Pepe. What can we say here. Lot's of potential and the price tag is not his fault but he gives the ball away so much, runs down blind alleys too often, makes the wrong choices too often. Worth sticking with for now but things like yesterday won't help him at all.

 

It's not all doom and gloom though as I really do believe that Arteta is the real deal and he will eventually sort this team out. It's just going to take time (and money).

He needs to build a team around Leno, Gabriel, Tierney, Saka, Partey, Auba & Martinelli.

Apart from these 7 players name me one that would even get close to a Liverpool or a City 11.

 

Doesn't mean everyone else is shit, just that they are not quite good enough starting 11 players if you really want to compete with the best.

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I'm still willing to give Arteta the benefit of the doubt and accept he was given a tough job and a squad that looks better on paper than they often perform - good letter on F365 saying how in US sports a certain type of player is referred to as a coach killer, and Arsenal may have too many of them (Pepe could well be one).

 

The problem is though that if you go out and meet a few people on any given day and one is an arsehole then its quite likely that person is an arsehole, if everybody you meet is an arsehole then its likely to be you that is the piece of shit.

 

Arteta seems to have the control freakery obsession about him and its going to burn bridges with quite a few players, and a few quid of investment and salary - that goes so far but he has to get a tune out of enough of them and the results to show he's worth listening to.

 

Last night was dire, it wasn't a good plan to get an away point, is was sheer luck and bad finishing with them hitting  the woodwork 3 times. 

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I think people put up with Guardiola's incessant micromanagement as it's proven to get results whereas that trick is harder to pull off as a novice coach. You can see there's disciplinary issues all over the place, both on and off the pitch. My huge question mark over Arteta is if he's able to keep a lid on that, as within the calendar year there's been problems with pretty much half the squad. Some of the players visibly don't seem to give a shit either. Both Tierney and Bellerin were giving pelters to Willian and Pepe as they dawdled about without providing any support. If you're playing that Arsenal team you fancy your chances as they're not at it.

 

Arteta's huge issue is the make-up of the squad is dismal. The product of years of poor purchases and a lack of a cohesive plan. We have some bad players, but worse than that I feel is that we have good players who are completely ill-suited to either the league or what we're trying to do. People like Xhaka, Ceballos, Lacazette, Pepe maybe as examples, all talented but no matter how well they play do not effect a game. It happens, but it happens way too often with us. You can either get a coach who sees what he has and builds a system to make them sing, or one who comes in with a tried and tested method and either through coaching or the market gets things going that way. Arteta has been rigidly the second option until now, but you can see the tinkering beginning to set in. 

 

I think the advice he's being given can be questioned too. The two blokes closest to him were binned off from Man Utd for being co-conspirators of Van Gaal and Moyes' football terrorism. Whatever they're being coached doesn't look even vaguely close to clicking. We create absolutely nothing, and that's not even an exaggeration. Aside from blowing away a Sunday league Fulham team and FC Euro Disney in the UEFA cup we just don't ever look like scoring. In my mind top 4 is long gone, and I'd be happy with top 10 if it was offered.

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Arteta looks to have made sorting out the Defense his top priority, which given how shit we have been the past few years in that area makes complete sense. To say it's been at the expense of our forward play is an understatement. I can't really find fault with Arteta though, he has inherited a imbalanced squad with far too many overpaid players and a really poor midfield. Don't think there are going to be any quick fixes, but I hope he's given time to fix this.

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He'll definitely get this season to sort it out. If we finish mid-table he'll be shipped out, I'm pretty sure of that. The standards have dropped so far though it's difficult to know what might happen. No matter how bad it got for Wenger I was confident we'd badly beat up everyone bar the top 6 at home. Now there's not a single fixture I can say with any certainty we'll take points from.

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Just looking at club wages, it's incredible how many top earners are not even first team starters and TBH would be shipped out if Arteta (or most fans) had there way. There has to be close to a million a week in wages going on reserves. As poor as the football is right now, what's happening on the pitch now has more to do with how the club has been run the past few years than the manager (although he's not blameless).

 

 

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I think some of the deals we've done are genuinely against the law criminal. Apparently Mari cost us £16m, but Flamengo received £4m. The initial fee is ridiculous for a journeyman centre half anyway, but where that money went is anyone's guess. Soares is a player we never needed on a four year mega-deal who hasn't made the league squad once this season. Willian is one of our highest earners on a contract he wouldn't even get in China or the the Middle East. The Pepe deal was by all estimates £30m more expensive than it needed to be. Saliba at that money is insanity. Just a load of board level robbers trousering what they can and flushing a lifetime's worth of financial prudence down the toilet. 

 

Everyone keeps on about getting to the end of the stupid deals we've did 5 years ago but we've just got a whole new contingent of worthless assets to deal with. We never learn.

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Isn't the mumblemumble accusation that all the deals old Don Raul had his filthy paws in that we were lauding were all very sweet for his chums and former acquaintances, with hints of him trousering a bit on the side too. 

 

I think I posted here at the time the StatsBomb article saying from the data we'd overpaid double if not treble what they believed Pepe to be worth, and that wasn't wise after the event, that was the week we bought him.

 

We've done well for Kia Jorabchian's retirement plans too in the last couple of years, Luis and £200k a week for 3y on Willian being prime examples.

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Yeah it's not just the late period Wenger deals and the Mislintat ones that are the problem, we've bought in players as recently as this summer on vastly inflated wages who we are going to be stuck with for years and that's going to effect our ability to bring in better players.

 

Given that Arteta was instrumental in bringing in Gabriel & Partey, it does at least look like we are now signing good players. Plus Pepe & Saliba might work out in the long term, but we vastly overpaid for them.

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Does Arteta have to bite the bullet/tell the board to fuck off and bring Ozil back in to the squad in January? Ceballos has been pretty shite since getting his second loan deal and whilst there's been alot of criticism of Aubameyang he's hardly being supplied with much at the moment. Xhaka and Ceballos just doesn't look like it works

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Arteta was on a hiding to nothing taking the job so he can't exactly be shocked it's all gone to pot this quickly. Everyone looks like they have the hump, which is probably due in no small part to spending all game either running towards their own goal or fiddling about down the left wing for no discernible reason. The big swizz is the idea we've suddenly got good at the back. Any coach in the league can stop you conceding goals if you abandon all attacking endeavour. Ask any of the shit clubs we used to hate having visit our ground because they wouldn't attempt to create anything. That's us that is.

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With a midfield of Xhaka, Ceballos and Willock it’s no wonder we can’t create anything. None of them are good enough. If we keep losing Arteta is sure to go, but it’s doubtful the club have the money to bring in anyone good enough. It’s just never going to get better under this ownership. Emery has Villarreal up to 3rd in La Liga FFS.

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Its all quite similar to what happened under Emery, a decent start with some semblance of a plan taking shape (namely suicidal fannying round at the back) and managing a few wins by outscoring our own xG and under conceding the xG given up.

 

Then for some reason the players get bored of it all and give up, to the degree we don’t even have any shots any more - none at home the entire second half last night. 

 

Seems they aren’t responding to Arteta at present and without results his control freakery won’t go down well.

 

Doesn’t seem a lot of joy about the place, almost a squad that used to made for the like s of old Harry to come in, tell them they were all great, and go on the attack a bit.

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I don't mind Willock at all. He's not the most technical, but he's got good drive and does try and break the lines a bit. Xhaka and Ceballos are slow of speed and thought and the pair of them together is the death of us. With Partey out until the new year I guess we'll have to persevere with it. 

 

It does all have that sinking feeling about it and a continuation of this form over Christmas will sink Arteta. The players look over coached and miserable and we've been dog shit from start to finish in every game for weeks. Points wise we're not far off, but top four is a complete fantasy this season. It's the other way that should be worrying us as there's only four teams I would say that look worse.

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Just confirms what we can all see. Frustrating as for certain games on rare occasions we're pressing like Vic Akers has presented a silver tray of marching powder to the squad in the dressing room and the promise of more to come. We do that for one game and look amazing, then don't try doing that again for a few months. 

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We're very much a mid table club playing mid table football. 

 

I don't think a change in coach will address this either, an injection of cash would certainly help if we buy the right players, our track record on that is not good either, Tierney, Partey and Gabriel are top players but we have wasted so much money on mediocre players. 

 

 

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