Season two of the Unai Emery era has seen the same confused tactics. There have been a number of additions and a number of departures and still Emery insists in a non stop rotational policy.
Unsurprisingly, it’s earned Arsenal and Emery the same poor results but much worse is that the attack is less productive, the midfield less creative and the defence is just as fragile.
The decision to mollycoddle Bellerin and Tierney is outrageously odd. The club’s decision to pay Mesut Ozil £350,000 per week to sit on a sofa or bench is plain crazy.
You couldn’t make it up because none of this make sense, especially when Arsenal are playing such turgid football home and away. Truth be told, they are less entertaining now under Emery with a greater attack. They are less solid in defence than they were last season and they still have players that shouldn’t be wearing the club’s famous red and white.
After the defeat to Sheffield United the knives were out for Emery, who increasingly appears unable to find a successful formula. Wenger had his faults, especially in the last few seasons of his reign but there was occasional excitement and the odd decent performance. Not like now, not like this. Given the league position Arsenal find themselves in right now, major bookmakers are favouring Chelsea ahead of Arsenal to finish in the top four and with these guides to football betting, its easy to understand why.
I’m not suggesting he comes back, hell no, but it’s dawning on most that when we were good, we took it for granted and thought it would last forever.
Let’s ask some reasonable questions shall we. Why was Arsene Wenger allowed such freedom at Arsenal across the entire club and offered a two year contract extension for delivering poor results ?
Can anyone explain how Arsenal football club let Aaron Ramsey go due to his wage demands but are happy to pay £350,000 per week to someone who hardly ever gets a game ?
And can someone kindly tell me why they let Santi Cazorla go when they were prepared to bankroll the likes of Abou Diaby, Robin Van Persie and Laurent Koscielny through endless injuries ?
Perhaps someone can reveal why Arsenal and Emery went through with a loan deal for Dennis Suarez for £2.17m, on a wage of £55,000 a week, only for him to play a fraction more in a season than Ozil.
Those referring to the great deals made by Raul Sanllehi should cast an eye over the money he’s wasted since his arrival or at least mention the contracts he allowed to run down or the botched contract extensions.
Finally, why does Emery persist in playing out from the back when the team don’t do it naturally and regularly make errors by doing so ?
Another problem would appear to be Emery’s reluctance to bench players that just don’t deliver at the highest level. Emery persevered with Mustafi last season until he became a liability and now can’t resign himself to start a game without Xhaka and while we are on that subject, why make him one of five captains ?
In terms of defeats, its inevitable on occasion and I certainly wouldn’t go as far to say that I’m okay with that but it depends on the manner of the defeat.
Losing a close run, exciting goal fest, is just one of those things or being outclassed but giving everything is acceptable but not this low level, dull and dreary nonsense that is either served up in the first half, the second or for the full 90 minutes under Emery.
Two defeats already and 10 points behind the leaders, just 4 points ahead of Everton in 15th and 11 points off the bottom makes uncomfortable viewing.
Arsenal have scored 13 but conceded 12, which is worse than Aston Villa who are currently 12th in the table. Aubameyang up until now has been the get out of jail card but it appears that without him or Lacazette, Arsenal have no goal potential from anywhere else.
The defeat to Sheffield United was sobering after achieving third place, just a point behind Manchester City but in terms of football, Arsenal are years behind and Emery needs to work it up as soon as possible.