Carabao Cup Semi-Final 2nd Leg I Arsenal v Chelsea I Wednesday 24th January 20:00 GMT | Sky Sports

Discussion in 'Match Day Archive' started by American_Gooner, Jan 21, 2018.


Will we make it through to the Final?

Poll closed Jan 24, 2018.
  1. Yes

  2. No

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  1. Dokaka

    Dokaka AM's resident Hammer

    I think it's safe to say that modern Wengerball simply doesn't work without a 3 man midfield with a proper anchor. If Elneny is the best you got for that, so be it. Did a good job yesterday.
    Brown Gooner likes this.
  2. The_Playmaker

    The_Playmaker Well-Known Member

    Theres a part of the game that really summed up what he was instructed to do in the second half if someone could maybe make a short clip of it.

    We have a period of sustained possession and at 63.56 Elneny sums up what has been wrong with this club for so long. We get caught on the break because we are never aware of where we should be positioned when we have possession of the ball.

    Koscielny has the ball and plays it to Bellerin. He then makes a run forward. At this point Hazard is on the touchline. As soon as the pass is made, you see a light bulb turn on in Elneny's head. He literally sprints over off screen. Koscielny loses the ball and he is the furthest person forward at this point. What usually happens is the other team play a ball down the line or over the top and usually break. However, Elneny is already in front of Hazard and wins the ball for us straight away.

    He may not have the physical attributes at this time, but that is a really high level of football intelligence. We are such a possession orientated team, it is really good to have someone who is thinking about what happens if we lose the ball.
  3. VancouverCanuck

    VancouverCanuck Well-Known Member

    Yes we were lucky. But good teams make their own luck. So have any problems with what he said.
  4. Longy

    Longy Well-Known Member

    Yeh I think this is the way to go.

    2 centre backs with a midfield sitting between them and a little in front (like an old fashioned sweeper but in front)
    2 disciplined central midfielders
    Özil in a free role mainly skirting with laca, frees up space for Bellerin to run as well.

    We always see magic when Özil is free, now we have jack being able to get him the ball early, what we've missed since Cazorla.
  5. Preacher

    Preacher Twitter Bot

    Good thoughts.
  6. GunnerBP

    GunnerBP Well-Known Member Trusted

    These points are really valid, but based on our squad I still think Wenger got his lineup wrong.

    Elneny did a decent job as the holding midfielder, but he's still not a good tackler, his ball control is mediocre and his range of passing isn't that good.

    Based on our formation and our ability to go from a 433 to 343 to 352 during a match, then Xhaka would be the ideal person to play as the holding midfielder.

    Xhaka always gets in trouble when he gets caught too far up the field and has to track back. So we should put him in a position where he can sit back defensively and use his passing range. We should also be working with him defensively so that he can cover for Mustafi or Kos when they attack. He's a better tackler, passer and has better technique than Elneny. Elneny runs more than Xhaka, but he isn't fast. Ramsey runs more, is faster, and better defensively than Elneny.

    If we replace Elneny with Xhaka at DM, then Ramsey will replace Xhaka at CM. Xhaka scored a big goal against Chelsea when he attacked the box, but Ramsey is still much better than Xhaka in the box.

    Right now Xhaka just looks like a player that has been poorly coached this season without a clear objective when he steps on the pitch.

    If we worked with Xhaka and tried to play him similarly to how Man City uses Fernandinho then we could have a front six of Xhaka, Ramsey, Wilshere, Özil, Laca/PEA and Mkhi. And we could easily switch between 433, 343, and 352 during matches.

    Against Chelsea, it literally took us until halftime to get our tactics right, and we were greatly aided by Willian's injury and Barkley doing nothing all match.

    Our tactics are much better now, but our starting 11 can still get better.
  7. IslingtonBornandbred

    IslingtonBornandbred Well-Known Member

    I think your thoughts on Xhaka are valid, but unfortunately for him, we haven't seen him be reliable enough in the holding role. Whilst Elneny has his limits, I believe he's much more intelligent than Xhaka in terms of his positioning, and where and when to press. I can't recall Elneny vacating the holding role a great deal last night, whereas I've got a feeling if Xhaka was in that role, he'd end up roaming and either pressing too high or making off the ball runs forward. I don't know why he can't be told just to sit, but for whatever reason, he doesn't do it and Elneny did it last night so it's not a tactical decision i.e whoever is holding has to do what Xhaka's been doing which is making runs out to the wing or occupying the space behind Lacazette . Even alongside Wilshere, it's often Jack who has to sit whilst Xhaka moves forward on occasions. There's a reason why Wenger chose to have Elneny in that position and not Xhaka. I don't think Xhaka has the quickness of feet or dynamism to play further forward regularly.

    I think the obvious solution for Wenger is to keep Elneny in there, and leave Xhaka further forward alongside Jack, or replace Xhaka with Ramsey/Mhki.
  8. TheArsenalis

    TheArsenalis Well-Known Member

    See the thing is while your right on both elneny and a
    Xhaka. What elneny brings you won't get that from xhaka and we kinda need it. Plus xhaka cannot emulate mancity fernandinho. But I do feel that Wenger end up playing xhaka Ramsey and Wilshere. Which will be to the team detriment. For now the best combo we have is the current trio.
    Elneny doesn't get caught upfield. He is always looking to cover the outta placed player and intelligently watches his man. He plays like a true shield though he is lacking. He could pass better tackle better but we do not have another player in the squad who does the role better than him. And xhaka next to gives us more solidarity.

    All he needs to do is collect pass and receive. Stay deep.
  9. TheArsenalis

    TheArsenalis Well-Known Member

    You won't see xhaka playing cb when possibly overlapping. And don't ask why he does this. He does. Ayte
  10. GunnerBP

    GunnerBP Well-Known Member Trusted

    I'm not saying that I expect Wenger to do anything besides keep Elneny in the same position and play two of Xhaka, Wilshere, and Ramsey ahead of him.

    I'm saying that I think he will do that and this is due to bad coaching and not getting the best out of Xhaka.

    For Switzerland and Gladbach, Xhaka was consistently a DLP/DM. He would drop deep to collect the ball and the CBs would move out wide, and his range of passing let him spray the ball all over the field. This is the position he played when we signed him. This is why we signed him.

    However, Arsenal has possession way more than most teams, so Xhaka would play a slightly more advanced then he used to. We've basically been trying to figure out a way for Xhaka to be more effective higher up the pitch, which is new to his game. This is largely why his season has not been the best.

    Elneny looked good in this formation against Crystal Palace and he was okay against Chelsea, but Barkley made him look way better than he was.

    When Chelsea had Willian on the pitch he stretched the field and this gave Hazard the space to confuse the CBs. On the first goal he floated in the space between Elneny and Mustafi, neither picked him up and he scored. Elneny's positioning was all wrong on that play. I don't blame him for that. Clearly, Wenger got his tactics wrong at the beginning of the match.

    However, Elneny got much better once Wilian left because Barkley stayed more central and played like an AM. He was in front of Elneny and not trying to play between the lines. This made it easier for the defense to mark Hazard and Pedro.

    In the second half, we dropped Elneny about 5 yards deeper on the pitch, almost having him play as a third CB, and everything got much better. However, Elneny's passing did not create much offensively, and when he did try he turned the ball over.

    Xhaka got better in the second half, and I think a lot of that was due to Elneny playing deeper which gave him more space.

    What we saw Elneny do in the second half, I think Xhaka could definitely do that and more. And I think Ramsey would have been better in attack than Xhaka.

    Wenger lets his players play with a lot of freedom. If you're Xhaka, play in an attacking team like Arsenal, and you have a great left foot shot, it is pretty logical that you're going to gravitate into the attack, and try to score some goals.

    Elneny doesn't have that in his locker, so it isn't surprising that attacks less than Xhaka.

    Xhaka made a great tackle on Hazard during a big moment in the match, so he can be an asset on the defensive end.

    Overall, I don't think we're getting the best out of Xhaka, and as a result, we're going to have a starting 11 with Elneny starting and Xhaka making runs into the box as Ramsey watches on the bench.

    Due to poor coaching we're going to have a backup starting matches while Ramsey, who we know consistently creates goals, sits on the bench.
  11. celestis

    celestis Arsenal-Mania Veteran Moderator

    Was used on one of the fouls .
  12. c00lguy

    c00lguy Well-Known Member

    Not sure where to post this but I realised something.

    City get 12 days rest for the final whereas we get only 70 hours (due to Europa) . And then we play them again 4 days later in the premier league.
    How is that fair?
  13. IslingtonBornandbred

    IslingtonBornandbred Well-Known Member

    It's not. But it's what you get for being in the EL. He'll need to rest and rotate.
  14. It will be 6, 7 or 8 days, as we will be playing in the FA Cup 5th round the weekend before.
  15. TheArsenalis

    TheArsenalis Well-Known Member

    i think people just dont like the guy for whatever reason. maybe its his hair. or because he came cheap.
    they want someone who can do everything in midfield, super quick, master passer, big strong hard tackler, who can defend aswell as attack. :lol:

    the funny thing is that silva, Özil, coutinho only excell in the attacking part of the game, and even then those guys don't excell in all areas of attack yet they get some much love.

    i guess im saying, he needs only to be good at one thing that, everyone else in our team lack to be a benefit.

    he doesnt need to be able to attack remember makalele? he need to help shield the back, and stop the silly counter attack that team been using for ten to **** us over. to close the spaces left open by his team mates brain farts.
  16. Mark Tobias

    Mark Tobias Mr. Agreeable

    Still a fair amount of time more. But as has been mentioned, that is what Europa gets you.
    celestis likes this.
  17. Brown Gooner

    Brown Gooner DoN'T ceNsOR maH FreE SpEecH

    Play the first teamers in the away leg and finish them off in the first Ostersund off in the first leg itself. Arsenal play Spurs on 10th and it is an early kickoff. Ostersund away is on 15th.

    If we win 4-0 in Sweden the second leg would be as good as dead and play the youth at home.
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