I felt extremely pessimistic yesterday even before kick off as Wenger’s approach to the game was too negative from his team selection, my pessimism was proven accurate.
My problem with the starting line up was the two holding midfielders being played in front of the back four (Arteta and Flamini). To me this is totally unnecessary regardless of our opposition. Wenger has a team at his disposal (all be it depleted yesterday) that can carve open opposition and dominate possession most games, but away to Manchester United all he did was invite the home team on to us and give us fewer options going forward – after five minutes I could see we were going to struggle.
So, I sat frustrated as I’m sure every other Gooner was through a first half were we never gained attacking momentum. The front four attacking players (Cazorla, Ramsey, Ozil and Giroud) were outnumbered and too spread out. Not only that but Ozil had his worst game for us so far and Giroud looked like a worse version of Bendtner if there is such a thing. We should have started with Wilshere or Gnabry instead of Arteta and taken the game to them. Wenger should show more ambition.
The goal came in typical fashion from a corner where our defence stood still in that stupid zonal formation around the box, and waited for the players from the opposition – in this case RVP – to take a running jump and header the ball home. This zonal system is one of my biggest hang-ups with Wenger’s yactics as we concede numerous goals because of it throughout the season. It makes me wonder how much influence Steve Bould has over our defensive tactics as surely he knows that a man marking system works so much better.
In the second half things improved a touch but it was typically too little too late. Wenger’s mistakes had been made and he could not rectify them by bringing on Bendtner! That was as worth it as sending the Spice Girls armed with Nerf Guns to take on the Taliban. At least Sagna put in some great crosses that no one had the minerals to get on the end of.
Sickener now is the international break!