It is becoming more and more apparent that some of Arsenal's squad players aren't quite good enough. They're good players but not good enough to be in a team that wins the league. I think if you just had one or maybe two of them in the team we'd get away with it but when there are so many like today, we struggle a lot more.
To be fair, anybody missing the majority of the spine of their team plus others would struggle against a decent side on top of their game. Fabregas, Song, van Persie, Vermaelen and Walcott were all missing today and there's no shame in admitting that we missed them today. OK, Vermaelen's been missing for a while so you don't really count him as much as it wasn't the defensive side of things which were the problem today, it was the attacking side.
We missed the creativity and drive of Fabregas, the solidity and ball winning ability of Song, the goal threat and link up play of van Persie and the immense pace and finishing of Walcott today. The trouble is that players such as Denilson, Diaby and Bendtner came in for them today.
Bendtner I was praising the other day but his problem is that he is too hit and miss. He is the sort of player that when he's not scoring, he's not really any use which is not the case with someone like van Persie. But he can be very good and be a great impact player at times. I'm a season ticket holder at Everton and Tim Cahill is a player that notches a lot of goals for Everton, but in the games he doesn't score he's like a waste of a player as he isn't really doing anything else. Bendtner is like that.
Denilson ain't good enough. Simple as. He isn't strong enough, clever enough, brave or solid enough to be a good defensive midfielder. He isn't good enough in terms of creativity, passing or being a goal threat to be playing further forward. He just doesn't offer us anything.
Diaby's mind is too slow to play for a team like Arsenal, particularly in a game where Arsenal are chasing a goal and want be not- stop attacking. He neither has the passing ability or creativity to be in this team. I think it's time to move on for player's like Diaby and Denilson. I wouldn't sell Diaby as he can come in useful as back up to Song or in away games where you need to dig in and be physical. But Denilson has to go.
I'm still not sure about Rosicky. I still think he's a good player to have in your squad, not everyone can be as good as Fabregas, but he is a bit hit and miss too. He should have started today, or at least come on earlier than he did.
Marouane Chamakh concerns me a bit. He made a slight impact today but when push came to shove in an important game, neither him or Bendtner could fill in for van Persie and win us the game. His attitude stinks at times and he doesn't move enough in the build up play. He only seems to get interested when the ball is in the box. But he is a decent player and would be better when he has players like Fabregas and Walcott in the team with him, same for Bendtner to be fair.
Maybe I'm over-reacting and being a bit harsh on these players. Like I said, they would do better when there are more first choice players in the team, but they should have been able to step up between them today and deliver a win. Which brings me to my next beef...
Arsene Wenger's team selection. The man is a genius and knows more about football than me . But it is my opinion that he got it wrong today. Diaby and Denilson coming in for a home game against a team that are leaking goals and have lost their last four games doesn't make sense to me when you have Rosicky available and even Ramsey. Why Diaby wasn't hauled off earlier for Rosicky or why Rosicky didn't start instead of him today is beyond me. One thing you can never really criticise Wenger for is being too cautious in his team selection, but today he probably was. I can't imagine cautiousness was the reason behind his centre midfield selection today, but whatever it was, he got it wrong.
On the positive side, we drew. We didn't lose. And we are not out of the title race. This is just a minor setback. Nothing more. We could be jumping with delight come Tuesday night and going on about how brilliant Arsenal are. I hope Fabregas and Song are available and Barcelona suffering a couple of injuries would be a nice bonus too.
Hopefully, everyone can play with the heart, determination and quality of Jack Wilshere. As he was almost on his own in that department for spells of last Sunday and today.
Come on Arsenal!