Today Arsenal were woeful for 45 minutes against Chelsea. You can't afford to be like that against the top teams. We were decent, but no better than decent in the second half and yet again against Chelsea we were not tactically perepared, organised or determined enough.
Last year we won 5-3 at Chelsea, but apart from that every year we go to Chelsea we get outsmarted and Chelsea take advanatge of our embarassing naivety and lack of tactics and usually go 2-0 up early on and protect the lead. We're just way to easy to play against for the top teams. The players were generally poor and I'll get to them soon but the main person who needs to take the blame in Arsene Wenger.
I've said it so many times over the last 18 months that I'm getting sick of saying it, but he is tactically inept and doesn't prepare for a lot of games anywhere near well enough. Today it looked like we'd just turned up and not prepared at all for this game, no tactics, no sense of importance on the game, we played the first half like it was a nothing game when in actual fact it was a massive game.
It was a huge game where we had to be determined, cautious, tactically astute and aggressive. Yet we were timid, tactically non- existent, clumsy, dozy and naive. It was so easy for Chelsea to get at us and play against us in the first half it was embarassing. We were pushing both full back forward at the same time away from home at 0-0 and 1-0 down against Chelsea early on and pushing way too many players forward overall. We were also not protecting the back four well enough and our wingers weren't tracking back enough. It's frankly schoolboy stuff and Wenger and the players should know better and this shouldn't be happening at all, it's actually awful, especially by the manager.
It was a game where we needed at least a point and you wouldn't be able to tell that looking at the players, many of whom played with such little desire and commitment. The lack of care from the players, the naive and lack of tactics and preparation from the manager just make me so angry about Arsenal.
The transfer business is as always a big factor in Wenger's lack of ability to manage Arsenal and that was evident today. It's the 20th January and we STILL haven't signed anyone with the vast amount of money we apparently have. We've had two massive games against top sides in that period, all the more reason to get business done early. Our bench today was woeful, as soon as we've got 3 or 4 players out, our bench looks very poor.
Mannone, Jenkinson, Koscielny, Santos, Ramsey, Arshavin and Frimpong. That was our bench today. That's not good enough. We've bought extremely poorly over recent seasons and it was evident today. So little amount of quality players who can make a difference. And to think we could have had the likes of Gary Cahill, Ba, Huntelaar, Van Der Vaart and De Jong if we'd have had any high ambitions in recent seasons. (As well as keeping the likes of Van Persie.)
The fact is that any other top club would have got rid of Wenger by now and at Arsenal he's not even under pressure. It'd ridiculous, it appears he can get away with anything- lack of success, lack of ambitious signings, selling our best players to rivals, not solving the persitent injury problems at the club, being tactically inept. It's time for him to go and it's time for Arsenal to start showing some ambition and desire to be at the top again.
It's got the point now where we're competing with Tottenham and Everton with the likes of West Brom and Swansea not too far behind. That's terrible. We should be up there contending with the top 3 now with our current resources.
What we have got going for us is that we haven't got many big fixtures left now and that our fourth place competing rivals have got tougher fixtures overall left to play. The next 3 games, which are all at home, are massive, we need 9 points out of 9 there. Even if we pull it off and finish 4th it still won't be good enough for this club and change will still be needed big time.
(Image source: http://news.bbcimg.co.uk/media/images/65398000/jpg/_65398404_chelsea_arsenal_pa.jpg)