Arsenal Tactics

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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by Don't call me James on Sat Nov 05, 2016 1:33 pm

Venga loves Ramsey. Can't see him not starting when 100%.

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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by Sri on Sat Nov 05, 2016 1:34 pm

Meh, one of him/Thei/Ox is gonna pull their hammy again sooner or later anyway.
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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by urbaNRoots on Wed Nov 30, 2016 1:28 pm

Examining Arsenal’s defensive flaws from @LGAmbrose

http://spielverlagerung.com/2016/11/27/examining-arsenals-defensive-flaws/
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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by Jay29 on Wed Nov 30, 2016 2:28 pm

Structure is the magic word here. The linked article about our possession play is very good as well as it illustrates this point.

It's why I said that even after signing Mustafi, Xhaka and Lucas and strengthening our problem positions we won't be successful. Tactically we're an inferior team to Chelsea, City and Liverpool. I'd argue Spurs are a better team than we are as well, but don't have the same quality in their squad.

You can watch any Arsenal game and see numerous instances of Alexis and Ozil pressing alone, and then turning back and wondering where the hell the rest of the team is. Sometimes the frontline and midfield press well together but our backline stays where it is so there's a gap between midfield and defence. I've yet to see a game where we've pressed cohesively.

Our lack of compactness is a massive problem as well and you could see it in the PSG and United games. Mid-table teams and even relegation teams come to the Emirates and make it difficult for us to work the ball into dangerous areas, but you wouldn't trust us to go to a big ground and do the same. That 2-0 at City a couple years back was remarkable because it was the one time we actually did it.

And of course, that leads to our issues with the ball and why its hard work to break teams down. We're an instinctive team without structure, which means the patterns of our play will change depending on who's playing. It'll work for some games and we'll look great (the 3-0 against Chelsea, for example) but it also means being totally reliant on the players for every game and it's impossible for players to be good for all 40-50 games in a season. Our "freestyle" way of playing is also easily countered by a solid, compact team or a team that presses well.

So this is how we'll take the next step. We have enough talent in the squad to accumulate around 70 points every year, but to win the league and go deep into Europe we need to be better coached than we are.
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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by Sri on Wed Nov 30, 2016 2:38 pm

a.k.a Wenger out.
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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by Da Gunner on Thu Dec 01, 2016 7:56 am

Have been going through his thread for sometime and wanted to get the opinion of fellow posters for some scenarios.

1/ I raved about the lack of structure in one thread and see it has been also been done here. Is it to do with the formation or with the coaching? If it is the coaching, is there some formation/tactics which can overcome the coaching deficiencies and provide us more structure.

2/ The flavor of this season, 3 at the back. We seem to have the personnel to do it ( 4 decent CBs and one LB who has played CB). It can hide our defensive frailties(Kostafi when one of them has those bummer games). We can use Monreal as the third CB to hide his weaknesses to some extent as well and probably give more freedom to Belle who loves to attack. But I believe our midfield will be a muddle. Any opinions on the same?

3/ Chambo as the second choice RB. We seem to have poor second choice RBs and there is a dearth of good quality "affordable" RBs in the market. Chambo has good physique, pace and crossing. He has poor composure, so I'd want him to be delivering crosses from outside than trying to finish them. For anyone who feels whether he'll be able to defend, I have two words for you: Antonio Valencia.

4/ What is our Plan B? We only seem to have a Plan B for attack. What about different formation/tactics. We seem to have decent depth and a good tactician. I'd love if we tried diamond, 4-4-2 or 3 at the back.

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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by Jay29 on Thu Dec 01, 2016 9:57 am

1/ I raved about the lack of structure in one thread and see it has been also been done here. Is it to do with the formation or with the coaching? If it is the coaching, is there some formation/tactics which can overcome the coaching deficiencies and provide us more structure.

It's the coaching. Structure is something that achieved through drills on the training field and analysis. There's no formation that can compensate for a lack of it, because if you tell your players to go out and play where they want that's what they'll do, regardless of the formation they're supposed to be playing.

2/ The flavor of this season, 3 at the back. We seem to have the personnel to do it ( 4 decent CBs and one LB who has played CB). It can hide our defensive frailties(Kostafi when one of them has those bummer games). We can use Monreal as the third CB to hide his weaknesses to some extent as well and probably give more freedom to Belle who loves to attack. But I believe our midfield will be a muddle. Any opinions on the same?

Well, it surely isn't coincidental that a lot of managers who favour a possession approach are using three at the back with more regularity. Pep at City, Sampaoli at Sevilla, Sarri at Napoli, Lopetgui at Spain and Low at Germany all use it. The additional centre back makes it easier to create overloads and play around a press, while attackers can play off a striker without the burden of having to track back.

I'm not sure we have the quality at wing back to make it work, though. Bellerin is fantastic, but I wouldn't trust Gibbs or Monreal for the left wing back spot. As far as the midfield goes, we'd up losing one of Iwobi or Walcott in favour of the extra centre back, which comes with its own set of pros and cons, while our two CMs would need to excellent athletes as well as intelligent.

It's an interesting option but not one I see Wenger trying, ever.

3/ Chambo as the second choice RB. We seem to have poor second choice RBs and there is a dearth of good quality "affordable" RBs in the market. Chambo has good physique, pace and crossing. He has poor composure, so I'd want him to be delivering crosses from outside than trying to finish them. For anyone who feels whether he'll be able to defend, I have two words for you: Antonio Valencia.

Full back is where failed wingers go to play. I'm not convinced he'd be happy with it, though. As a winger he has a chance for game time against Iwobi, who's young, and Walcott, who's slightly injury prone. At right back he wouldn't have a hope against Bellerin.

4/ What is our Plan B? We only seem to have a Plan B for attack. What about different formation/tactics. We seem to have decent depth and a good tactician. I'd love if we tried diamond, 4-4-2 or 3 at the back.

There isn't one. It's 4-2-3-1 or die.
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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by Da Gunner on Thu Dec 01, 2016 11:58 am

@Jay29 wrote:
Well, it surely isn't coincidental that a lot of managers who favour a possession approach are using three at the back with more regularity. Pep at City, Sampaoli at Sevilla, Sarri at Napoli, Lopetgui at Spain and Low at Germany all use it. The additional centre back makes it easier to create overloads and play around a press, while attackers can play off a striker without the burden of having to track back.

I'm not sure we have the quality at wing back to make it work, though. Bellerin is fantastic, but I wouldn't trust Gibbs or Monreal for the left wing back spot. As far as the midfield goes, we'd up losing one of Iwobi or Walcott in favour of the extra centre back, which comes with its own set of pros and cons, while our two CMs would need to excellent athletes as well as intelligent.

It's an interesting option but not one I see Wenger trying, ever.

We can probably play Monreal as one of the CBs and TBH, I don't think he should be at Arsenal, at least as first choice next season. That said, I agree with the latter two points about sacrificing Theo/Iwobi(one of the two bright spots yesterday) and the CM conundrum. We don't have the best mid/attack to support three at the back. We would need a Kante type tireless midfielder in the middle. Ramsey is tireless but it is sad he's more interested in doing all those fancy tricks and flicks.

Though I'm an avid AW fanboy, I'm fine with a new managers such as Loew, only in hope that they'll bring this tactical flexibility. Being a fan of Germany has let me see how tactically flexible Loew's teams are.


Full back is where failed wingers go to play. I'm not convinced he'd be happy with it, though. As a winger he has a chance for game time against Iwobi, who's young, and Walcott, who's slightly injury prone. At right back he wouldn't have a hope against Bellerin.

Maybe not make him as a permanent RB, maybe he can fill in at RB at times when the wingers are on form?

I know I'm clutching at straws coz playing in the wings and defence, can/will be detrimental to his already slow development, but I desperately want to keep both Joel as well as Chambo. The former coz he's a hard worker and the latter coz something tells me if we sold him to a PL team, he'll regularly score/assist against us.

There isn't one. It's 4-2-3-1 or die.

This makes me sad. For all the squad depth and AW at helm, we suck with tactics and formations. If Plan A was too good, I can understand AW refusing to infuse new stuff but we know the formation has lots of chinks and its the players with their individual capabilities saving the day for us.

Not even false positives to feel happy as an Arsenal fan. Lemme go back to watching 2003/4 season on YouTube.

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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by El Gunner on Thu Dec 01, 2016 12:15 pm

You should try to post more, Da Gunner

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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by Sri on Thu Dec 01, 2016 1:02 pm

@Da Gunner wrote:
For all the squad depth and AW at helm, we suck with tactics and formations. If Plan A was too good, I can understand AW refusing to infuse new stuff but we know the formation has lots of chinks and its the players with their individual capabilities saving the day for us.


And yet you are an AW fanboy? Why? Because of everything he has accomplished in the past?

Anyway, you should post more often. Enjoyed reading your posts today. Thumbs up

Btw, Löw only just extended for Deutschland. Anyway, I am not convinced if he'll make a successful transition from NT to club football - they are two very different animals.
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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by urbaNRoots on Thu Dec 01, 2016 1:37 pm

@Sri wrote:
@Da Gunner wrote:
For all the squad depth and AW at helm, we suck with tactics and formations. If Plan A was too good, I can understand AW refusing to infuse new stuff but we know the formation has lots of chinks and its the players with their individual capabilities saving the day for us.


And yet you are an AW fanboy? Why? Because of everything he has accomplished in the past?

Anyway, you should post more often. Enjoyed reading your posts today. Thumbs up

Btw, Löw only just extended for Deutschland. Anyway, I am not convinced if he'll make a successful transition from NT to club football - they are two very different animals.


If anyone could do the transition, I truly believe Löw could do it. Very tactical and smart manager from what I can tell from his press conferences and we have all seen how Germany play.

But as you said Löw has extended, that ship has sailed. What are some other options for us in case Wenger decides to quit.
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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by Da Gunner on Thu Dec 01, 2016 1:39 pm

@Sri wrote:
And yet you are an AW fanboy? Why? Because of everything he has accomplished in the past?

Btw, Löw only just extended for Deutschland. Anyway, I am not convinced if he'll make a successful transition from NT to club football - they are two very different animals.


I'm one hardcore AW fanboy and started following Arsenal more seriously after becoming impressed by AW, his loyalty and principles :hides face:

Though we may have lot of harsh opinions about AW now, Arsenal is Arsenal now only coz of AW.

Ok, maybe not Loew but some who is tactically flexible with some track record of managing semi-big teams and player ego. (That rules you out, Eddie Howe)

@Sri wrote:Anyway, you should post more often. Enjoyed reading your posts today. Thumbs up
@El Gunner wrote:You should try to post more, Da Gunner


Gee, thanks!
It is just that I'm incredibly lazy to put thoughts into words. Yesterday was the tipping point and I wanted to rant, the result of which is in the Soton thread.

And special thanks to El Gunner! He was the first one to welcome me and I thought he was a mod. This section seems too friendly IMO Very Happy

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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by Sri on Thu Dec 01, 2016 2:27 pm

Lets keep it that way Wink

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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by El Gunner on Thu Dec 01, 2016 3:09 pm

No probz, Da Gunner. Take it one simple step at a time. Like I also said before try and venture out to the general section and the Hub, before you know it, posting on here will just be a part of your daily routine Laughing

@RG, ahem, it seems that I have mod potential *wink, wink*


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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by Sri on Thu Dec 01, 2016 5:26 pm

I suspect a multi-account ban incoming. hmm
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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by Jay29 on Sun Dec 18, 2016 8:46 pm

Posted in the matchthread for the City game, but it's relevant here as well.

http://news.arseblog.com/2016/12/man-city-2-1-arsenal-total-domination-by-the-numbers/?utm_campaign=autotwitter&utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=twitter

So this season Arsenal have been trying to improve as a counter attacking team. Wenger wanted us to be more of a threat on the counter after Leicester showed what the benefits were of that approach. Hence the signing of Lucas and the interest in Vardy.

As part of that, our defensive approach has been altered to concede more of the ball and draw the opposition out to make counters more viable. However, the numbers are showing that this approach is backfiring.

We're giving up more shots in prime areas than last season. Last season we forced 50% of opposition shows to outside the area - this season that figure has dropped to 37%. So we're conceding more shots in our 18 yard box. Last season only 21% of opposition shots were in prime areas - this season it's 31%.

More shots in prime areas = more big chances. We conceded 35 big chances all of last, but this season that figure is already at 27.

Not only that, we're not blocking these shots. Last year we blocked 3.4 shots per game, but this year it's only 2.5.

Looking at these numbers, we can see that we've been dropping deeper into our 18 yard box, but haven't defended the 18 yard box well at all. That we haven't conceded that many goals this season completely misrepresents the quality of our defending. The feeling we had gotten lucky in games this season wasn't misplaced at all. If the opposition had taken their chances we would have been no where the top of the table.

It's likely as well that this method of defending is contributing to our poor ball retention and lack of attacking quality as well.
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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by RealGunner on Thu Jan 05, 2017 10:33 pm

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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by El Gunner on Sun Sep 17, 2017 3:58 pm

RealGunner already knows where this post is going.

So I, my dear lads and gents, with a pristine tactical eye for the game, have finally seen the light when it comes to our fortunes against our fellow big teams in the league.

Mesut Ozil
I remember before Ozil arrived, things were admittedly chaotic because we really didn't have creative AM in our side since Fabregas departed, and Nasri abruptly as well who potentially could have filled that void. We had Cazorla though, who created a lot of smart attacking play, however our team was more balanced when he slotted into the midfield in a pivot with a holding midfielder. Our performances against the big teams have been awful even before Mesut Ozil arrived at Arsenal, but not as bad as the 5-1s, 6-0s, 6-3s. Mesut Ozil, the most unique player since Scott Parker, brought his own bag of tricks, and admittedly baggage as well when he arrived at Arsenal. First it was fitness issues, failing to cope with the pace of the English game, he soon stepped that up however, to become the most creative player in the league since he has arrived here. However, for him to do that Arsenal, as a team, and more specifically a defensive unit, have to sacrifice a little bit. Ozil runs a lot off the ball it has been established, but those are mainly runs that benefit Arsenal offensively. Defensively Ozil has become a bit of a liability for Arsenal because he doesn't track back as fast, and is rather a clumsy looking figure on the pitch most of the time, making it easy for opposing players to win 50/50 challenges against him. And when Arsenal play the best teams in their league this issue worsens, because these teams usually play with much more pace and strength, exactly the things Ozil struggle against. Resulting in leaving Ozil as a stranded figure most of the time in these matches.

Essentially, playing Ozil in big matches is like playing with 10 men. And I have seen that too many times. He is a player that already upsets our organised defensive balance, of the little of it that we have as a team, and playing him in big matches is always taking a big risk. Yes, he has been instrumental in a few big matches since his arrival, Man Utd (3-0), Chelsea (3-0) and the FA Cup finals we won he has also been in the side. But we have to face it here, having him in the team, having that creative flair, and more possibility to score goals but also concede a lot more, could either result in us winning 3-0 when luck is one our side that day and our defense is ready to run like crazy to cover all the gaps that Ozil leaves so that it can't be exploited, or we could risk a good defensive shape and ship in a few early goals that lead to a 4-0 or 6-0 loss.

Without him in these big matches, allowing that the player that replaces him in the team actually has quality, we have more defensive stability, and a well-drilled hardworking effort from all 11 players on the pitch. This makes us a more sturdier outfit to break down and score against. And I for one would rather want that than to risk being smashed 5-0. I don't know if you guys have felt this as well, but I feel fairly more confident in our team in big matches the longer the game stays at 0-0. We usually end up being the better side on the day in matches where that is the case. So we can live with that and hope we win by the odd goal or two, like we have against Man City away from home a few years ago 2-0 (Santi dancing after assisting Giroud), 1-0 vs City (Arteta long range strike). I even remember 1-0 vs United (Ramsey winner) before Ozil arrived.

In conclusion, I believe we have a much better chance at winning these big games if Ozil doesn't play.

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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by EL Patron on Mon Sep 18, 2017 3:59 pm

@El Gunner wrote:RealGunner already knows where this post is going.

So I, my dear lads and gents, with a pristine tactical eye for the game, have finally seen the light when it comes to our fortunes against our fellow big teams in the league.

Mesut Ozil
I remember before Ozil arrived, things were admittedly chaotic because we really didn't have creative AM in our side since Fabregas departed, and Nasri abruptly as well who potentially could have filled that void. We had Cazorla though, who created a lot of smart attacking play, however our team was more balanced when he slotted into the midfield in a pivot with a holding midfielder. Our performances against the big teams have been awful even before Mesut Ozil arrived at Arsenal, but not as bad as the 5-1s, 6-0s, 6-3s. Mesut Ozil, the most unique player since Scott Parker, brought his own bag of tricks, and admittedly baggage as well when he arrived at Arsenal. First it was fitness issues, failing to cope with the pace of the English game, he soon stepped that up however, to become the most creative player in the league since he has arrived here. However, for him to do that Arsenal, as a team, and more specifically a defensive unit, have to sacrifice a little bit. Ozil runs a lot off the ball it has been established, but those are mainly runs that benefit Arsenal offensively. Defensively Ozil has become a bit of a liability for Arsenal because he doesn't track back as fast, and is rather a clumsy looking figure on the pitch most of the time, making it easy for opposing players to win 50/50 challenges against him. And when Arsenal play the best teams in their league this issue worsens, because these teams usually play with much more pace and strength, exactly the things Ozil struggle against. Resulting in leaving Ozil as a stranded figure most of the time in these matches.

Essentially, playing Ozil in big matches is like playing with 10 men. And I have seen that too many times. He is a player that already upsets our organised defensive balance, of the little of it that we have as a team, and playing him in big matches is always taking a big risk. Yes, he has been instrumental in a few big matches since his arrival, Man Utd (3-0), Chelsea (3-0) and the FA Cup finals we won he has also been in the side. But we have to face it here, having him in the team, having that creative flair, and more possibility to score goals but also concede a lot more, could either result in us winning 3-0 when luck is one our side that day and our defense is ready to run like crazy to cover all the gaps that Ozil leaves so that it can't be exploited, or we could risk a good defensive shape and ship in a few early goals that lead to a 4-0 or 6-0 loss.

Without him in these big matches, allowing that the player that replaces him in the team actually has quality, we have more defensive stability, and a well-drilled hardworking effort from all 11 players on the pitch. This makes us a more sturdier outfit to break down and score against. And I for one would rather want that than to risk being smashed 5-0. I don't know if you guys have felt this as well, but I feel fairly more confident in our team in big matches the longer the game stays at 0-0. We usually end up being the better side on the day in matches where that is the case. So we can live with that and hope we win by the odd goal or two, like we have against Man City away from home a few years ago 2-0 (Santi dancing after assisting Giroud), 1-0 vs City (Arteta long range strike). I even remember 1-0 vs United (Ramsey winner) before Ozil arrived.

In conclusion, I believe we have a much better chance at winning these big games if certain players play for the team instead of themselves ( Ramsey, Ozil and Alexjs).

Petite correction :coffee:
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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by El Gunner on Mon Sep 18, 2017 5:07 pm

Would love to hear Jay's thoughts on this.

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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by RealGunner on Mon Sep 18, 2017 5:24 pm

same
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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by Hapless_Hans on Mon Sep 18, 2017 6:27 pm

@El Gunner wrote:
In conclusion, I believe we have a much better chance at winning these big games if Ozil doesn't play.

Just FYI, you didn't actually win against Chelsea.
And without bothering to check, I'm going to bet that the big games you won in recent years, Özil was playing.

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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by El Gunner on Mon Sep 18, 2017 6:37 pm

You clearly didn't read my post in entirety.

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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by Jay29 on Mon Sep 18, 2017 6:52 pm

Looking at recent trends in football, it's becoming clear that the traditional 10 is becoming less popular, especially in big matches. It's notable that amongst Europe's biggest teams, few of them play with a 10 like Ozil, and the teams going furthest in Europe don't use one at all unless they're playing with three midfielders also (as Madrid did last season, with Casemiro, Modric and Kroos behind Isco).

The issue with Ozil only seems to happen away from home. When we play the big sides at home, Ozil not only plays well, but is highly influential. He scores or assists just about every time we've beaten a big side at home since he's joined, and we had to get through a lot of defending in those games as well. He's made contributions away from home as well.

The difference I feel is in the type of defending he has to do. At home, we're more aggressive and tend to press more, something which Ozil does well. Away from home, we're more passive. It's more about sitting deep in shape. In the old system, he would be part of a front two as the first line of defence (so dropping back into midfield wasn't part of his responsibilities) but in the current system, he has to defend the flanks, and that's where the problems arise. It's the same with Alexis on the other side.

But, it should be noted that when we played City and Chelsea in the cup last year, Ozil played both games as a right sided attacker and we defended very well on both occasions.

In the end, it's about the system and the attitude. I think there is an argument to be made that playing, say, Welbeck and Iwobi as grafters on the flanks makes us more solid, but at the expense of quality going forward. On the other hand, our poor results away from home come from an team-wide passivity that seems to take hold whenever we travel, which I don't think is fixed by taking Ozil out the side. If we had put Welbeck and Iwobi in against Liverpool instead, I still think we would have ended up being smashed.

The way I see it, it comes down to how much of the play we can manage in the opposition half. The more we can play there, the more useful a player like Ozil is. If we end up penned in our own half, then he's not quite as useful. I'm thinking of games away to City and Spurs where we could, perhaps, not start him and bring him on after we've eased our way into the game. While games against United or even the Chelsea game recently would be good games for him, as long as the midfield behind him is solid (which most of the time it isn't).

Playing more in the opposition half, though, depends on the strength of our midfield. Last year for example we really struggled to control the midfield in big games, which doesn't help Ozil at all because he's starved of the ball and can't effect the game (which in turn contributes to his label as a passenger in those games). If Xhaka and Ramsey perform like they did against Chelsea on a regular basis, their wouldn't be as many issues.
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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by El Gunner on Tue Sep 19, 2017 6:03 am

But Jay wouldn't you say that Ramsey becomes a better player when Ozil isn't in the team?

I think it frees up Ramsey a lot more, and he can make those forward runs that he wants to with a lot more discipline knowing that he is a central figure in the midfield. With Ozil in the squad and his constant nature of dropping deep and wanting to play in the midfield rather than stretching our play outwide, Ramsey is bogged down, which affects his mentality in the game regarding what role he has in the team and often causes him to overcompensate with his runs in the game.

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Re: Arsenal Tactics

Post by Sina on Tue Sep 19, 2017 6:29 pm

Ramsey's Best form came while Özil was in the team(13-14 first half of the season)

also Alexis is as bad defensively as mesut but the former tricks ppl to think he is hard worker(he just runs around and press individually but still keeps disrupting teams' defensive shape most of time)

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Re: Arsenal Tactics

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