Wenger’s legacy is fundamental. Free flowing, attacking football by a club with integrity and class.

Analyzing How Arsenal Was Defeated By City

Freddie loses to Pep

After a week in which Arsenal managed to grab a win and avoid a defeat, one can understand why there was a bit more optimism going into a game against the English champions not only from the players and the staff but also from those sitting in the stands of Emirates.

But what transpired on Sunday can only be described as the hollow and empty experience of playing football and getting a beating at the hands of superior and better managed Man City team as the full Emirates crowd watched as silently as possible as though everything was known before hand and not many bothered to do much rather than just turn out in numbers.

And by the time the hour mark was reached, the Emirates went half empty as everyone slowly understood the position this mighty club suddenly finds itself.  Dragged right back into the mess  just when we thought we saw a bit of ray of hope.

Arsenal lack technical ability

It is fair to say that the nature has not been kind on Arsenal as we lost both our fullbacks and Granit Xhaka in the build up to the game. The later turned out to be the most significant as Arsenal were forced to go with a pairing of Guendouzi and Torreira who even though show a lot of passion, desire and willingness to throw a foot in but lack the technical ability and the positional awareness required to either stamp their authority in midfield or provide enough defensive solidarity to see City out.

Arsenal’s best chance was always to attack City and for that they needed to have a kind of authority in midfield which on night our both midfielders failed to provide which not only resulted in making our offensive players inefficient but also made us vulnerable to counter attacks which City exploited perfectly as they romped to 3 goal lead inside the first half.

All three can be described by similar patterns. Arsenal tried to build slowly from the back, pass after pass and then when the time came to make something out of it in the opposition’s final third, they were either too slow or lacked any kind of imagination or the willingness to run in behind to cause Man City any kind of trouble.

Systematic fouling and swift counters

During this phase, City would systematically foul in order to stop Arsenal or create a situation in which they can turnover possession and counter. And counter they did not one, not twice, but countless times in the same pattern over and over again and Arsenal had no answers.

With one pass City would cut open our midfield like a knife through butter and with De Bruyne on the ball and Sterling and Jesus bombing forward  in acres of free space, beyond our defense, they were in heaven. First De Bruyne blasted the open net after a neat work by Jesus on Arsenal’s right hand side and then Sterling did the same after De Bruyne put one on a plate.

On both occasion, Arsenal could have dealt with it better. Players could have been more tight in box and goals could have been avoided with better positional awareness and defending. But none was to be found and it looked like City would score every time they went close to our box. It seemed like everyone in the stadium including the Arsenal players expected it to turn out like that as well.

Arsenal tried to build sustain periods of possession in City’s half but to no avail and soon City killed any small hopes of Arsenal comeback. In a similar pattern as before, De Bruyne found himself on the edge of the box and curled a great low effort in the left bottom corner of the net. The Belgian had never scored a brace before for City and on night, had it not been for Leno, he could have had a hat trick as well.

From there on, fans slowly started leaving Emirates.

Freddie cut the figure of a manager who had accepted the result but still wanted to try to make an impact and hence, he took Ozil off. It appeared to me he was singling out the German when the whole team, frankly, was just not good enough. This became apparent when the substitution itself made little to no impact whatsoever.

Beaten in midfield

The bottom line is that Arsenal were beaten in midfield, they were out possessed, out passed, out shot and on night there was no contest. Arsenal have had a lot of beating in recent years, but none came with such a toothless performance at home in the league as this was.

Arsenal remain 7 points off top 4 and the relegation zone and the club has never looked more directionless, ever. Arsenal need saving and it’s time that board gets their act together and clarify the situation regarding the manager and the direction in which they want to take this club otherwise we are in a mess and with each week we seem to pile deep underneath it.

Freddie can be much more to Arsenal Football Club then just being used as a shield to cover for board’s incapability to run a club of size of Arsenal.


  1. Yep the concussion for Xhaka has scuppered any hopes Freddie might have had of rebuilding this midfield that Emery poured salt upon around the two senior CMs left at the squad during this Xmas crunch.

    though the arsonists were very close to driving them out too.

    Imagine where Raul is taking this club when you consider that Xhaka & Torreira both want to run away.

    What would be the midfield ATM then?!!!!

    The idiots and the liars are only now able to point out the poor old Guendouzi is still a rookie yet he’s been the starting midfielder ahead of the likes of Ramsey for 12 months under the frauds.

    Who are the heroes? Those defending this negligence from a comfy couch or those at the coal face acting out of love for the club and who are brave enough to still call out the negligence even though they haven’t been given the tools to do the job. Who are right now haggling with The Frauds as the Ghost of Highbury also known as Sir Lord Hot Chip floats smiling upon his shoulder? Fingers crossed…

    Here’s a toast to the Arsenal heroes who might only ever be allowed to play the violins by the Kronke’s before returning to shore and the City in the future but fuck me, at the least they can play…

    • Rosicky@ArsenalDecember 18, 2019 at 5:06 am

      Wonder why everybody at PA and Uncensored is so eager to have Arteta as manager .Does Arteta carries more Arsenal DNA than Freddie?
      Freddie has been more loyal to the club imo and has performed well with U23.
      It will be better for the club to give time to Freddie imho.

      • I personally have nothing against Freddie but if you are going to back Freddie then please give him the support to have a proper backroom staff but maybe they have decided that they don’t want Freddie to be in charge and hence doesn’t want to invest in his backroom staff as well.

        But I’ll admit that having the idea of Freddie and Arteta working together is much more attractive than either of them working alone with someone else. Freddie was an assistant manager under Emery but he was never his No. 2 that was Carcedo. So, I hope that if it is Arteta, Freddie is his assistant.

    • Fin it all feels like we are just one finish outside Top 4 from losing all our quality players with no financial muscle to replace them with equally talented players. We are very close to yet another project youth but the difference is that this time Arsenal does not have a man in charge in which they can believe blindly.

  2. Hey Omi. I really appreciated your analysis. Unlike a vast number of other fans on social media, you avoid the usual cliches that are simply lazy emotional reactions which cater to national bias and prejudices. The bottomline is Arsenal lacked the technical ability, especially in midfield, to neutralize and overcome City’s personnel and tactics. But the advocates of “pashun” and grit were quick to focus on Mesut Ozil because he didn’t run around like a mad hatter trying to win the game by himself. Few of these “experts” on social media point out that the duo of Torreira and Guendouzi were unable to retain any decent possession and when they advanced the ball it was “either too slow or lacked any kind of imagination.” Smith-Rowe certainly had a lot of energy and passion and at his age, trying to break in the first team, he had better. Few of these “pashun” merchants will admit it made little difference.

    • The bottom line Shotta is that if you cannot even stamp your authority in midfield in any kind of form or shape than you have no hope against a midfield as technical, physical and balances as of Man City. Arsenal fans love a scapegoat and in process make themselves blind to issues that really matter.

      • It’s the single most obvious thing to note that as Shotta and George have observed the club have been degrading the squad deliberately:

        The midfield:
        Chamberlain, sold and replaced by Iwobi who was also sold.
        Coquelin, sold, belatedly, agonisingly point (as in points on the table) retarding slow replacement found in Torreira who was hopelessly mismanaged and also looks like he will be sold,
        Rambo, the most disgraceful transfer saga in the clubs history, the anointed captain and club legend, a horror story, sold for nothing after a decade of investment,
        Carzola, the less said the better,

        People talk about the defence but no coach can coach the senior CBs currently at the squad who were NOT signed by AW

        The defence
        The I nability to sign top level CB since 2017 when it became apparent that Kozza’s injuries meant he was essentially retiring from the top level at the same time as the BFG

        Wasn’t even a starter for Dortmund

        Not a regular in the PL for TWO seasons before being made a regular at afc by the clowns Raul & Unai.

        Would these two signings even be starters for Wolves or Sheffield Utd? It’s a fair and simple question. What could the ghost of GG do with these two? I don’t mean to be offensive but the honest answer would be: Sweet Fuck al.


        It’s the Wexit brigade who will be against Arteta. For obvious reasons.

  3. Letting Montreal go for a player not physically ready for the PL has also been a HUGE disaster.

    Not least because he’s been a better CB for the club then either Luiz and Sokratis will ever be.

    What a humongous fuck up that was.

    But as “Don Raul” declared, the transfer window was all on him. His glory and no one else’s eh? We are watching….

    …Therefore the only reason Arteta is still in the discussion is because this parasitic toad has been weakened by his greed: he’s done as much damage to afc in 18 months as Woodward has done in 8 years to Utd. Fuck me…

    • In my blog analyzing the last transfer window, https://uncensoredarsenal.com/index.php/arsenal-new-season-ins-and-outs/, the following was my finding: “I conclude the squad is either about the same, if not slightly worse.”
      To be honest Fins, I never anticipated such a rapid decline in performances under Emery. Neither did I anticipate a similar demoralization in the squad. To his credit, in our podcasts, George has always emphasized how players like Xhaka and Auba will not stick around as we fall further into mediocrity with no hope of winning trophies. In the case of Xhaka why should he stick around in the face of abuse by our deluded fans with their inflated sense of entitlement.

      I have avoided making any comment on the speculated appointment of Arteta until it is official. Hopefully he is given the job as he is a firm believer in the Arsenal Way and he has the unshakable values this club needs if we are to stabilize and refloat the sinking ship.

      As I have now highlighted in the tagline above, the Arsenal Way is Fundamental, our guiding light if we are to become a super club.

      • Super club or not

        No Football team should be afraid of passing the football into and around the opponents D.

        I see the forensic examination of poor Guendouzi’s hopeless play in midfield continues belatedly after Emery’s evaporation, when he’s only starting as Xhaka is concussed.

        Thanks Shotts and also George for being some of the only people online in the Arsenal world to have been talking about the fucking football this time last season and for a li nag time before and since.

        Raul will look to strangle Arteta eventually. The PR war has already began.
        But Arteta and the BFG have been here before, with the Kronke’s still around & still stinking out the yard. This appointment is a victory for Sir Lord Good Hot Chip and anyone else who loves the club whether they no it or not.

        If they bring back Santi as a player coach then to quote the blues brothers they really will have put the band back together.


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