The Arsenal Way is fundamental. Free flowing, attacking football by a club with integrity and class.

Brief Summary: Arsenal v Aston Villa

 

Arsenal triumphed over Aston Villa 3-2 after falling behind twice in the 20th and 60th minute, first to McGinn who stered a cross into the back of the net and then a neat near post flick by Wesley from Grealish put them up 1-2. But the Gunners roared back. Our first goal was in the 59th minute via a penalty scored by Pepe after Guendouzi’s excellent dribble into the box and the equalizer at the 81st when Chambers neatly stabbed one home after the ball ping-ponged in the box. The ultimate dagger was struck in the 84th by, who else but Aubameyang, our goal scoring savior since last year, who struck a delicious free kick low and hard to Tom Heaton’s left.

Struggle to overcome lower-table teams

The post game jubilation and relief among us fans cannot paper over the fact that Arsenal struggle mightily to overcome the newly promoted side especially during the first half. Although Arsenal enjoyed 70% possession during that period, Orbinho on Twitter revealed that the Villans had 5 shots on Target compared to Arsenal’s 2. This is a telling stat that we at Uncensored have been featuring explaining why Arsenal have difficulty overcoming traditional mid and lower-table teams like Newcastle, Burnley and Watford. Compounding the difficulty for the Gunners was a 2nd yellow card for Ainsley Maitland-Niles on the 40th minute which on review was a horrible decision by Jon Moss, adding to his resume of dodgy decisions against our players.

Villa go into their shell

Fortunately for the Gunners whenever Villa had an advantage they went into their shell and dropped deep to defend their goal leaving the freedom of the Emirates to Arsenal as the game wore on. Obviously they had no confidence in their ability to hold the ball, string passes together and make the pitch as big as possible for the undermanned Gunners. The Arsenal team may be limited in creativity and creating chances but they are far more talented than Villa and it showed. Playing 2 and 3 at the back they constantly pushed 6 and 7 players in attack and reaped their reward. The stats don’t lie.

  • Superiority in Number of Shots and Possession percentage.

Still disquieting is at the end of the day the Villans had more Shots on Target. But Hey Ho, it is the result that counts, innit?

After that fantastic effort by the team and the resulting victory everyone blew a huge sigh of relief, none more so than Unai Emery.  It could have been 180 degrees different. The mood on Twitter when we fell behind was incendiary. This upcoming week could have been very difficult, if not impossible to overcome. One wonders if after this victory he remains just as secure in his position as prior. Meanwhile in 8 days we have the struggling Manchester United. That too is another enormous challenge for him and this team based on current form.

 

12 Comments

  1. George was right to be worried before KO!

    The stats 11 vs 11 today were not great.

    Great result, very happy about that but oh man that first half…before the handbrake came off, as you describe so well with the stats.

    The hope was that Emery would grow from the new coach we saw in the first half of last season but as you Shard says he never learns. he won’t change.
    e.g.: The passing out from the back debacle was bad enough last season, but to have repeated the same “process” again this year is simply poor and no one, nobody can defend the coaching instructions on display.

    As you say Shotta, a debacle.

    A shambles. Shambling about the pitch.

    The most annoying thing for Arsenal fans is that this was predictable.

    Reply
    • It may comes as a surprise to you Fins and to most readers, but I dislike making this a blog all about Emery but no matter how I try, he remains central to our current challenges. Meanwhile Don Raul has sneaked his way out of the limelight. (Note how I try to change focus.) What a fraudulent Godfather. They have all left Emery to take the bullet, and, unlike the lowest point in the Arsene Wenger era, you can count on your finger the people willing to stand up for the Spaniard. Shambles indeed.

      Reply
  2. Grand Daddy Raul.

    How much was the reported agents cut in the Pepe transfer? £50M? LOL!

    With friends like these sucking on your marrows…

    Grand Daddy Raul Montana AKA Finchy

    Davide Bremery

    Gunner Gavin Blog (“I really like Raul!”)

    It is an unholy trinity that gorges upon the essence of Arsenal Football Club at this time.

    As you said previously Shotta. The concern for Arsenal fans is NOT the sabotage being enacted upon Arsenal Football Club under Emery. We knew a long time ago that there were many better candidates. Many. The fear is what comes next under this mob.

    Reply
  3. Grand Daddy Raul will hope to distract the plebs with the spectacle of a manager/coach change.

    This is his game. Not Football but Football Relations. And the blaggers will be doing their bt as one of the conduits (*vomits*) for Montana’s football relations. Do you doubt me?

    “Ozil and Ramsey can’t play together” yes. They said it!! What an epitaph!!!

    I thank them for leaving such poetry for posterity to read and appreciate…for now there is no excuse for any Arsenal supporter to ignore the true nature of this Mob and there can be no doubt about their Game.

    Reply
    • Raul ensured he was visible in every signing. His very presence is supposedly meant to be gracing Arsenal. (They left out the dis) And he made it clear that this window was HIS.. And made sure it would be deemed a huge success.. Now he has Emery as his first scapegoat, and Edu as the buffer. He intends to keep dealing with agents with his different knock for a very long time indeed. Who knows? Push comes to shove he might even negotiate a nice little understanding with the Pgmol. That will really have people singing his praises.

      Reply
      • I was laughing at Man Utd for about half a decade there as they’ve been fleeced and flogged by Sir Ed Woodward in recent years.

        Who did not laugh? Apart from any May Utd fans.

        Who couldn’t admire a man like EdWoody who is trying his best to make Richard Scudamore look like Charles Dickins? What a hero!

        It is not the Age of the Moron but the Age of the Scam Artist.

        In my defence before anyone accuses me of laying a jinx I’ve always said Arsenal fans should be wary of the Football Mafia out there. Karma. It’s a….

        Meanwhile Billy the Big Blagger tried to deflect Sven telling all Arsenal fans how it will be under Daddy Raul (Kowtowing to the super agents like the best of the patsies) with a smear against Mistlintat and the assertion that “football is a dirty business”.

        So to be clear, the fans, the PR consultants of Grand Daddy Raul smeared the man who signed us all Aubamayang in an effort to defend their idol. This in addition to the Ozil and Ramsey quotes.

        It is clear that they owe more allegiance to this football relations guru who somehow got a job at Arsenal after almost destroying Barcelona, then they do to Arsenal Football Club.

        And therefore, given the above chronological record that have left for everyone to observe for the rest of time:

        the Big Blaggers currently represent a big threat against the future prosperity of the club.

        Reply
  4. I don’t normally ascribe too much importance to judgments on body language made from fleeting images. Too often they just lead to a confirmation bias. But I must say yesterday Emery looked almost ashen, and quite subdued throughout the game. Even when we were leading at the end, he didn’t look his usual self..neither his usual happy self, nor his usual worried self.

    For the game, once the players decided to go for it and they did, they overcame Villa. No big feat normally, but a quite heroic effort in the face of what they have to deal with. Enemies both foreign and domestic, and even those supposedly neutral.

    Honestly, we’re no longer a big club. Emery has ensured that through his approach to press conferences and games. And Raul and Josh have ensured through their approach to transfers, players, and coaches that we’re no longer a unique club either. Getting lost in an unsavory crowd, instead of daring to stand apart.

    Reply
    • My take is we still are a big club, but stuffed and shoved into the straight jacket of wrong player (race horses into cart horses) and middle management (analytics arent enough there has to be human understanding)which is making us a ramshackle mid table outfit.

      Reply
      • Millsy: I fear there is something far more fundamental at play here than normal trading for players and poor managerial decisions. There has been a strategic change at Arsenal that began two years when Josh Kroenke became a director and taking over from his Dad as the point man for the family. Over time we detect actions to break with the Wenger philosophy that permeated how the club was run. I intend to write something on this but it is a very challenging project as it is a case of joining dots in the absence of primary data.

        Reply
  5. Not sure that we’re no longer a big club but we play like a small club. In this case I think it’s Emery related. When after drawing Watford telling all that he set the team up to counter the team in last place well I don’t think a big club does that.

    As for the AV game, he dodged a major bullet as they let us off the hook. Mings who I thought up until his brain cramp looked very good gave the ball to Chambers who did extremely well to capitalize and score. As for the Auba goal, pretty boy Grealish didn’t fancy holding the wall ( not in my face! ), had he a pair of balls we don’t score then. It was great to see us finally attacking with urgency.

    Will we see Özil tomorrow? Has he sufficiently rested?

    Reply

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