Arsenal 22-23: Time to Deliver the Goods

BostonJack42

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Started watching All or Nothing last night - rewatching the begining of last season was painful. The clip of ESR as a 15yr old juggling the ball was insane.
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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Saturday's match was one of my favorite Arsenal performances in a long time. I thought Leicester actually played fairly well but we were just too much for them. It's a lot of fun to finally see Arteta's tactical vision really coming together.

We have a very soft group of fixtures coming up - Bournemouth away, Fulham home, Villa home, Crisis United away, Everton home, Brentford away - that should be a great opportunity to rack up some points early in the season while we're playing well. But every match in the PL is hard in its own way and we still have to see whether the team can put in the performances consistently, especially once the games start coming more frequently.
 

teddykgb

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I think what you’ll have to watch out for in that run is the difficulty of unlocking packed back lines. You’re playing true Pep ball at this point and whenever City get these runs I’m always prepared for a match or two where we are just a little too wasteful and all the possession leads to a bunch of interesting half chances but no goals. Sometimes it takes some real quality to rescue points in those matches and that’s where Arsenal may be just a bit short.

To me, you should be more active in the midfield, I think you’re short by maybe 2 bodies there for a true title push. I know a lot was spent this summer but it feels to me like the depth and less creative nature of your 8s is going to really wear on the results over 38 matchweeks
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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I think what you’ll have to watch out for in that run is the difficulty of unlocking packed back lines. You’re playing true Pep ball at this point and whenever City get these runs I’m always prepared for a match or two where we are just a little too wasteful and all the possession leads to a bunch of interesting half chances but no goals. Sometimes it takes some real quality to rescue points in those matches and that’s where Arsenal may be just a bit short.

To me, you should be more active in the midfield, I think you’re short by maybe 2 bodies there for a true title push. I know a lot was spent this summer but it feels to me like the depth and less creative nature of your 8s is going to really wear on the results over 38 matchweeks
That all sounds about right. I think teams are still kind of learning/adjusting how to play against Arsenal and over time we're probably going to see more and more deep blocks that are difficult to unlock. Odegaard has had a pretty quiet start to the season and he'll need to up his game. Fabio Vieira could also be a big part of the equation eventually. Especially against weaker opponents that sit very deep, we could see him end up starting a lot of matches in Xhaka's spot eventually. Everybody looks good in youtube highlights but he is a player whose quality really jumps off the screen and in Portugal at least it translated to some very impressive g/a numbers for a player his age. If he can adapt to the PL (he is very small and slight), it will be a big boost. I like Eddie Nketiah a lot as a backup striker but we may eventually learn that we need to find a more physical option for these scenarios, just like City and Liverpool have seemingly decided.

I don't see a real title push in the cards under any circumstance but I think we are two players away from being a pretty interesting threat. We probably need another high quality CM as you say. And we need a winger that can do some of the same things as Saka and Martinelli so that we can rotate without really changing tactically too much. ESR is a totally different profile of player and Arteta has no faith at all in Pepe.
 
So...I'm only going to say this once, and it's not a point worth belaboring in any event. But when you think back to the "Wenger Out!" period of the club, this is the sort of optimism and youthful vitality around Arsenal that everyone had hoped and believed might eventually come after the great man's departure. I don't think many people expected an immediate transition to success the minute Wenger left. But there were basically two camps at the time: there were the "Be careful what you wish for!" people who reckoned late-period Wenger was still a safer pair of hands than anyone likely to follow him, and there were those who didn't see a future under Wenger and were willing to risk an unsettled period of further backsliding in the hope that the club's long-term ceiling would eventually be higher under new management. Well, it's taken much longer than most Gooners had hoped - Emery just didn't work out, front-office intrigue took ages to settle down, and Arteta himself was seriously at risk of being sacked at various points - but here we are. It feels like we're at the dawn of a new Arsenal. And I mean, they may lose to Fulham next week, or all of these wins against relative minnows (although the result at Palace is looking better and better every week) may show this to be a false dawn. But man, this is the most excited I've been about this club in a long time.
 

OCST

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I remember how bad they looked at the beginning of last season- no just the results but on the pitch it just looked awful. I remember that Arteta had lost the fans (well at least that knob with the fan tv show) at a couple of juntures and that the indifference of ownership might have been the only thing saving him. This is great. Good for the club the fans and Arteta. Well deserved and looking at that base of young talent plus Jesus uoure going to be around for awhile.
 

lars10

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So...I'm only going to say this once, and it's not a point worth belaboring in any event. But when you think back to the "Wenger Out!" period of the club, this is the sort of optimism and youthful vitality around Arsenal that everyone had hoped and believed might eventually come after the great man's departure. I don't think many people expected an immediate transition to success the minute Wenger left. But there were basically two camps at the time: there were the "Be careful what you wish for!" people who reckoned late-period Wenger was still a safer pair of hands than anyone likely to follow him, and there were those who didn't see a future under Wenger and were willing to risk an unsettled period of further backsliding in the hope that the club's long-term ceiling would eventually be higher under new management. Well, it's taken much longer than most Gooners had hoped - Emery just didn't work out, front-office intrigue took ages to settle down, and Arteta himself was seriously at risk of being sacked at various points - but here we are. It feels like we're at the dawn of a new Arsenal. And I mean, they may lose to Fulham next week, or all of these wins against relative minnows (although the result at Palace is looking better and better every week) may show this to be a false dawn. But man, this is the most excited I've been about this club in a long time.
I was firmly in the Wenger out camp.. he stayed a year or two (at least) too long and made moves at the end that kept the team from moving on/ were short sighted. Movethat were intended to help win that year but not for years to come. His refusal or inability to bring in a center mid and defenders.. staying with players that got injured every year etc.

The club seemed ahead of development last year.. but injuries kept them from top four. The same could happen this year.. the team is still thin. Arteta’s reliance on Xhaka is working out but feels misplaced given his history..
BUT they’re playing very positive football… they’re putting teams under a lot of pressure and keeping possession.. and the passing up front is great.. Gabriel has been the forward they needed in Arteta’s system.. with the ability to hold up and win the ball but also creative and fast enough to go 1v1 and create havoc on his own. The core is also very young… we could see them playing together for five or so years together..

The last time Arsenal played the same starting eleven in the first three games they had a pretty good year…
 

Time to Mo Vaughn

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I was firmly in the Wenger out camp.. he stayed a year or two (at least) too long and made moves at the end that kept the team from moving on/ were short sighted. Movethat were intended to help win that year but not for years to come. His refusal or inability to bring in a center mid and defenders.. staying with players that got injured every year etc.

The club seemed ahead of development last year.. but injuries kept them from top four. The same could happen this year.. the team is still thin. Arteta’s reliance on Xhaka is working out but feels misplaced given his history..
BUT they’re playing very positive football… they’re putting teams under a lot of pressure and keeping possession.. and the passing up front is great.. Gabriel has been the forward they needed in Arteta’s system.. with the ability to hold up and win the ball but also creative and fast enough to go 1v1 and create havoc on his own. The core is also very young… we could see them playing together for five or so years together..

The last time Arsenal played the same starting eleven in the first three games they had a pretty good year…
The youth is a huge thing. I started following Arsenal in 2007 when I graduated college and for the first time controlled my own cable package and could subscribe to Fox Soccer Channel. Since then we've almost never had a young team with promising prospects. There's been a few individuals along the way (Jack Wilshire anyone?) that mostly haven't panned out and a major reliance on buying outside talent that was generally later 20s, more expensive and already closer to their prime.

Right now you've got Ramsdale (24), Ben White (24), Gabriel Magalhaes (24), Saliba (21), Tierney (25), Zinchenko (25), Tomiyasu (23), Lokonga (22), Saka (20), Odegaard (23), ESR (22), Martinelli (21), Jesus (25), Nketiah (23) as players that should all be getting better purely as a result of getting older and more experience.

Even their older players are still under 30 (Xhaka and Partey). I'm not crossing my fingers and praying that this isn't the year that Aubameyang or Lacazette (or Koscielny or Montreal) doesn't fall off a cliff physically. By the way, color me shocked that Bellerin is only 27. Such a shame how much his knee injuries have sapped him. I would have sworn he would at least be turning 30 on his next birthday.
 

lars10

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The youth is a huge thing. I started following Arsenal in 2007 when I graduated college and for the first time controlled my own cable package and could subscribe to Fox Soccer Channel. Since then we've almost never had a young team with promising prospects. There's been a few individuals along the way (Jack Wilshire anyone?) that mostly haven't panned out and a major reliance on buying outside talent that was generally later 20s, more expensive and already closer to their prime.

Right now you've got Ramsdale (24), Ben White (24), Gabriel Magalhaes (24), Saliba (21), Tierney (25), Zinchenko (25), Tomiyasu (23), Lokonga (22), Saka (20), Odegaard (23), ESR (22), Martinelli (21), Jesus (25), Nketiah (23) as players that should all be getting better purely as a result of getting older and more experience.

Even their older players are still under 30 (Xhaka and Partey). I'm not crossing my fingers and praying that this isn't the year that Aubameyang or Lacazette (or Koscielny or Montreal) doesn't fall off a cliff physically. By the way, color me shocked that Bellerin is only 27. Such a shame how much his knee injuries have sapped him. I would have sworn he would at least be turning 30 on his next birthday.
Much of that was due to Wenger.. he didn’t have time left to develop players.. he had to win… so you get players that are older and more expensive to try and win now.. at the expense of not playing your young players and letting them grow.
 

shaggydog2000

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Much of that was due to Wenger.. he didn’t have time left to develop players.. he had to win… so you get players that are older and more expensive to try and win now.. at the expense of not playing your young players and letting them grow.
I think there was also such a big financial incentive to either stay in or get back into the champions league that it made short term decisions look better. Arteta committed to a rebuild, probably because he had little other choice, and it took a bit to fully make sense, but now that he has mostly the right players in the right positions (I don't think Xhaka is Arteta's ideal choice for his role, but he's there and he's worked fine so far) the team is showing what Arteta's plan has been all along. And when it clicks it is gorgeous. The first few years were about building a base of players that fit, and if it wasn't for injuries to an overly thin squad, I think they would have made it back into the champions league. This year they really have put in the finishing touches for the first team, and started to shore up the bench. The flexibility of who he has brought in helps with the depth. Ben White at RB and Zinchenko being able to cover LB or the left midfield slot are good examples. They do have to continue to fill out the bench with quality players instead of semi-retirees and never going to happen sort of guys, but it's not nearly as thin as last year. And I think he'll look to replace Xhaka with someone closer to an Odegaard type, someone who can press and is defensively responsible, but a more creative player or better finisher. There is no real replacement for Partey, but that is going to be hard to find so I think they have to just get better and if something happens you cover for it in aggregate.

Also, Saliba is a beast.
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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Can Arsenal pull Neto away from Wolverhampton? If so, how much will it cost them?

Dude has a worrying injury history, but he was pretty fantastic two seasons ago.
God, I hope so. He would really be the perfect "third winger" on this team, capable of rotating with either Martinelli or Saka and allowing us to do so without changing much in terms of our style of play. Before his injury he was as bright a winger prospect as anybody in the game.

It sounds like a tricky deal for numerous reasons - he's the classic high-ceiling-but-so-far-unrealized type of player that is very hard to value, he just signed a new contract, the prices clubs like Chelsea and United are paying for players could give any seller some second thoughts about doing a "fair market" deal. But Edu has a good relationship with Mendes and has apparently been quietly working on this for a while now so that gives me some hope that it gets over the line.
 

Time to Mo Vaughn

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I think there was also such a big financial incentive to either stay in or get back into the champions league that it made short term decisions look better. Arteta committed to a rebuild, probably because he had little other choice, and it took a bit to fully make sense, but now that he has mostly the right players in the right positions (I don't think Xhaka is Arteta's ideal choice for his role, but he's there and he's worked fine so far) the team is showing what Arteta's plan has been all along. And when it clicks it is gorgeous. The first few years were about building a base of players that fit, and if it wasn't for injuries to an overly thin squad, I think they would have made it back into the champions league. This year they really have put in the finishing touches for the first team, and started to shore up the bench. The flexibility of who he has brought in helps with the depth. Ben White at RB and Zinchenko being able to cover LB or the left midfield slot are good examples. They do have to continue to fill out the bench with quality players instead of semi-retirees and never going to happen sort of guys, but it's not nearly as thin as last year. And I think he'll look to replace Xhaka with someone closer to an Odegaard type, someone who can press and is defensively responsible, but a more creative player or better finisher. There is no real replacement for Partey, but that is going to be hard to find so I think they have to just get better and if something happens you cover for it in aggregate.

Also, Saliba is a beast.
Yeah, the definite concern for this team and going forward is the defensive mids are Xhaka (30 in September), Partey (29, seemingly a shit bag), Elneny (30). All eyes to Lokonga (22) hopefully making some big leaps to spell one of them by next year.
 

shaggydog2000

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Yeah, the definite concern for this team and going forward is the defensive mids are Xhaka (30 in September), Partey (29, seemingly a shit bag), Elneny (30). All eyes to Lokonga (22) hopefully making some big leaps to spell one of them by next year.
I don't think all the Tielemans talk is made up. Arsenal clearly know what they have to address next. They want to move out Pepe and add depth on the RW, and fill out the midfield a bit. Although, maybe Zinchenko moves there if Tierney can stay healthy. He could replace Xhaka, at the least rotationally so that everyone stays healthy.
 

Time to Mo Vaughn

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I don't think all the Tielemans talk is made up. Arsenal clearly know what they have to address next. They want to move out Pepe and add depth on the RW, and fill out the midfield a bit. Although, maybe Zinchenko moves there if Tierney can stay healthy. He could replace Xhaka, at the least rotationally so that everyone stays healthy.
This is a good point. I forgot that Zinchenko actually slots into that defensive mid when not covering for broken Tierney. I had such high hopes for Torreira as he always looked like a complete beast when playing for Uruguay.
 

shaggydog2000

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This is a good point. I forgot that Zinchenko actually slots into that defensive mid when not covering for broken Tierney. I had such high hopes for Torreira as he always looked like a complete beast when playing for Uruguay.
This should remind you not to get too excited about players you see in the World Cup in few months. League play and international play are just too different.

But I hope the player flexibility they've brought in will allow Arsenal to rotate players a lot more and keep them healthier. I think some guys were getting hurt and not recovering last year because the first team was good, but there was just such a dropoff to the bench players. Tierney should be playing 2/3 rds of the EPL games at max, he just can't handle a full schedule. And Saka never gets rested, which is why bringing in a viable upgrade on Pepe is so important. Losing Saka would be a huge blow for them.
 

litigator02

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And Saka never gets rested, which is why bringing in a viable upgrade on Pepe is so important. Losing Saka would be a huge blow for them.
So, I’ll shamelessly use this as a jumping off point to ask for the group’s collective wisdom on something.

Saka’s off to a slow start - no goals, no assists, expected npG+A/90 less than half of last year’s rate (.22 vs .46). Is the season so young that reacting to this is like reacting to Devers going 0-4 on Opening Day? Or is this a thing that people who know what they’re talking about are starting to watch, wondering if maybe Jesus is “crowding out” Saka’s offensive opportunities?
 

lars10

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So, I’ll shamelessly use this as a jumping off point to ask for the group’s collective wisdom on something.

Saka’s off to a slow start - no goals, no assists, expected npG+A/90 less than half of last year’s rate (.22 vs .46). Is the season so young that reacting to this is like reacting to Devers going 0-4 on Opening Day? Or is this a thing that people who know what they’re talking about are starting to watch, wondering if maybe Jesus is “crowding out” Saka’s offensive opportunities?
I feel like three games is too early to make any conclusions.. but I will also say that I like what they're doing up front... and I think it's only a matter of time before Saka gets on the scoresheet. I also think that Gabriel is unlike Lacazette and Auba in that he doesn't seem overly selfish. The better he performs the more space there's going to be for Saka and others. He's been great at holding up the ball while also attacking.. teams are going to be drawn to him. I don't think Saka has lost anything and as the season goes along he's going to get more opportunities than last year.

I defer to those that are smarter than me though.
 

Time to Mo Vaughn

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He posted in the previous Arsenal thread last May that he was done until Arteta is gone. I really hope he keeps his promise (and that Arteta leads Arsenal to 10 league titles and 5 CL titles over the next 25 years) because he's definitely the miserable CHB of Arsenal in this forum.

Missing out on the CL league was definitely disappointing, but if you didn't look at the progress of him putting in his system and getting youth into the team and see the advancements and additional potential, you were never going to be happy without Pep results. If he was a Liverpool supporter over the last 5 years, he'd be running Klopp out of town.

Arteta took over in December of 2019, so you had a horrific season that was already in flight then you went into COVID in the middle of the second half, a shortened offseason with reduced team time. This is truly his team now and deserves the credit or blame for its success.
 

lars10

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He posted in the previous Arsenal thread last May that he was done until Arteta is gone. I really hope he keeps his promise (and that Arteta leads Arsenal to 10 league titles and 5 CL titles over the next 25 years) because he's definitely the miserable CHB of Arsenal in this forum.

Missing out on the CL league was definitely disappointing, but if you didn't look at the progress of him putting in his system and getting youth into the team and see the advancements and additional potential, you were never going to be happy without Pep results. If he was a Liverpool supporter over the last 5 years, he'd be running Klopp out of town.

Arteta took over in December of 2019, so you had a horrific season that was already in flight then you went into COVID in the middle of the second half, a shortened offseason with reduced team time. This is truly his team now and deserves the credit or blame for its success.
While also cleaning out a lot of players that were dead weight on contracts that couldn't be sold.

Agree on hoping for Arteta to have a long run.. will be nice to have a forum concentrating on the positive side of the rebuild minus posts of absolute misery (that don't acknowledge any context of what is happening around the team or advance the conversation in any way whatsoever)
 

shaggydog2000

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No trip to East Kerplackastan makes me happy. PSV is a relatively tough team, but overall, nothing to complain about. Although I got curious and looked up where Bodø was, and it does not look that close. Maybe it's that northern map distortion, but it looks like half of the paying audience could be polar bears.
 

Time to Mo Vaughn

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Pepe on loan to Nice for the year without an option to buy clause at the end of it. I like this a lot as I think he'll see major resurgence in productivity outside of Arsenal's system, and while it won't be 72M pounds of productivity they will hopefully be able to sell him at a better price a year from now than he would command right now.
 

litigator02

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The midfield is officially thin now, I think, with Partey and Elneny both hurt. Zinchenko, who might have been a reasonable candidate to play a 6, is apparently 50/50 for tomorrow. I guess it’s Xhaka and Lokonga for the next couple games, but I wondered - with double game weeks starting up - what you guys think about the depth past them? I think of Smith Rowe and Vieira as more forward-playing, right? Are we desperate in the transfer window now?
 

lars10

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The midfield is officially thin now, I think, with Partey and Elneny both hurt. Zinchenko, who might have been a reasonable candidate to play a 6, is apparently 50/50 for tomorrow. I guess it’s Xhaka and Lokonga for the next couple games, but I wondered - with double game weeks starting up - what you guys think about the depth past them? I think of Smith Rowe and Vieira as more forward-playing, right? Are we desperate in the transfer window now?
I think arsenal have needed midfield help/depth/talent for probably ten years at least? Basically since Ramsey and Wiltshire started getting hurt every year.
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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If we can't play Sambi as DM against Villa at home, with a strong team around him, then we should just ship him somewhere else.

It sounds like Partey will be back in a week or two and Elneny maybe right before the international break. We need another CM but I don't think the short term crisis here is truly acute. If we can move up a deal for somebody that we really want, we should definitely do it and even be willing to pay a bit of a premium to secure him. But I hope we don't bring in somebody crap like Arthur just to have another warm body around.
 

lars10

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If we can't play Sambi as DM against Villa at home, with a strong team around him, then we should just ship him somewhere else.

It sounds like Partey will be back in a week or two and Elneny maybe right before the international break. We need another CM but I don't think the short term crisis here is truly acute. If we can move up a deal for somebody that we really want, we should definitely do it and even be willing to pay a bit of a premium to secure him. But I hope we don't bring in somebody crap like Arthur just to have another warm body around.
Yeah.. agree with this. I’d like a player that upgrades the position and who will challenge for playing time when everyone is back.
 

hube

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Usual exemptions and caveats apply, but this is an exciting team right now. Arteta seems to have found his footing and the team feels like it’s fully his.

Things may tumble, but I’m having more fun supporting this team than I have in a long while!
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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Strong Douglas Luiz rumors. If we can get him in the 20-25m range and with reasonable wages, I think it would be a great deal. He can play 6 or a more all action 8 in Xhaka's position, has some familiarity with our style of play from his time at Man City and obviously should integrate well given that he knows all our Brazilians. Not a superstar but a good, reliable squad option that is a clear improvement on Elneny (who may be injured for a long time anyway) or Sambi (at least the current version of him). Luiz and a maturing Sambi would also give us some decent insurance if Partey ends up facing charges and getting suspended. And if the wages aren't too high he should be a player that remains moveable in the future if we want to go that route, as he is only 24 and is proven in the PL. A lot of midtable PL teams would want a 25 or 26 year old version of Douglas Luiz if it comes to that.
 

Mighty Joe Young

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Strong Douglas Luiz rumors. If we can get him in the 20-25m range and with reasonable wages, I think it would be a great deal. He can play 6 or a more all action 8 in Xhaka's position, has some familiarity with our style of play from his time at Man City and obviously should integrate well given that he knows all our Brazilians. Not a superstar but a good, reliable squad option that is a clear improvement on Elneny (who may be injured for a long time anyway) or Sambi (at least the current version of him). Luiz and a maturing Sambi would also give us some decent insurance if Partey ends up facing charges and getting suspended. And if the wages aren't too high he should be a player that remains moveable in the future if we want to go that route, as he is only 24 and is proven in the PL. A lot of midtable PL teams would want a 25 or 26 year old version of Douglas Luiz if it comes to that.
If rumours are to be believed Liverpool were sniffing around as well. The tea leaves probably indicate interest was luke-warm at best. Rumour also has it he wants London.
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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Well that was a disappointing end to what was otherwise a really good window. Arteta said today that Elneny would be out "months" whereas Partey would be "weeks, hopefully sooner."

I have no idea what Villa was doing with Douglas Luiz, holding out for a crazy fee or just not interested in selling. I don't really blame the club for not going over the top for a player that clearly wasn't at the top of their list.

I think Arsenal is a little bit short but that's not all that unusual among the clubs in the big six. How much that comes back to haunt any club is really going to revolve around injury luck.

For Arsenal the big question is whether they can get Partey back and then have him available in the period from the end of the international break (10/1) to the World Cup (11/12). If he stays fit for those six weeks then he and Sambi are more than enough for the DM position. I think there is some significant reason to believe that Danilo was our #1 DM target but Palmeiras didn't want to sell in the middle of their season, so he could become an option in early January, making Elneny kind of irrelevant. But if Partey keeps getting hurt and our DM depth chart looks like Sambi and (checks notes on our U23 side) Matt Smith, then the period between 10/1 to 11/12 (featuring matches against Spurs, Liverpool, City, and Chelsea, along with a gazillion other fixtures) could break us.
 

litigator02

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That was a bummer. Felt good after Saka knotted it up, but that second goal was entirely on Ben White. My son and I were both yelling at the TV for him to get back - he stayed in an advanced position well after possession changed, and it was too late to close the angle by the time he recovered.

I don’t know what to think about the reffing - the overturn of Martinelli’s goal is getting some broad criticism, it looks like, but Man U was treating Jesus like a rag doll and never seemed to be held to account for it…
 

hube

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That felt like a throwback to the last few years of the Wenger era. Better for most of the match but couldn’t finish.

Lots of blame to the refs for letting the over-physical grabbing and pulling by United, but they have to be able to overcome that. Gabriel Jesus looked like he couldn’t.

The foul that led to the overturn of Martinelli’s goal was one, but that’s the kind of thing that needs to be called as it happens in the run of play by the officials.
 

biollante

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Martinelli's goal should have counted. I hate slow down in games. The foul was on the other half of the pitch (I think).

Arsenal has a fun team this year but they need a defensive enforcer, which they always lack.
 

Time to Mo Vaughn

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19 year old Brazilian winger Marquinhos made his debut for Arsenal in Europe yesterday with a Goal and Assist in a 2-1 win over Zurich.

Is he the next Martinelli, Saka or ESR? I don't think we care, but it's certainly amazing to have even more youth in the squad to be excited about. He was acquired by Arsenal for 3M pounds from Sao Paulo this summer, swooping in and blocking a free transfer to Wolves and continuing to keep our relations strong with our Brazilian youth feeder programs. :)

I didn't catch the game, but found the following clip of his highlights from Twitter:
View: https://twitter.com/CKftbl/status/1567980513046003713


Great one touch to put the cross into the back of the net on the first goal, and just perfect placement on the assist to Nketiah's header.
 

swiftaw

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Jan 31, 2009
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Arsenal’s Europa League match against PSV on Thursday is postponed due to lack of police (due to the Queen’s funeral). I wonder why they didn’t just reverse the fixtures and have Arsenal play at PSV this week?
 

Time to Mo Vaughn

RIP Dernell
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Mar 24, 2008
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Arsenal’s Europa League match against PSV on Thursday is postponed due to lack of police (due to the Queen’s funeral). I wonder why they didn’t just reverse the fixtures and have Arsenal play at PSV this week?
Agreed. They can't just delay this until after the World Cup like EPL matches, but even if PSV didn't want to disrupt their fans travel and tickets I think it would be better for Arsenal to just play at PSV twice.
 

Time to Mo Vaughn

RIP Dernell
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Mar 24, 2008
7,246
Some unfortunate news this morning that ESR underwent surgery to repair his groin tendon: https://www.arsenal.com/news/emile-smith-rowe-undergoes-surgery

This was reaggravated in the ManU match on September 4th, so a little unfortunate that this wasn't done sooner and possibly delayed his return by about 3 weeks. Hope is to get him back to training in early December. Perhaps some good news is the world cup will minimize his time back. Thins out the depth for the next month and a half until the world cup break, but fortunately Arsenal is in decent shape there at the moment and even when he returns they'll be able to ease him in off the bench until he returns to full fitness.
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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Jul 2, 2006
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It was only Bodo/Glimt but, wow, Fabio Vieira is some player. There are players who are good technicians and then there are guys with that Odegaard/Bernardo/David Silva level of pure technical ability where it always seems like they have an extra split second of time on the ball because its tied to their boot. I'm not saying he'll be in that class of player but he might have that kind of elite technical ability.

Despite being the least physically imposing player on the pitch, the guy also just has talents that can't be taught in the final third. You can see why he was a g+a monster last year at Porto, his final ball is really top notch and he has a knack for finding the spaces and movements to end up getting shots off in the box. Especially as we start needing to rotate more, I think we'll see him getting PL starts in a number of roles in the team, definitely spelling Odegaard if necessary but also Xhaka at times and maybe the top alternative to Saka too.
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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Another fantastic win for the Arsenal. Liverpool right now aren't the same team as last year but that also wasn't the Liverpool of August/early September that was lethargically getting beat to every second ball and in a major funk. It was a highly competitive, tactical, high level football match that we came out on top. We got a bit of luck with the Jesus penalty decision but overall we were the better side. The last time we beat Liverpool AND were the better side by xg in a PL match was in....April 2015. Its been a ridiculously one-sided rivalry since Klopp arrived and clearly very important to change that.

We also had some sneaky huge news last week, with several relatively reliable reporters coming to suggest that Saliba and Saka's contracts (which run until 2024) both have one year team options and that Martinelli's has a two year option. I have never been too worried about Saka or Martinelli leaving, but the lack of new contracts had become a bit worrisome. Saliba on the other hand was a real unknown for me, I was starting to have serious worries about him getting tapped up by Real Madrid or PSG and either forcing his way out next summer or leaving on a free in summer 2024. But with all these contracts effectively running until 2025, all that seems much less likely now. Saliba comes from a relatively poor background and hasn't made big money yet, there is way too much risk in running down his contract for another 2.5 years when he could sign a new deal that locks in lifetime security for himself and his family. I'm very confident all three end up signing new deals sometime in the next six months that extend them through 2026 or 2027.

Managing the squad with so many Thursday games will be a challenge, but Arsenal have a great opportunity to go into the World Cup break in very good league shape. Other than Chelsea away (a massive fixture for sure), we play the sides currently 14, 17, 18, and 20th in the table during that stretch. Four of the five remaining league matches are away and no PL away game is a gimme. But we've been pretty good at grinding down these lower table teams, even away from home.
 

JimBoSox9

will you be my friend?
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Nov 1, 2005
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If you had told me at the start of the season that Granite Xhaka would be consistently getting into the dangerous area of the pitch and unlocking the last level of the defense, without getting routinely punished on the counter, I'd have asked you what league he was playing in. There's so much to be bullish about with the young core right now, but his turnaround has just been remarkable.
 

fletcherpost

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Jul 15, 2005
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WHy does that dude Mikeford who always posted negative shite all the time not share in the good times here? Maybe he was an AI experiment fueled by an algorithm.