Our team is currently devoid of leadership: nobody is able to take the bull by the horns and pull us out of this pile of excrement.
Yesterday’s game against Swansea was the ideal opportunity to start Arsenal’s recovery, as a win would have taken us within only two points of third position in the league table. A lot of the recent negativity surrounding both the quality of our football and our position in the league would have been instantly forgotten, as the hunt for third would have become our main focus.
However, our collection of eleven players on the pitch never looked like winning yesterday; and more than the result, this is hurting us badly now. Of course, Swansea are not a bad team and their confidence was high; and nothing is better for not feeling fatigue than being on a good run. Swansea deserved their win, but it is also fair to say that we handed it to them by not finding a cutting edge throughout most of the game.
It is absolutely amazing that Arsenal can still look so disjointed and one-dimensional after 15 PL games. I still feel that all our players are working hard to make things happen, but football is a lot more than 11 players working hard and performing their roles as good as they can.
Without any doubt, the most important thing that Arsenal are lacking at the moment is on-field leadership. Everybody is hiding in that respect, or maybe it is just a case of not being able to lead; maybe we have a bunch of players who need to be led by a strong leader with excellent organisational skills. And who is going to do that?
Vermaelen is a fine CB and for me he is our first soldier in defence, but he is not a leader. Any leader would choose Vermaelen in his team, as he would give his all for them, but ultimately he is a specialist who should be left to concentrate on his defensive duties like a pit-bull terrier.
From an organisational point of view, I would prefer Mertesacker to be our captain, or maybe Arteta. Both have a good overview of the game and can organise a team really well. They both could do a far better job in leading the team on the field than Vermaelen currently does.
But I am actually starting to think we need something else now.
We need a new on-field hero: somebody with the energy and drive, the never-say-die attitude, and the ability to rouse the troops; somebody who can re-install belief and purpose in our football, and who understands what it means to play for Arsenal: somebody of the leadership pedigree of Adams or Vieira.
Until recently, I believed Jack is too young for this, but a leader needs to take to the stage when duty calls him.
Jack is the complete midfielder and has the fighting spirit to make things happen; he bleeds Arsenal and also has the required organisational skills to guard the shape of our team and the execution of Arsene’s philosophy of football on the pitch.
It is time for a new hero. It is time for the giant-killer to start wielding his axe at Arsenal. Arsene has got to be brave a make changes now.
“This is no time for ease and comfort. It is time to dare and endure”