Mikel Arteta I am Right Behind You

So Arsenal are out of Europe now and there are just four PL games to go before the season comes to a close. It was a tough night for all of us and naturally many feel hurt and disappointed.

Clubiconen Arsenal schamen zich: 'Dit doet pijn: Arsenal wordt elk jaar slechter'

I was not convinced by the tactics but we will never know how the game would have finished if Xhaka had not been injured just minutes before kick-off. I am not going to explain again why Granit is so important for us as I have done so ad nauseam over the last few years. But whether he would have been played at LB or LM, Granit would have been the nr.1 translator of Mikel’s tactical plan for the game. During the whole 90+ minutes we were rudderless last night, and I think Mikel made a mistake with not giving Partey an extra man in midfield. Thomas was far too isolated and made a lot of mistakes; he just needed a ‘hoover’ like Elneny to help him out.

Mikel aimed for the 1-0 victory rather than go all out blazing for a big win, and I have time for this. Unfortunately, we did not produce enough chances and/or lacked quality and luck for the few good chances that came our way. I am all for rationally ananlysing games and throwing loads of stats in the mix, but we did not lose to a better team but a luckier one: the bounce of the ball went Villareal’s way on a number of occasions over both legs and that in my view made the difference. It just felt it was not going to go our way, and that is cup football for you. Arteta also made a very good point that his key players were either not available or not fully fit last night, and it cost us.

I would not have started with Bellerin who, to be fair, did not have a bad second half and delivered a peach of a cross that any CF would have loved. I would have played two in midfield, especially after Xhaka got injured. And I would have played Martinelli from the start and leave Pepe out (not that he played that bad last night). But I am just a keyboard manager and know very little of football management compared to Mikel and therefore have only respect for him. He got close to getting us to the final but it was not to be; just as it was not to be for Mourinho, Ten Hag, Rodgers and so many others in the UEFA League. Again that is cup football for you.

There will be calls to get rid of Mikel now.

I even have these calls on Bergkampesque. This is of course fine but I will not support you. The club moved mountains to entice Mikel away from Man City and his great master, Guardiola. Why did they go for a rookie? Well I guess because they believed that Arteta would build something like Wenger did in the late nineties: a legacy based on beautiful, winning football. Arteta has a vision and a plan but it takes time… much more than I thought it would take. The squad is not a bad one at all, but too many players cannot play passing football the modern way. Is that not obvious to any serious Gooner?! Pepe cannot play tight-space-football and neither can Auba; Laca is getting there but Eddie is not making the grade; Martinelli is keen but has dropped tremendously in form and also struggles with playing combo-footie in tight spaces. We have some good full and centre backs but only a few can pass out the ball well and can play a ball over the top when needed; Partey has struggled with the tempo and intensity of the PL this season and Bellerin also struggles with playing the high-intensity football that is required. Luckily, there are still a handful of great footballers at Arsenal and one or two of the above mentioned players may still improve.

So what to do? Kick out Mikel and start again? Hope that a new manager can get the best out of this squad again and make us go places? Or stick with the road and the man we went, on and with, when Emery was sacked? You know how I think about it. Believe in the vision and the man and have patience with the way he is going about things. A big summer TW is coming up and next season we will properly see what Arteta is made of… and I am right behind him.

“No difficulty can discourage, no obstacle dismay, no trouble dishearten the man who has acquired the art of being alive. Difficulties are but dares of fate, obstacles but hurdles to try his skill, troubles but bitter tonics to give him strength; and he rises higher and looms greater after each encounter with adversity.” Ella Wheeler Wilcox

By TotalArsenal.

49 thoughts on “Mikel Arteta I am Right Behind You

  • Couldn’t agree more with your analysis TA. Really depressing result…😰 difficult to rationally analyze the game now. But at the same time do not think a knee jerk change in coaching staff will yield a better result. Perhaps not having European football (the horrors! But looking a possibility) for a year will allow us to storm back to the top? Searching for some silver lining here…

  • Cheers St.H

    I am all for European football but not on Thursdays. It just does not work for us as it means so many games of Sunday/Monday too. A year out of Europe with Arteta just focusing on the League and FA Cup would be fine with me.

  • 10th, 11th, 9th, 14th
    The first four seasons of Herbert Chapman’s Arsenal managerial career.
    Stick, Support and give time
    Do not twist

  • I agree with you TA (and St.H) even though I was similarly disappointed by Arteta’s tactics and substitutions (again) last night.

    For me, we need to give Arteta at least until the end of the year. The league now has to be our priority and he and the team will be judged by our league position. There is a big summer ahead for the club with many important decisions to be made about existing and potential squad members. Edu and co will play a big part in this and we should also be judging their performance when looking at our league position next season. We need committed team players with the requisite skills. Warriors not underperforming overpaid divas. That is why I’m so concerned that we got rid of scouts and seem to be relying more and more on agents and data analysis. We need to reduce our bloated cost base but, we need people on the ground who can assess how players perform in real life not just via videos.

  • I agree with that, OX10: people are the best talent spotters and data should only be used in support of human activity.

  • I am thinking beyond just the result of this game, crucial as it was. I am thinking of the standard of our playing, not only for this game but for several others across the season – lame, insipid, non committal…….
    I am thinking of all the unwanted records that have been broken this season, domestically and in Europe.
    I am thinking of the abject inconsistency in our style of play and the consequent results
    I am thinking of the millions spent on the likes pf Pepe and Partey and the worth of their on-field contributions to the team
    I am thinking of the huge wages being paid to the likes of Willian and Aubameyang and what they are doing for the team and can do in the future playing under Arteta.
    I am thinking of all these and more, and I am convinced that Arteta is not right for this club
    There is need for bravery here – to take the bull by the horns. Sack Arteta and find a coach who can restore this global brand of a club to its glory days and put the smile back on the faces of we the long-suffering, loyal supporters

  • TA , I will agree with Arteta staying only if the structure behind him is strengthened with a experienced Technical Mgr. Arteta should be sorrounded by experienced staff and an experienced boss. There is too much first timers and for a club of this size with champions league ambition is not good enough.

  • First rational article I’ve read today, well done TA and well done to the guys who have replied so far. We knew Arteta was a rookie, we knew he was going to make mistakes, we knew that this squad, even though we have some great players and very good youngsters lacks and has limitations. Weaknesses in the team especially in the centre mid. I’m glad we had Cebellos and Odegaard on loan they did their best but are not made for Arsenal nor the Prem. Unfortunately we’ve had fitness issues to key players. additionally the terrible VAR calls we have had in recent months costing us quite a few points.

    Arteta needs time he needs support from the owners and he still has players he needs to move on. Without Europe next year we can now re-focus have an actual pre season and get some new lads in and see what our fringe youth players are made of. Let’s get this season out of the way enjoy Euro 20-21 and come back in August renewed

  • Cheers Corporate,

    When I think of Arteta, I think of the glorious cup run and win last year. The victories against Manure, Chavs, Leicester, Leeds and Spuds this season, our victories in Europe, reaching the semi final. The football is a work in progress and next season I will have higher expectations, but I fully get why it has been so hard this season.

  • Beautifully expressed TA and an accurate summation of our season. Everyone on here expressing disappointment and disenchantement with our results this year must take into account the following:

    1) Serious and continued long-term injuries to key players not fully fit.; including some of those playing last night,
    2) A very difficult managerial challenge to integrate quite a few new faces with different playing styles and habits into a homogenous squad and Arteta’s playing style.
    3) Based on point 2, the challenge to develop a strategic and tactically consistent series of formations which will work most of the time.
    4) A terribly disheartening Covid-19 season played under harsh conditions, fanless and always with the threat that the entire season could end suddenly and conclusively.
    5) Sacking Arteta, about halfway through his team development time would be a stupidly fatal error. Guardiola needed 5 seasons before his team stabilized ,but look at it now.
    6) We need to stop looking backward at the initial Wengerball years. The world of Football has changed drastically and after seeing the fiasco of the European Elitist league, not necessarily for the better. Arsenal are in a strong position to develop another dynasty but need to allow the seeds to sprout and keep to the course. Fairweather fanboys are an unnecessary distraction…there is enough negative media to s**t all over the Arsenal as it is.

  • Strong but fair comment, OMG. I could see Arteta threatening to make a breakthrough a few times only to suffer a setback of some sort. It hasn’t been brilliant but a rebuilding exercise seldom is initially.

  • If the team was winning all the glory would be on Arteta. There is nothing positive about this season. Football has changed and he won’t get al the time in the world to build a team the way he likes. Our league position is unthinkable yet we are using old horses like Luiz and Willian who have no future with the club. We are playing so badly yet our players on loan are playing better than what we have. With no Europa football it will be difficult to attract better talent. No player has improved under Arteta. The majority have actually got worse (Bellerin, Aubameyang, Lacazette, Nelson etc). The team plya without any urgency at all. They don’t seem bothered in some games. We need a manager who will put that spark back in the team. Based on the squad we have the results are not up there. The club need to move away from the small boy mentality and demand Arteta to prove his worth and earn his money.

  • Strong views, Simba. I think many players have improved but some are just not right for the way Arteta wants to play, hence progress is taking time.

    Arsenal going for the long term and trusting Arteta is class in my view. It may not pay off straight away but those who have patience will be rewarded.

  • Simba, you mention a few players who you feel Arteta has made worse. Auba has certainly been beyond par this season. There have been personal issues, sickness etc. He hasn’t had the service he deserves and it seems that he has felt burdened by the captaincy. Bellerin hasn’t been himself after a succession of injuries. I actually think that Laca has been one of our better performers recently and he has scored some key goals for us. Nelson hasn’t had enough chance to show us what he can do. He had one game when he was a bit anonymous and we haven’t seen him since. To be honest, I have miffed by this especially when we see how many chances Willian has been give,

  • It’s unfortunate that some will throw Arteta under the bus but I guess that everybody is allowed their opinion.

    I’m disappointed but not at all surprised by the way the season developed, I prefer to look ahead and not behind.

    Next season is a new opportunity for both the manager and the team to show what they have in their lockers. We can take advantage of not being in Europe and concentrate on the PL and FA Cup – if we win the FA CUP or finish in the top six then we are back in Europe. It’s not what any of us wanted but it’s where we are and nothing to take away my support for Arsenal. However I would like a change in ownership – personally I’m done with American owners in the PL.

  • TA I have gone to sleep
    Please wake me up when next season kicks in
    Thanks

  • I’m voluntarily secluding myself from all Arsenal related activities till the end of the season/month.
    Before I go, here is my response to your admirably optimistic post, TA, especially your main argument: “Why did they go for a rookie? Well I guess because they believed that Arteta would build something like Wenger did in the late nineties: a legacy based on beautiful, winning football”

    It’s a low hanging fruit, but people make mistakes and bad decisions. Even those who astronomical salaries and their main jobs are to make good decisions. Some of the more controversial decisions of the past:
    – letting Sanchez and Ramsey run down their contract
    – selling Martinez to Aston Villa
    – signing Emery as Wenger’s successor
    – expel Guendouzi from the club, maybe Torreira too
    – tying William to the club with horror wages and beyond his productive years
    – assigning Steve Bould to the U23 team
    – renewing Aubameyang’s contract in a way that doesn’t maintain his performance or motivation
    – keeping Saliba at London for half a season without a single senior minute played
    – parting ways with Sven ‘Diamond Eye’ Mislintat
    – loaning Denis Suarez or signing Lichtsteiner
    – founding European Super League
    – paying 1.8M for Runarsson
    – sacking Gunnersaurus
    – etc.

    We might be debating some points from the list (I don’t agree with all either), but it’s fair to say that there have been some bad decisions, maybe even clusterf*cks. But that’s alright. Mistakes are part of the game, every other team make them too (Mourinho, Drinkwater, Karius, Slimani, Ake, Lampard, Brewster, Havertz – of course some of them can turn fruitful). I’m just saying, that the simple fact that our board made a decision would not make it a surefire success. Especially that some of the decision makers are no longer with us; Saunllehi didn’t became the savior we all hoped for, and Vinai Venkatesham or Edu don’t seem infallible either.

    Was appointing Arteta a bad decision to make? Hell, no. I was as optimistic about it as anybody, and wanted him to succeed just like you. It was a risky decision, but a risk worth taking after the Emery experience found wanting. And for quite long Arteta’s evaluation seemed like a matter of emotions, and that is somewhere between hard and impossible to debate on emotions. However I honestly think this is no longer the case. While making an emotional stand is an unalienable right, there are plenty of data and evidence showing Arteta’s performance are below Emery’s albeit managing a better squad (with the one and only improvement is the number of goals conceded), so it seems a bit of a double standard demanding to stick with Mikel when Unai – and his transformation journey – didn’t receive the same courtesy. So I’m not in the business to blame anyone for the Arteta experiment, but (with the immortal words from Lawrence Garfield) let’s have the intelligence, let’s have the decency to sign the certificate and move on. Mikel had more than a season and a half, a few more games than Emery, but the “beautiful, winning football” is nowhere to be seen. On the contrary, unfortunately the evidence are overwhelming. There are no foolproof scenarios on the table, any decision will be an experience, either we sign a titan like Allegri or Sarri, we stick with a tactical genius like Favre or Gasperini, or maybe try again with another ex-Arsenal icon like Vieira or Henry. The risks will always be there, but we might be able to control some element of them. I agree with TA, that we have a better, stronger squad than most of us realizes, but in my opinion we need someone who can work with that…

    To be honest, it hurts seeing that Tottenham made the smart decision in time – although there were clearly less emotions involved – while we are dreaming about ideal scenarios where we immediately bounce back to EL (or even CL) football. While that is not impossible at all, the “common knowledge” process behind it have serious flaws. Starting with the summer wishlist. I’m not sure whether Barcelona or PSG still interested in Bellerin, but even they are I don’t see Hakimi willing to join us (even if we splash cash beyond 50M) or Emerson Royal would decide to sign on a free transfer to an English mid-table team. And we might stick to ESR as the sole AM, but if we want to sign someone else there for cover/competition, Arsenal will not be a dream location for someone like Odegaard, Calhanoglu or Coutinho, and I’m afraid Buendia will find more attractive suitors than us. I will not continue, the same applies to every other position, except from Ryan, who might be willing to join on a cheap.

    And while we are compiling the ‘ dream 2021 summer signings’ shortlist let’s not forget that without European football Arsenal lost 14000 (!!!) minutes which is around 20-25% of the total playing opportunities. So how much will Balogun play? Who shall we sell from Pepe, Martinelli, Saka, Willian and ESR as they won’t be able to share the EL games among them. Arsenal had an insanely large squad at the beginning of the season (as I always kept telling), so huge that we had to terminate 5 contracts (Macey, Ozil, Papa, Mustafi, Mkhi) without losing quality or quantity, and we have to get rid of about ANOTHER 12-15 this summer with 7 seniors coming back from loan, not to mention the 4+ academy players who should be playing first team football. The future of Arsenal is not mainly in the coaches hand, but the loaning manager. Who will William Saliba play against? What can we promise Ainsley, Willock, Nketiah and co? Do we honestly expect our most promising starlets like Azeez, Taylor-Hart and Okonkwo to sign a new deal (their contracts run down in the summer) when we can’t even offer a lousy bench spot Dundalk or Molde?

    Sorry, I got carried away. But at least I’ll will not flood your monitor screen for the next 3 weeks minimum.

  • Hi PB, there is no need to exclude yourself. You have an opinion that is different to mine and that is of course fine.

    You make your point well and you are not the only one with those views.

    The only point I want to make is that the difference between Emery and Arteta is that the latter speaks English much better and did not lose the player group. Both were on a mission to improve the team but Emery just was not right with little prospect of improvement.

  • PB excellent points. My grouse with Arteta consistently has been that he is not able to get maximum from this squad. This is my strong belief a team.is greater than sum.of parts and here in lies Artetas failure. He just hasn’t understood this principle. It’s manager 101. I agree with you that we have a huge and actualy a very good squad. Few of them are dross but when you compare it with Villarreal we surely had a better squad. Iam concerned and haven’t seen enough from Arteta that he has utilized the squad the best and made the team better. League table doesn’t lie.
    By the way what a result for Newcastle and Willock played on the right side of midfield 3. Isn’t he better or atleast same as Dani, based on current form better. But what did Arteta get out of him. He is our academy player and we should be proud to have him rather than Dani. Based on today’s result our result aginst Newcastle looks great. I still think Eleney should have played againt Villarreal as double pivot with Partey. Say what you will you know what you get out of Elneny. Solid and honest performance.
    If Arteta needs support from fans he should manage the squad better and show signs from first game. No Willian anymore ship him to MLS.

  • Madhu, should the squad fit into the vision or the vision onto the squad? Think about it like a journey to become say a much more open and customer focused IT company. A new manager comes in to turn a technical oriented company into a service oriented one. To do so the employees will have to fit into the new way of working. Some will be there straight away, others get there with training and guidance and quite a few just don’t make the grade. In football the latter group takes a lot of time and money to sort out. Arteta used the squad last year to win the FA cup but now he is on a mission. If you look at it like this you may have more respect for Arteta and his mission.

  • TA, I agree with what you are saying, but Artetas actions doesn’t depict what he says is his vision. His decisions and treatment of individuals are inconsistent with his vision. That’s atleast my reading and that’s why although I loved his appointment. In fact I was for him before Emery, but his talks, vision that he paints and culture he talks about is not consistent with his actions. The league table shows that . The league is reflection of consistency of any team and our position shows that we are not. Even now we should get to respectable 60 points snd so if iam Arteta I would set my sight on winning atleast 3 matches and giving Chelsea a good game. I woul not take less than 10 points. It’s the intent and actions not words that defines everything for me.

  • Madhu, there’s no doubt we are in need of improvement and the league position reflects this. Next season should see a step change.

  • Cheers Total, I waited a spell before reading your post and the comments thereafter, just needed to clear my mind after the expected maelstrom online.

    Great post TA, you’ve fought your corner with tenacity and passion and I’m still broadly on board with the ‘process’ myself but Peter makes some compelling arguments.

    Being a successful manager is sometimes about accepting your players’ limitations and not expecting them to do what they aren’t able to do and it’s something I think that Mikel struggles with in his efforts to enforce the process.

    Emery was also guilty of this with Petr Cech in his last season, it was clear that Cech struggled with playing out from the back so why make him suffer?

    Arteta when he first joined made compromises, adjustments and went with three at the back and it contributed to some of his most memorable results and an FACup win so he’s done it before. But that was also a period when you had drinks breaks allowing Arteta to get in among his players and do some coaching, I miss those breaks and I’d guess so does he.

    The change to the substitutes was a retrograde step and hasn’t helped anyone as the three teams going down voted against it so well done them – idiots. I don’t remember substitutions being an issue last season, mainly because we were winning, but this season it’s been different and I don’t know why despite the theories out there?

    Does Arteta struggle with in-game management, I don’t know I guess we’ll discover more on that subject next season?

    Did Mikel miss the input of Ljungberg sitting in the stands and did Arteta act on Freddie’s overview anyway and was that a reason why Freddie left? Maybe Freddie speaks his mind and that might not have been welcomed because I do worry about the quality of the people around Arteta and their ability to have any positive influence?

    Peter’s comment about outgoings is exactly my thoughts and Arteta has suggested recently in his statement about the club being ‘ruthless’ that he’s thinking along similar lines. With only three competitions to go for and no european income or matches our squad will need a hard pruning.

    I can’t see any Odegaard or Ceballos type loans next summer and we might have to accept some of our favourites getting the chop, I’m thinking of Bellerin, Lacazette, Leno even, sadly not Willian.

    Hale Enders will hopefully pick up the slack, Balogun, Azeez, Cottrell, John Jules, Olayinka perhaps, a summer with Arteta on the training ground could bring us a couple of surprises in the squad?

    If Arsenal are going to do any transfer business but it’s limited due to funds then let it be a quality centre mid, a quality right back, left back cover and a goalkeeper, I’ll be content with that.

  • Well balanced comment, Kev.

    You wrote: “Being a successful manager is sometimes about accepting your players’ limitations and not expecting them to do what they aren’t able to do and it’s something I think that Mikel struggles with in his efforts to enforce the process.”

    I agree and disagree. This is were Arteta’s inexperience still shows but if you want to change things structurally it cannot be done by just being nice and accommodating to everyone. It is a fine balance.

    If you come to think of it there are a lot of players who struggle with what Mikel (or Klopp, Guardiola) expects of players. It is a big big challenge and allright!

  • It is easy now to ask for the sack of Arteta, with the season unravelling (read, over) right before our eyes, but it cannot be the wise move, in my view, especially as everyone screams for it waiting to lap it all up when we do so and maybe continue to struggle. We should show class and insist on our convictions.

    The management team at the club are no mugs. They must have seen something in his presentation during the interview process to believe he has something about him that suggests he is a safe pair of hands for the medium to long term; probably the same acumen Arsene Wenger saw in him to refer to him as “my technical leader on the pitch”.

    Arteta is intelligent and handles the press and pressure well. As every young starter, he prepared the team to win cups, just to start well; he desperately wanted to win the Europa league to immediately hand us CL football the owners and fans needed, to the detriment of our league positioning. He failed woefully and for me, needs the chance to go again, this time, with more experience.

    PB makes some very strong case for effecting change. He won’t have the same disposition had a few of the issues he raised were different and we had a few more Ws on the board. We could easily have been victorious on Thursday night and unlike some, I believe we would have beaten manure. We have their number in the cups and Arteta just knows how to prepare us for them and similar contests. Hey! Arteta gave us wins over sides who we had trouble with hitherto; I can’t forget that in a hurry. He does need to improve man management (and there is no knowing if he is doing his master’s bidding on those occasions he’s turned his back on certain players) and aspects of in-game management. If you ask me, all it requires is some confidence from a few good wins and the team will sing like a well oiled machine.

  • Madhu (I think it was) referred to handling of the likes of Willock. I daresay, Willock’s was the right decision and we should have done same for Nelson. Both were not going to get the time they require to improve and there was need to send them out on loan. Arteta loves Willock, that’s clear to see. In fact, I believe he is one academy star we may only sell if we are getting good money for him. Deep down, Arteta wants to keep him and make him his own Ramsey (engine, goal scoring instinct and all).

    We have some good young lads coming through and if our absence from Europe would force us to use them more, then so be it, only we must understand their energy levels would wane towards the end of the season. So, careful management of their playing time would be necessary.

    As for Partey, Pepe, Willian and the like….. They barely had a pre-season with the team. Let’s see what a good summer can do to their contributions. Partey must know a lot more was expected of him and look to repay the trust.

    Having said all, if the decision is to change managers, I’d support the club and the new team. On this, I shall only accept an established, experienced head, just to calm things a bit and bring new motivation.

  • Eris, I recall that Arteta wanted Nelson to go out on loan but he opted to stay and try and get game time. He made the wrong decision but Arteta could have given him more opportunities as he did for Willian. I suspect though that Willian was (stupidly) promised game time when he signed and so Artetat kept bringing him on when it was clear that he wasn’t cutting the mustard.

  • GunnerOX10, you may just have a point there. These more experienced players find a way to get water tight contracts for their last few years at top level. I have always thought Nelson would be a good player for any team that trusts him with some game time.
    He is a creative type and has Arsenal DNA. Playing alongside Saka, ESR, Willock and Nketiah/Balogun, I expect he would be flying after about 3 good games.

  • GN5, I was happy that I predicted an Away win for Chelsea over City.

    Just scrolled back to confirm and was surprised to see I entered a Draw. My heart chose Away win, but I must have typed a draw.

    My thinking was Chelsea would want this one more; City would have their own back in the final.

  • That’s what I just realized too, GN5. I felt Chelsea would win this and lose the final.

  • I think there was a touch of arrogance about Man City today, the Aguero penalty summed it up, Tuchel is a smart guy and maybe he’s got Guardiolas number?

  • I saw some brief highlights of Sheffield Utd vs Palace and United really are a terrible team, I’ve seen pub teams that can finish better than them.

    Was Harry Kane offside, because it didn’t look it to me but wait until the fans come back they’ll give out dogs abuse to the officials.

  • I have no idea how reliable this guy is but I really hope that he’s right;

    @EddieLongbridge
    #AFC | Willian has reportedly told family and friends he is unhappy with how things have gone at Arsenal this season and is hopeful of a move to the MLS this Summer.

  • Thanks for the comments, Kev. It is such a surprise that Willian did not work out at Arsenal. Totally didn’t see that one coming.

  • A shame Willian cannot even back himself to improve here. He should be thinking to have a proper pre-season then see how things pan out before giving it up. Unless even he realises he is keeping some academy lad away from the first team.

    Kev, who cares if Kane was offside? It is the Spuds and God knows, they have had a fair share of good VAR fortune this season. 😏

  • Eris, I don’t care from a Tottenham perspective mate but it’s just VAR, how rubbish it’s operated by our officials and we know it’ll keep on happening especially to us.

    Bissouma certainly looks just the type and size of player we need to complement Xhaka and Partey, the club needs to push the boat out to get him, he’ll be perfect for us.

  • On that score, I’ve got to say I agree with you. VAR must be deployed to achieve fair, consistent and balanced refereeing decisions.

    I like Bissouma a lot too. With him pairing Partey, we can give more freedom to our forwards taking away defensive duties for the striker, thus sustaining pressure on the opposition defence.

  • On that score, I’ve got to say I agree with you. VAR must be deployed to achieve fair, consistent and balanced refereeing decisions.

    I like Bissouma a lot too. With him pairing Partey, we can give more freedom to our forwards taking away defensive duties for the striker, thus sustaining pressure on the opposition defence.

  • Whoa! No comments on here, perhaps because we won, or may be a reflection of the collective disappointment in how the season has ended?

    We have inflicted a first relegation on fat Sam Allardyce and we had a fairly good performance by our youngsters. A point of note is that it is easier to perform when the pressure is off.

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