4 Things We Learned From Arsenal’s Win At The Cottage
Arsenal bounced back from last weeks disappointment against Aston Villa with a 3-1 win over Fulham. Here, Gunner333 gives us 4 things we learned from the victory
Arsenal bounced back from last weeks disappointment against Aston Villa with a 3-1 win over Fulham. Here, Gunner333 gives us 4 things we learned from the victory.
Arsenal arrived at Craven Cottage eager to add to an impressive mid-week win in Turkey. The Gunners lost their opening match to Villa at home last week whilst Fulham snatched a victory against Sunderland. A victory for the Gunners would deflect attention away from under-pressure manager Arsene Wenger who this week has defended his side’s transfer policy.
Looking much sharper in the opening stages, Arsenal grabbed a goal through our latest goal-machine Olivier Giroud. In-form Ramsey got the assist. As the rain poured down, we soaked up some Fulham pressure before Podolski fired home a second from range.
More chances fell to the away side early in the second period, Walcott pulling a shot wide and Ramsey having a shot at goal blocked. Fulham’s loanee signing Darren Bent caused a sense of anxiety as Arsenal were trying desperately to secure the three points.
Podolski earned his brace with just over 20 minutes remaining and it looked like a repeat of our impressive display on Wednesday night. Fulham struck back through Bent’s left foot finish from close range but Arsenal held on for their first points of the season.
Here I will look at 4 things we can learn from the game.
1. We Have Flexible Players
Our side has been hit hard with injuries so far this season but you would not think it by looking at our first eleven. We now have a group of players with each capable of playing in a variety of positions.
Cazorla started down the middle, Sagna played centre-half and Podolski started down the wing. Add this to the fact Rosicky, clearly an attacking midfielder, started a lot deeper and we have a team in which many of our players are played out of their ‘ideal’ position. This of course did not affect us today, and it’s a useful thing to have in our locker.
2. Our Impressive Away Form is Crucial
Last season we proved the Emirates was not a ‘fortress’ as we picked up 35 points on our travels and 10 away wins compared to only one more victory at home. Today’s away win is our sixth successive victory on the road and the players clearly enjoy playing away from home. Perhaps the tensions in the crowd at the Emirates are affecting the players on the pitch? If we could improve our form at home, we might just be capable of challenging for honours this season.
3. Possession is Still Important
Despite speaking recently of our ability to create chances in more ways than one, I still believe we must maintain our dominant possession. It was 52% at the Cottage – which is very positive for an away fixture.
In order to break sides down we hold the ball, tire the opposition’s defence and pull players out of position with a string of short passes. Being more direct or hitting teams on the break can still be a part of our attacking make-up, but possession football is still vital to our style of play.
4. Szczesny Still Needs Competition
Unfortunately, we still require a number of new additions to make us a competitive squad this season but is a goalkeeper on Wenger’s shopping list? He was excellent today and the boss may still think Fabianski has what it takes to be a top-class goalkeeper, but I still think Szczesny needs a more experienced stopper to push him to greater things.
A player such as Julio Cesar would be an ideal signing but it seems he’s heading to Benfica. There are of course other potential targets being suggested such as Vicente Guaita or Rui Patricio. Whoever it may be, I feel we need someone of top quality who can compete with Szczesny and help his grow as a player.
Thanks for reading and feel free to comment below.
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