4 Talking Points From Arsenal’s 3-1 Win Over Hull City
In what was a dress rehearsal for next months FA Cup final, Arsenal beat Hull City 3-0 on Sunday afternoon. Here are four talking points from the game.
In what was a dress rehearsal for next months FA Cup final, Arsenal beat Hull City 3-0 on Sunday afternoon. Here, Gunner333 gives us four talking points from the game.
FA Cup Finalists Hull and Arsenal faced off weeks before the vital clash in a league tie at the KC Stadium on Sunday. Arsenal’s star-studded midfield boasted the return of multi-million pound man Mesut Özil, whilst Monreal also came in at left-back.
The game looked in equal balance early on, with both sides suffering moderate scares. Arsenal firstly under threat from a dangerous Elmohamady’s powerful cross, Koscielny nodding away, before Hull unrightfully survived a penalty shout. Egyptian Elmohamady was at the action’s forefront yet again, his challenge on Özil almost certainly deserving of a spot-kick.
The home side were by far the better in the opening stages, but it was the Gunners who made the first breakthrough. Özil playing the ball into the middle, where puppet-master Cazorla unravelled the Tigers’ back line with a neat pass to find Aaron Ramsey who fired home. The Welshman recalling his early season form after his prolonged absence to injury.
Eager to ensure a victory was the outcome, Arsenal induced a heavy attacking threat and added a second through the in-form Lukas Podolski. Giroud’s cross was played into the German’s path by Ramsey’s chest, and Podolski made no mistake with another hammer left-footed finish for 2-0 at the break.
The second half commenced and it took less than ten minutes for Arsenal to kill the game off. After Fryatt came close, Arsenal responded with yet another Lukas Podolski strike. Ramsey’s effort at Harper fumbled, with the winger-cum-striker Podolski making no mistake from close-range.
Victory practically secured, Wenger now looked to give rests to some key men with Flamini coming on for Özil and Oxlade-Chamberlain introduced for Giroud. After Arsenal were denied another potential penalty and Hull’s creation of some final opportunities came to no avail, the game was up and it had been a delightful showing from the Gunners. A continued induction of pressure on Everton, with three games now remaining to decide the final Champions League spot.
Here I will now analyse four talking points from the game:
1) Heads In Gear
At this stage of the season whether you are battling relegation, involved in a fierce title challenge or, like ourselves, competing for European spots, it’s vital the players hold their nerves. Fans expectations of Arsenal to finish fourth could easily tell and cause cracks to start showing.
It is of course important to be ambitious but the best strategy to be taken, I believe, is the typical cliché of taking each game as they come. If we play to our strengths, the passing game, and keep it tight at the back then we should have enough to clinch fourth.
In the more recent years of Wenger’s reign, the psychological aspect is always worrying, as shown by our various mess-ups in the big games. But yesterday we showed enormous confidence by playing on the front-foot and attacking with great aggression and little fear, in order to cut-open a feeble Hull defence.
2) First-Half Fury
Points are everything at present and we made this game all the easier after having the points practically tied up by half-time. This is something we haven’t been used to this season as we’ve been painfully slow starters, so it was a welcome relief to simply enjoy the second half.
I have criticised our lack of hunger in recent weeks but yesterday was an exhibition of complete contrast. Every attack had the intention of grabbing a goal and we were far more dangerous in the final third, which was largely down to the return of Ramsey and Ozil.
3) Podolski Unsung Hero
After scoring four goals in his last two games, Podolski is really finding form at the right time. His mentality is looking much better than before and it looks like Wenger is finally trusting him more. Not only does he drift down the flank now, but he also battles for possession more frequently and is getting goals for his hard work.
However, I will always believe Lukas is primarily a striker through the centre, as he has greater finishing ability than anyone else at the club. There have always been complaints of Arsenal possessing no ‘world-class’ striker, but perhaps we have had one all along…
4) Rambo The Returning Warrior
After lighting up the league early in the season, Ramsey’s absence was a torrid sight for all Arsenal fans. Not only for the short-term loss, but there were also fears that it may take him some time to find his feet again. Well those fears have been diminished already.
The Welshman conducted the game in the middle, his dealing of the ball often dictating the game’s tempo and his positioning in front of the defence made it tough for Hull, who could neither cut through to lines with a good ball nor find space in advanced areas.
Rambo also got back among the goals, scoring the opener and then setting up the next two for Podolski, so his return is a major boost in our quest for fourth and lifting the FA Cup.
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