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Some Arteta and thoughts on Arsenal defending

Hello, hope you are well and thank you for visiting. Guess we are all in that “in between relationships” period, just getting out of one bad experience and hoping for the best in your new one. Saturday wasn’t good for many reasons, the result, the injuries and the lost opportunity to put some light between us and our title rivals, but we have a Champions League game against Zagreb and an opportunity to quickly reverse the mood.

I agree with Peter Cech’s summary of the game

‘We had chances and a lot of opportunities and we were unlucky as we scored an own goal. Apart from that, we were on top of them and looked like the side that was going to win the game, even in the second half.’

‘I thought when we had the penalty that we would still have a chance to search for the third goal but it was one of those games where it was not going our way.

‘But I like our reaction and although everything went against us a bit, we kept going until the last minute and were still creating opportunities. We have to regroup and continue working.’

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-3330708/Arsenal-goalkeeper-Petr-Cech-happy-reaction-despite-West-Brom-defeat.html#ixzz3sLZR6Ztx

I think we did enough to get a result at the Hawthorns but sadly it did not work out. There seemed to be a lot of animosity after the game on social media and deservedly so. I do not think most fans expect us to go unbeaten, however the frustrations seem to stem from the team being held back by decisions not made with respect to player acquisitions in key segments of our team which was highlighted by Mikel Arteta’s contribution.

I am not a psychologist or anything close but I think it is really hard for players like Mikel. Quitting is hard for all of us but harder especially for professional athletes. I think it’s easier if you are playing and are in shape till the end of your career like Henry, Frank Lampard, Drogba, Steven Gerrad etc who left the game contributing on the pitch for their respective teams. For players like Arteta who have been out for so long, the mental preparedness required to bow out might be lacking. The desire to contribute, to help and lead your team especially in Arteta’s case as he is our captain might block out the consciousness of his body lacking the abilities to compete in what is a highly demanding sport.

“It’s hard to replace the passion you have for a sport.  There aren’t many jobs that you retire from where you get to prove that you are the very best of the best in front of thousands and thousands of people every night,” former NHL all-star Al Iafrate.

Read more: http://www.forbes.com/sites/robertlaura/2012/05/22/how-star-athletes-deal-with-retirement/

However, at some point either him, the manager or his contract would have to come to reality of the situation. To be fair to Arteta, he already speaks a lot about retirement and his desire to go into coaching. One of the skills he would require if he intends to make it in coaching is to identify when a player is past it and drop him.  He can set an example with himself and admit any further inclusion in the team would be holding the team back.

Another aspect of the game that caught my eye was the manner we conceded the first goal. To be honest, I think it has been a problem for a while. Whilst we seem to have greatly improved with how we deal with corners and also improved our scoring from set pieces we are developing a knack for conceding from free kicks taken in and around 30 yards floated into the box. Three of the goals we conceded this season have come from such situations and I wonder if anyone is addressing it in the training ground. I think these situations are harder to deal with than corners as defenders have to determine how high they want to hold the line, mark positions or mark a man and the keeper has to make a decision as to what height and time to intervene.

A good ball in can lead to a lot of confusion and I think we are having a lot of that now. Most of these can be resolved on the training ground and with better communication between players. I made a short compilation on the goals we have conceded from this situation and uploaded it on our new YouTube channel.  Not sure what I am going to do with it after this but I really enjoyed making this video so maybe I’ll try others so feel free to subscribe if you want.

So what do you think? Enough for you to join me in worrying every time we concede a free kick that will be floated in? Let me know in the comments section below or on Twitter @canoncrested

Have a good day my friends. Thank you for visiting the blog.

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