ANR reply : Arsenal should play a realistic 4-5-1

Kixzon writes :

I think our problem lies in our tactics. If we don’t review our overall formation & the way we play, we’ll be exposed by any good team.

Why on earth must we play attacking football? Are we kidding ourselves?

Our attack is non potent without Henry or van Persie. Baptista is a joke. If their defenders have no problem shackling our attackers, their fullbacks & even centrebacks will have more confidence to roam forward. As such they will overrun our midfield and the snowball continues where their attacking midfielders will push further upfront causing problems for our defence.

I was so exasperated when we still opt to play attacking football, even under such circumstances, when we should be playing defensive 4-5-1, like when we did with Adebayor upfront against Man U.

So the problem is not our defence really, IT’S ABOUT THE WAY WE PLAY. We should learn how to play according to circumstances & wise up tactically.

We’ve to learn to be more tactically aware & grow up in this department, starting with Wenger!!

MYLES COMMENTS : Any team is a house of cards which can collapse at any moment. Any team is fragile. That’s why I talk so much about the importance of spinal players : keeper, stopper, anchorman, captain.

Tony Adams argued for years that Arsene shouldn’t play both Pires and Ljungberg away from home. He thought that was too risky. But Wenger wanted to entertain and score first and win with style.

The Professor DOES do pragmatic on occasions but he tends to stubbornly pursue his vision of the beautiful game. He is an idealist, a romantic scientist, not a survivalist or a cynic. He teaches attack – narrow, quick, skilful attack and counter-attack. He is a choreographer, not a tactician, as I’ve said here for five years. If he was a great tactician, as well as a great talent scout, a great man-manager, a great nutritionist and medic, he would win every game and every trophy.

With the Invincibles he was close to re-inventing the sport as we know it. But when he loses a few games we all say : get real, make it more solid, play 4-5-1 and try to pinch the game, sacrifice the spectacle, just play for the result.

Arsenal need a result against West Ham, They need a result against Newcastle. And Bolton. Without results in those games, they would be going to White Hart Lane expecting to lose.

And I would prefer not to think about that. While I like Spurs, and have had a helluva lot of fun at the Lane, as a punter in the Seventies, and as a journalist for 25 years after that, I know that Arsenal is a better club than Tottenham, and I know that the current Arsenal players are superior to the Spurs players.

However, Spurs have not built a new stadium. Let’s remember : the second biggest news at Arsenal is the Emirates and the biggest news is the debt. The debt impacts on everything.

And Arsenal is now a property company as well as a football club and it is developing Highbury Square into flats itself, rather than selling the real estate to a property company. That route is more profitable but they will not receive the profits of £100 million-plus till 2009.