Looked at the team that started versus Everton and thought immediately it was going to be a tough day.
Why? Because the players missing have been so pivotal to keeping the team challenging.
Xhaka and Torreira as the sitting two in combination with Ramsey is a great trifecta that complements each other very well and is a really solid axis.
Versus Everton you had the limited Elmeny and Guendouzi, who has had a great season, but is starting to look a bit leggy at times as the jump from the French League understandably takes some toll.
The injuries to Bellerin and Holding, who were just getting into a level of consistency, have also had to be adjusted to, and Maitland-Niles has been learning in the position and been doing an ok job, but he too has started to look a bit leggy.
With the axis above in place, Ozil and Mkhitaryan are at their most effective as have the freedom to influence in the attacking areas.
Arsenal are also playing three at the back where as you feel Emery would really wish to play four, but he has to get the best out of Kolasinac and the three allows him to cavalier up the wing.
Monreal is steady and serviceable but more as a LB and not left of a three,while Mustafi is at least one accident waiting to happen each game.
Emery has working relentlessly to pick teams and formations that maximise the abilities of the players Wenger left him.
When some of those key players are missing the quality and depth of the squad is exposed. On Sunday where it was not a mentality issue, more a quality and physical issue,
You have seen the games this season where team was fresh and the best team was out there and the play was dynamic and aggressive and so I disagree a little with one of your recent posters that Emery’s style is a little predictable and slow. Much of what we see is caused by the players he is having to put on the pitch.
The age of some of the players concerns too so think next season cannot really be a rebuild, there needs to be a shedding of quite a few, some promotion of the better younger players and some really shrewd purchases.
Arsenal now have talent and a better mentality but there is no escaping that the lack of quality and depth compared to the teams above and surrounding them.
And some teams a little further down do have talented and balanced squads. That is lacking, so Emery is having to work overtime each week in managing formations and keeping the likes of Maitland- Niles and Guendouzi going.
I hope you’re right about AMN long term.
He’s been pitiful in recent games.