Arsenal 1 – 1 Spurs: Fatigue, injuries and poor finishing

Gibbs goal arsenal spurs 2015

BPL Season 2015/2016: Arsenal 1 – 1 Tottenham Hotspur

Match review & rants by a Malaysian Gooner

I never thought I’d say this but thank goodness it’s the international break. The Gunners looked extremely tired and lacked pace against Tottenham Hotspurs, not to mention about the injury list. They’ve been playing away from home in the last three matches, and previous one was midweek at Munich for the massive 5-1 loss which weren’t too surprising to be honest. We are getting better but not at Bayern’s level just yet.

It was a battle of midfield. Our usually reliable engine Santi Cazorla failed miserably today as he was “dizzy” and was taken off at half time for Mathieu Flamini. He wasn’t involved much and when he did, he lost out. We were doing all right in the first 20 minutes or so, dictating the game with Mesut Ozil being the liveliest again and probably the man of the match for us. There was no clear cut chance, always stuck outside of the box with no final pass falling while Spurs readied to counter. They had better chances and Harry Kane’s good run and finish off a great pass from Danny Rose caught Laurent Koscielny off guard as he made an error trying to set a late offside trap.

Ozil arsenal spurs 2015

If I’m not mistaken, we didn’t have a single shot on target in the first half. The new right-side partnership between Mathieu Debuchy and Joel Campbell isn’t quite working. To be fair, Debuchy did much better this time compared to the last couple of games and Campbell worked hard offensively trying to produce individual magic, but we all know this isn’t the answer. Alexis Sanchez was off again today, didn’t manage to do much besides playing Ozil’s wingman. Have EPL found a way to stop Alexis or is he just exhausted? Spurs defender Walker has been an absolute pest on our left side so we had both wings not really working. Olivier Giroud could’ve had a hat trick but it was one of those days where he’s just not clinical. He was roughed up by Vertonghen the whole game but nobody was annoying him when he had the chances to score.

Some decent defending and Petr Cech kept us in the game as Spurs continue to attack in the second half. Le boss Arsene Wenger made a smart decision to put in Kieran Gibbs for Campbell and moved Alexis to the right wing. That gave the team a much needed freshness and balance. Ozil was given space to cross in to the far post for the runner Gibbs who scored the vital goal, and that gave the team motivation and strength to keep the pressure on but Giroud just kept missing those sitters. But his reactions did tell us that he knew what this game meant and he’s genuinely angry with himself. Spurs hung out for the draw and they did it. Congratulations to them. Today’s performance justifies Wenger’s logic of wanting to sign another midfielder, but it doesn’t quite justify why he didn’t sign a striker in the first place.

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Arsenal 1-1 Tottenham EXTENDED HIGHLIGHTS
Posted by Arsenal Videos on Sunday, 8 November 2015

Damn it, I was looking forward to keeping my word and get a new jersey if we won today but that’s not happening. I set my “offering” to the result of this game as this is it’s usually going to be disappointing after a series of W’s. However I still like what I see. The team tried and managed a draw. So, if we win the next three games, I would get the Puma outlet to take my money.

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