Monday 2 April 2012

Pressure mounts.

The official Arsenal site mentions about a three fold plan for any successful team. Maybe not exactly, but there are various articles from Wenger and RVP talking about the next steps for Arsenal. Arsene talks about the QPR match and calls it a reality check(like I mentioned yesterday), he says,
It is difficult to explain because we prepared as usual. Maybe we sensed it would be easier than usual and once you have that in your heads it is difficult to come back to reality.
Yes, there might have been a hint of complacency, considering that you are playing a team from the relegation zone. If you look at our performance against the bottom three, we have lost against Blackburn & now, QPR. We have drawn a match against Wolves. Most of those losses/draw are down to complacency. Our performance in recent seasons against lower oppositions should have been experience enough. We have had trouble against Blackburn in the past too.

The question is, why should there be any complacency or any "taking for granted" at all? It's the premier league and teams have given absolutely everything to get here and remain here. Why should a lower opposition be so called? We already have classic examples of over confidence punishing teams, there were already lessons to be learned, but we simply did not.

Of course there is no need to over-react, we had won seven in a row before this loss. It's just that losing against QPR, after a winning streak against Rottenham, Milan, Everton etc, just seems hard to digest.
Arsene suggests,
We have to take the distance with that and put things into perspective. We have to go back to basics; that means to win football games and win your fights first. We have to play like we do. It is disappointing to lose a big run in the way that we did it here. At the end of the day the result does not lie. The focus was missing a little bit and the way we conceded the goals was disappointing. I felt that we lacked something, I do not deny that.
I guess a bit of change in strategy might help too. Though we might have new found belief and resilience in this team, I feel that our approach play has got a bit predictable. There seems to be no Plan B, C or D. The consistency is not consistent throughout the team. Basics, according to me, is not just moving around the football. You should be able to hold the ball too when teams are pressing too much. Which is why players like Arteta and Rosicky are doing well when teams press against them, they have the experience.

Just playing your own game and remaining blind towards the oppositions strategy is not going to help. We must be aware of our oppositions tactics and plan accordingly. Small things like TV or Kos charging forward with the ball, do matter a lot. I just didn't see these things happening in the match. Infact, Kos was hardly visible even in the defense. Usually, he is very good at making interceptions and carrying the ball out of defense, so is TV. Zamora did a very good job of holding both of the defenders and keeping them away from the ball as far as possible.

Our next match is absolutely crucial for us, to keep us in our current position. After Rottenham won their match against Swansea, they are level on points with us, but due to a lower goal difference, they remain in fourth position. We play Manc at home, and the team should be more comfortable at home, with a familiar pitch and 50,000 fans behind you.

RVP says,
Everyone is disappointed but towards the end of the week I am sure the spirit will be how it was. We’ll have a couple of days to be disappointed but after that our focus is on Manchester City. It is a shame we have wait eight days for the game, but it is how it is. Losing at QPR is a big blow but we have to look forward and the next one is a big one.
I am sure he'll be raring to have a go, maybe overcome his very short barren patch. Big players always thrive on big occasions. These kind of big matches is what they live for and dream of playing in. RVP is no exception to that. Even after the loss, he is confident that after the initial disappointment, the team will be back with their old spirit and enthusiasm to face Manc. He says,
Everyone is disappointed but towards the end of the week I am sure the spirit will be how it was. We’ll have a couple of days to be disappointed but after that our focus is on Manchester City.
 I hope the team is as excited as this to go ahead and take up the challenge. I am sure Arsene must be giving his "every match is a cup final" talk time and again. But that is what now the games are going to be like, cup finals. Chelsea won last night and are just 5points away from us now, so is Newcastle. Maybe these things will add more pressure on the team, maybe they will serve as boosters, but that's the fact. Let's hope we'll see a more dynamic team on the weekend.

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