Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Goalless Arsenal and the 'Steve Bould Effect'

So we are two games into the Premier League season and we have already faced two 0-0 draws. Following this and the departure of a certain 'Flying Dutchman', the often criticism over us being a one-man team has now suddenly began again. 

People seem to think that because van Persie has left we all of a sudden have the inabiltity to score which frustrates me to say the least. People often disregard that although we may have lost a world class striker; we have brought in 3 brilliant attacking players in Cazorla, Podolski and Giroud. These players are quality, and although they have all failed to score as of yet, nobody remembers that only a short while ago none of these signings would have even met each other. They've had to try and structure a goal scoring partnership in a very short amount of time which is unbelievably difficult after losing such a brilliant goal scorer. It has to be said that Cazorla looks like he's been at the club for years and he has started his career at Arsenal very promisingly. His vision is second to none and he can use both of his feet equally which has made an instant impact to the squad. Podolski and Giroud on the other hand have started their career slightly slower, both players don't look match fit and will take time to fit into our system but will score goals, there's no doubt about that. Collectively they scored over 40 goals just last season and when they have settled at the club I don't see a reason why they can't do that again. They are both class players and will bag tonnes of goals fairly soon.

If you look back to our previous season, we again hadn't scored in our first two games even with van Persie in the squad but ended up with our highest point total since the 2009 season, so please can we just get off the teams back. The squad has improved drastically and I'm sure this will be a very successful season for Arsenal Football Club.

Another point I'm going to address is the 'Steve Bould Effect' as the defence has clearly been reshaped and reworked which has seen an amazing improvement to the solidity of the back four. 

Our defenders now seem a lot more organised and are no longer constantly caught out of positions leading to a frustrating goal leakage. The whole defence now seems solid and Vermaelen for example has seemed to stop his manic runs up the pitch which has led to us conceding no goals in our first two games of the season. Also I've noticed our exceptional organisation during set pieces with a lot better man marking, we now don't look like a liability whenever the ball is hoofed in to the box (enter stoke joke here).

Our full backs have also been very impressive, Gibbs and Jenkinson both look capable of doing fine jobs out wide after plenty of criticism last season. Both full backs look positionally excellent and have helped out in the final third with their supportive runs down the wings without getting caught out of position when dropping back into defence. Our defence is looking far more stable and we still have the close returns of Sagna and Koscielny to help bolster our defence even further.

The amazing improvement in our defence of late can only be from the effect of Steve Bould. So I'd like to thank Mr. Bould for making the final minutes of games much more bearable and look forward to an exciting and successful season! 

Written by Shaun Weller - @ThatGoonerShaun


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