Saturday, January 16, 2016

TGT January report


Less than half of the season remaining and Arsenal are still on top. There is every reason for Arsenal fans to be optimistic. Despite injuries to key players like Coquelin, Wilshere, Cazorla and Sanchez, Arsenal still managed to get through the busy Christmas period and perform fairly well, considering how the rivals did in the same period. This is far from over for Arsenal who need to maintain a high level of consistency and with a bit of luck with the injuries, they could well be lifting the trophy come May.

Season so far

Looking at every game individually at this point may not tell the whole story. Arsenal lost to West Ham on the opening day, lost to West Bromwich Albion, lost to Chelsea and drew against Norwich. Dropping points against bottom half teams, which you expect Arsenal to win comprehensively, could have been fatal for the title challenge. Arsenal, however, managed to win against Leicester and Man City and taking six points from those fixtures is what keeps them ahead of both right now. So the story this season is not what we are used to witness with Arsenal. It has not been perfect but just good enough to make that final run a memorable one. 

January transfers

Arsenal have already confirmed Mohamed Elneny as the first signing of the window, however, we understand that he will be the only one. There are talks ongoing with some young Nigerian stars but for the senior team, Elneny will be Arsenal's only January signing. We are only half way through the window and things might change but right now our sources close to the club have confirmed that it is highly unlikely.

Regarding club exits, Mathieu Debuchy's Aston Villa loan deal seems in jeopardy as there is interest from Manchester United. There is also a possibility of Serge Gnabry, Alex Oxlade Chamberlain and Yaya Sanogo going out on loan for the rest of the season.

Players of the season

Picking one player is not fair, as Arsène alway stresses, football is a team game. So we have picked three players who we believe have been the top performers and played a huge role in Arsenal being top in January.

Mesut Özil
(Photo credit: Ronnie Macdonald)
The German Player of the Year is enjoying the best time of his career and it comes as no surprise to Arsenal fans, who have been behind Özil ever since he signed for the gunners. There is no need to go into stats at this point because Özil's contribution in Arsenal's attack is way more than just assists. It was apparent last season. For those who followed Arsenal every week last season, watched Özil being the orchestrator behind Arsenal's attack, despite not being the last man to pass before someone scored. 

Mesut Özil is doing a favour to the English Premier League by playing for Arsenal. The league is in desperate need of such quality and while some novice and sad journalists run their agenda against Mesut week in, week out, they should be thankful to the German for playing in England.

Petr Cech
(Photo credit: Christopher Johnson)

Roman Abramovich, what were you thinking? Nobody wins the title by selling their best players to direct rivals. Arsenal taught that lesson to everybody in the league (Robin van Persie, Nasri etc). Petr Cech has been sensational this season. 

“There’s talk of Arsenal signing Petr Cech and, if they do get him, he will strengthen them for sure. He will save them 12 or 15 points a season” - John Terry (June 2015)

Petr Cech certainly saved us points already. Ever since David Seaman left, Arsenal wanted a world class goalkeeper but never thought a title winning team would hand it over to us. As you can notice, we are repeating the same point again and again simply because it is quite hilarious how Chelsea sold him to Arsenal. 

With Petr Cech in goal, Arsenal have another security and another reason why the remainder of the season can be a memorable one for the gunners.

Nacho Monreal
(Photo credit: Ronnie Macdonald)
Arsenal struggled in the left back position after Ashley Cole left. Gael Clichy was never convincing and Kieran Gibbs despite being a talented player, proved to be inconsistent overtime. Monreal, however, is not just the best left back for Arsenal right now, he is arguably the best in the country. This season has been his best so far and Arsenal fans would hope he stays fit and takes them all the way to the title because he will be needed every week. Monreal's efficiency and intelligence has been remarkable and even though he may not be lauded like Mesut Özil, the Spanish fullback is one of the most important players for Arsenal right now.




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