Arsenal 0 – 2 Schalke: Worrying Times…

One of the hardest times to write a blog is after a defeat. A defeat that you thought was coming, even worse. A defeat after a defeat, even worse. So, here goes.

Arsenal 0 – 2 Schalke: Worrying Times…

After the painful defeat to Norwich, tonight’s game was very important. Arsene and Bould had to make changes to the team, as we were simply too lethargic. The midfield wasn’t in the game, and that was one of the major changes that was made, with Coquelin coming in into central midfield. I was happy with that change, but not happy with Ramsey being moved out into righ midfield and Giroud being dropped. It kind of felt like we were playing 4-6-0.


Jenkinson – Koscielny – Vermaelen – Santos

Arteta – Coquelin

Ramsey – Gervinho  Cazorla – Podolski

That’s how we ended up playing, and no wonder we ended up with only one shot on target.

From the kick off Schalke looked the better team, they probed and prodded and looked far more interesting than us. We looked tired, lethargic and devoid of ideas. I don’t quite understand the game in tactic. I don’t know quite why we play in a way we’re not used to.

Personally, I say play players where they are most used to. For example, for the kick off, play Podolski up front, and Gervinho on the left. It’s confusing to understand why we don’t do the simple things like play players where they should be played. Ramsey on the right? That would never work. Without Walcott, or Oxlade, surely this game meant Gervinho had to play on the right.

At home, surely we had to try and win, so why not play Giroud? All very baffling. Schalke actually deserved to win, as did Norwich on the weekend.

The problem with the game was the balance, and with a strange balance and a tough team, we had a rely on discipline, and as much as I live Andre Santos, he wasn’t disciplined in defence, and to be fair, didn’t have much cover. He was exposed for both goals and his lack of matches really told. We will get better, but it may be too late.

Steve Bould:

We haven’t played anything like we can, I think that’s the big disappointment. We haven’t performed today. We lack a bit of confidence, for whatever reason, but it’s a tough competition and they [Schalke] are a good side in all fairness. They beat Dortmund at the weekend and played really well. A 0-0 would have delighted us I think.

When the management talk about being delighted with a 0-0 at home, then you know things aren’t going quite right. We’re currently 9th in the Premier League and just lost at home in the Champions League.

We have our annual AGM tomorrow, and boy, is it going to be interesting. I don’t think we’ve ever had an AGM when we’ve been so low in the table, with so many disillusioned fans.

The good thing about football, is that we play again on Saturday. This time against QPR and hopefully with Wilshere and Chamberlain back in the squad and hopefully with Giroud up front!

It’s not all over yet, there are many games to go in both competitions, but we need to find some form and find some form quickly.

Til tomorrow…

  • Sad

    Very worrying at the moment.
    We need to buy players and buy players very soon. January can’t move soon enough.

  • Dev Day

    There’s something not quite right at the Arsenal at the moment, a defeat against Norwich and then Schalke, and some strange formations and players chosen do point at the manager. You can understand if the players play well and fail, but having weaker players who are not capable of raising their game is not good. We have the likes of Chambo, Wilshere and Walcott back soon, but simple things like playing Giroud up front – Gervinho on the wings and for goodness sake, don’t play Ramsey as a right forward.

    Definitely need to try to sort this out in the next few games, even the biggest and best fans are very worried right now.

  • worldofarsenal

    We do have a lot of returning players – but ultimately, the loss of RvP and lack of faith from Arsene in Giroud in recent games means that we may need to invest in a striker.

  • Sarah Jackson

    Hey Guys – personally, I think that there is a lot more to this team then we’re getting. At West Ham they were pretty amazing. Giroud making a real difference up top from the start. Wenger has to play Giroud from the start every time, he will be useless with 15 minutes to go. Also, why did he take Jenkinson off? The only decent crosser?
    However, I really think we can come back from this. Every new team needs these blows to work harder.

  • worldofarsenal

    I would have to agree – Jenkinson is one of best crosser, and with Giroud on, I would have taken Ramsey off, keeping Coquelin in the middle where he was so effective. Bould / Wenger were tactically wrong and wrong with their subs.

  • Sarah Jackson

    Ramsey should have been subbed much earlier, Giroud on, around the 50 – 60th minute. Coquelin was our best player yesterday!

  • Arsefan101

    I don’t think we’ll get top 6 this season let alone top 4. Arsenal won’t win a trophy under Arsene Wenger.

  • Only_Arsenal

    2 shots on target in two matches, what a shame! Many times, you will see Gervinho running with a ball with nobody in the box to strike from his pass (nobody to give the ball to), Cazorla and Podolski were playing too deep and were not attacking as expected of them. The second goal came as a result of a dismal substitution, removing Jenkinson and leaving Ramsey who was not giving enough (which created more space for Schalke to operate on a counter attack) was absolute madness. Losing two matches on a run in two different competitions for a club like Arsenal is totally unacceptable.

    We have a club with players capable of winning matches, yet they are not giving us what we expect from them, it’s really worrisome and we are not happy, they should sort things out and get back to winning ways.

  • sevin

    I do believe there’s a danger in overreacting, but I also believe
    there’s a danger in the ‘Keep calm and carry on’ message too. There is
    unhappiness and discontent, not at who owns us really, but at how we’re
    run at a footballing level. The grumbles and gripes are borne almost
    entirely out of what happens on the pitch and last night will do nothing
    to allay fears that, without some character, on and off the pitch, this
    is a season which once again will deliver little.

  • kevin

    QPR are without a win this season and visit on Saturday. Can you
    imagine? There is perhaps a chink of light. A few more defeats between
    now and the end of November could make the manager’s position untenable.
    The board would have trouble extending his stay if the season did
    collapse completely. Many have acknowledged for a while now that
    Wenger’s powers are waning. Perhaps it would be best for everybody if
    the board acknowledged that and we could all move on. At least try
    something different, as this is only working financially at present. The
    idea of a trophy seems very, very distant right now, because squads win
    trophies, and the last two matches have shown that Arsenal’s isn’t deep
    enough. Scratch the surface and there ain’t much below. Just paying
    players huge amounts of money does not make them good. Motivation and
    organisation can make them better, but there doesn’t seem to be too much
    of that around at the moment.

  • worldofarsenal

    I know it looks like doom and gloom at the moment, and I share your pain.
    However, teams do need time to gel, and if we can get some of injured players back such as Wilshere, Diaby, Oxlade, Walcott and Giroud firing on all cylinders, then we can push on…

  • worldofarsenal

    Gervinho has to be re-instated to the wing. It’s the only place that he’s effective. I would much prefer Podolski or Giroud up front without a shadow of a doubt.

    QPR this weekend has already become a must-win game!!

  • worldofarsenal

    Unless something changes.

    I’m sure the team can be more motivated – I really hope Wilshere’s return inspires the team…

  • worldofarsenal

    But don’t forget, QPR have been unlucky this season. Even though they haven’t won, they still do have quality in Zamora, Cisse, Tarabat, SWP… and our defence has a few issues at the moment.

    We need to really focus to get any sort of result on the weekend.

  • Only_Arsenal

    We all see that Ramsey didn’t gave enough last night simply because he was playing in a strange position to him.

  • Berth

    Dev remember three years ago when the argument was how tactical is Wenger. Well seems like occasionally his chicken brain pops up to a match.

    Answering ur question about coaq – Yesterday he showed he can play but not with Arteta.

  • Berth

    Well I said that last season and Wenger waved his magic. I always know we can’t win the league but Wenger is a “master in top 4 finish”.

  • Arsefan101

    Spurs, Chelsea, United, City are much better than us without a doubt. Liverpool are now only 3 points behind us and Everton look like a bit of a surprise package.
    I’d be delighted with a top 4 finish, but really doubt we can do it.

  • sevin

    The thing is, I personally would rather a champions league spot rather
    than winning say the league cup, problem with that is Wenger and or the
    board don’t give us much chance of winning the champions league by
    consistently selling our best players, so, that makes my wish of being
    in the champions league a bit of a nonplus. I know Chelsea won it last
    year and never should have, but, when you hear Steve Bould saying that
    “a draw against Schalke at HOME would have been a great result”, you
    kind of know that Arsenal are in the competition solely to make money
    and nothing else. I do understand that yet again Arsenal have lots of
    injuries, and when those players are all available on paper at least we
    look pretty formidable, but after hearing this latest AGM I can’t help
    but think that Gazlizardish and Hill-Wood have already drawn up a list
    of the next players to be sold. I feel sorry for the likes of Theo
    Walcott, something definitely amiss there, he’s been one of our best
    players this year with hardly ever stepping foot on the pitch, I think
    he’s the next one the club want to cash in on and that’s a massive gain
    for another club.

  • sevin

    Yes, Arsenal are on a sound financial footing. But they are doing nothing with
    it. There is no vision to speculate to accumulate. A lack of realization at how
    important it is to win trophies rather than just take part in a highly financial
    rewarding competition. Arsenal might not make next season’s Champions League
    unless the horrorshow that was the last two matches is addressed. But then
    again, what would change if they did miss out on the top four? Would we have to
    sell a top player to compensate? Heaven forbid – but hang on, aren’t we doing
    that already…