Arsenal lost 3-1 to West Ham United in the League Cup and are now out of the competition. Additionally, the Gunners suffered their first Premier League defeat of the season against Newcastle. These are frustrating losses. Let’s discuss them in more detail.
Arsenal 23-24 Matches 15-16: Arsenal’s Defense Was Poor Against West Ham But Better Against Newcastle
The Gunners’ defense is quite good in general, but it fell far short against West Ham in the League Cup. Arsenal conceded three goals against West Ham, one of which was an own goal by Ben White. That own goal is mostly unlucky, but the defense still did not do enough against West Ham. Aaron Ramsdale also failed to make a single save and did nothing to try to make his case to be Arsenal’s number-one goalkeeper.
The defense was much better against Newcastle. In truth, Arsenal’s defense is unfortunate not to have kept a clean sheet in that goal. Newcastle’s only goal was controversial and should have been disallowed. Hopefully, Arsenal’s defense steps up next time against Sevilla.
Arsenal’s Midfield Dominated Possession But Failed to Create Many Chances
The Gunners’ midfield is also very good on its best way. Arsenal’s midfield dominated possession in both games, with 71% possession against West Ham and 59% possession against Newcastle. This is good to see.
However, the midfield deserves some criticism for only creating a few chances in both games. This is unusual for Arsenal. Martin Odegaard’s absence in Arsenal’s midfield is significant and the Newcastle game demonstrated that quite clearly. Odegaard’s return will breath new attacking life back into Arsenal’s midfield.
Arsenal 23-24 Matches 15-16: Arsenal’s Attack Did Little in Both Games
The Gunners’ attack also deserves criticism in both games. In the game against West Ham, Arsenal only scored a single goal, which was a consolation goal in added time. In total, Arsenal only managed three shots on target against West Ham.
It is even worse when discussing Arsenal’s attack against Newcastle. The Gunners only got a single shot on target against Newcastle in the entire game. Gabriel Jesus’s absence looms large over the Arsenal attack. Additionally, the Gunners need to sign a striker to replace the inadequate Eddie Nketiah.
Manager Ratings for Arteta: 6/10 in Both Games
Arteta receives a 6/10 manager rating for both games. The midfield created little in both games and the attack was not clinical with the chances they received. Additionally, the defense was inadequate against West Ham. The subs did very little in both games. Arteta rotated heavily against West Ham, but none of the players who don’t normally feature in Arsenal’s strongest lineups did much to make a case for more playing time.
Arsenal Hosts Sevilla in the Champions League Next
The Gunners’ next game is at home against Sevilla in the Champions League. Arsenal needs to win this game and end the losing streak. Additionally, a win against Sevilla in this fixture will be a major step toward making it out of the group stage. I would bet on Arsenal winning this game, especially after some lackluster performances lately.
Check back next week for more Arsenal content.