Friday, January 21, 2022

Boring, boring Arsenal? Without Adebayor, their own fans might have thought so.

Emmanuel Adebayor has committed his future to Arsenal and that should come as a welcome relief to fans of the North London club.

He was booed by some sections of the Arsenal support on Saturday when they took on Juventus, but there was much less booing and much more cheering during Sunday’s game against Real Madrid. The fact that he dispatched the penalty that gave the hosts a 1-0 win may have played a part in that.

It is more likely that the more discerning Arsenal fan has realised that Adebayor is absolutely crucial to the team if they are to have any success at all. He is so essential to their cause that I am amazed that any Arsenal fan would jeer him or boo him. Yes, he has messed people around during the summer but he is staying and he is priceless for this Arsenal team.

Watching the Emirates Cup game yesterday against Real Madrid was like watching any number of Arsenal games over the past couple of seasons. Great passing and movement, wonderful patterns weaved across the pitch and a master class in keeping the ball. Arsenal, as always for a football lover, were a pleasure to watch. Having said that, the penetration and goal scoring threat they showed could be summed up in just two words. Emmanuel Adebayor.

Once again, despite having huge admiration for the way Arsene Wenger’s team play the game, it is difficult to see where the goals are going to come from if Adebayor were to get injured or suffer a loss of form. He is the only player in the side who is direct and poses an obvious goal threat.

It must be a strange experience to be a fan of this current Arsenal side. They play the game with grace and patience and with exceptional pace, accuracy and artistry. They weave patterns across the field of play that mesmerise the opposition and get the side into wonderful attacking positions. All of that must be wonderful to watch for the Arsenal faithful. Unfortunately for them, all too often, the move stops there, breaking down on the edge of the opposition’s penalty area without a shot or a cross being produced.

Although yesterday’s game was relatively meaningless, I did hear some frustration in the home crowd when yet another glorious move ended with one pass too many and no threat to the Madrid goal. I don’t know the actual statistics, but Arsenal must have had 65% of the possession yesterday and they rarely troubled Dudek in the Madrid goal.

Not only did we see few attempts on goal, it is also hard to remember any crosses being whipped into the six yard area or flashed across the goal. All I can remember is Arsenal trying to pass and walk the ball into the net. It is great to watch for the neutral but I get the feeling that it might not always great for the Arsenal fans.

I appreciate that this was a gentle pre-season warm up game and you can’t read too much into these type of games but the pattern displayed by Arsenal yesterday may have been depressingly familiar to an Arsenal fan.

It is against this background that I believe Adebayor is so crucial to the success of the side. He is the player who will run directly at goal, he will have a shot and he will get into the box if anyone should ever put a cross in.

In short, as far as I can see, Adebayor is the only ‘cutting edge’ that Arsenal possess. Without him the side is beautiful to watch but completely toothless. Without him I think Arsenal would struggle. With him, they might just have half a chance.

Arsene Wenger has a very clear ideology of how the game should be played. He believes in it passionately and he is not going to change now. His way of playing the game is cultured, technical and pleasing on the eye. What it doesn’t do is place the opposition under too much pressure, put the opposition in two minds about how Arsenal are going to come at them and, I think, it doesn’t always thrill their own fans.

Highbury used to be known as the library because it was allegedly so quiet. People have said that the Emirates, although a wonderful stadium, lacks atmosphere. Boring, boring Arsenal and 1-0 to the Arsenal seemed to be songs and reflections on the Gunners that were long gone.

Fans get really excited by seeing attempts on goal and crosses into the box. Maybe watching Arsenal is more entertaining for the neutral than it is for their own fans?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Graham Fisher


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no.1 goon
no.1 goon
13 years ago

please stick to cricket and leave our football club alone!
go attack chelsea about the amount of money they have spent but did not win nothing.

shedzy
shedzy
13 years ago

The guy deserves to be booed, and he more or less said so himself in a (just about comprehensible) interview before the game.

Simple truth is that he’s not the best forward at Arsenal, both van Persie and Eduardo are better than he is, the only reason he got so many goals last year is because he had more starts than the two of them put together – anyone who can kick a ball straight would get a hatful playing up front for the Arsenal (ie not Bendtner)…….

abhishek
abhishek
13 years ago

you definitely dont know about football….we didnt play rosicky, van persie, fabregas, edurado….what do you expect? go s@@k on the scumbags Chelsea….

morroman
morroman
13 years ago

Replace Adebayor with Thierry Henry and it is what you most probably wrote last year. You miss the point completely, Arsenal is a collective and simple minds focus on the cult of the sword at the end of the attacking whirldwind. Is Bendtner any worst than Adebayor at this time last year? Most Arsenal fans know what and where we are, they were right to express their displeasure and Adebayor needs to understand his role within the collective on and off the pitch. Yes he has improved greatly but he is not irreplaceable, as you seem to suggest.

Dave
Dave
13 years ago

Good article – I couldn´t agree more. Every time I see Arsenal play, I think “just like the last few years – great play, great possession and no goals”.
And I´m not knocking the Gunners – I was born near the Higbury Stadium and grew up there. I´m a Gunner for life, win, lose or draw.

soulrebel
soulrebel
13 years ago

I feel this piece is a little harsh. We were playing Real Madrid, so it wasn’t going to be easy to fashion chances at will, they are the Spanish Champions. It was also a pre-season game and we have players such as Nasri who do not really know their role yet. Denilson and Diaby are only just making the step up too and will get sharper and more direct. Another key factor was the absence of Cesc Fabregas, who’s job it is to create clear cut chances, and we will see the return of Rosicky and Eduardo at some point.… Read more »

Ben Lorente
Ben Lorente
13 years ago

Hmmm, is it effective. Arsenal came 3rd in the PL, 4 points behind the winners Man U. It’s common opinion they played the best football last season and were the 1st UK team in a long time to beat Milan away from home. The fact they finished the season empty handed was very dissapointing as their destiny was in their own hands, this could be down to plain bad luck, a loss of confidence, lack of experience, short depth of squad, injuries etc etc. However, to say their style is innefective is nonsense. You big up Adebayor, but a turning… Read more »

Padre Pio
13 years ago

You must have a bad memory. Or perhaps the facts dont fit your theoy. There were several crosses including one that led to an Adebayor header that forced a great save from Dudek. Also an Ade header that jsut went wide, a Clichy cross that no one got to to name but three.

As for where the goals wil come from, they will come from the same people who scored another 70 or so on top of Adebayor’s 30 last season. Arsenal were the second highest scoing club last season with 113 in all comps

gaylord focker
gaylord focker
13 years ago

Adebayor is kinda like C.Ronaldo. Disloyal scumbags.

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