Arsene Wenger’s men on Sunday played Stoke City at the Britannia stadium in their second fixture of the Barclays Premier league campaign. The Gunners again failed to make it work in the final third of the pitch as the match ended in a goalless draw with both teams having a point each. This however, is Arsenal’s second scoreless draw in a row which may be a cause of concern especially as the Gunners see themselves as genuine title contenders. How ever, it would be rather harsh on this new look Arsenal team to judge their inability to but the ball behind the net, as they need time to gel into a formidable team.
Fans have already started to question the attacking prowess of the new look gunners team, especially with the absence of Robin Van Persie, who alone scored about 45% of their goals last season. Arsene Wenger has so far introduced two new strikers in the persons of Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud to replace the void left by the former captain and talisman. However, the two new replacements have so far not been able to score a single goal, not even a disallowed offside goal.
The team looks very stronger defensively compared to last season, as they have managed to keep two clean sheets in a row, which is a sign of good things to come if they can keep such wonderful defensive displays. The back four made of Kirren Gibbs, Thomas Vermalen, Per Mertesacker and Carl Jenkinson have so far performed well as a unit. The likes of Per Mertesacker and Carl Jenkison have so far improved upon their last season’s performances with former adapting to the physical conditions and pace that the Premier league is known for, as it was evident in the match at the Britannia stadium on Sunday against the potters which saw as he was able to dominate majority of the aerial balls keeping Peter Crouch quiet on most occasions. With the return of the brilliant Koscielny Arsenal would be much stronger defensively, giving the squad a defense of real title contenders.
The midfield also looked very promising in the match against a much physical Stoke side, as the likes of Mikel Arteta, Abou Diaby and Santi Cazorla were able to control the midfield through out majority of the ninety minutes. Arteta with the absence of Alex Song played the role of the deep lying midfielder dictating play from deep in the midfield which he did with much composure and discipline. Santi cazorla on the other hand was voted by fans as the man of the match against Stoke, as he was able to control his territory very well with some great technical passes to the men up front, it was only disappointing to see them waste much of these great passes when the got to the final third of the pitch.
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