Arsenal 1-0 Spurs | More perspiration than inspiration, but who cares

As has been the case recently when Spurs visit the Emirates, Arsenal were in desperate need of three points to not only boost their league position, but also ease some of the pressure on Arsene Wenger. And following on from those famous 5-2 victories came a much scrappier, but no less important, 1-0 win that highlighted virtues I wasn’t sure we had.

This was a mature, determined performance from Arsenal, defending as a team and working hard to deny Spurs any clear openings. It was more perspiration than inspiration, but that’s fine with me.

Giroud scores against SpursWe started well but Spurs quickly took over and were bossing things when we hit them on the break and took the lead. Rosicky found Walcott, whose low cross was delicately flicked past Lloris by the in-form Giroud.

Thereafter Spurs lost their way and we grew into the game. We weren’t ripping them apart with any high-tempo, dazzling passing, but we were solid and looking very dangerous on the break.

It says much that Spurs’ best chance of an equaliser came via a deflected shot which Szczesny did brilliantly to parry and then Giroud was on hand to block the follow up. The desire to get back and protect our lead from our centre forward epitomised how everyone was prepared to do the dirty work for the cause. That’s not always been the case in recent years (and I worry that they will take certain teams lightly again now that the immediate pressure is off) but it was encouraging to see nonetheless.

So despite the pre-match predictions of goals galore, we ended up with a scrappy 1-0 to the Arsenal. There was much to be admired about our spirit and ability to defend as a team (in particular the midfield) although it must be noted that this was an excellent time to play Spurs. They looked disjointed for much of the match as their new guys have yet to settle in, and I fear they’ll be a much better team by the time we go to the Lane.

My biggest worry about this result is that Wenger will feel mistakenly justified in his lack of spending so far and decide to keep his cheque book in his pocket tomorrow, which would be a huge mistake. Our squad is still four or five players away from being where it should be given the resources at our disposal and a win, however well earned, over our bitter rivals shouldn’t disguise that.

Over to you Wenger — let’s have more Ozils than Park Chu Youngs this time around please.

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  1. john

    I am a spurs fan, and your review, was refreshingly honest, well done, and you are right, that spurs team have not even begun to gel yet, but when it does, we are going to dominate and rip teams to pieces, we dominated today, but no cutting edge, whereas your lot kept catching us on the break, and dawson didnt play well today, along with rose, and they left us vulnerable, we will get better week by week, and then be a real force, the derby came too early for us, lots of good players on our side, but we were not a team, but it will come, cant wait for the second half at white hart lane, with our wonderful crowd leading us to victory over you.

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  2. William

    It was a determined defensive display which earned the three points.
    It was a dogged show or winning ugly if you like.Perhaps the gunners are about to grind out 1-0 wins no matter what.
    More of this against the redfacedless rd will make me happy. It’s about time
    the gunners win against this particular team.As for RVP he was’t given much time and space and hence the growls.Hopefully Wenger will get some
    players to turn the gunners into challengers.

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  3. Dave Highbury

    Don’t agree. Santi came in more central on the attack so we out numbered and out manoeuvred you in the middle coming forward and we could have scored more. Now watch the signings and remember Arteta, Verminator, Ox Podolski will be back. Giroud was HUGE today!

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  4. matt

    Much as it pains me to says so, as a Spurs fan, I thought you played well and just deserved to edge the game.

    However, bearing in mind we had nearly 60% of the possession, at the Emirates, I am not unhappy with our overall performance. We played how I thought we would, physical, aggressive and with a healthy amount of possession, but disjointed and somewhat unbalanced.

    Dembele and Paulinho are too similar and we needed the guile of a Cazorla, for example, linking midfield to our lone striker Soldado. On the basis of our first two games, none of this was very surprising, especially when our most talented new recruit playing the pivotal # 10 position, Eriksen, was unavailable for this game.

    The end result was a rather blunt and one dimensional attacking effort that made it all too easy for Koscielny and Mertesacker to close down Soldado, which they did very effectively.

    It was clear to me before the game that your midfield would have more guile and cohesion than ours and so it proved. What was not clear was if your midfield would be able to rise to the physical challenge we would present and have the appetite to assume the defensive duties needed to combat our physical presence and nullify our possibly greater amounts of possession. To give your boys full credit I thought they answered those questions very positively.

    A good result for you, but early days yet! I think by the time of the return match at WHL we will be a much more balanced and cohesive unit.

    The key for you, in my opinion, lies in increasing the depth of your squad. There is no doubt in my mind that we have a much stronger squad this year, which at this point in the season is not too relevant, however as we have found out to our cost two seasons in a row, it becomes much more relevant at the business end of the season.

    Last year I felt it was the greater depth in your squad which was decisive in the final run-in, but this year you have currently lost that advantage and even if you manage to secure one top class recruit today, like an Ozil, it won’t cover the bare patches in your roster, evidenced by your bench yesterday.

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