Arsenal had so many injury problems before the game against Wigan but still a top-notch side like Arsenal was expected to beat a relegation-threatened team.
However, that wasn't the case at DW stadium and Wigan pulled off a shocker. But Martinez may not agree with that. Why? Because his side was the better one on the pitch and not many would discord with the same. Wigan played with real purpose and Arsenal were clueless.
First off, Eastmond and Campbell played well but others around them were poor. Some may target Clichy for the third Wigan goal, but there were so many others who were poorer than Clichy.
Also, Wenger's decision not to give more playing time to Van Persie didn't help either. Wenger's decision making is really pitiable lately with his gambles not paying off and the Arsenal manager is running into all sorts of trouble.
Back to the game, Arsenal hardly created any chances and Wigan had a gazillion lot of chances to seal all the three points even before their first goal, but they opted for the toughest way and scored three goals in the final 10 minutes.
Arsenal's defense was so poor that whenever Wigan had the ball in the final third they looked like scoring. Arsenal's centre half partnership might be one of the worst in the league and can never be expected to beat any side with both Silvestre and Campbell at the heart of the defense. Silvestre was all over the place and made it extremely difficult for Clichy.
Fabianski did a decent job but again Wigan's second goal showed why he can never be a world-class keeper. It was ridiculous to say the least. Blame Arsene Wenger for not improving the goalkeeping standards. It was quite clear by the halfway mark of the season that Arsenal badly need a better goalkeeper but Wenger opted to stick with his mediocre players in front of the goal, and now he's left to pay the price.
He could have given more opportunities to Vito Mannone but he didn't. Don't forget the fact that Mannone won a game for Arsenal at Craven Cottage almost single-handedly but again Wenger's decision to stick consistently with his poor first and second choice netminders are suspicious, leaving a talented youngster like Mannone on the bench.
Abou Diaby had a pathetic game and this is unacceptable when all the major players were out injured. One would expect the experienced players to step up and Diaby let everyone down with his substandard performance. He had some glorious chances to score today.
The major problem with Diaby is his reluctance to shoot. He even squandered a one-on-one chance to score. He could have attempted more shots on target but went for the wrong passes. He lacked discipline and was easily dispossessed. The recent games showed why he's one of the most inconsistent players in the Arsenal squad. He had a poor game against Tottenham too and I feel he has gone back to his old self. Even a youngster like Eastmond had a better game than Diaby and it's time to decide the future of this Frenchman. Really doesn't look like a worthy addition to the long term plans of Arsenal.
Nicklas Bendtner is another big question mark in this Arsenal side. Alright, his pass led to the first goal but he was pretty bad overall. His first touch is horribly wrong and never really instills any kind of belief amongst his teammates. After Diaby, he's the one who loses the ball far cheaply. His ball control is pathetic, and according to me, it's time to terminate his contract. Against Wigan he didn't get too many chances chance but he was anonymous for the most part and that's not what you would expect from your big centre forward.
Blame must be attached to the midfield for not creating too many chances but Bendtner's poor ball control and touches were there for everyone to see. He's scored a lot of goals lately and that shouldn't blind anyone because his overall contribution is poor and he's not the kind of striker Arsenal need. He would be ideal for a team like Blackburn where heading prowess is more important than ball control and footwork.
This game clearly indicates why Arsenal can't win silverware with the current crop of players.
Injuries are a big concern and it destroyed the spine of the team but some of the players are regular starters and this kind of performance from them is unpardonable.
The only person to be blamed for the defensive mediocrity is Wenger. He focused only on the attacking part of the game and totally neglected the defensive side of it.
The team clearly doesn't have anything defensively. Starting from the goalkeeper everything needs to change. Arsenal were lucky to have Vermaelen for the most part of the season, otherwise these shockers like Wigan would have repeated more often.
Moreover, Wenger gambled with two centrebacks for the whole season and pushed them to play with injuries. And the rest is history. Gallas collapsed twice and Vermaelen picked up a rather strange injury, which could be related to the fact that he was forced to play each and every game without adequate time to recover. After all he's not a machine and Wenger failed to realize that.
Over the course of the season, Wenger used makeshift players everywhere and you can't do that at the heart of the defense. Something Wenger must learn soon to bring trophies back to Ashburton.
Wenger isn't ruthless enough, and he shows lots of affection even towards the poorest of the players. And if he's going to continue with the same kind of affection, sorry, with due respect I must admit that this team don't need him as a manager because he's going nowhere with this policy of "not spending and encouraging mediocrity."
Financial stability is a great thing but if the team performs like a mid-table one then what's the use of his financial stability and the long term plans? Wenger may argue that the long term future of Arsenal is bright but what's happening right now? Where are the trophies? Even teams like Tottenham feel that they've overtaken Arsenal. Such is the situation of the great Gunners now.
You don't have to be a rocket scientist to know the problems at Arsenal. Wenger has accumulated a lot of average youngsters and he must filter those ones out, who are not good enough to play for a world class team. The likes of Denilson, Diaby, Bendtner, Almunia, Fabianksi, Silvestre, and Vela doesn't really look like capable of guiding the team to a different level.
This Arsenal side is simply not good enough and players like Robin Van Persie and Cesc Fabregas would be ashamed of the way their teammates had played recently.
Something really needs to change and even Wenger realized that after the recent failures. With the current form and the type of players available, Arsenal should consider themselves lucky if they managed to beat Blackburn, Fulham, and Manchester City in the remaining games of what was a promising season, which signalled something special in the early part but as the season progressed Arsenal collapsed and the search for silverware continues, but with the current crop of players don't expect this frustrating run to end any time soon.
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