This summer Arsenal lost a lot of fire power. Robin Van Persie scored or assisted 39 goals for Arsenal last season and together with Alex Song (1 goal and 11 assists) was responsible for 47 out of 74 Arsenal’s Premier League goals.
Van Persie was a focal point, a target man, the go-to-guy – stop him and you stop Arsenal.
Song was central figure in Arsenal’s midfield but he was never an effective passer. He loved to the “Hollywood passes” that sometimes worked but he was not consistent on the ball and not a good mover off it. His positioning was also never good enough to make him a great defensive midfielder.
Either way, Song and Van Persie were important goal-getters for Arsenal. So how do you cope with this duo leaving?
Change your game.
Yesterday, Arsenal might have lacked sharpness but there were good signs: Cazorla created more chances (7) than any other player in the Premier League yesterday, all from open play, while Arteta ( 96% pass accuracy) kept the ball at Sunderland’s half, which meant the visitors didn’t manage a single shot in the second half.
Wenger saw Spain at Euro 2012 and thought to himself: We can do that. So expect Arsenal to keep the ball better this season. If this won’t work – nothing will.
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