Arsenal’s defenders used to keep their mouth shut, because they were the problem, but now they are taking advantage to speak up about the real problem.
I love a team that can self-identify their own issues. It takes the pressure off us writers to yell into a void to no avail. And right now, Arsenal players are spot on about just about everything, and it makes me happy that I don’t have to come here and harp about how players are wrong, or ignorant, or blinded by the light.
The latest to speak out is Hector Bellerin, who has said that the big problem with the club right now is a lack of finishing in front of goal.
Bellerin has only been back for a couple weeks, but in that time he’s proven a hero while wearing the armband and reestablished himself as one of the tried and true Gooners on this club. So yeah, I’m paying attention when he’s speaking.
Unsurprisingly, he’s not the first guy at the back to speak up about the problem with scoring goals. Bernd Leno spoke not long ago about how important it was that we turn our form in front of goal around.
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Again—Leno? Bellerin? These are guys that have the right to talk. Well, by that I mean that these are guys that we should listen to.
It’s funny, really. Before Arteta took over, nobody on this defense could say anything. Not Leno, not Bellerin, not anyone. Because they were the clear and obvious problem. They were the guys who couldn’t see the result out. And if they had said anything about the attack, fans would have been quick to lash out at them and put them in their place.
Not so these days. These days, it’s the superstar-packed attack that can’t put the finishing touches on anything. This is a club that’s lucky to score a goal. It’s a field day when they score two.
The good news, for Bellerin and Leno and us, is that we know what this attack is capable of. And even if they never reach that level of capability again, the world knows the value of guys like Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Mikel Arteta can polish his axe and sell them off.
It’s all a work in progress. Maybe we can sign that camel that Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette were riding on. Seemed like he had some great chemistry with our strikers.