View From The Sphere

A one-off, Arsenal WILL bounce back despite loss to Ipswich


Last night’s performance was arguably the worst Arsenal have put in this season. Defensively suspect throughout and lacking any kind of intuition or verve at the other end of the pitch, there can be no arguments about the defeat at Portman Road, even if the winning goal was a yard offside.

This game was not just a one-off; Arsenal have now gone two hundred and seventy minutes without scoring a goal from open play, and that must be a cause of concern for Arsene Wenger. He shall rightly point to the absence of Robin Van Persie in two of the three games as a possible reason behind the drought, but given the quality of the opposition in the two the Dutchman has missed, the Frenchman’s excuses will no doubt fall on deaf ears.

Every team has these periods of the season, and Arsenal should be thankful that their particular barren spell is coming in games where the damage left is clearly repairable. They can progress to the 4th round of the F.A. Cup with a win at Elland Road, and they will also fancy their chances overturning the one goal deficit forced upon them by Ipswich. There is thus no need to panic. Despite the side that Wenger picked this evening being regarded by many as relatively strong, one has to appreciate that the first choice goalkeeper was rested, both full backs were out, the best defensive midfielder at the club started on the bench, and the third choice centre-forward played for more than an hour.

It would be nothing short of alarmist to suggest that this defeat was caused by anything more than a multitude of poor performances from a mixture of both fringe and senior players playing on a difficult surface in a hostile atmosphere.

The West Ham game on Saturday has a level of importance that last night’s game never possessed. It is easy for Wenger to tell the media that his players are up for the Carling Cup, but the reality is that instinctively certain players are withholding some of their energy for what is a crucial game this weekend. Should the performance against the Premier League’s bottom side mirror the one put in last night, then there will be reason to be somewhat concerned, but the likelihood is that the quality of performance will be far greater, which will hopefully be reflected in the result.

So despite the terrible performance at Portman Road, it is difficult to imagine that Arsene Wenger is worried about the current state of affairs. He shall welcome arguably the Premier League’s most in-form player in Samir Nasri, whilst Robin Van Persie will be in the side at the weekend, something which will surely address quite how toothless Arsenal’s strike-force has been in recent weeks.

There are more positives than negatives with Arsenal at the moment, and there is no doubt that if the supporters were offered just one win from Leeds, Ipswich and West Ham, they would certainly choose the latter game every single time. Now it’s up to the team to produce, and ultimately, not disappoint the Arsenal faithful.

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1 comment

  • Barry Pancake says:

    Arsenal were shocking last night, I can’t believe how bad they played against Ipsitch, they lacked desire and passion and players like Bendtner and Arshavin really disappointed me. Bendtner did nothing for the team and it just proves he needs to be sold. Arshavin I’m really surprized with because as of late is playing bad and I thought a game against Ipsitch could show Arsenal fans what he is made of, if he keeps playing like that WEnger should definately sell him. Oh yeah, I was also upset with Denilson but I’m used to him playing rubbish as he does it week in week out.

    Arsenal are going through a bad spell but as the writer said I’d rather it happen in these competitions then the premiership. WE played bad against Leeds but managed to draw and where not out of the tie against Ipsitch but Arsenal need to raise there game. Arsenal need to focus and get back to winning ways and there is know better game then West Ham to do this, but Arsenal must not underestimate them like they did against Leeds and Ipsitch.

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