The Arsenal side that took on West Ham today in their opening game of the season were a far cry from the solid team that performed well in pre-season. To lose a game that you absolute put the effort into is bad enough but to turn up and play like that is terrible, especially on the first day of the season.
They were ill-prepared, sloppy and lack any consistency throughout the match. Conceding from another set-piece is irritating to watch and it should have been dealt with during pre-season as should the defensive issues and weaknesses. West Ham started the game with intent and throughout the first half they dominated us in terms of chances and consistency and this didn’t change. They were well organised, well prepared and fantastic on the counter-attack, in fact they were everything people expected on the pitch today but from Arsenal.
The first goal conceded was an unfortunate misjudgement from Cech but he should have easily saved the second goal but despite that it could be put down to first game nerves at a new club. It’s clear that the goalkeeper is going to need more time to get used to the Arsenal defence and how to work best with them, there were a lot of times where communication was needed during the game and there was barely any. Our defence is very different to Chelsea’s and Cech just needs time to bond and get to know how they play and hopefully he’ll settle into the team quickly.
Our first chance on goal was from Koscielny just before ten minutes and then we didn’t get another chance until Cazorla volleyed the ball over the goal around the 3o minute mark, just as Arsenal actually started to put energy into the game. The second half wasn’t much better but we at least improved slightly for the first half.
If Wenger thought his summer transfer window was already closed he might be rethinking that after this game. It’s clear that we are in desperate need of a DM, Coquelin won’t suit every game and today that was obvious. We are also in need of a centre forward that can actually handle the pace of Ozil and Cazorla rather than get there and miss shots through bad positioning.
Overall a disappointing start to the season and Arsenal still have a lot of work to do but with Crystal Palace next week the focus will be on preparing for that game and making sure that we don’t lose.