Toon park the bus again
I know we don’t have the best players out there, but surely, we can do something else other than park everyone behind the ball against a top six side and hope for the best. It’s been made even worse this season that every time we’ve tried (and failed) at this method its been on TV for everyone to see how poor we are.
Hoping for a goal on the counter-attack is a good tactic if you have quick, talented attacking players. Unfortunately, we are lacking in both of these departments. The two or three players we have with a decent turn of pace weren’t anywhere near enough to get past Liverpool and we suffered, going down 2-0 with a whimper. Granted, this game wasn’t one we hoped to get anything from, but the performance didn’t inspire much for the rest of the season. Big games against Southampton and Huddersfield coming up, hopefully, we can take six points from these, which would almost cement our place in the league for next season.
Managerial merry go round set to continue
What do Arsene Wenger, Antonio Conte, and Alan Pardew all have in common? They’re all staring into the abyss of unemployment, if not before, then definitely at the end of the season. Arsenal have already lost eight games in 2018, more than bottom of the table West Brom, sending the Arsenal fans who already wanted Wenger out anyway into full-blown crisis mode. Although Wenger shouldn’t be too worried about getting sacked, after all, he calls all the shots at Arsenal nowadays.
That reference to West Brom leads nicely onto the great Alan Pardew. West Brom were awful before he arrived, and they’ve been awful since too. Most teams get a new manager boost, but that hasn’t happened with the Baggies. While Pardew can’t be absolved of all blame, it’s safe to say that the players at West Brom simply aren’t good enough for this level. Their record over the past year, under both Tony Pulis and now Pardew, has been awful. It always seems that the manager in this situation gets the blame, but surely most of the flack should fall on the players, they are the ones on the pitch performing poorly. Regardless of that, it seems that Pardew will be packing his bags before the end of the season at this rate.
Antonio Conte is also coming under increasing pressure from sections of the support due to Chelsea falling behind in the race for the top four. This is despite their impressive stifling of Barcelona in the first leg of their Champions League tie, which I give them a good chance of progressing from if they can perform as well in the away game. Conte must have been inspired by Rafa Benitez and his overly defensive tactics at Newcastle before Chelsea’s game against Man City, where Chelsea defended as much if not more than we did against them. Gary Neville called it ‘unacceptable’ and ‘embarrassing’, to which Conte responded, calling Neville and other pundits ‘stupid’. Either way, after his complaints at the board for lack of spending and his war of words with Jose Mourinho, Conte appears to be fed up with English football and will probably head to PSG or back to Italy at the end of the season.