Apparently it’s Arteta’s fault that Arsenal don’t win every game



by Tony Attwood

Apparently, it is all Arteta’s fault.  He rages too much, shouts too much, points too much.  That at least seems to be the view in some journalists, but as ever what they are doing is pushing their own failings onto Arsenal.

For if any people in football rage, shout and point too much it surely is football journalists with headlines like “Mikel Arteta rages at ‘scandalous’ penalty calls as Newcastle dent Arsenal’s title hopes”.

A dent?  Last season after 17 games Arsenal were in fourth place 12 points behind the leaders (Manchester City), 11 points behind the club in second place (Liverpool), eight points behind the club in third place (Chelsea).   Arsenal’s goal difference was 30 worse than Manchester City, 34 worse than Liverpool’s and 26 worse than Chelsea’s.  And now a goalless draw against a team with greater wealth than even PSG is a dent?

In reality (something rarely noted in football journalism, Arsenal are three points better off than Manchester City were after 17 games last year and have scored the same number of goals as Manchester City last year.

And when Manchester City lost to Tottenham or Crystal Palace in the first part of the season was there such rampant criticism of their manager or indeed any single aspect of Manchester City’s game?  No of course not.

The fact is that Newcastle United are doing well, in the league, and are doing well for Newcastle United.  But they have only won half of their games this season.  44% of their matches are drawn.  

That is what they play for, that is what they do, and it must be incredibly frustrating for their supporters to be seeing so many draws.    

Instead, the media speak of Arsenal being “starved off success for so long”  (I think that was meant to be “starved of” but I guess proofreaders are in short supply in the professional media these days – I can’t believe the journos have to proof their own writing as us bloggers do).

As a result of this starvation “desperation will become a driver or a deterrent come the business end of the season. That is something Arteta has to ponder.”

What total bollocks.   Arsenal who incidentally had two-thirds of the possession last night have won four FA Cups in the last nine years.  Leaving aside one-off match trophies like the Community Shield and the Super Cup, Liverpool have won three in the last nine years, Manchester United three.  Chelsea and Manchester City have done better, we know that, but this story telling of Arsenal “starved of success” is nonsensical.  Even in our worst period in decades, we are the third most successful team.

Newcastle United is, like Manchester City, a club funded by a state.  That’s perfectly within the rules as they stand, and undoubtedly Newcastle will use this money to good effect in due course and get titles and cups just as Manchester City have been doing.  Some may think that will make football better, but I am not quite sure how that works.

The richness of the owner is becoming the new way to evaluate football and of course, on this basis, Newcastle are top of the league, Manchester City second, Chelsea third and Arsenal fourth.  Newcastle hasn’t had time yet to spend its money and build a team based on that funding but when they do, I am sure we will see the effects.  But what is amazing is that the club whose owner has only a quarter of the money that the Manchester City owner has, is giving Manchester City a run for its money.

But to return to the match, a draw might well be disappointing this morning, but Arsenal had over twice as many shots as Newcastle, plus four times as many shots on target, double the number of shots from outside the box, double the number from inside the box, and double the accuracy of shooting, as Newcastle.  I know which side I would sooner watch. 

No wonder the journalists had to focus on Arteta.  To focus on the football would be to recognise that despite all their cash, Arsenal can still readily outplay Newcastle.  It bodes well for the future.

17 Replies to “Apparently it’s Arteta’s fault that Arsenal don’t win every game”

  1. There does appear to be a need among the footballing Illuminati — especially those hailing from north of Watford or N17 — to castigate Arsenal at every possible opportunity, and I rather think that the reason for this is two-fold.
    Firstly, it is a case of inverted snobbery; whereby the northern flat-cap brigade still recalls the ‘Marble Halls of Highbury’ and compares the image that conjures to the memory of their own corrugated sheds and farmer’s fields.
    Secondly, I rather think that we bring some of this on ourselves. Invariably our blogs, websites and contributors are often hypercritical of our managers and players and this provides the inherently lazy, as so many of them are, with easily-spun material to plagiarise and enhance.
    The first we can do nothing about. Whether we call it an inferiority complex or a good old-fashioned chip on the shoulder matters not; the problem is not ours but theirs and they have to own it and deal with it.
    The second we can do something about; and that is to try to be more positive in our support. I have to admit that I include myself in that. Your site does a great deal to foster positivity; other Arsenal-supporting sites should be encouraged to follow your example, and so should we, the contributors

  2. It’s deflection ! If Arteta is to seen to be waving his arms then ask why ? If he gets into a pitchside row with the 4th official ask why again and finally why did his actions upset Howe so much .
    Instead of just castigating Arteta a decent journalist would look for the reason that he was acting as he did .
    Look for the common denominator , investigate the reason .
    No too much hard work in analysis as there’s another story coming on line tomorrow to fill their 300 word diatribe.

  3. As I showed in the previous article we actually produced a very good performance last night against an extremely resilient team.

    The only thing missing last night was our usual clinical finishing. But even then, being denied 1 stone wall penalty and another very possible penalty we still should of won the game.

    As I said yesterday, dropping 2 points, or even 3 points last night would not of been a disaster as all our direct rivals have already done that and their World hasn’t ended. But as expected it sounds like the media are suggesting ours has, on the back of 1 draw.

    I say ‘sounds like’ as from the final whistle I haven’t listened to or read a word as I fully anticipated a s**t storm of negativity from all quarters. I can do with out that thank you very much.

    As long as we the fans keep it in perspective, and keep the belief, as by and large it seems we are here on Untold at least, we will be fine.

    This tough run of matches was always going to see us drop some points and therefore drop back towards the pack, but it’s nothing to worry about. We are in this title race for the long haul, and like everyone else, including Man City, Man Utd, Liverpool etc. we will drop points. It happens.

    Let the haters hate. It’s not as if we aren’t used to it.

  4. Personnaly, I felt Oodegard looked very tired, which considering how much he plays all over the pitch game after game is understandable.
    The positive is that Arsenal kept a solid defence and at no point stopped trying. newcastle have the best defence, we have seen why. The day they get better players up front, they will be much more dangerous. Kind of reminds me of the Arsenal turnaround, which, incidentaly, started with the defence.
    Other teams will lose points as well.
    The return game at St James will be more difficult as you can bet the referee appointed will have a stellar ‘pro home team’ record.
    Considering the financial means these state owned teams have at their disposal, it is kind of ironic that we find ourselves, even with much spending, in the same situation as Arsenal in Wenger years, playing wonderful football yet facing teams with way more ressources. Then, in the other hand, as in the past, we play brilliant football, so I’m happy and grateful about that and that will gie us breaks here and there to win even against that kind of competition.

  5. never mind the rantings and ravings of classless plodders. there will be no end to their jealousy. they are likely from the same pool of lumpen proles as the refs.

  6. I have seen a headline elsewhere that Shearer accuses Arteta of being “disrespectful”. I haven’t bothered to open it because I assume that it is a load of sh….

    Deliberately wasting time, feigning injury, haranging the referee, scything down opponents is surely disrespectful. Presumably Newcastle did all of these under instructions from “respectful” Mr. Howe.

    Just Shearer talking out of his a… as usual, to deflect from the reality that Arsenal were the better team by far. On the other hand, he is perhaps not perceptive enough in reality to recognise this fact.- based on his own totally brief and disastrous managerial career, that could well be the case.

  7. I don’t think the readers of UA and contributors pay much attention to the media’s opinions regarding AFC. The posts here are fact based and usually refute whatever nonsense the media is spouting. So how can UA’s message reach a wider audience? Perhaps a social media presence? Being of a “certain age”, I don’t do any social media but I know most people do. Is there an Untold-Arsenal Twitter account for example? I know Tony has his hands full with Advertising, Untold-Arsenal, Untold Dylan and dancing, lol, but perhaps someone else could assist. Does anyone have any ideas about this or am I off the mark?

  8. Re: Journalists and proof-reading

    Ash Rose’s bullet points from an article in today’s Daily Mail include the following literary butchery:-

    “Felix has been linked with a January move to both Arsenal, Man Utd and Chelsea”

    Numeracy has also taken a bit of a hammering here.

  9. goonersince72

    “I don’t think the readers of UA and contributors pay much attention to the media’s opinions regarding AFC”

    That is certainly true but it does feel like countering the rabid anti Arsenal agenda, that by all accounts has gone into overdrive again today on the back of ONE draw, is like swimming against the tide in a treacle sea.

    “So how can UA’s message reach a wider audience”

    I’ve often felt the same. The counter points and data/fact based arguments put up by Tony, Chris and others, should be seen by a as many people as possible. How, I have no idea.


    “Numeracy has also taken a bit of a hammering here”

    A good job our Prime Minister’s prioritising Maths at school then isn’t it. And there I was thinking sorting out the current mess we’re in was the priority? Seems he’s not the total plonker I thought he was.

  10. seismic

    Dianne Abbott? Surely not. I suspect there is a joke in there somewhere siesmic, but if there is I’m afraid it’s gone over my head. Sorry.

    I don’t have a twitter, snapchat, or any other type of social media account. It’s not that I’m against it, it’s just the World winds me up enough without being on any of those platforms.

    That doesn’t mean I don’t realise the enormous impact those platforms have, so you probably have a point that that would be the way to get to more people, alas I wouldn’t go near it.

  11. I keep seeing headlines regarding Chelsea hi-jacking the Mudryk deal. I can’t imagine that Mudryk would be overjoyed at the prospect of moving to a club with historic Russian connections given the current situation in his home country.

  12. Seismic,
    If Untold revives the Twitter account I might join social media for the first time. The reports here on referees,transfers, world football, etc. need to be seen by a wider audience.

  13. Seismic,
    The reports on UA need to be by a wider audience. If US’s Twitter account is revived, I might join social media for the first time.

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