Morning all from a very depressing Dublin. This has not been a terrific summer time anyway, however at the moment is taking absolutely the mickey. The rain is biblical.
Mikel Arteta held his pre-Group Defend press convention yesterday, and in fact there wasn’t something significantly stand-out from it. He talked in regards to the dimension of the squad, and trimming it down a bit:
We’re within the course of. We’re engaged on a couple of issues. We now have to make a couple of choices. There’s nonetheless time to try this. We’re very proud of the squad that we’ve, that’s for positive. However as properly we’ve to be sure that we are able to share the minutes in the precise means for the workforce to have wholesome competitors inside the squad and we’re engaged on that.
There was some chat about Declan Rice and beating Man Metropolis to his signing, which we’ve principally heard earlier than. I did suppose his feedback on Kai Havertz and the place he’s going to play have been fascinating. He stated:
Properly, he’s performed the vast majority of the second as an attacking midfielder on the left, however he can play on the precise, he can play as a winger coming inside as a 9, as a false 9 so we are going to see. We’re seeing quite a lot of issues, I feel the workforce provides you quite a lot of info day by day and a few connections and a few relationships that you simply didn’t count on and also you look and feel at what is going on there and it’s pure.
We now have to have the eyes open to that and don’t simply shut the door to one thing as a result of typically it’s not the perfect factor to do.
For me this isn’t about Havertz per se, as a lot as it’s about what lies forward this season. If I’ve a slight concern, it’s that our ‘success’, if you wish to name it that, has come from Arteta working with a comparatively small group of gamers inside the confines of a really properly outlined system. This time round, it’s a a lot larger squad – as a result of it must be, he stated that himself – with new gamers settling in, in addition to a necessity for better variation in how we play.
It’s one thing the supervisor himself spoke about a few weeks in the past:
The thought is to be extra unpredictable yearly and be harder for the opponents to cease and nullify what we wish to do. That’s what we’ve now, particularly on the again and within the midfield the choices we’ve, to open up the areas, we’ve many extra choices than we had final 12 months.
We now have to start out doing the precise issues in preseason to get the very best preparation and get that chemistry and cohesion within the workforce.
Understandably, that would take time. These new relationships don’t come totally shaped, they need to develop, and but we’re in a league the place even simply a few dangerous outcomes – and a nasty consequence generally is a draw, let’s not neglect – leaves you enjoying a really tough recreation of catch-up. So, that’s the problem for the supervisor. Implement new concepts with some new gamers, however keep the consistency we confirmed for many of final season. I don’t suppose it’s going to be plain crusing, so how we navigate the opening a part of the season goes to fascinating.
Talking of which, Arteta was requested about how he handled the way in which final season panned out, having led for thus lengthy, solely to be overtaken by Metropolis on the finish. He stated:
The primary few weeks, very powerful. The very first thing it’s important to do is look within the mirror and perceive – is there one thing that you must have performed higher or otherwise? If that’s the case then be taught from it.
After which decide your self – ‘are you continue to the precise individual to drive the membership, the workforce, forwards in the way in which that you really want and do you have got that vitality and that perception that you simply wish to do it?’.
It took a giant reflection, however the reply is sure and I really feel with quite a lot of vitality and positiveness. I don’t like dropping, and it takes me some time, and that was a troublesome second.
As ever, sincere and forthright from Arteta. When he says he’ll be taught from it, you don’t actually doubt him, as a result of he has demonstrated that capability beforehand. The place we’ve fallen quick, we’ve gotten up once more and improved. Like all of you, I hope that it’s the case once more this time round, as a result of whether it is, we’ll be difficult once more, and fingers crossed we are able to take it one step additional.
Proper, that’s as a lot as I’ve received. I would like extra espresso and to examine if all the pieces else hasn’t been blown/rained away by this storm. We’ll have a Group Defend preview podcast for you over on Patreon this morning so be part of us for that.
Have a terrific Saturday people.