It is an axiom that Arsenal will find a way to shoot themselves in the foot. And it was yet another set piece that proved their downfall. Somehow for some reason, the Gunners transform into drooling dolts dealing with corners or free kicks. After Vermaelen, it is clear that there appears to be no take charge personality to organize the defense. And yet here is Wenger stating the blindingly obvious in MOTD.
“There appears to be no organization.”
So what are we going to do about it? It’ll be the end of January when Vermaelen gets back. All the warm fuzzies after the Chelsea win dissipates after this wasted opportunity. And again Wigan finds a way to embarrass us.
This time it was Squillaci under pressure from Gary Caldwell turning Hugo Rodallega’s header into an own goal after Ben Watson had sent in a booming corner in the 81st minute. Squillaci gets the statistic but it was Lukasz Fabianski who should be held responsible. The Polish goalie reverted to an older more familiar form when he was caught way out of position to do anything other than look hapless.
Wenger made eight changes from the winning squad on Monday. To be fair playing the same XI after 48 hours would have been too much and it did seem like a stroke of genius as Andrey Arshavin provided two moments of magic. He scored a sensational goal to restore parity and then set up Nicklas Bendtner to put Arsenal ahead.
Where Wenger seems to have made a mistake is to assume that Arshavin plays like this for more than 10 minutes. Or that Denilson is a holding midfielder. Both should have subbed off early in the second half for Song and Walcott, especially after the game meandered into nothingness. Its these unproductive spells that make one nervous because more often than not Arsenal comes off worse.
It was Wigan that got things started after Lee Probert bought Charles N’Zogbia’s blatant dive in the box and awarded a spot kick which Watson buried. There was no way Koscielny touched him as the replays clearly showed but that theatrical tumble was enough. But N’Zogbia did himself no favours headbutting Jack Wilshere for which he received a red card. Down to 10 men in the 78th minute and Wigan comes back three minutes later for the equalizer.