After five league games and a Europa League game, making six competitive games in total, Arsenal have still not been able to keep a clean sheet under Unai Emery. This is very unimpressive given the way the club sets out to play, Unai Emery came in and instantly bought in two central midfielders to sit in front of the defenders yet this has had no effect.
The way the club concedes every game is becoming a worrying trend despite winning the games by managing to outscore the opposition. There are several things that need to be looked into to stop this, Emery has to start addressing this issue sooner rather than later.
Lack of communication was a problem for the defensive line in the opening game against Man City at The Emirates, Raheem Sterling was allowed to walk his way from Bellerin’s side of the pitch past Guendouzi before striking the ball past Cech.
The second Premier League game at Chelsea also gave an insight into the problem at the club, the way Pedro was able to move past the centre backs with ease showed that there is no coordination or communication between them. Morata was also able to beat them once again to put the Blues 2-0 up under 30 minutes and yet even after these schoolboy errors, Arsenal were still able to recover and level things before half time.
After the break, it was expected that they would have learned their lesson and would keep everything tight and clean but it wasn’t to be. Looking at the way Chelsea got their winner, the blame, once again, lies squarely at the feet of the Arsenal defenders. From Bellerin’s positioning to Torreira who was caught ball watching when Hazard moved past him to release a pass to Marcos Alonso who slotted home from close range.
Following these two huge (and rather difficult to be fair) games at the start of the season, our next game was against a West Ham side who had yet to pick up a point in the season and a great chance for us to keep a clean sheet, but it never happened. The manner in which Marko Arnautovic was able to move past the midfielders and shoot from the edge of the box to give the Hammers the lead was another good indication as to the defensive vulnerability at the club. Unai Emery has to address the counter attacking positioning and covering of the defenders and things have to improve, and quickly.
Cardiff were the only side not to have scored a goal this season from all of the 92 clubs in England’s top six leagues before playing Arsenal, yet they still managed to score two past us.
The good news is that Arsenal next six games are winnable games that can be used to perfect the art of defending and try and keep a clean sheet, it would not be becoming of a club like Arsenal to not have a clean sheet after 10 games, perhaps this will all change against Newcastle this week.