As if things can’t feel like they seem any more farcical right now, we found out yesterday that Lucas Torreira wants talks with the manager because he is not happen with his current situation or his role in the Arsenal team, which to most of us is a ‘well, duh’ kind of moment really. That’s because most of the world can see that he’s been better deployed in a more deeper-lying, ball-winning, tenacious and tigerish role like times last season.
The only problem is that the man who is the one who has the power to actually play him in that position, is of course the man who is currently manager of Arsenal football club.
I really like Torreira. I like what he brings. I like his style and I – like many of you – feel like we need him in the base of our team. But as is par for the course under Unai Emery, he seems to think that he’s better pressing higher up the pitch, influencing play in the opposition box. I have no idea why. It doesn’t feel to me as if this is the best use of the player. But then again, we re dealing with a manager who has made baffling selection decisions all this season, so perhaps we shouldn’t find it as a surprise.
If Torreira is in the same position in January he make seek a move, but I’m hopeful that it won’t come to a head like that, because if Torreira is in the same position, it means Emery is still in his job. The upside of that is that somehow he must have turned it around, but given the form and clear lack of any kind of tactical structure to our team, that’s an ‘against the odds’ kind of situation.
So if Emery is still in a job and we are still in poor form in January, that’ll be the end of our hopes of the Champions League but worse than that, we could see players actively seeking an exit. Good players too. This could go spur very quickly unless the board act. Because let’s not forget; they have built some goodwill after the summer and everyone is turning on Emery and not the board, but it won’t be long before eyes start gazing at the back office team for failing to put us all out of our misery by relieving the manager of his duties.
With regards to this weekend I suspect we’ll get a team that many would prefer anyway, because Bellerin will most likely come in, as will Torreira and I suspect Özil too. Aubameyang will lead and in midfield we’ve basically got a hand that has been forced with the news that Ceballos is injured. With Xhaka frozen out too and Willock playing a big part on Wednesday, I think we’ll see a Guendouzi/Torreira midfield anyway, so maybe it’ll keep Torreira happier for a little longer.
But it speaks volumes that we’re talking about Emery’s hand being forced and that’s the only reason we aren’t seeing another Xhaka/Guendouzi midfield with Torreira getting no game time. That the manager has to have his options limited before actually playing players in their natural positions is just another reason why he’s got to be shown the door I’m afraid.
I know I’m banging the drum hard for his exit and that has been the case pretty much since the Sheffield United game, but it’s only because I can’t see any long-term hope of success for us under a man who looks all the more like a guy who would be more comfortable managing a Burnley, Leicester, Newcastle, etc. It seems crazy to me that I’m only now starting to realise this but it’s just because I think it’s always been in the back of my mind with him from about Christmas last year, I’ve just been happy to overlook because we seemed to be getting the job done in terms of results.
That’s gone now and all we have is crap football and points being dropped all over the place. I want to see Arsenal winning football matches and hey, if we win the next 15 in a row I’ll be happy to say “I was wrong, fair ply to Unai” but as it is right now this seems like it’s got no chance of going in that direction.
Catch you all tomorrow.