Kolo Toure is a natural leader so should be a captain.....our captain!
(This post is written by a long-time Gunner and regular comments contributor to EFT: GunnerPete)
If any of you have long memories, you may remember a great Spurs player called Dave Mackay, well Kolo reminds me of him. So powerful and so determined to win and enjoy himself.
I really have believed for some time that we have the players, thanks to AW, to win a few trophies this year and for some time to come, but they are not necessarily playing in the correct positions. Henry for one, ( the worst captain Ive seen in 57 years ) it seems has become our wandering lone striker. This has been great until teams worked out a simple tactic to wind him up, so he starts to sulk. If we were playing a two up front system, with a powerful goalscorer (beside Thierry) who would have to be marked separately, TH14 would score more & make more for others.
Baptista may or may not be the answer to our need for a bustling old style centre forward but with skill to match. Who knows until he is given a run in the first team. This may work, but we have major flaws in our team that other clubs have noticed, and use against us. Henry being one of them. He gives the impression that he is doing us all a favour just turning up, and if he had not already signed I would say his body language is crying out for a move! He must be dropped to the bench now and again and made to realise that he is an overpaid player not a god.
I sat with my brother (a Chelsea Supporter) and watched the CSKA & West Ham matches. We both salivated over the beauty of our moves. In fact my brother said he wishes his bunch of mercenaries could/would play like AFC.
However, the fact that something is wrong within our camp is probably too mild a statement. You know when something is wrong when deep down inside you know we will struggle against much weaker sides. I have noticed two big flaws in Arsene's team tactics. Whilst we watched the W.Ham match the flaws became open sores and so easy to see we could not understand why others, especially Arsene, have not.
Flaw one: our lightweight midfield. Mainly due to injuries, but also a lot to do with AW relying on Cesc to much. This lad will burrn out long before the end of the season, unless AW gives him a partner who can potect him, and put fear into the opposition.
Answer = First make Kolo Toure our captain, then place him side by side with Silver in front of our defence, but with the freedom to attack when he wants. This mean bringing in Senderos to play alongside Gallas. He gives us so much more power in defence, and attack. I would also forecast that Kolo would score up to 10 goals a season from that position. AW, could then play a 4-2-2-2 system, which he did against Man Utd. This formation would be so powerful against any style, of any team, including Bolton & Blackburn. They wont bully that back 6 !
Flaw two = Zero / none / tactics at corners and freekicks. I counted 46 corners in the past 3 games and no shots or even saves produced! That is shameful! Answer = If AW was not so insistent that his way is the only way, I would suggest he goes through all the videos of our matches under George Graham.....Steve Bould could also teach him a lesson or Five about where to stand and how to vary, what should be an advantageous deadball situation. How come that I feel nervous when teams like Villa & Everton look dangerous at every corner, and 'The Arsenal' look like wimps? It all comes down to using our ability in the right place & at the right time ie; if AW cannot find a way for our tall men to win the ball at corners.....try passing back to draw the opposition out!
How has this come about? Well it seems to me that AW has decided that he want only one main goalscorer ( since giving away Pires) and rely on midfield to come up with the rest. Sorry to keep mentioning Man Utd, but Fergie gets a lot right with his buying, and one policy I love is that he always has at least two, sometimes three, top strikers in the squad. AW started like this with Wiltord being the 'other' striker but when he went the AW buys since have been woefully bad for that position.
I would like to end by saying that I have been a great advocate for playing reserve players ASAP like Eboue, who I campained for long before he was given the chance. I would like to see young guns like Bendtner & Stokes brought back in January and given a nice long run up front. If they are good enough, they are old enough, like Eboue. I will also forecast that Traore will be our leftside midfielder very soon, so re-establishing our power running left side.
The SAD & SORRY fact is that Arsene will (a) never read this (b) if he read it, he would ignore it! BUT perhaps if enough people press him by mail, he may do right by our KOLO!