Monday, 15 November 2010

More shots inside the box would make Arsenal more clinical

Three hard earned points were won yesterday with an excellent team performance.

Everton had come into the game without losing in their previous eight fixtures.

However Arsenal's away form is the best in the Premier League with the Gunners taking 11 points from six games, prior to yesterday results.

Going forward we were consistent in our threat towards goal with 13 shots spread almost evenly over both halves. 

Nasri was the architect of many of our opportunities and his driving run towards the Everton goal. He had three shots, two on target and one blocked effort.

Arshavin wasn't afraid to have a go himself. Putting two off target attempts towards goal within two minutes of one another.

It's not surprising that our goals came from shots within side the area. This is a place in our game where we are most efficient. Of our five on target strikes, three were inside the box and two resulted in a goal. Chamakh's glaring error in the 61st minute was the only shot off target from inside the box.

Of the three blocked goal attempts, both Nasri's and Wilshere's efforts were inside the penalty area, whilst Fabregas' free kick in the 67th minute was the only blocked shot from outside the box.

It seems if were put more effort in to shooting when we are inside the box we'd score more goals. However the problem is getting the ball there and our players are shy about shooting unless they see a clear chance.

Arsenal's defensive pressure paid dividends early on as our good pressing of the ball restricted the home team to just one shot on target in the first 45, which was from Seamus Coleman outside the Arsenal box on 15 minutes.

Tim Cahill's off target header plus two efforts from Loius Saha were the Toffee's other shots towards goal before half time.
Fabregas, Arshavin and Squillaci put their bodies in the way of the ball to stop three other efforts from outside the box reaching Lukasz Fabianski's goal in the first 45.

But it was this solid ground work which made it easier for us to contain the pressure of the Everton attack in the last 10 minutes of the game when the home side really went for us.

They were less shot shy and peppered our goal with twelve shots, six on target (including the goal), three off target and three blocked by the bodies of Arsenal players in the second period.

We were able to stand firm because Everton were too narrow in their play and didn't attempt to go at our full backs and cross the ball in.

The one time they did cross - the Everton goal coming from a corner - they were successful in winning the ball in the air. Arsenal's defence were certainly let off the hook and Lukasz Fabianski's good form continued with some fine stops.

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