Per Mertesacker has revealed that the players decided to hold a crisis meeting to discuss what was occurring within games that has cause the team to accrue their worst start to a season in 30 years.
The meeting took place after the Gunners loss to Southampton on New Years day and the players all had a heart to heart discussion regarding the issues mainly surrounding the defence not getting the backing they felt they needed during games.
Speaking to The Mirror he told them:
“At Southampton, that was a major setback. That was a bad start to the year. After that, we promised ourselves to come out of that comfort zone and be a bit more focused, especially what comes first is defensive work and not just for the back four.
“That is what was maybe the main thing for us to focus, just to promise, and after that we played more convincing, especially defensively. You can see the benefit when everyone realises that, and I thought everyone realised it very quickly after we lost at Southampton. Maybe sometimes you need a wake-up call in certain times to realise what was really important”
The defensive side of our games has improved no end since January and it was more than obvious that there has been a distinct improvement in the way the team performed against Manchester City a few weeks ago. The change has meant that everyone has tightened up their game and become more focused on helping each other instead of being selfish.
It is thought that Wenger does not attend these meetings but he however fully approves of the players meeting and having these discussions. In fact he even revealed it was the players that convinced him to change his line up against City which proved to be the best game we have seen from this Arsenal team in a year.
If these chats are the thing that sort this team out then long may they rein, but one does have to question the manager once again. If Wenger’s team can do his job better than him tactically, especially when lining up against the big teams it begs the question of whether he is capable of adapting to change?
It seems the team have won the battle on this one but how many games can they manage this without Wenger changing it back or admitting finally that his tactics are redundant and moving forward with a new plan.
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