Arsenal 2-0 Manchester City: David Luiz ABSOLUTELY IMMENSE for the Gunners – Steve Nicol | FA Cup
Two manchester city, nil in the semi final of the fa cup, a brace from pierre emerick aubameyang, proven to be to be the difference between the two sides: here’s to discuss the match with me, shaq and his off donation and stevie nick off stevie. Let’S start with you: where did this come from? Well, you got to say that arsenal did something that i really didn’t think they were capable of and and as individuals defensively, i didn’t think they were capable of it as well. So i mean what a performance from uh – okay, you could say at times they had every man behind the ball, but you still got to be in good positions. You still got to make good decisions and you still got to make smart challenges and, and quite frankly, martin isn’t gold didn’t really have too much to to do himself, because the men in front of him were so good. At the same time, i think this has to be the worst man city performance under pre. Since he’s got there, i mean it was just awful defensively. Nothing happened very quickly in the middle of the park and up front, an absolute shadow of a team who we were saying before this game would create chances, but would they be able to take them? Well, you know what they didn’t create anything and when you don’t create you can take it. So i think we’re going to have to praise arsenal defensively because we have given them pelters, particularly david, louise i’ve, given him a lot of stick, but today i thought he was absolutely immense.
Well, let’s stay with the positive, shall we stevie and talk about arsenal in a little more depth. You you were given the uh, the task of in the player ratings for arsenal aubameyang, one out of ten david lewis, nine out of ten tier 89 mustafi. Nine! Incredible! Well, you know what, when you don’t make a mistake at all and when you, when you are one of the main reasons why your team has beaten one of the best and probably the before this game, they were favorites for the champions league. When you do everything correct, you deserve to get praise and that’s why mustafi gets nine again i’ve, given mustafi pelters, yep he’s, put a performance in today that he hasn’t done in an arsenal shot for well. I don’t know whether he’s ever been as good as he was today: that’s it in its shaka. These arsenal players rising to the occasions, and we have been so critical of them. However, on today’s showing their defense was exceptional, yeah without question, and i totally agree with steve i’ll go so fast to say if we were doing those scores um in comparison to what we’ve seen from mustafi, tierney and louise over recent weeks or maybe what we expected. They could quite easily get 13 or 14 out of 10. that’s how that’s, how much better they were saying that um. I thought – and i was very critical of arteta recently and and i i i think he had to be some of the responsibility for those for some of their losses, but he got it absolutely right back three.
Nobody, none of these three center backs tried to do anything. Um, special or crazy went even a little bit further in la and in david louise. In the past i brought about the first goal. For me, i thought bellarine was simply outstanding and and the role that he played on the right hand, side, which allowed um pepe to either take take the wing back on or go inside. I, for me, ballerina was, was absolutely key to everything about arsenal, saying that it seems unfair to to pick out one player over the other, with the exception of aubameyang for his goals, because everybody did what was asked and everybody did so really well today, don we’ll Talk about manchester city in a moment, but continuing that focus on arsenal we’ve talked about the back and how good they were. The goals, though, needed to be scored, two quality very different finishes from a banyan yeah. The first of bamiyan finished was unreal. I mean he missed a sitter for his standards just before that, and you wondered were they going to get another chance arsenal and it was a really unusual technique, but a brilliant finish. Then. The second goal, once he’s racing away great ball from kirentini over the top. You no one’s know no one’s going to catch him, bender and menji playing him on side. Nowhere near high enough, then, once he’s away bearing down on edison, you only fancy. He was going to finish it.
There was not a doubt in my mind when he raced through 1v1. I thought he was going to finish it, but i think arteta simplified it. You know for his players. He hasn’t he hasn’t tried to make arsenal an open expansive team because he knows they’re not good enough, so he’s put them in a defensive shape, everyone’s buying into it. They’Ve done the same game plan against liverpool, same game plan against man city, and they made man city which we’ve never said before, looked very, very ordinary. How much of a positive step is this going forward for arsenal stevie? Listen if they’re going to turn out and play like that, every game, then we know that what they’re capable of, if they’re, going to defend where 11 men behind the ball, the truth is arsenal. Arsenal don’t want to be a team that plays against the so called big uh, better teams and sticks 11 men behind the ball that’s, not what a tetra really wants to do. What he did today was what he had to do. That’S arsenal going forward have to turn into a man city or a liverpool um and play and play open attacking football that’s that’s what they want to be doing. That’S that’s what they and certainly a teter wants to do so. Listen it’s, a one off typical fa cup tie the underdog won by sticking men behind the ball. It’S happened a hundred times before and it happened today again, but this is not how arsenal want to play in the future, but it’s effective we mentioned before they did it against the liverpool don.
Is this something to build on or is it a false dawn? No, i think, it’s something to build on. I think, if you’re an arsenal fan watching that tonight, you’d be optimistic, that you can see signs of where they’re going. You know mesut ozil has just been cast aside from arteta gwen doozy got brought into his office a couple of weeks back and he apparently arteta gave him two minutes. You know of real verbal abuse and told him to sort his life out, and then he actually went into the dressing room as well and told old, all of all the arsenal players exactly what he said to to gwen doozy. So the manager’s standing firm in his beliefs and if everyone or people don’t, want to follow him i’m, pretty sure he’ll be ruthless enough to get them out the door and that’s what we’re seeing for far too long. People like mesut, ozil and others have had an easy rider. Arse and the culture’s been terrible. So if you’re an arsenal fan now you can see people like you know joe willa. Coming to the side, i thought maitland niles was excellent tonight, playing on that left wing back slot. I thought it was immense. Sucker there’s loads of young kids that are signing contracts and i wouldn’t say they’re dragging their experience. Players up but lacazette looks fit now. Lacazette wasn’t much fit probably three or four weeks ago. We know obama’s quality, so you can see signs if you’re an arsenal fan just for something to cling on to and when they get results, get liverpool and get results against man city in a semi final of a cup.
You know you’ve got to be optimistic. Final word on this with you shaq absolutely. I think this is something for austin to build on. Listen liverpool continue to be the best team in english football, if not europe, by asking their front reader to carry a heavy load. I know there’s a far better support in cash, but in arsenal’s case probably their best and highest paid players are the attacking three and i think what arteta did today was send them out and say you carry you, carry that load. I’Ll say to the defense and the midfield: you all just stay behind the ball and and get get those guys to earn their money and i think, that’s what they did, that’s something you can. You can build on, as i say, it’s a long way between where they are now even with this performance and where liverpool are. But it also is a long way from what we’ve seen from arsenal of a recent week, thanks for watching espn on youtube for more sports highlights and analysis be sure to download the espn app and for live streaming and premium.