Football, but make it beige. That’s what today’s 1-1 Europa League draw at Vitoria SC was. It was a game that was played. It was a thing that happened. It was.
Arsenal looked to have eked out a win on a late Shkodran Mustafi headed goal only to be pegged back in stoppage time. Nobody was surprised when it happened. It’s getting difficult to muster up any kind of a reaction to the performances because they just keep happening, and the ugly truth is that this is what Arsenal are right now. They are mediocre.
PDB has asked if Arsenal are or can be more than the sum of their parts. Right now, they are somehow less than that.
FT Vitória Guimarães 1-1 Arsenal— Stats Zone ⚽️ (@StatsZone) November 6, 2019
Arsenal scored with their only shot on target, but couldn’t hold the lead.
Their pass dashboard (all passes & crosses) show how difficult they found it to build attacks into the penalty area or around the D.https://t.co/srHNzUU41q pic.twitter.com/HdVE5aTStC
Look at that chart — it’s as if there was a literal force field around the opposing penalty area.
I’ll do the counting for you: that’s 520 completed passes, only one of which went into the Guimaraes penalty area. Arsenal’s most frequent, successful passing combinations were the centerbacks passing to each other. Next on that list? Centerback to wingback.
This is what Arsenal are. Meaningless possession. Empty calories.
They’ll say “but Arsenal are still top of the group” or “they’re fifth in the table” but that’s cold comfort, because we can all see where this road is leading.
Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Maybe instead of commenting about the match, we can all share our favorite cute animal pics, which would be significantly better than discussing this game any further.