All Balls Don’t Bounce

Completely Random Sports Non Sequiturs From A Completely Random Hip Hop Head

What’s Beef? Cesc Fabregas On Arsene Wenger

Posted by hiphopmama on October 17, 2008

Titling an article “Cesc Fabregas Criticises Arsene Wenger’s Reliance On Youth” seems a little overblown considering his actual statements, but the Arsenal midfielder’s recent comments are still noteworthy. Fabregas has gone on the record recently stating that Arsenal lacks experience, especially in the midfield, and that it contributes to their losing tough games. 

“Our squad is a bit short on numbers and we are very young. It’s hard to imagine a midfield where I am the oldest member.

“We find it very hard to win matches, as we don’t possess enough experience.

“I scored 13 goals last season but then I had plenty of allies. Rosicky was around, Flamini covered every blade of grass and Hleb was like a brother to me out there.

“The team played with a lot of skilful touches, we were as solid as a brick wall and our opponents would not get a look in.

“Now none of those players and in the side and I feel like a rare being. We are more defensive-minded and sturdy as a team but we don’t play so much skilful stuff.”

He is certainly right that Arsenal is quite short on experience in the midfield, which is exceptionally young. And he is also correct when he notes:  “Arsene Wenger has crystal clears ideas, there aren’t two like him. He doesn’t want to spend money as he prefers to trust youngsters. His idea is that Walcott can’t develop if you sign Cristiano [Ronaldo].” I believe he’s well within his rights to say these things, especially since they didn’t appear to be offered in a sense of harsh criticism so much as keen observation and possible nudges in a different direction. He seems committed to the team for the moment, and a player of his caliber, at a club with the pedigree of Arsenal, should be able to expect to have a capable squad around him.

More than anything, I think Fabregas is just lamenting the loss of his mates in midfield. Flamini is great to play with in midfield, and everyone knows Hleb was extremely close to him both on and off the field, so I’m sure he misses playing with them, as well as the experience and leadership of Gilberto. The fact that Rosicky is gone in a seemingly interminable injury and rehab process only adds to the problem. 

That being said, Arsenal aren’t exactly scraping the bottom of the barrel. They currently sit in fourth place, just four points behind the leaders, and, despite a couple god-awful performances against average teams, they have looked pretty good so far this season. If they can pick up a couple players in the winter transfer period, they will be well equipped to make a run at the end of the season. And if they can do that, there’s no reason to believe Cesc won’t continue to buy in to Wenger’s approach.

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