Arsene Wenger says Arsenal’s poor away form is down to not defending well enough and not scoring enough goals.
After Arsenal’s defeat to Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday, Wenger explained to a press conference why he thinks the team’s away record is so bad this season. Basically, they can’t do the two main things needed to play football – defend and attack.
“It’s very poor,” the manager admitted. “Once they had scored the goal, that maybe played a part in it. Football is about scoring goals.
“You can say, ‘We are not strong enough when defending our goal’, but when you look at the numbers and compare them to the top six, we do not score enough goals away from home. These two weaknesses, one added to the other, explain it.”
Arsenal’s fortunes home and away are almost completely contrasting at the moment.
Since the start of 2018, the team have played three home matches in the Premier League, winning two and drawing one. They’ve scored 11 goals and conceded four in those matches.
Meanwhile, Arsenal’s Premier League away matches in 2018 have all been defeats. They’ve conceded six and scored just two in the same number of matches.
From the looks of things, Wenger is right. Arsenal are conceding more goals and scoring many fewer away from home. That’s not exactly an easy problem to solve though. Scoring and defending is most of what football is about, so it’s a major issue if his side can’t do either.
If your team is solid defensively but struggling to score, you can look at formation and personnel changes to add more offensive momentum. The same is if the problem is defending.
Trying to solve both problems at once isn’t going to be easy, but Wenger needs to do exactly that.
If he can’t, Arsenal surely have no choice but to replace him with someone who can.