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From Martin Keown
Former Arsenal defender and MOTD2 pundit
I had been yelling at the TV screen while I was viewing the second half of Arsenal’s draw
Together with the Hornets handling 31 shots and 23 of those coming after the rest, mathematically it was the defensive display by the Gunners since Opta’s records began in 2003.
Watching them in the manufacturing workplace that was MOTD2, it felt that way.
Arsenal strangely handed Watford a way back in the match at the way after attempting to play out of their area from a goal-kick when they surrendered from having their opponents by the throat after they were 2-0 up.
However, what made matters worse was when things went wrong that Unai Emery’s team could not respond. They disintegrated.
That 1 mistake was enough to derail them. In one minute, all their optimism evaporated. After that, they could not make a decision, and they could not make a move.
Their game-plan just disappeared. They were lucky to concede one target – by a penalty by David Luiz – and were left hanging on for a point against the bottom side of the Premier League.
It might certainly have been a whole lot worse.
As a group, Arsenal mind deserted them. I wondering exactly who picked up who, believing just how are they conceding much distance, and looked at them in horror.
There appeared to be a panic that gripped something their Swiss midfielder, their players Granit Xhaka confessed later.
We all can see it as well, and it is actually worrying for Emery. I think that the next half was the hardest 45 minutes he has had since the Arsenal job was taken by him .
Emery now knows he’s to restore confidence in the hearts and heads of the players, and also put together a program.
He’s made to work through what Arsenal are doing wrong, and also work out whether they are good enough to play how he needs them to play because it is like watching schoolboys sometimes when they try to bring the ball out from the back.
Arsenal had had a warning from the first half, even when they attempted to play out from a goal-kick and Matteo Guendouzi was caught in possession.
They didn’t learn from their error. Rather it was repeated by them, and handed Watford a route back into the game.
Yes , there was a suspicion that Gerard Deulofeu was in the box once he intercepted Sokratis Papastathopoulos’s clearance to install Tom Cleverley to make it 2-1, but it was a decision that is completely moot to perform that way in the first location.
I had been a player when the legislation have transformed in a way that affected defenders – such as when goalkeepers were ceased from selecting up back-passes in 1992.
There wasn’t any alternative you had to alter how you played, and also how the whole team played.
But in this situation, teams have a decision. You do not need to play short passes in your area from goal-kicks, just because you can.
I think we’re in a little bit of an experimental phase with it, with some teams when it just does not suit them doing it and others performing it at the incorrect times.
If they had been architects of their own downfall, the latter was the case for Arsenal on Sunday.
I respect that they are trying to perform from defence however, when they actually wanted to do there, there was a different pass for Sokratis – broad to right-back Ainsley Maitland-Niles, which was a way of doing it.
Then it’s comical if you really do exactly what Arsenal did and get it wrong and you look stupid.
It is crazy football, actually, since if you mess up, you are giving the opponent the ball over the edge of your area – and it finishes with you conceding a tap-in.
If Arsenal prepared by practicing passing away from the trunk, they did not appear to get’what happens if we lose it?’
There were not any responses from the Gunners, when Watford pulled a goal back. They had no way of seeing out the match.
They tore up their prior strategy, which was to maneuver the ball, and seemed to alter their thinking ‘let go ‘.
But while you do that, move the pitch up, and you have to take action as a team.
You may try to target 1 side, so you’ve got the numbers squeeze the opposition in that region, hold up the ball there and to get the knockdowns.
Arsenal didn’t adapt their shape to do that in any organised fashion.
Rather they played aimless balls to strikers, and everybody else stayed rooted to the spot in profound positions, still on the edge of their box.
Each component of the group had been strung out and disconnected, which meant they were not able to keep ownership – it dropped of 37% from 57% from the first half following the break.
With Watford attacks coming after another, things got so bad for Arsenal, it was like seeing a coaching session. It was relentless.
When that is currently happening to your group, as a player that you need to take control. You make yourself more compact as a device, and stay in touch with one another.
Arsenal’s sport management was non-existent. If you were in their own defence, you had binoculars to watch their entrance players, they were far off.
That is all pretty basic stuff, and lots of the time, if you’re maintaining the distance between, say.
When it doesn’t, you concede chances at the speed Arsenal were at the second half.
Alarm bells must be ringing for Emery, and he wants to get about the practice ground and sort matters out.
Without Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang about the pitch, Watford could have won – and they definitely deserved to.
Arsenal have already suffered 20 away Premier League defeats in just over two seasons, which is not good enough to get a team which wishes to make the top .
Emery has been in charge for a few of those attempts, however, the worrying thing is his side have huge issues and they do not seem to be improving. In reality they appear to be getting worse.
Martin Keown spoke to BBC Sport’s Chris Bevan.
While Steve Smith won over crowds after the scandal, David Warner endured a torturous Ashes.
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