Arsenal legend Thierry Henry featured on Monday Night Football on Sky Sports yesterday where he spoke about his former side’s problems this season.
The Gunners are 10th in the table at the moment, 10 points behind fourth-place Chelsea. There is a good chance that Arsenal will drop out of the top seven this season, but Henry still believes that his former club have made progress under Mikel Arteta.
However, he has noticed our lack of belief in the first half of a few of our games, and that is a huge worry, especially against some of the better sides in the Premier League.
Henry: Arsenal lack belief in the first half of some games
He said: “First and foremost, I would say yes [there is progress], in a way, because I think Mikel brought himself some time by winning the FA Cup last year.
“I know people will tell me, ‘yes, that’s last year’, but the way he won it and the team he won it against, I think brought him some time with the Arsenal fans and with the team because at the end of the day you have something to show at the end of the season.
“Now, what I think the team is lacking is consistency. I know people always use the word consistency, it’s a big word, but this is what they need to do.
“I sometimes put it down to their games. Sometimes I watch the first half of Arsenal, it seems like they don’t believe that they can win. Then when they’re in a situation where they need to come back and have a go, it looks like, why didn’t you start like that?
“Yesterday (Sunday), you could see they wanted to win the game, I think that Tottenham also made it a tiny bit easier for them on the day. But I can see progress, now it needs to move on to consistency, that’s going to be very key.”
Arsenal Insider’s view:
Titi is spot on.
There have been games this season where Arsenal’s performance in the first half has been shocking. We’ve gifted goals to our opponents time and again, and we’ve very often made things a lot more difficult for ourselves than they should have been.
Arsenal have looked a lot better recently, but there is still a lot of room to improve. Arteta has made us a very difficult side to beat, but the teams who are scoring against us are doing so just because we’re gifting them opportunities on a silver platter.
Once we eliminate that, Arsenal will go to the next level. We can compete with the best teams in the country when we reach that level, but as Henry said, consistency will be the key in the coming weeks and months.