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Post Match Review

How did Aguero-inspired Manchester City overcome Arsenal?


This weekend, Arsenal showed why they can’t be taken seriously going into big games. On paper, Unai Emery’s plan may have seemed right but, in action, it definitely wasn’t.

From the off, it seemed that Emery had conceded defeat to Manchester City. This could be seen in the shape of the team. The selection suggested a three/five-man defence would be played. Instead, he opted to use a flat 4-4-2. This included left-back/wing-back Sead Kolasinac at left midfield.

Manchester City Arsenal Premier League Tactical Analysis Statistics

Emery knew Arsenal wouldn’t dominate at the Etihad. That isn’t why he was at fault for this shape. Instead, it was the manner in which the team played. Over the course of the game, sticking with this shape proved costly for Arsenal.

Arsenal’s approach

That flat 4-4-2 was evident before Manchester City scored their opener after 48 seconds. This brought back memories of their famous win at City in the 2014/15 season. In that game, Arsene Wenger arrived in Manchester willing to forfeit possession play for points.

However, there was a big difference in how that was executed on Sunday. This was a mixture of square pegs in round holes as well as what seemed to be a much too cautious approach.

To read the full match analysis, click here.

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