So the Gunners notched up their first victory of the season yesterday at Anfield, and kept a third successive clean sheet in the process.
It was an impressive performance from Arsenal, but there it seems like there is a lot more to come from Arsene’s side. So what have we learnt from Sunday’s victory over Liverpool?
Firstly, in Arsene we trust. Wenger has not had the most comfortable of transfer windows in recent seasons, losing the likes of Fabregas, Nasri, Song and Van Persie, but yet again he has shown his nous in the transfer market. He has made some impressive signings and obviously still has an eye for talent. He is a firm believer in his principles and his way of playing, confident that things will come together. Once again it seems like that he is building a team full of quality.
Also, it seems that Steve Bould’s promotion to Assistant Manager was a masterstroke. He has got a hold of the defence and instilled a new confidence within them. Arsenal’s defensive frailties, often exposed last season, have not been apparent this season. In training the defence are working on key things such as defending set pieces. With Bould looking after the defence, it seems that Arsenal can be just as imposing at the back as they are going forward.
We have also seen that Lukas Podolski and Santi Cazorla are starting to work very well together. Podolski is quick, has excellent movement and a devastating left foot. Cazorla has shown us the class he brings to the team. His low centre of gravity, sharp footballing brain and range of passing have made him an excellent acquisition. If both can strike up a partnership, they could cut teams apart. Both players will be able to provide the chances for Olivier Giroud to kick-start his Arsenal career.
Theo who? After confirming that he would not be signing a contract extension at the Emirates, many thought that Walcott would be sold in the transfer window. However, he reached an agreement with Arsenal that he would stay until January. But how much will Arsenal actually miss him? Though fully fit, Wenger chose to start with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain yesterday and he was as impressive as ever. With Gervinho also available to operate on the flanks, Walcott may find playing time hard to come by.
Finally, it seems that Wenger’s patience and belief in Abou Diaby may finally be paying off. Diaby has been injury-ridden for a number of years now, but Arsene has always maintained that he would be integral to his plans, often deciding not to strengthen his midfield. Diaby is very strong, confident on the ball and loves to maraud forwards once he has shaken off those marking him. If he can stay free of injury, this could be the season where he announces himself and propels the Gunners.
All in all, a very pleasing weekend for Arsenal. Anfield has often been a ground where they struggle, but yesterday’s assured performance shows the new-found confidence within the club. With the arrival of Southampton at the Emirates this weekend, Arsene and his men will be looking to impress once again.