Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Three Key Takeaways For Arsenal In Their Win Over Manchester United On Sunday

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Jack O’Brien
A 22 y/o football nerd seeking my way into football writing. I love Irish football and also the Premier League. A huge Arsenal fan! Aside from writing, I like to spend my time fishing and drinking beer.

Arsenal secured a famous 1-0 win over Manchester United on Sunday, with Mikel Arteta becoming the first manager to guide the Gunners to a victory at Old Trafford since 2006. The win also helped the club retain their place in the top half of the table, though the north London giants are still lagging behind their rivals like Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea.

Here at The 4th Official, we will take a look at three key takeaways for Arsenal in their win over Man United this past weekend.

Is Gabriel Magalhaes The Real Deal?

With no David Luiz missing, the onus was on Gabriel Magalhaes to provide the solidity at the back for Arsenal, alongside two defenders who haven’t had the brightest of injury records in Rob Holding and Kieran Tierney. But, the Brazilian responded admirably to the pressure, proving himself to be an absolute rock at the back for the Gunners throughout the course of the game.

Gabriel was particularly impressive with his tackles, one of which, late in the game, stopped Nemanja Matic from providing a dangerous ball into the six-yard channel.  The 22-year-old also made good use of his imposing presence at the back to get the better of strikers like Marcus Rashford and Mason Greenwood.

This performance should give Gabriel a lot of confidence, and if the defender can keep up his amazing start to the season, he may turn out to be an absolute bargain for Arsenal this season.

Three key takeaways for Arsenal in their win over Man United - Gabriel masterclass.
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 01: Gabriel Magalhaes of Arsenal reacts during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Arsenal at Old Trafford on November 01, 2020 in Manchester, England. Sporting stadiums around the UK remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Phil Noble – Pool/Getty Images)

A Good Start For Thomas Partey

While Gabriel was responsible for mopping things up at the back, it was Thomas Partey who instigated Arsenal’s discipline pressing setup in the middle of the park.

It was, in fact, a masterful performance from the new signing, whose work-rate, tenacity and willingness to win back possession for his side made life difficult for Bruno Fernandes. The Ghanaian international notably shut down Man United’s passing channels in midfield, effectively preventing the opposition from dominating the game.

Partey’s performance should serve as a major boost for Mikel Arteta, who will be hoping that the marquee signing from Atletico Madrid can replicate such performances throughout his Arsenal career.

Arsenal’s Offensive Woes Continue

The defence was overly impressive for Arsenal in their win over Manchester United. But, Arteta’s side still struggled to create too many opportunities going forward.

The offensive trifecta of Willian, Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang provided little to no creativity. On the flip side, Lacazette missed an excellent opportunity to score while Aubameyang couldn’t reach Hector Bellerin’s brilliant cross.

Such lack of penetration should be a worrying sign for Arteta, and the Spaniard should definitely entertain the idea of deploying Aubameyaing in a more central role in the coming matches.

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