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Stubborn Emery could already be costing Arsenal's big ambitions - Opinion

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A lacklustre performance by Unai Emery’s Arsenal against West Ham United on Saturday probably capped off the Gunners’ worst team performance under the Spaniard’s reign this season.

Emery can’t afford to lose sight of the top four at the moment and with big matches coming up he also can’t afford it to experiment with a formation that has brought him more failure than success recently.

Forget the drubbing at Anfield a few weeks ago, Arsenal’s showing at the London Stadium was terrible to say the least and it’s quite ironic coming from a team who boast players such as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette in it.

Emery had Hector Bellerin and Nacho Monreal return from injury this week but they were only good enough to make the bench with Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Sead Kolasinac operating as wing-backs.

And, although Emery could be excused for not wanting to risk players like Bellerin and Monreal against a physical team like West Ham, it is becoming ever more evident that he is a manager that likes the formation and believes it’s the best system for the team.

But the main concern from an Arsenal perspective should be the fact that the manager continues to play with a back-three formation, despite the tactic being exploited by opposition teams in recent matches.

It’s the only way for Emery to bring more stability to back, which would also make the work of the midfield easier and it was quite clear on Saturday that Granit Xhaka and Matteo Guendouzi struggled in the centre of the pitch.
For more news relating to West Ham, visit our sister site Hammers Live.
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