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Arsenal Chalkboard Analysis

Ah yes, that Monday feature where I get to play with some toys that I probably don't understand completely. But that's the fun, isn't it?

Reading some other wraps of Saturday's game (so I can get ideas to steal, obviously), a lot were making light of how Charlie Adam was playing deeper than Lucas, allowing the Brazilian to get forward more and join the attack. This isn't quite borne out by the charts.

by Guardian Chalkboards

What it appears is that Lucas and Adam were basically playing at the same "height" or "position" if you will. This in itself is an upset, because we all thought Lucas would be Adam's "minder" (using a lot of quotes now, it's an end of summer thing), allowing Adam to launch attacks. Neither approach is wrong, but Lucas's greater mobility will see him probably yo-yoing ahead and behind Adam. Everything should pivot around Adam when he's on, because his greatest strength is pinging passes around the pitch from the middle of the park. Still, on the other hand, we'd like to see Adam get a little closer to goal because he does have a lethal shot to unleash. What I think this tandem speaks to, though, is that Liverpool were really pressing Arsenal up high, allowing both midfielders to get closer to the box than we may have expected with a normal trip to the Emirates.

by Guardian Chalkboards

This tells the previous story a little better. Lucas attempts six more tackles in the opposition half to Adam's two. Some of this can be attributed to Adam just trying less tackles, though he certainly didn't miss when he did decide to dive in, did he. But again, I think Lucas's greater mobility leads to this, and also speaks to The Reds really pressing up as high as they can, especially with the jittery midfield that Arsenal had against them on Saturday. Not sure you'd try this against Toure and De Jong, per se.