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Deleted User

Time to say au-revoir to Debuchy and Gibbs?

Posted by (deleted user) almost 2 years ago · 30 replies

Debuchy and Gibbs have been - all too easily - usurped by the form of Bellerín and Monreal, respectively. Obviously Wenger needs to rotate at times and so the two of them have played in a makeshift back four in cup games (including last season's FA Cup run until the final) but have looked less than convincing, or even interested.

Teams have scored almost identical goals time and again with the two of them in the line-up: pass behind Debuchy, cross from the byline to the far post, header in... Sheff Wed scored a similar goal too by exploiting Debuchy's poor positioning to get in behind him and cut it back to the edge of the box.

Unfortunately for the pair of them, they just don't seem to cope well with having competition and for their own sakes as much as ours, is it time to send them on their way and bring in new players?

Is there anyone that we could get to replace them?? Bearing in mind we're not going to sign Alaba and Lahm or Jordi Alba...

30 Comments

Ix Techau Evil Mastermind 14,229 pts
Posted almost 2 years ago by Ix Techau

Well first of all, Debuchy is still not back at 100% so slightly harsh blaming Sheffield Wednesday goals on him when it was clearly the whole team struggling in every single position. Bellerin couldn't have prevented the final scoreline in that game.

Secondly, Gibbs is to Monreal what Bellerin is to Debuchy - an attacking version of the same position. Bellerin and Gibbs are similar in that they both bomb forward. Monreal and Debuchy are more traditional and defensively solid full backs. Therefore it makes no sense to me to replace either of the four options we have - it's a perfect mixture as it is.

If an opposition team has a weak right flank, we should go for Gibbs. If they have a strong right flank we should go for Monreal. Adaptive strategy is the best option, always.

And even if it wasn't, Bellerin and Gibbs aren't exactly awful second choice full backs. Why replace them? What team on this planet has better second-choice full backs than we do?

Deleted User
Posted almost 2 years ago by (user deleted)

Bellerín isn't an awful second choice full back at all, because he isn't second choice.

I think it's generous to give Debuchy the benefit of the doubt because he's had injuries. He's been unfortunate - two awkward falls/bad challenges - but sport is all about how you recover from setbacks. Look at likes of Koscielny, Giroud, Walcott. All of them have responded well after injuries rather than coming back into the team (in Debuchy's case after being 'fit' for a while) and being poor.

Of course we were poor all round against Wednesday, but it's no surprise we conceded a similar goal against Spurs, and Gibbs was at fault for the 3rd Olimpiacos goal and has been a problem defending the back post for a long time (see Reading, United for two more examples). When the same players are making the same mistakes, I think it's difficult to look past that and Gibbs has always been a player who needs a run of games to find form but then gets injured, but Monreal is playing so well that's simply not going to happen unless he's injured.

Tim Stillman wrote an interesting piece on Gibbs' relationship with Alexis - if there's really something in that, maybe he has more of a chance (plus he's homegrown), but like I said it's in both their benefits to leave the club when they're not getting chances and not performing when they do.

I don't think your analogy works either. Quite simply, Bellerin and Monreal are better than Debuchy and Gibbs (on current form at the very least). All well and good to say they compliment each other but at the moment it's a risk putting either of them in.

Deleted User
Posted almost 2 years ago by (user deleted)

Going back to your post on the injury thread, and trusting Debuchy over HB when both are 100% - does that mean you would play Gibbs over Monreal for the attacking threat?

Ix Techau Evil Mastermind 14,229 pts
Posted almost 2 years ago by Ix Techau

Quite simply, Bellerin and Monreal are better than Debuchy and Gibbs (on current form at the very least). All well and good to say they compliment each other but at the moment it's a risk putting either of them in.

On current form, sure...but in order to get into form you need to play. There is no way around it. If Debuchy stays second-choice he will stay second-best. If he is given the first-choice nod, he will become the better player, because logic tells us:

  1. He has more experience in the league
  2. He has a better track record statistically
  3. He is better defensively

We simply won't know for sure who is the better overall player - and by that I mean which of them fits better into our style and system - until Debuchy is given a run of games and a chance to cement his place in the starting XI. It is my opinion that if he does, he will outshine Bellerin by a mile (just like Monreal outshines Gibbs).

Keep in mind that as soon as Bellerin dips in form (which will happen), everyone will forget how good he is. That is how the Arsenal fan base works, and that is what happened with Debuchy. People forget very easily. Same happened to Ramsey, Wilshere, etc.

Going back to your post on the injury thread, and trusting Debuchy over HB when both are 100% - does that mean you would play Gibbs over Monreal for the attacking threat?

Not really, Monreal is most likely better when both are 100% fit and in form. But as usual, I would rotate based on opposition. Against a world class right winger I'd play Monreal every time. Against lesser opposition we could play Gibbs if we can afford to open that flank up.

Main problem with Bellerin isn't Bellerin, it's the fact that we can't use an attacking right winger if we play him. So even if Bellerin is twice the player Debuchy is, I would much rather see Theo on the right and Debuchy cleaning up behind him, than Bellerin bombing forward and Ramsey having to cover his tracks.

Morleys Mesut Özil > You and your mum, chief 4,424 pts
Posted almost 2 years ago by Morleys

Debuchy started off well but Bellerin is well ahead now imo. His lack of defensive ability (well, he's not even bad at defending) is more than made up by his phenomenal speed & is so good going forward which is key to us.

Debuchy will be gone at the end of the season.

Nacho is also better going forward than Gibbs is.

Mate Kiddleton 1,452 pts
Posted almost 2 years ago by Mate Kiddleton

No way would we let either go. Having three international level fullbacks plus one up and comer in blistering form is a luxury most clubs would love to have.

Deleted User
Posted almost 2 years ago by (user deleted)

Also tonight just proved my point about Debuchy. Grew through the game and showed glimpses of his pre-injury form. His last man tackle on Robben wasn't really surprising - that's the kind of stuff he was doing every week for Newcastle.

Are you joking? Are we going to just ignore the fact the second goal was his fault, and he got caught out majorly on the fourth? It's just so blindingly obvious that Bellerín is the better player at the moment. It's not even like he's a bad defender, I genuinely can't think of a time he's cost us a goal this season, yet I can think of several times Debuchy and Gibbs have.

It's not really relevant anymore that Debuchy was statistically the PL's best right-back two years ago. Right now, that's Bellerin - he's in the whoscored.com team of the season so far. For the past few seasons, Ivanovic has been one of the best RBs in the league, this season every winger has had him on toast. Experience doesn't always equal quality.

Unless Debuchy has a dramatic turnaround in his form, and starts acting like he gives a *, I can't see him staying beyond this summer. Like I keep saying, he'll want to leave as long as he isn't first choice because otherwise he'll never get into the France squad.

I would much rather see Theo on the right and Debuchy cleaning up behind him, than Bellerin bombing forward and Ramsey having to cover his tracks

A separate point really, but I much prefer Theo as an option up front at the minute. When they're both fit, I think he and Giroud compliment each other very nicely with one starting and one coming off the bench. Agree on Ramsey to an extent, I'd prefer to see him central but I also don't think that's an option at the minute because the midfield triumvirate of Santi, Ozil and Coquelin are so in form and I don't like Ozil starting wide or Ramsey as a #10.

Ix Techau Evil Mastermind 14,229 pts
Posted almost 2 years ago by Ix Techau

Are you joking? Are we going to just ignore the fact the second goal was his fault, and he got caught out majorly on the fourth?

I disagree completely with both. Debuchy had a good game, especially compared to other players like Mertesacker, Sanchez, Cech, Campbell...etc. He started slow but grew into the game and was great towards the end.

Deleted User
Posted almost 2 years ago by (user deleted)

But it was his failed clearance that led to Muller doubling the lead and putting the game beyond doubt, and it was his side of defence that was exploited when Alaba got in behind him, cut the ball back from the byline and Robben finished.

That sounds a little familiar to Sheffield Wednesday. And Tottenham. And Zagreb. Is it a coincidence that almost every time Debuchy has played, we've conceded a goal from his side? I don't buy into him not being fit still. That's 90 minutes against Zagreb, Tottenham and Wednesday and another 70 against West Ham and he played in pre-season and he's training every day. He's a top level athlete - he didn't break his leg, or do any harm to his legs. He should be fit.

Ix Techau Evil Mastermind 14,229 pts
Posted almost 2 years ago by Ix Techau

But it was his failed clearance that led to Muller doubling the lead and putting the game beyond doubt, and it was his side of defence that was exploited when Alaba got in behind him, cut the ball back from the byline and Robben finished.

Eh what? It wasn't a failed clearance, the ball was out of his reach. No clearance could have been made, failed or otherwise. Doesn't matter how good a footballer you are, you can't grow longer legs on demand. He was marking Muller, then a cross came in and he tried reaching it but the ball was hit too far away from him.

For Robben's goal he was marking their #11, who then made a pass to Alaba. After that, Debuchy has no control. Gabriel failed to mark Robben tight enough, that's why that goal was scored.

It's like you're trying to find reasons to dislike Debuchy, and I don't know why.

I don't buy into him not being fit still. That's 90 minutes against Zagreb, Tottenham and Wednesday and another 70 against West Ham and he played in pre-season and he's training every day. He's a top level athlete - he didn't break his leg, or do any harm to his legs. He should be fit.

I'm not saying he's not fit physically, but he does need time on the pitch to get back into form and also get back into the groove of playing against proper opposition. Let's not pretend Bellerin was instantly a good right back. It took quite some time for him to become good, and that is all due to getting pitch time.

Deleted User
Posted almost 2 years ago by (user deleted)

I'm not trying to find reasons to dislike him. I do, or at least did, like him and thought he was an excellent and obvious acquisition when we signed him. However, opinions change and through no fault of his own he has missed a year of football...

During which time, Bellerin has established himself as a better option - clearly, since Debuchy was fit, started the first game of the season and didn't do well so HB came back in and bossed the shit out of that position. Unfortunately, Debuchy's reaction to being dropped hasn't really been good enough. When you look at how Giroud, Walcott, Koscielny to name a few have reacted after getting back into the side after injury, there's a notable difference (they've been quite good).

What I'm saying is, it's not a coincidence to me that I can find four examples from when Debuchy has played when we've conceded a goal from an opposition move on the left-wing (again: Spurs, Zagreb, Wednesday, Bayern), and that Debuchy either missed, or fucked up, a vital clearance which led to Bayern scoring a second goal against us last night. At the very least, Debuchy is out of position and allows Coman a free volley at the far post which Muller diverts in.

Obviously none of the players exactly shone last night, but I remain convinced that Debuchy is throwing away his best opportunity to usurp Bellerin, who, evidence shows, is a better fit for the position since I can't think of a single goal we've conceded with him in the side coming from a cross/cut-back from the left wing.

With this in mind, and the fact that Debuchy is getting on a bit and needs to play first-team football if he's going to play for France, I don't think there's any point hanging onto him beyond this year if there's a better option available. Who that may be, I don't know, because I'm not a professional talent scout.

Going back to Gibbs, the situation is less clear. On the one hand, he regularly struggles with fitness and he too has had his problems when in the side (most notably being incapable of heading the ball away at the back post). He is 26 and there's a good chance we can make some money on him as an England international 'in his prime'. A midtable PL would snap him up (before he could say 'I've snapped my hamstrings').

On the other hand, he's a HG player who I imagine is popular with the other British core (as they all are with one another), he still has time (sort of), and obviously it may be a risk to sell two players in important positions at the same time. If - heavens forbid - both our first choice players were injured, we'd have a back four with two new players still settling in which wouldn't make me too confident.

I just think that we need greater competition in the squad and that whilst our 2nd choice full-backs are failing to convince, there's nothing stopping Monreal and Bellerin taking their foot off the gas

Ix Techau Evil Mastermind 14,229 pts
Posted almost 2 years ago by Ix Techau

and that Debuchy either missed, or fucked up, a vital clearance which led to Bayern scoring a second goal against us last night

But he didn't. The ball landed too far away from him. Joel Campbell should have been the one marking the player Debuchy felt the need to mark. There was no clearance that could have been missed. Bellerin wouldn't have reached it.

Deleted User
Posted almost 2 years ago by (user deleted)

So it's not the right-back's job to mark the left-winger from crosses? If he's in the right position, he clears it.

Ix Techau Evil Mastermind 14,229 pts
Posted almost 2 years ago by Ix Techau

So it's not the right-back's job to mark the left-winger from crosses? If he's in the right position, he clears it.

Watch it again. When you're pushed back into the penalty box it's not the right-back's job to mark the opposition left winger, no. In that zone his primary job is to keep the back four compact, which he does.

http://arsenalist.com/f/2015-16/bayern-munich-vs-arsenal/bayern-2-0-muller.html

  1. As the ball comes into the box, Debuchy notices that Mertesacker is running away from Muller, who will end up completely free in front of the goal if he gets the ball. He reactively tries to mark Muller instead.

  2. Both Muller and Debuchy think the ball is going towards Muller, but it overshoots and impacts too far away from them both. Debuchy tries to reach it but is too far away. Bayern's #29 takes a shot at goal but mis-kicks it and it happens to hit Muller, which Mertesacker should now be marking.

  3. All this time Joel Campbell is marking Bayern's #27, outside the penalty box close to the middle of the pitch. He should have been doubling up on Bayern's #29.

So I can't really see how this is Debuchy's fault. He was trying to prevent Muller from having a free shot on goal, after Mertesacker moved too far away from him.

Deleted User
Posted almost 2 years ago by (user deleted)

So Debuchy is trying to mark Muller? But Muller ends up scoring?

You still haven't responded to the main point I keep making - is it a coincidence that in almost every game Debuchy has played, we've conceded a goal from a Left-wing cross or cut-back? Surely you can admit that Debuchy (aka Jesus Christ Superstar) is being regularly targeted and exposed?

Ix Techau Evil Mastermind 14,229 pts
Posted almost 2 years ago by Ix Techau

So Debuchy is trying to mark Muller? But Muller ends up scoring?

Don't know why you're having such a hard time understanding this, but Debuchy is trying to cover for Mertesacker, who has moved away from Muller. The ball overshoots both of them and lands at #29, and Debuchy now identifies the problem and tries to prevent a goal. #29 takes a poor shot at goal (because Debuchy is correctly coming at him) which luckily for Bayern ends up at the feet of Muller, who Mertesacker still isn't marking.

It's Mertesacker's fault, not Debuchy's. He was trying his best to prevent two players from a clear shot at goal.

You still haven't responded to the main point I keep making - is it a coincidence that in almost every game Debuchy has played, we've conceded a goal from a Left-wing cross or cut-back? Surely you can admit that Debuchy (aka Jesus Christ Superstar) is being regularly targeted and exposed?

You're trying desperately to paint me as some Debuchy apologist (I'm not), which is rich coming from a fickle scapegoatist, but yes it's a coincidence. Just like it's a coincidence that Iwobi on the pitch means a loss. It's a team game. Individual win/loss stats are pointless. Debuchy has made plenty of mistakes this season, but Muller's goal isn't one of them.

poodris 2,605 pts
Posted almost 2 years ago by poodris

Debuchy likely will plead to be sold/loaned in January in order to see the pitch. Whether they accomodate his wishes is another question. If he is sold, I believe the reason would be to grant him his wish for more playing time. Either Jenkinson will be recalled, or they will go out into the market to find cover, if that's the case.

Imo, selling debuchy in January and recalling Jenks is actually not a bad idea. An unhappy player does not make good cover for injuries, and recalling Jenks hurts a team that is currently in the mix for the coveted 4th place silverware.

Deleted User
Posted almost 2 years ago by (user deleted)

You're trying desperately to paint me as some Debuchy apologist (I'm not), which is rich coming from a fickle scapegoatist, but yes it's a coincidence. Just like it's a coincidence that Iwobi on the pitch means a loss. It's a team game. Individual win/loss stats are pointless. Debuchy has made plenty of mistakes this season, but Muller's goal isn't one of them.

Name-calling is real mature, so kudos.

And it's not really the same is it. Like if we conceded a large number of goals from headers because Koscielny/Mertesacker gets repeatedly beaten, it's not a coincidence.

So goals from x area of a pitch while x player is on the pitch (defending that area) can't really be a coincidence.

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