Manuel Almunia terud dipertahankan bekas pemain Arsenal.. Yang terbaru ialah bekas kapten pasukan Arsenal, Stewart Robson.. Laporan semakin hangat diperkatakan yang Schwarzer akan ke Arsenal selewat-lewatnya hujung minggu ini selepas dilaporkan Arsenal bersedia mengemukakan tawaran baru hari ini.. Namun Robson memberitahu yang Almunia jauh lebih bagus daripada Schwarzer..
"I don't see that Schwarzer, the player that everybody's talking about, is a better goalkeeper than Almunia.. I think Almunia's a better goalkeeper than Schwarzer.. Shay Given is a very good shot-stopper, but most of the criticism of Arsenal's goalkeepers is that they don't come for crosses or haven't been dominant in the air.. Shay Given's not that goalkeeper.. He's a very good goalkeeper, we all know that, but he's more of a shot-stopper than someone who's going to dominate his penalty area.."
Robson juga menegaskan yang Arsenal boleh memenangi kejuaraan liga dengan mengunakan khidmat Almunia walaupun beliau diasak penjaga gol muda Arsenal.. "I think Arsenal can win the Premier League with Almunia in goal.. He gets a lot of criticism, but I think he's unfairly treated. He was understudy to Jens Lehmann and had to wait a long time, but I don't think he's as bad as many Arsenal supporters are making out.."
"I'm not sure Fabianski's good enough.. People tell me he's going to be a great goalkeeper, but he's made so many mistakes in his short career at Arsenal that it will be very difficult to win the fans back over and win the press back over.. Mannone had a good spell last year and saved Arsenal on a couple of occasions. He played brilliantly against Fulham, but he did make two high-profile mistakes.."
"One against Birmingham, which didn't cost Arsenal, and one when Arsenal were 2-0 up against West Ham and he palmed a free-kick back into the path of Carlton Cole.. It cost Arsenal two points on that occasion. He's probably got a bit to do.. I don't think he'll play too many games for Arsenal.. I still think Almunia is by far and away the best keeper Arsenal have got on their books.."
Robson juga menegaskan yang Almunia perlu meminta lebih perlindungan daripada bahagian pertahanannya.. Dan juga beliau mengesa Wenger mengubah cara Arsenal bertahan.. "I still think Arsenal can win the league, but they need to improve a couple of defensive frailties that they've got.."
"One is when balls get played over the top and they play too high an offside line - and the other is when they're defending set plays.. That's where they've let goals in over the last three or four years and I see in pre-season that they're still doing those same things.. It happened again against Liverpool.."
"There were a couple of situations in the first half where they tried to play too high an offside line, there was no pressure on the ball and the ball got played in and one ball could beat the whole of the back four.. It's not just about buying players; you have to have a defensive strategy.."
"Arsene Wenger has got a philosophy of how they play. They play good football, they can open up teams and they're as good as Spain or as Barcelona football-wise.. But they're not as good as those teams defensively because they have a strategy about pressing the ball and showing teams out wide when they need to.. I can't see where that's happening at Arsenal.."
Atikah cukup setuju dengan apa yang dikatakan Stewart Robson ini.. Sekarang ini bukannya penjaga gol Arsenal punya masalah semata-mata.. Pemain pertahanan Arsenal juga patut dipersalahkan terutama sekali semalam.. Arsenal perlukan cara lain untuk bertahan.. Arsenal dah ada pertahanan yang bagus cuma strateginya yang tidak bagus.. Adios!!