Arsenal were extremely poor in the first half against Preston, but a second half turnaround saw them advance in the FA Cup with a 2-1 win.
There were however, several concerning performances from Arsenal players on the night. One player who came under strong criticism
‘The Ox’ often came up against big crowds of Preston players and that made it particularly hard for him to be influential. The quick midfielder normally thrives when he has space to run into, using his electric pace and power to make the difference in the attacking third. With Preston rarely allowing much space, Ox looked out of ideas, and that’s something we’ve been saying about him far too often recently.
He was dispossessed 6 times and subbed off towards the end of the game after failing to make any sort of significant impact. Completing 0 dribbles and just 2 key passes, the Ox needed to show more quality against Championship opposition. With Danny Welbeck now back in contention, Theo Walcott returning soon and Lucas Perez looking good, it’s hard to see the Ox getting the game time he craves. With less than 18 months remaining on his current contract, it raises huge questions as to whether or not the Englishman will still be at the club come the summer.
He’s been at the club for a long time now, and a lot of fans patience are wearing thin for him. Here’s some of the reaction to his poor performance vs. Preston.
Oxlade-Chamberlain needs to be sold.
— Heisenbird (@_Heisenbird_) January 7, 2017
Alex oxlade chamberlain should be playing at wigan.
— #SELL-THE-OX- (@NwozorSomto) January 8, 2017
Oxlade Chamberlain is a liability for Arsenal. I used to rate the lad, but he gives away possession then just walks.
— village Idiot. (@HullCityRanger) January 8, 2017
Oxlade Chamberlain has surely had his chances now?
He doesn't even track back ffs
— Jason AFC (@JasonJhuti) January 7, 2017
I think Ox does have strengths, he’s very quick, he makes things happen and he’s a dynamic unique midfielder that offers something different compared to the other Arsenal midfielders.
Personally, whilst I think he has a lot of potential, I just can’t see him fulfilling it here. He is incredibly frustrating and not an Arsenal type of player, often giving away possession far too cheaply.