Thursday, April 26, 2007

Why I'm glad Jens is staying.

Well it would seem the Krazy old German is with us for another year, and I for one am thrilled.

Look long and hard at that photo and remember what he's capable of, and watch this video to remember how important he is to our team.

He hasn't quite been in the, to be frank, player of the season form he was in last year, but to suggest that he's suddenly become a has-been or is now expendable is rubbish.

Firstly, he's pulled out game-winning, top-quality saves on several occasions this year - Sidwell vs Reading, Solksjaer at Old Trafford to name a few. Granted, he was erratic last week at the Lane last week, but he's marshalling, without much credit, a pretty leaky defence at the moment, composed of inexperienced full-backs and a centre-back partnership which hasn't hit it off.

Furthermore, to contend that Jens's form has slipped due to the absence of an international championship to look forward to is ludicrous. Few players in the current Arsenal team wants to win every game as much as Jens. He may have a, to put it mildly, rather confrontational way of motivating the team, but its good to see when the rest of our players seem so mild-mannered.

Comparisons with the over-extension of Seaman's contract are disingenous. Lehmann has not suffered the series of injuries Seaman did, which seriously affected the latter's form after the contract-extension too far. Lehmann is a better and less damaged player than Seaman was at similar ages.

And despite talk of the like of the Pele in France, Craig Gordon, and Akineev, there remains a possibility Wenger might just plump for upgrading Almunia which would be a disaster: he is not a first XI player, and we are kidding ourselves if we think he is capable of making the jump.

Too often in the past Wenger has been right to sell or release, but has not replaced, and another year gives him another year to line-up a permanent successor. We can't make the mistake of casting off another invincible if we're not going to replace him with a similar level of quality.

For me, I'd love us to somehow sign Craig Gordon, but keep Jens for another year as well. I'm not sure how the logistics of this would work, but having a year in which to blood a new keeper, while having Jens as our No. 1 would be the best situation. Of course, with keepers, it's always hard to do this, so maybe a sign and a loan - a la Foster or Carson - would be an idea.

Finally, it'll be nothing but entertaining; Jens can at least guarantee that and I'm glad we have a year in which to plot a fitting farewell for someone I consider a true Arsenal legend.


Anonymous said...

ah man, im super happy the mad bastard is staying on, cracks me up

also, hes a fucking good stopper when he wants to be

Anonymous said...

Nonsense. Arsenal have kept just five clean sheets in their last 31 games in all competitions. Lehmann concedes from virtually every shot on target he faces. His lack of agility is exposed again and again. Look at the Jenas goal and then look at Cech's save v Gerrard last night.

Chelsea have scored one more goal than us, yet we're 16 points adrift. Yet, cech has just kept eight clean sheets in a row.

We have conceded one in each of our last six home games - that means you go into every game knowing you have to score two to win.

Arsenal actually allow their opponents fewer shots than chelsea or United - it's just they go into games knowing they have to score two to have a chance fo winning the game.

Lehmann is past it and in the same way we struggled with Seaman lumbering around, he will only cost us more often.

Goonerboy said...

I would place more blame on our shoddy defence than on Jens for the goals we've conceded this season.

I just think that unless we've got someone of proven quality coming in, we should stick with what we've got for one more season. And knowing Arsene he'll probably need about five years to line up an adequate replacement, while we suffer with Almunia between the sticks.

Anonymous said...

Its good for Arsenal that Lehmann is staying because he is a quality keeper and they are hard to find.

He occasionally makes mistakes as he is vulnerable on crosses especially from dead ball situations and his sprees outside the area leave a lot to be desired. However he is an excellent shot stopper, his positioning is very good and his record on one to one situations is excellent.

He is also very experienced and this is very important for Arsenal at the moment as there is a distinct absence of wise heads in the dressing room and on the pitch! Overall he is an excellent goalkeeper.

Also do not forget that he will cost nothing whereas his replacement will cost from 3m upwards.

Unknown said...

Jens is part of the problem and I beleive he is in decline. he has been just about acceptable this season but next season, if he carries on this rate of decline will be unacceptable. he has never been great with corners but its getting to comedy proportions now. he is brining way too much pressure onto himself and the team with his antics. what happened at WHL was certainly not a first.

our other problem at the back has been Eboue/Hoyte. OK hoyte is a passable defender but not great going forward so attacking wise our right side does not function with him. Eboue cannot defend properly and we have conceded tons of goals from his area of the pitch. RB is the other problem in our defence no question.

Anonymous said...

True legend and quality player, but he appears to have lost some of his shot-stopping ability. More than that, he has been dodgy at crosses/corners all season. I love that he plays aggressively, sweeping up and trying to take command of the area, but I'm not sure that he's capable of it anymore. No matter what, I'll miss him when he's gone.