It’s easy to overreact to what happens in pre-season, especially losses, and especially heavy defeats in what would otherwise be rivalry games. While results never really matter – ‘false games’, as José Mourinho once called them – they sometimes portend bad seasons (Mourinho’s 2015 pre-season comes to mind, also at United States).
It’s also easy to underreact in some way. Ultimately, the “Florida Cup” is not a thing, even if it exists in physical form. Winning is always better than losing, but it’s just friendly matches that are most useful as fitness drills with perhaps some tactical tinkering.
What is concerning, however, is the general lack of commitment, focus and effort that we have witnessed in large parts of the last three games in the United States for the past fortnight – particularly the last two this week in Charlotte and last night in Orlando. .
Of course, it’s just the pre-season. We are talking about training here! But Thomas Tuchel certainly wants to see more of his squad, especially as he puts a serious emphasis on pre-season.
“We just weren’t good enough. We were totally uncompetitive. The most worrying thing is the level of commitment, physically and mentally, because this match was not the same, it was much higher for Arsenal than us.
“[We] need to be more lively and aggressive. The level of commitment, the level of physical input, just wasn’t enough. The job adaptation, the joy of helping each other, the joy of working hard together, that was what was missing.
“Now is not the time to destroy my group because they are a very nice and hardworking group, that will not change. But for today it is the honest analysis of the match. It is not the It’s hard to talk about it. It was like that today.”
“I don’t know if I’ve ever lost a game in pre-season 4-0. I can’t remember not winning two games in a row in pre-season. I’m a big fan of a pre-season. strong season in all areas: atmosphere, sensations, performance, conviction.”
We can blame various factors for this performance, from tactical to physical to mental, from the sweltering heat to the uncertain future of many team members. These two weeks in the United States have certainly been exhausting, and not only because of the intense training.
“I saw a team at Arsenal today who are mentally committed to a game idea, a level of exhaustion, a level of physical commitment that we couldn’t match. Also, a level of mental commitment that we missed because we have a lot of players thinking about leaving and looking at their options.”
[The] the analysis of the season does not change because of this game. Sadly this proved my point and last week proves it [when] I look at last season and the parts of the game where we struggled and how we struggled.
“We have been sanctioned and players have left us, we know some players are trying to leave us, and that’s where it’s at. We had an urgent call for quality players and a huge supply of quality players. We have two quality players, there’s no doubt about it, but we’re not that competitive and unfortunately we could see that today.
“[We have] the same players, so why should anything change? We will hopefully see some development, but at the moment we have the same issues because we have the same players.
“[We] could feel the energy level dropping after Las Vegas and after the Charlotte game due to the amount of travel, humidity and very hot weather. This made things difficult as it has now been two weeks on the road.
“It’s also a point but it’s a small point or explanation why we didn’t look fresh. I didn’t expect that today. I thought we lowered the intensity a bit in training for the past few days, but not in a way that we would expect to have fresh legs, so that wasn’t the biggest surprise, just the difference between being tired and playing like that.
We have two weeks left before the actual start of the season. Apologies won’t get us anywhere fast, certainly nowhere fast in the right direction.
Hopefully this is just a massive wake-up call, rather than a sign of things to come.
“I’m superstitious but not in a way that allows me to say that a bad pre-season has to mean a bad season. It doesn’t make sense to me. I’m part of it, I’m part of it and I’m part of it. need to find solutions.
“We are going home now and we only have a day and a half, Tuesday we have to present solutions, we have to present actions. Me and the coaching staff, as well as the team, have to step up and find a way through this because it hurts right now.
-Thomas Tuchel; source: Football.London
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