Unai Emery Defends Lacazette Substitution Against Fulham

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Unai Emery, Arsenal’s manager has defended his decision to substitute midfielder Aaron Ramsey for Alexandre Lacazette in their Tuesday mauling of Fulham. Arsenal eventually won the match, bouncing back from their recent loss to Liverpool.

Alexandre Lacazette was substituted for Aaron Ramsey despite the French striker scoring Arsenal’s second goal against the Cottagers. The decision came not long after Fulham’s Abubakar Kamara scored their only goal.  

The change was not well received by majority of the fans and Emery has said the following in his own defence.

“I understand the supporters. Tactically, we thought in that moment, we needed to change for more balance. Above all, we know Fulham midfielder Jean Michael Seri is coming on and we need a player close to, not to let him play easily with the ball. Ramsey can do that and help us in attack, and he scored. The reason is this. I need to do my work. And not maybe because every supporter can have a different opinion, tactically.”

The decision eventually paid off as the game ended 4-1 in favour of Arsenal with goals from Xhaka, Lacazette and Aubameyang sealing the win. This marked the Gunner’s only second win in six matches after they suffered a heavy 5-1 loss to Liverpool on Saturday. 

Unai Emery also had this to say about the match, “We wanted to win and this result will give confidence. We continued to push and create chances and we can be happy. It is normal for the fans to have some doubt at 2-1, but the team continued to do their work and played our planned game.”

Arsenal’s next match is a third round FA Cup tie against League One side Blackpool. Their next premier league match is an away match against West Ham on January 12.

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