A few boos rang out around Emirates Stadium on New Year’s Day when Unai Emery replaced Alex Lacazette with Aaron Ramsey.
The game was hanging in the balance in the second half after Aboubakar Kamara’s goal had pegged us back to 2-1. And some fans voiced their disapproval at the removal of a striker who had already scored for us.
Unai’s decision was soon vindicated when Ramsey restored our two-goal lead before Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang wrapped up a 4-1 win. And after the game our head coach explained the tactical thinking behind the change.
“Tactically, we were thinking that in that moment we needed to change to get more balance,” he said.
“Above all else, we know [Fulham midfielder] Jean Michael Seri very well and we needed to get a player close to him, to not let him play with the ball very easily. When Aaron Ramsey came onto the pitch, he could do that and can also help us in attacking moments - and he scored.
“The reason for the decision was this and I need to do my work. Every supporter can think different things tactically, but for me today, Lacazette worked very well, scored and he helped us. His reaction was very positive.”
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