RATING THE ARSENAL SQUAD AS IS by JA
Hello there, still basking in the Cech-abration I’m guessing!
Well, the season is nearly upon us as it is and I thought we’d take just a little time to rate all our squad members just to see how ready we are for next season.
We’ll be using a four point matrix; World class, Great player, Potential to be world class, and just Okay. Therefore, if there’s anyone that is below that, then I’m guessing I don’t think they should be at the club. Please note, this article is a personal opinion and doesn’t reflect the opinion of the club or other Arsenal fans in any way. I just like to see a good debate! Also, this article is not meant to determine who should be bought, sold, replaced, killed, mutilated, or any of that other stuff. Let’s dive into it then …
We have 3 great goal keepers, each with a good and bad side, we’ll break up the analysis into the requirements for this position.
REFLEXES; David Ospina is pretty good at close range saves .He can also stop a certain goal from going in. His showing for Columbia against Argentina shows that he’s got pretty good reflexes. His rivals are Szczesny and Cech – both very fast and big. Now I’ve seen the Pole pull of double saves like Ospina’s before, and he is pretty good at it. The Czech is a little better at stopping from range. We’ve not seen him in close combat so often before because of how deep Chelsea sit.
Verdict; Ospina wins this round, Szczesny comes second, Cech third..
DISTRIBUTION; With his feet, Ospina is pretty accurate at variable distances. With his arm I’ve not seen much of that. With his feet Szczesny sucks! With the arm, he is average and can bowl out a pretty good distance. Cech is perfect with both. He was a major part of Chelsea’s success with the long ball during Mourinho’s first era and even in the recent change from route one to counter attack, we’ve seen him start counters with his arms.
VERDICT; Cech wins this one, Ospina comes second, the Pole tails the two.
POSITIONING; This is a tricky one. Of all the three, Cech and Ospina attain a similar starting position. What they do afterwards tends to differ so we’ll start with Szczesny.
The Pole has a high propensity to come out and meet the ball, which in periods when he’s on form and confident is just what a team that plays a highline would require. In backs to the wall periods, he still tends to come and meet the ball which when he’s off form looks really stupid – as we’ve all seen recently. But however he looks really brave and bold when it comes off.
On the contrary, in a backs-to-the-wall situation, Cech tends to assume a similar position to Szczesny. However , the few times I’ve seen Cech left for dead with Chelsea playing a highline, he takes a long time to get off his line, and still isn’t great when he does. His catching though is really great when he comes for a cross. Ospina starts deep, stays deep and relies on his reflexes to save the day. Not a good one though when the opposing team means to cross. And the few times he comes out, I don’t feel confident.
VERDICT; The Pole tops this one because at his best, he’s reliable off his line, Cech comes second , because he might not be that good with a striker rushing in on him, but he is great at catching crosses. Ospina …. Well, he comes third..
HANDLING; This one is easy and goes hand in hand with the above , we all know Petr is less likely to fumble. Ospina, he doesn’t really drop the ball ………uhm need I say anything about Mr Wojciech Butterfingers?
VERDICT; It was pretty obvious from my arguments – Cech, Ospina, Szczesny.
All three goalkeepers are great. I didn’t add Damian because I haven’t watched so much of him. I think Cech is world class, Ospina is great, and Szczesny has the potential to be world class.
Do you agree?