Perhaps the biggest conundrum of last season was why Arsene Wenger did not shift to the new back-three system sooner. Clearly, the system brought to Arsenal defensive solidity and more creative freedom for the Gunners’ forward players and laid the foundation for the team’s late resurgence in the previous campaign. But leaving that aside, Wenger did confirm that he will stick to the new system next season as well and it now appears as though the Frenchman is signing players based on the formation as well.
Arsenal’s latest acquisition, Sead Kolasinac, is primarily a left-back who is equally adept at and has the physical stature to play at centre-back and in defensive midfield as well, something the player himself reiterated in his first interview upon signing for the club from Bundesliga side Schalke on a free transfer. Moreover, the Bosnian, apart from being solid and tenacious at the back, is great going forward as well and hence would be perfect for a wing-back.
In the new system that Arsenal employ, there is always a necessity for an extra defender considering that the team will start the game with three central defenders on the pitch. Therefore, it makes sense to bring in a quality left-sided defender who has all the attributes to step into central defence should there be a necessity. Furthermore, Kolasinac is a lot like Oxlade-Chamberlain in terms of his energy levels and willingness to take people on, so it would be really interesting to see these two bombing down Arsenal’s flanks next season.
Having said all this, I firmly believe that Sead Kolasinac has been brought in with the new system in mind. The player, who was included in the Bundesliga team of the Season, will most certainly strengthen the Gunners’ squad and it remains to be seen as to how efficiently Le Prof can strengthen the team in the other areas in which reinforcements are needed to make his plan even more efficient, especially with respect to a prolific goal-scorer.