We heard a few days from the Arsenal and Spain international midfield maestro, Santi Cazorla, about why he felt that he was more effective in the Central Attacking Midfield role for the Gunners, rather than being stuck out wide as he was for much of last season.
As I wrote in an article for Just Arsenal, I think that his words were instigated by the return to fitness of our German playmaker Mesut Ozil, who is clearly the main rival to Cazorla for that central role. And now Ozil has given Arsenal Player his own say on the matter.
It is no surprise to hear Ozil claim that his own talents are much more effective when used through the middle. The German feels that it is his vision to spot a pass and be able to execute it to get his team mates into good positions that is his main strength as a player. And to be fair to him, he has been the undisputed king of the assists in recent years and that is the main reason why Arsene Wenger smashed the club transfer record to sign him from Real Madrid.
Ozil said, “Before you get the ball, you think about where your team-mates and the opposition are likely to be. I have an idea of where my team-mates are when I receive possession, and where they could run.
“Of course what happens next depends on them as well as me. If they make runs into space or we think along the same lines, I can play the pass.
“But if I see the gap and they don’t run into it, you can’t play the pass. We have so much quality going forward. We have players with a lot of pace, who think about what’s going to happen and that makes it easier.
“You have to think before you receive the ball, because the game now is so intense and quick. It wouldn’t work otherwise.”
With all Arsenal’s injury problems last season, Ozil often had to do without the likes of Walcott and Ramsey running into those key areas but if he does now get his place in the centre back for Arsenal, he is likely to have not only those two, but Alexis and Welbeck to work with and then we really might start to see the best of Ozil. …..
What do you think Gooners?