Will Wenger be happy with Chambers’ displays for Arsenal so far? by SE
Calum Chambers’ £16m summer move from Southampton to Arsenal was in many ways an unexpected one, as the teenager had made his Southampton senior debut only last year under Mauricio Pochettino, and since went onto rack up 22 Premier League appearances. However, being an unknown quantity has helped Chambers immensely, and allowed him to settle in at his new club without a lot of scrutiny. His performances in Arsenal colours have been good, if not very good, and the Englishman has already put up some impressive defensive displays, both as a center-half and Right-Back. But, given the pressures of being at a big club as Arsenal is, will Wenger be happy with Chambers’ displays for his new club so far?
In the first place, Wenger, despite the criticism he receives for his waning managerial methods, needs to be applauded for the audacity he showed in bringing a near unknown quantity to the Emirates, and doing so for a whopping £16m. From there on, however, things have quietly fallen into place for both men in concern. Mertesacker’s World Cup exertions meant that Chambers’ versatility saw him go straight alongside Laurent Koscielny at Right-Center-Back and, from his very first game for Arsenal against Manchester City in the FA Community Shield, has bedded in well. Debuchy’s injury against Manchester City saw Chambers get an opportunity to play at Right-Back, his natural position, and although he has been proficient in going forward, his defensive game still has a few holes to be plucked.
As much as it can be helpful to play alongside experienced defenders – Mertesacker and Koscielny – there are other pressures to contend with it as well. But Chambers has shown signs of wanting to be a learner and, going by his performances so far, looks to be a good reader of the game – something that is important for a central defender coming up against some skillful forwards. On that note, however, Chambers has been culpable a handful of times when he has jumped into tackles hastily, which fortunately haven’t cost him and his team. While I don’t want to be pernickety of his defensive errors and the struggles he has endured against the likes of Demba Ba, Kevin Mirallas and Eden Hazard – a handful of players who have investigated Chambers’ ability – it is something he needs to work on. At times, it’s his naivety that has seen him pick up 5 yellow cards already, and he, more than anyone else, would want to tighten up on the disciplinary side of his game.
“It is a strange one because I would imagine that to be very successful at 19 you need to be massively confident, maybe overconfident at times,” said Szczesny.
“But Calum isn’t – he’s very humble, very quiet and he shows his confidence on the pitch. It is a massive quality because he looks very comfortable, whether you play him at right back or centre back.
“He is comfortable on the ball, he is comfortable defending and he is very strong as well. He has been a massive signing.
“The pressure was on him as well because he was 19, he came to a big club and he went straight into the starting XI but he has been coping very well.”
Chambers has given a good account of himself during the early phases of his Arsenal career. Wojciech Szczesny, speaking to Arsenal club website above was appreciative of Chambers’ down-to-earth demeanor, in addition to his Footballing ability for just a 19-year old. And albeit there will be a lot sterner tests to overcome for the Englishman, which subsequently could give us a better inference of what Chambers can render Arsenal in the longer run, Wenger will be mighty pleased with his new recruit’s performances in Arsenal colours so far.