Arsenal do not have the core yet but they are very close

Successful teams are ones that have a core that usually consists of the goalie, central defender, central midfielder and striker and one of them tends to be the captain.

There are of course exceptions but I am talking generally here.

The successful Jose Mourinho Chelsea team had Cech, Terry, Lampard and Drogba, Sir Alex Fergusons United that won the treble had Schmeichel, Stam, Keane, Yorke, the Invincibles had Lehmann, Campbell, Vieira, Henry and Man City last seasons had Ederson, Laporte, Silva and Aguero.

Now, I accept that there were other players in each of those teams that were just as integral, Scholes and Giggs for United, De Bruyne and Sterling for City, Chelsea had Makelele and Mendes and of course, there was Pires and Cole for Arsenal.

And that is just a couple of players per team, there were more.

But those core players played the most games in the big seasons and had the most influence and it is very rare that a team is successful without that central core.

This current Arsenal team is not there yet but I would argue that in Leno and Aubameyang they have two key elements already and this season may see the emergence of the final two.

If Luiz can make the central defensive position is own and show the leadership he has shown before then Arsenal will almost be there.

Torreira could be the final missing piece if he kicks on from last season, as I believe he will and if he does then the core will be complete.

The core I am looking at then is, Leno, Luiz, Torreira and Aubameyang and if those four can boss their positions and make themselves indispensable to the team then Unai Emery can build around them and turn this Arsenal side into a very succesful one.


  1. Agree Martin, the core/spine of a team is so important. It gives a solid foundation and you can’t build unless you have a solid foundation. It is probably why arsenal have under achieved in the second stint of Wenger’s reign. We had some very good players but those last bits of the puzzle, DM, striker CM were never filled properly.

    I do think we are very close, fingers crossed we are there.

  2. I would rather say that Lacazette is that kind of core-forward and he has all the attributes aswell.

    Big game player, mentally strong, physically strong, inspires the rest of the team in a way that a forward has not done since van Persie.

    In midfield i would say Guendouzi might become that core-midfielder. Very vocal, very sensitive (can be both good and bad, but good players usually turns it to their favor), and last but surely not least he has the heart needed. Holding at the back hopefully.

    Oh, and hey everyone. I have been reading the articles and comments as long as i can remember and now i felt it was the right time to actually say something. Not sure why ?

  3. The solution like many have said for years especially with the team we have this season is 2 big béasts in our middfied and then we’ll be taken & respected seriously by all the physycal and football teams so obvious look at Watford((Doucouré and Capoue)

    1. One is good for an offensive team to shield the back four, look at top teams
      Real Madrid – casimero
      Barça -busquet
      Man city – Rodri/fernandinho

      My pick for this duty is Sangare from Toulouse

    2. Did Citeh take those two seriously when putting SIX pastcthemnin the FACup final? What a ridiculous post.

  4. I disagree with your point about Leno, Luiz, Torreira and Aubameyang being the core of Arsenal.Take a look at the names you mentioned for some of the past great teams.They were not only world clas but very consistent and took responsibilty.The team lacks leadership and responsibility.
    We also lack good defenders and have only made our situation worse by the signing of David Luiz who is even past his best and just another error prone CB.
    It’s going to take a long while before we win anything major but it’s all part of the process and we will keep on waiting for that very day

    1. luiz, auba and torriera

      all three is likely to be gone in 2 or 3 seasons

      core players need to stay for together for at least 3 seasons and made up of at least 5 players

      cant have a brand new first 11 in a team to win unless its in Fifa20

      1. Even if they were all to stay I don’t believe they have the consistency to be our core.
        The team we currently have doesn’t have a core in terms of how it’s been explained in the article

          1. I’m talking about all of them.They aren’t on the level of mentioned players class,talent and consistency wise

      2. If u say at least three years as regard the core players of a winning team, then van dyke is an exception because he is just a season old with Liverpool yet he is a very vital player for them

    2. Just to let you know by the statistics David Luiz last season over 37 appearances was Chelsea best and most consistent defender do as him being past this best us wrong,some players like wine get better look cat Ronaldo he worked harder on/off the pitch (diet, recuperation.,)and changing the way he plays!! Buffon, Pirlo, Company and others only got better with age especially defenders and Goalkeepers!!

  5. The Arsenal Invincibles Core-Spine:

    1.Jens Lehmann – Goalkeeper.
    2. Sol Campbell – Central defender.
    3. Patrick Viera – Defensive MF.
    4. Thierry Henry – Striker.

    Admini Martin, no disrespect to you please. However, of all the current Gunners you’ve mentioned, I can’t see any of them being close to my above 4 core-spine of the Arsenal invincibles. Talkless of any of them be very close to any of the 4 Arsenal Invincibles core-spine.

    Nevertheless, you are very correct to have pointed out these 4 vital elements who are very necessary to have in a team squad that have the ambition to win the Coveted Premier Leagues title and the Uefa Champions League. Which Arsenal have won in 2003-2004 season with invinciblity. But miss out on the Champions League in 2006.

    But haven said my above saying, I believe the spine or the core of a winning team squad should be built overtime at a club side but can be built overnight. But did I say overnight? It could be built overnight however as us have seen Antonio Conte did at Chelsea to win the PL title in 2015-2016 season after only been at the club for a season. Isn’t that a record? And Pep Guardiola too have done twice in succession buying his team squad to win the PL title back to back in 2017-2018 and 2018-2019 seasons after been at Man City in just 2 seasons with the former being a 100 points record breaking season PL title win that has now become a benchmark points tally collection to break.

    Could the era of building the necessary 4 Core-Spine gradually for a team squad to firs have before they can make the attempt to win the Premier League title and the UCL has now past? But the core 4 players could quickly be obtained in the transfer market to win soon after the obtaining has been done if the ambitious club have the financial resources to obtain the 4 Core-Spine.

    1. PV4 was a box to box player, not a DM.

      He almost always had a more defensive minded partner (petit /Gilbert)

  6. I think Emery did an awesome job this summer. He got more players than I expected and higher quality than I expected.

    Two CB (1 will join us next season)
    One CM (hopefully we will purchase)
    One top winger
    One 18 year old forward with potential

    Our spine could be fixed by next summer. If Luiz doesn’t work out we can sign another CB. If Ceballos leaves we can sign another deep lying CM. And sign a CAM to replace Ozil, Mkhitaryan. That’s it. We’ve got a GK, DM, and top strikers

    I think we should get a quality LW and RB next summer too.

    We are looking much improved now. Can’t wait till Burnley

  7. It’s possible the team that starts against Burnley is the best we have put out for some time. If Xhaka does not play we may have Torreira, Ceballos, and Guendouzi in midfield. Auba, Laca and Pepa up front. That is some six players. I’m hoping for a faster, more intense Arsenal.

    1. Looks good to me Sean. However if Emery DOES insist on picking Xhaka then for me that will mean he’s still stuck in his ‘Xhaka for Captain’ imbecilic rut. Still hope some foreign team think Xhaka can play and he gets transferred – I think there’s still a couple of weeks left. Don’t want Xhaka on the bench either, taking the place of a proper footballer.

  8. I agree with the Xhaka, even though i do believe he is a good player, he isn’t premier league standard. This because of 3 things, Urgency, Pace and Concentration. You need these attributes if you are going to survive in the premiership. Also I think he has the mentality of a leader but doesn’t command respect nor is he capable of leading by example which is key. He’s a good player but the premiership is above of his level. He would be more successful in lower standard leagues in France, Germany, Italy, or Spain.

    Sol, Adams, Vieira and Henry to name a few of our past leaders. They all Commanded respect had great player mentality and lead by example even when they didn’t have their best games

      1. Gave me a chuckle too.

        I know xhaka has an error in him but I don’t think he’s that bad. Gets caught on the turn and like a stupid foil, but compared to the rest of our deep cms I think he’s In the team for his long passing which gives us a direct option on the counter that we have missed since cazorla.

        He’s not hwy standard but it gives us an interesting option. Same thing with mikhi. Even if they both go missing in games, look at the Newcastle game – though neither was great in their all round play mikhi created 2-3 clear cut chances as did xhaka.

        No one else created those kind of direct opportunities except the cross for the goal from maitland.

        We can’t carry players in every game but those two add a directness and an ability to cut out half an opposing team with one pass. Ozil can do it on his day but not sure how many others in our current team have that in the locker.

        As long as xakha isnt the last midfielder he does give us something different.

    1. ” Xhaka is is good player but not Prem standard”? Please explain this gobbledegook! The ONLY way your odd post makes any sense is if ALL Prem players are better than good!

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