Arsenal star can prove media (and Wenger) wrong

Of course Arsene Wenger will point out that it was him that signed the French midfielder Mathieu Flamini for Arsenal in the first place, back when he was a promising 20-year old just breaking through into the Marseille first team. And I’m sure that the prof will say that he was also in charge when we took Flamini back a couple of years ago and kept him at the club this summer.

But reading between the lines tells you that Wenger was happy to let the Frenchman go this summer and was not intending to bring him back in the first place. For me this is symptomatic of one of Wenger’s major problems; that he loves skilful and tricky players and does not appreciate those that do the dirty work.

If this was not true, would we really have had Mikel Arteta as our main defensive midfielder for years? I think Wenger has been very lucky with the emergence of Francis Coquelin but now the young Gunner has picked up an injury and we have a problem.

Who did the boss turn to? Arteta, and look how well that went. So while Flamini, in my opinion, is well aware of his somewhat shoddy reputation with his manager and with the football media in general, he does not share that opinion and is determined to do a good job as Coquelin’s replacement, as he explained in an Evening Standard report.

Flamini said, “The season is always very long so sometimes you have to accept being on the bench but sometimes you have the opportunity to prove you can still play in the Arsenal team.

“I have an opportunity to be back in the team and I will try to prove every game that I can be in the team.

“Can I play twice a week for three months? I think I can but now it is my job to prove it. Fitness is hard to maintain.

“For an athlete, if you don’t play every week, it’s not easy because the more games you have in your legs, the better you become.

“You gain in confidence, you become better physically, so the possibility to have game after game is obviously going to be good for me.”

Will Flamini prove Wenger wrong and be the player Arsenal need?

Tags Arteta Coquelin Flamini


  1. Flamini yea i’m counting on you to do a good job till January transfer when…oh no sorry mate, if we get a good DM then you can rest your old legs again..
    I’m willing to trust a guy who could keep his business secret from 2008 till now..
    Flam we wont need you to keep this one for years,just months please.
    The flame or Chambers in the DM role please, i don’t want a Mikel in our matches

    1. He’s only 31, hardly old. Rusty? Yes, but playing every game will shake of that rust for sure. Nevertheless, Flamini is the closest from Coquelin we have so we better make it work.

      1. altho i wish the best to flam bc he’s an arsenal player, i do wish wenger would not put us in these kinds of situations. i get wenger has faith in his players, and they can muddle us through to 4th/3rd, but to go higher i think we need some more firepower.

        1. Trust in Flamini, he is good enough, in fact if he hadn’t had a run in with people at Arsenal over a few things his playing career might be very different. He was even being considered for a call up to the French squad a season or two ago I believe. The most important thing is that the Flame knows his limitations, so will ensure to play to his strengths. They are not beautiful, but they are quite often effective.

  2. Agreed. Arteta can do a job on the training or in the dressing room but his legs can’t take the pressure any more

  3. He should be fine for the next 3-4 games but I can’t help being concerned when we play the likes of City. For me, not buying another DM was as inexcusable as starting the previous season with just 2 experienced CB’s. In footballing terms it’s verging on insanity IMO.
    Why we continue with both Arteta and Rosicky when we already have 4 regular starters (our Brits) that we can be fairly certain will miss at least 1 third of the season, is beyond me. A quarter of our squad is now massively injury prone, that needs to change.

    1. Great news!

      “He started running again on Tuesday morning and had no reaction. He has no big hurdle to get across today and hopefully he will be successful”

      I’m sure Sanchez will be glad to have Walcott back. They work so well together.

  4. Who knows, we might be doing an article: Who starts against City, Coquelin or Flamini? And the Coquelin camp will be Coquelin has better interception skills and the Flamini fans will be Yeah, granted, but he hasn’t scored 8 goals has he? 😀

  5. Good article and fair points. I guess non of us have forgotten that Coq being one of the best emerging DM in the PL can hardly be said to be a result of Wenger’s talent recognition ability.

    Wenger backed into Coquelin as a result of injury. Had that injury not happened I am pretty sure Coquelin would not be with the club right now.

    I think Wenger doesn’t understand or maybe better said doesn’t want it to be true that the probability of success in the PL is much higher if you have a dominant DM (preferably with box to box abilities). He made his own success with players like that in the squad like Petite, Viera and Gilberto. In fact Wenger has never won the PL without such type of players.

    Wenger seems to see the Barca model as the wholly grail and mistakenly believes he can do the same in the PL. Thats why for years we had a squad over loaded with small players technically gifted. He doesn’t really want the guys who do the dirty work and that’s why he is happy with Cazorla playing as part DM, which IMO is an improvement for Arsenal over the past but far from ideal.

    Part of the reason we are much better defensively with Ramsey on the pitch on the right wing is because of Cazorla’s limited defensive abilities and Ramsey helps out with those defensive duties much more than Ox or Walcott – although Walcott doesn’t seem to be diploid on the right wing any more.

    In an ideal world we have two DM with forward going abilities (which are limited for Coquelin) so we can play real wingers on both sides of the pitch and don’t have to deploy a central midfield player like Ramsey who neither has the natural instincts of a winger nor the the burst of speed.

    I think, and from what I have seen, Carvalho is very good going forward and solid defensively.

  6. The Flame has a lot more about him than many give him credit for. He is rusty, as others have mentioned, but he loves Arsenal and will play to win. If that means shouting at other players and upsetting them so be it. He knows how to prtect our central defence far better than Arteta, so I pleased that that choice has been removed from Wenger. I’ve also been pleased to see how controlled Flamini has been in the tackle so far this season. When he has been on, he has been firm, but nor reckless (well not so far anyway). As previously mentioned by @NY_Gooner he kept his defensive shape realy well in the recent ECL game.

  7. He is all we have and I still think he is very good. Thing is there is chambers and I don’t rate him at all sorry he needs to go out on loan or sell him. Flam can do a job till Jan and AW best have a deal for a player to come in as soon as the windo opens. Buy him now end of then get 2-3 others because we won’t finish top 4 unless he dose

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