IF WE WANT TO WIN, THEN WE MUST TWEEK THE PATTERN by NO
The French good run in the Euro 2016 Tournament exposes one thing that some of us have suspected for a long time, that Giroud can become world class if he plays alongside other strikers in the side. France looked out of sorts until coach Didier Deschamps changed the system to 4.4.2 and Giroud was partnered with Griezmann upfront, suddenly Giroud was the world class attacker we have always hoped he should be.
The other player who has set the tournament alight happens to be Aaron Ramsey. Ramsey too has had too many hot-cold moments in his Arsenal career. Playing for Wales in the more advanced role in midfield. With that position Ramsey has shown that the Ramsey we have always longed for at Arsenal is still there but we must find a way to get that Ramsey out.
The question therefore becomes, are Arsenal playing their best possible system? If so why is it that we have too many players playing outside their best roles? Which brings me to simple, frightening remedy for Arsenal next season when teams have revitalized themselves the best possible way they know how to ensure that they will be competitive. Arsenal should also do the same and we should play at our best.
Let me start with a pattern that I think Wenger should not fear embracing if he wants the best and the players he should go for based on the latest rumours out there about the people we are chasing to sign.
The first XI
The players: I know we are linked to Lacazette, Morata, Lukaku and Higuain for striker’s role. Straight out, it will be pleasantly shocking if Wenger were to sign Higuain 72Million. We know he is worth it and we also know that scares Arsenal FC out of any running to sign such a player. I would have suggested we go for Morata but with Giroud in the team, we may be setting ourselves up for a French first striker role fight within our dressing room, therefore let’s not risk such trouble. Between Lukaku and Morata, well Morata wins out for me because the Everton are attaching silly money to Lukaku…at above 60M he is not worth going for.
We are also linked with Gabriel Barbosa, a 19-year old from Santos. Well, watching his play you can tell he is well worth a role in the first team even at the age. He plays like Douglas Costa but tampers his games with goals.
The pattern resolves our needs for a centre back by leaving only one place available and with three senior players in Koscielny, Gabriel and Mertesacker we would be full house. It allows Ramsey a position in the center of the field in the areas where his best runs into attack can be very useful. The other player is Cazorla who again has similar attributes and he will be useful from there. Granit Xhaka staying in front of the defenders will help resolve the situation of defender exposure, especially if both Ramsey and Cazorla are encouraged to man the areas allocated to them from the box all the way to the other box. Sanchez, Morata and Barbosa are the three front players. Sanchez and Barbosa would play as front wingers. These allows Cazorla and Ramsey to cut inside from the wings and enough freedom to the two front wing strikers to start their attacks from midfield all the way to the centre forward areas. Giroud (if he gets to play) will now get supported and should be scoring more frequently.
Arsenal are a team bursting in the seams with talent in the centre of the pitch with the likes of Coquelin, Elneny, Wilshere, Walcott, Iwobi, Ox-Chamberlain waiting to steal any of these roles from the First XI named here… 6 roles rather than the traditional 5 with the 2 wing fronts available makes for better opportunities to allow them game time. For the front wing areas, Iwobi, Walcott and Ox-Chamberlain would be able to fill in adequately.
What pattern and what other players would you ask Wenger to adopt for next season?