Did Oxlade-Chamberlain leave Arsenal over his wing-back role change?

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain forced Arsene Wenger to sell him to Liverpool in the summer, and with him due to come back to the Emirates tomorrow for the first time since his departure, Jurgen Klopp has been asked about how he has progressed since leaving Arsenal, and he thinks that Wenger wasn’t using the midfielder in his best positions.

The Ox was shuffled around the side in just about every position (except goalkeeper!) and last season he finally got a run in the team when Le Prof changed formation to his 3-4-3 and decided that he could convert Oxlade-Chamberlain into a wing back. Going by what Klopp has said, the Ox was not very happy about that. “When he came here we spoke about the position,” added Klopp. “The only position he didn’t want to play is wing-back but just like Milly [James Milner] if you asked him he would still do it. But even that is different here, it depends on the style of play.”

Klopp went on to say that he has improved from his time at Arsenal because he is given more opportunities to join in the attacks.  “I think the biggest improvement and potential for him is being involved in goalscoring situations,” Klopp said, as quoted by the Guardian. “It is unbelievable but he was not asked for this too much in the past.

“If you watch Arsenal in the past their two decisive players were Özil and Sánchez. They are involved in a lot of moments and decisive passes. Özil or Sánchez, then Giroud when he is coming on the pitch. Then you [the rest] are not much involved.

“Here we put it on more shoulders, much more shoulders. If he is on the pitch he needs to be involved in these situations. At the moment it’s all good but I also see there is space for improvement.”

When you consider that the Ox only scored 13 goals in over 160 appearances for Arsenal and he has scored twice under Klopp after making just six starts, you could perhaps agree that Wenger wasn’t making the best use of him.

You can’t blame him for leaving after being shunted around the pitch by Wenger for years!

Darren N


  1. Maks says:

    Yes, he left cos we have Ramsey who can play any position as long as he can play in 1st 11. Wenger out!

  2. Robin Vanpayslip says:

    He left because he was wack. Flopp thinks he is ok but Jorgen Flopp hasn’t done anything of note for about a decade. Our guy hasn’t done anything for even longer but same old story…..

    1. Ivan says:

      He won the German league 5 and 6 years ago. Also like Wenger he won some cups

  3. GB says:

    For goodness sake, give it a rest as to why he left or why that happened, all in the past, get over it, let it go, PLEASE, it’s getting monotonous!

  4. Adnaan says:

    Good riddance… Klopp the FLOP won’t be At Anfield for more then 3 years

  5. ThirdManJW says:

    If he did leave because he didn’t like the wing-back role then that would be quite ironic, because that was the only position he ever looked any good in.

    I am still very pleased with the business done in regards to the Ox. £40 million for a flop, with only 12 months left on his contract was a fantastic deal for us!

  6. shark says:

    He left because he didn’t want to pass sideways :). Anyway, selling him was good business for Kroenke, not the fans.

    1. ClassyGunner says:

      Yeah, right. He wanted to continue misplacing simple passes and sky the crosses into the stands.

  7. Yossarian says:

    I’ve always said Klopp is over-rated. I thought maybe he was improving when Liverpool beat us 4-0, but now I realise that we were just rubbish and made them look good.

    The best Oxlade-Chamberlain will win at Liverpool under Klopp is an FA Cup or League Cup, which is no better than he did at Arsenal. It was a sideways move.

    If he gets to play in a position he prefers, then good for him. Makes no difference to us on the pitch, and we got some good money for him, so happy days all round.

  8. Kenny Rolfe says:

    Maybe it was because he only scored 9 goals in 132 games or maybe he got a backhander out of the £43, million we got for him lol or maybe he went up north to join Pixie Dixie whatever her name is. Whatever it was, it was the best bit of business Wenger done since Anelka

  9. TW14-TH14 says:

    There’s is this whole baseless talk of being played out of position. Most times when said about Arsenal, it is usually to criticize Wenger and nothing else.

    All managers play players “out of position”. For instance, let’s look at a few cases from other clubs.

    1. Valencia (Manchester United). At Wigan, Valencia was played as a Winger/forward before arriving Manchester. He was a very attacking player and Ferguson used him primarily as a Winger. Both LVG and Mourinho have used him as fullback/wingback and he has excelled there.

    2. Azpilicueta (Chelsea) Before arriving Chelsea he played as a right back. Mourinho used him as a left back and Conte as a centre back. He has excelled in both.

    3. Fabian Delph (Manchester City). A midfielder, Guardiola has used him as a left back and he’s been excellent so far.

    4. Milner (Liverpool). A midfielder played as a left back at Liverpool with mixed results.

    5. Mascherano (Barcelona). A defensive midfielder at Liverpool played as a centre back at Barcelona with overwhelming success.

    I can go on and on for both successful and unsuccessful ones. but let’s look at Arsenal.

    1. Henry. Winger played as Centre forward with overwhelming success.
    2. Lauren. Midfielder played as right back with overwhelming success.
    3. Kolo Toure. Midfielder played as a centre back with overwhelming success.
    4. Van Persie. Winger played as as a centre forward (a move that was heavily criticised) with overwhelming success.
    5. Carzola. Attacking midfielder played as deep lying playmaker with overwhelming success.
    6. Gibs. Winger played as a left back with mild success.
    7. Belerin. Winger played as rightback/wingback with initial success but declining performances.

    If you look through you would see that not only has Wenger done it with overwhelming success, other managers do it as well. We can’t just point at a few who didn’t succeed and it becomes the basis for attacking the manager. The job of the manager is not just to field a player where the player wants but where he has identified the player can contribute most to the team or develop best given his skills set. A manager trains with the players every day and sees what fans do not see or what the player doesn’t even see about himself. Besides, the fact that a youngster has started out in a particular position does not mean he has to establish and end his career in that position. Managers do a lot of things in the interest of the club and the players. Some work out well and others do not.

Comments are closed