Has Fabio Vieira proven that he should be in Arsenal’s starting line-up instead of Havertz?

For the better part of last week, there were calls for Fabio Vieira to start the Manchester United game ahead of Kai Havertz after his fantastic cameo that helped Arsenal pick up a point versus Fulham; the Portuguese had a hand in the two goals Arsenal scored for the 2-2 draw.

Vieira didn’t start versus Manchester United; he was introduced as a second-half substitute for Havertz. Even so, against United, the ex-Porto star dazzled; he once again gave us a glimpse of why, before he left FC Porto, he was dubbed the assist king, assisting in his second match off the bench.

Pressure is now mounting on Arteta to start Vieira, but Arteta hinted that the moment is not yet ripe for the playmaker to start, as he sees him as more of an impact sub, a super-sub, a good option from the bench, even so, he noted that he could start.

Arteta said via Arsenal.com, “Every player has a chance to do that. Today, we decided to start with Kai. We knew that Fabio would have a big impact, especially in the last few minutes or final minutes, if we needed something and something has changed with Fabio. You notice with the crowd when he steps in, he’s different to how he was last year; he’s more mature; he’s more senior in the squad; and his confidence in the squad is high, so I’m really happy to have those options.”

I guess, for now, Arteta is just slowly easing Vieira into the team game after game, then boom! Down the line, he will start utilising from the onset. Let’s trust Arteta; each time he has had the chance, he’s shown us he knows best.

It is nice to see him raving about now having quality options from the bench, but while Havertz is still settling in, perhaps Vieira should be starting against Everton to see how he performs for the whole game?

Daniel O

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Tags Fabio Vieira


  1. If Arteta doesn’t maximize Havertz’s physicality, he’d better have a trickier AM with a lower-center of gravity in Xhaka’s position

    I believe Vieira and Trossard could make more 180-degree turns in tight spaces as compared to Havertz and Smith-Rowe, because Vieira and Trossard seem to be more technically-gifted and have lower centers of gravity

    Vieira and Trossard were also productive, so they’d better get rewarded with some places in the starting lineup. I guess they will get their chances when we play against PSV

    1. I would prefer to give ESR a chance there but on the other hand I am not sure he work well with MO as the season before when they both played together ot seemed hit and miss at times.
      All the same if you don’t try we won’t know plus I bet he is hungrier then ever to prove a point so why not

  2. Kai may needs to be dropped, but Viera is not a long term answer.
    He can’t win physical battles, press or dribble. He isn’t press resistant. He can mainly pass. I don’t think that is enough for the kind of football we play. He can come in late when there is more space and both teams do less pressing. He is not the guy to start in our high press high tempo game.

    1. Excuse me Ozziegunner! How’s Fabio not part of the Arsenal future? If Silva or Modric or indeed Fabrigas are in your books as great players, how’s it you fail to see what Viera has to offer?
      Someone is talking about how Havertz can dribble. Fabio can give double the dose at Mach-2 speed.

  3. if we do persist with KH then i would like to see him go passed players. he proved he can do it when he went down in the box but he seems to hold and turn back or pass side ways.
    need to see him commit players
    plus take up more attacking positions
    Xhaka for all his faults fond the space and arrive in the box to create the chance and even tuck a few away

  4. At the risk of repeating myself,MA should have done with Havertz,what he did with Fabio.as for him starting,I don’t think just yet.it’s too early, it’s only been a couple of games and one bad game might undo the good work done by the coaching staff and the player.even with Havertz on the bench and TP injured,there are 2 players thst I’d start before him(Trossard and ESR).

  5. I would drop him if it wasn’t the fact that Everton away is our next fixture.

    Doesn’t matter awful they’ve been (and they have been shocking for years now), they always seem to turn up against us at Goodison, and you can see the story now – they are yet to win, we’ve just beaten Utd and chasing City down, so of course Everton will win.

    The reason I would keep Kai in is because Everton are very physical and have a lot of height. He deserves to be dropped because of his form, and I normally don’t like picking a player because of only one attribute, but with no Partey, and Trossard or Vieira possibly coming in for Kai, we would be short on height against a team that puts everything into set-pieces.

  6. Kai Havertz in just a few starts for Arsenal already has a contender for howler scoring miss of the season.

      1. No way, Saka got a shot away, on target at goal. Haverz was an air shot. Would be pretty low to slag Saka off for what he does in the team.

  7. A midfield trio of Rice, Odegaard and Vieira is too lightweight and would leave a huge burden on our excellent DM in terms of winning and recovering the ball.Better to utilise Vieira to take over from Martinelli who cannot be expected to play 90mins every match.While Vieira does not have the pace and energy of Martinelli, he is equally skilled and is more accurate in crossing with his wand of a left foot whereas with the “inverted” Brazilian is a bit hit or miss with his wrong un.

  8. He’d be best suited as an odegaard alternative if he were to start otherwise it’s best to come on as a sub as he’s been excellently doing.i for one don’t degrade the essence of substitutes as many fans do cos of the “too good to start from the bench” mentality which i find rather unthinking. Vieira should only start PL games in place of Odegaard not alongside him.FA and league cups are there for him and ESR to stake their claim on cos we have to give it a go on at least one of those two competitions where i believe they should be our main men.vamos lads!!!

  9. It’s too late. If Havertz is taken out of the squad, it could shatter his confidence completely. He probably should have been gradually introduced but MA has made a rod for his back already. Havertz should continue to start for now but the wolves are definitely at the door now. He needs to pick his game up or risk being another flop!

  10. Havertz and Vieira are two different types of players. Havertz is a dribbler and a runner into the box whereas Vieira is a playmaker who prefers to stay out of the box. Also off the ball defensively, they are different. Havertz is better off the ball than Vieira, and Havertz’s positioning is much better in helping to solidify Arsenal’s team shape

    1. Without being funny, where is the evidence for this? Arsenal fans saying Havertz can do this that and the other – based on what? At Chelsea he showed neither dribbling ability, nor physical presence. Nor anything according to the Chelsea fans you speak to, see online, or in the press. It all comes from internationals, where he’d be up against usually far less tough and well organised teams, or from the spin that surrounded the transfer. He’s certainly done nothing at Arsenal to justify such comments. He may come good, with that price tag I pray to God he does, but hes not doing it so far. When he does prepare me a large slice of humble pie. Until then….

  11. My pet cat has a better case for playing than Havertz. That said, Viera is doing well as a sub and easing into the English game. The manager is right with that approach. Instead of Viera, Trossard? Jorginho? The guy who cleans the clubs toilets?

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