How can Arteta’s use Guendouzi’s natural talent going forward?

Guendouzi’s Destiny Under Arteta

For all his time spent underneath Pep Guardiola, Mikel Arteta’s tactics at Arsenal so far have not been fully classic Pep-ball. There’s the appearance of the inverted fullback. A very advanced leftback playing like a winger. An attacking midfielder who generally occupies the halfspace. An inside forward. A ball-playing defender who is vital to the attack.

Despite that, we still have not gone fully into the Guardiola system of football. We use two deep-lying midfielders, for example. There isn’t a pivoté, a la Sergio Busquets, per se. How much of this remaining difference of tactics is due to the available profile of players and/or Arteta’s own tactical system is not clear as of yet.

But the addition of Cedric Soares indicates that Arteta desires to play with two natural fullbacks, and possibly then, a pivoté.

The existence of a pivoté in Arteta’s ultimate tactical system is where Matteo Guendouzi’s possible future lies. He has all the base qualities required for a pivoté: passing range, ability to dribble and win fouls in tight spaces, tackling, the required mentality of taking one for the team. He’s not the complete product, yet, of course. Some things can still be improved. Like his marking and positioning for example. But at only 21, he’s a remarkable talent who can go on to greater things.

If 35 million euros gets you Granit Xhaka in today’s market for pivotés and only double of that would get you the gold-standard in Rodri, then we might be better off moulding Guendouzi into the pivoté he was born to be.

If anything, his performance in the North London derby where he completely dominated the midfield, his infamous last-ditch tackle against Wilfred Zaha, and his constant appearances near the top of ball-progressing stats show that the large-haired youngster can be our dream pivoté, fashioned in the old Arsenal way.

Agboola Israel


  1. Your suggestion that Rodri is the gold standard when it comes to the defensive midfield pivot is debatable as some of his performances this season have been unimpressive.With regard to Guendouzi, at present he does not have the discipline nor the defensive nous to be another Busquets, but as you say, he is going and he may well be more suited to such a role as he experience.He is undoubtedly a talented lad, who to me is best suited to a box to box role at present.

  2. I see guendouzi as a frenkie de jong type player.Its still quite debatable, could he be trusted defensively?I dont think so.He has potential.Lets see what MA wants him to be…

  3. Im sure Arteta will work out who is an ideal partner going forwards. I think a vierra type player and Gouendouzi could replicate our best ever midfield of vierra and petit.

  4. Guendouzi seems like a highly intelligent player with a certain skill set, but his lack of speed and dexterity limit him. He needs to be played in a way that emphasizes his strengths and keeps his weaknesses from being exposed.

  5. Lack of discipline is his problem ….
    He seems to think he has to lead the team in n fights….he rushes into these fights stupidly…..all I see is a red card and a long term ban….he also delays counter attacks by hogging the ball….. peaked now ……needs to be on the bench …..

  6. We expect too much from Guendouzi. He is a young lad who will become the pivot of our midfield within a couple of years. If….and it is if, Arteta is fully supported and can sign some hard, athletic, strong players to support our super young stars, we will have the makings of a great side. Without strong players around them all our youngsters will not reach their peaks. We carry too many bits of deadwood players at the moment who are just not good enough. With a good summer window the sky is the limit for our exceptional young players.

  7. Guendouzi is undoubtedly a real talent but MA should instill discipline into his game and he should be moulded into a box to box midfielder.

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