Will Aubameyang Solve Arsenal’s Problems? Soorya Thavaraj
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has joined Arsenal for around £59m and Arsenal fans are getting very excited about their supposed saviour. For the most part, who can blame them; the Gabonese striker has an incredible striking record, scoring 141 goals 213 games for his current club, Borussia Dortmund. The charismatic striker will attempt to recreate this kind of goalscoring form at Arsenal and with his explosive pace and clinical finishing, he will surely score lots of goals. Nevertheless, as always with Arsenal, the problems are deeply rooted. Although the semi-final Carabao Cup win against Chelsea suggested a change in the team’s character and game-management, there are still massive question marks about whether their defence can hold up in the big games against the likes of Manchester City and Manchester United.
Therefore, there are still many questions about Arsenal. Where will Aubameyang fit in? Is their defence good enough? Does the team lack leaders?
Arsenal, as we all know, rarely struggle going forward. With iconic players like Thierry Henry and Dennis Bergkamp it is in the club’s DNA to play free-flowing, attacking football; Wengerball if you will. Additionally, the recent addition of Mkhitaryan alongside Ozil and Wilshere have seen that football be recreated; a joy to watch in any match. But surely, the addition of Aubameyang adds an extra dimension to our play. Lacazette is a top quality player, who when full of confidence, should really be a guaranteed starter possibly alongside Pierre; but the former Dortmund man brings an extra level of class that oozes confidence as he steps out on the football field. Some may call it arrogance, but like Troopz said ‘Our team has missed swag’ and he brings charisma in abundance. As well as this, he has the numbers to back up; scoring on his first Arsenal start, albeit an offside goal against a poor Everton side, but the quality is there for all to see. The nonchalance with which he finished that chance is there for all to see.
However, is he enough, to propel us to some sort of success this season; Carabao Cup, Europa League and Top 4? I don’t think so and that’s because of our defence. It’s as open as a shop on Black Friday; we need some reinforcements. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to bring any replacements in and I think that will eventually cost us. Our away form this season is atrocious and this is partly down to our defence. Mistake after mistake have cost us match after match; and valuable points in a tight Top 4 race. Ultimately, we aren’t the Harlem Globetrotters and we can’t outscore every team. As a result, we need to improve our defence drastically in the summer if we want to challenge next year.
The other main question lingering over Arsenal is the lack of leaders. We still haven’t replaced Viera, Campbell and Keown from the past Arsenal teams who were born leaders. Whilst the January transfer window has to be seen as one of Arsenal’s best ever; they didn’t sign any leaders. One player that could blossom into that role is Jack Wilshere. The injury-plagued midfielder has seen a resurgence like no other which started in the Europa League but now has seen the Englishmen become a regular starter and put together a string of impressive performances. With him reportedly on the verge of signing a new deal Arsenal fans have repeatedly called for him to be captain and it’s clear to see why. A Gooner through and through; he shows passion and pride on the pitch, rumoured to have stood up to Alexis and very well could develop into Mr Arsenal.
As a result although, Aubameyang is a quality signing and a step in the right direction, he might not be enough to cure all our problems.