Without wanting to get ahead of myself, I am starting to get the feeling that Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka is quickly becoming a world class player.
He has massive potential, but of course it’s still far too early to judge whether he will progress that far…
Many youngsters have shown great potential early on, before plateauing. Bellerin being a perfect example of this.He burst onto the scene, with his amazing pace, and attacking abilities. Such an exciting player to watch!
Whilst his consistency, positioning, and defensive capabilities wasn’t great, given his potential, we all thought that would all improve with experience… Which it didn’t! He had a lot of potential, but now in his mid 20’s, is he anything other than an average FB/WB?
Whilst Bellerin’s lack of improvement, shows why we should temper our expectations on occasions, I cannot help but feel excitement about Saka, because I feel Cesc Fabregas is a more relevant example. Where Bellerin showed glimpses of what he could become in those early days, Cesc was performing on a consistently high level from day one, and Saka is doing the same.
With Hector, one could see that although he had great potential, there were weak areas he needed to work on. When Fab broke through it was tough to find any real weaknesses. Even for someone so small and young, he wasn’t scared of getting stuck in with some tough tackling.
For me, it’s the same with Saka. I am struggling to find what his weaknesses are. Although he isn’t quite performing at the same levels as Cesc when he started his Arsenal career, Saka has proven to be very effective, and in a multitude of positions.
So, my excitement over Saka, really comes from his lack of weaknesses. He is versatile, gets tons of assists, scores, defends, works hard, has the right mentality, can cross, and is consistent. At just 18, he’s already become a key player. I always feel disappointed when he’s not starting, because I know it weakens us.
As much as I want to see him play every game, I fully understand why Arteta has been using him a bit more sparingly of late. One doesn’t want to burn out early on.
One could argue that Saka tailed off a bit towards the back end of last season. Most probably because of fatigue issues but I also feel it was because he was thrust into different positions.
Saka was in unbelievable form at LWB, but then quickly had to adjust to LW/RW positions. Even experienced quality players can struggle in a different position, so it was only natural Saka’s form would have dipped a little after leaving his LWB role. Despite the positional change, I still felt he was generally effective.
I also mentioned Saka’s attitude earlier. I love the fact that he isn’t scared to take on responsibility, and make things happen himself. We have seen this time and time again, with the victory over West Ham being another great example.
With the clock ticking down, and a lucky a draw on the cards, possible defeat coming (given our poor second half), Saka took it upon himself to drive at the Hammers defence, and make something happen. It was great vision to spot Ceballos, and a perfectly composed pass, giving Dani the easiest assist he’ll ever have. Yet again, Saka played a key role in another victory.
As I said earlier, we need to protect our star prospects, but for me, Saka is already a key player, and should be starting the majority of the time.
What are your thoughts on Saka, is he a world class player in the making? Has he already become a key player in the Arsenal line-up?