Arsenal’s defensive midfielder problem by Peter D
Arsenal have been busy adding to our attacking options this far in the transfer window with the acquisition of Fabio Vieira and Marquinhos, and the ongoing speculation surrounding Jesus and Raphinha. While this is very exciting and the increase in forward options would be greatly welcomed, it overlooks one position that is a glaring hole in our squad, a defensive midfielder.
Every successful team requires that player who quietly sits in the hole in front of the defence reading the play and then pouncing to break up opposition attacks. The best defensive midfielders are almost unseen, like our former ‘invisible wall’ Gilberto, a player who for me belongs in the pantheon of Arsenal legends. In the Premier League at the minute, Kante, Fabinho and Rodri are the players who perform this thankless task with best efficiency. But who can Arsenal get?
Ideally they would need somebody with experience. Preferably Premier League experience, and experience in other leagues would also be an asset. A seasoned international who has had to overcome setbacks and grow his game. Preferably somebody with a price tag to suit our budget, rather than the extortionate sums being asked for the likes of Declan Rice. I might just have the man for the role – Lucas Torreira!
If we can recall Torreira’s performances when he first arrived then it may not seem like a crazy solution. In his first season Torre,ira was outstanding. Tigerish in the tackle, available for the out ball and efficient with his passing. He was serenaded by the Gunners faithful with a tune reserved exclusively for our old talisman Patrick Vieira because he was that good. Then Emery (for some insane reason) tred to turn him into an attacking midfielder. From that point his Arsenal career went pear-shaped. The ensuing toxic atmosphere in the ground and in the dressing room seemed to affect him adversely and his form and the team’s form plummeted.
He seems to have rebuilt his confidence in Fiorentina, where he played his favourite role of doing the dirty work well. After their derisory offer of £6 million it would make good sense to hold onto him and see if we can return him to the quality that he displayed on his arrival. What do you Gooners think?
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