Interesting reading around the web when people talk defensive midfielder.
‘We don’t play with a defensive midfielder’
People getting a little too caught up in literal meanings there because it obfuscates the fact Wenger hasn’t addressed a glaring squad issue. Simply put, we’re struggling with a player who can break up play, intercept at rapid speed and help the team break quicker. I always speak about him, but Jordan Henderson is the perfect case in point here. He’s huge, explosive over ten metres and he can pass… He might not be the most technically gifted, but he’s Premiership attribute heavy.
Arsenal don’t have that at the heart of their midfield. Arteta has never been a natural in that role. Flamini had those skills 5 years ago. Outside that we have no one.
… sorry Arsene, what did you say?
Abou is back?
He can play the holding role?
He’s like a what… a new signing?!
Problem solved guys and gals. The answer was sitting there all along!
So once again, Wenger demonstrate comical predictability in his thinking. Abou does indeed have many of the attributes I listed above. But here’s the thing, he’s had those attributes for 8 years. But he doesn’t have reliability or consistency. He’s an attack minded midfielder who personally told me his favoured position is the number 10 role. For me, there’s almost no point in punting on him for this position. The disappointment the whole team will feel when he breaks down after 3 games is probably more hassle than it’s worth.
‘Oh he’s so brave’
‘You have to give him a go’
‘He’s just like Patrick’
Sorry people, but he’s a waste of time. He’s broken. He’s 28 now. We’ve been playing the ‘maybe’ game for too long. Everyone is losing their mind over Stan taking a £3m dividend every year, this guy takes a £3.5m chunk for having about the same amount of involvement. When do you just call it a day? When do you start acting like a sports club and give up the rehab charity act? When do we stop ignoring flaws in our squad because there’s a Diaby there? When the hell does his contract expire?
The predictability of that statement from Wenger is as predictable as our tactical set up. He’s at best a squad player. Someone you wheel out when you’re chasing a game. You can’t rely on him, because regardless of potential, he’ll never maintain fitness. We needed a 21 year old Carvahlo to play that role. Why we didn’t just pay the fee. I mean, if he’s good enough, what does £22m matter? If he’s not good enough, why show an interest? If he’s not worth £22m, you have to wonder why we’re looking at him… because really, you need a £25m talent in that position. If you can get him cheaper, cool, but we should be looking at players like Carvahlo for ability to impact our squad. If he was capable of impacting it, you do wonder why we didn’t move. Matic looks a steal for Chelsea and he came from the same league.
Anyway, it is what it is… Diaby for a starting role on Saturday against Spurs anyone? Big game… big, big game!