We’re going to BREEZE through the news today because there’s a real lack of it.
BEN WHITE was spotted sneaking out of Colney yesterday. The English centre back, who wears white suits, and would definitely make a pass at your mum, looks set to join in a deal that is pretty damn mind-blowing for a club that was so skint last year they were growing vegetables on pitch 6 to stock the canteen.
So are we hyped for Ben? Absolutely. I’ve been breathing in some elite propaganda from around the internet and I’m all in on this lad.
Firstly, my uncle is a huge Leeds fan, he said the player had no real weaknesses, bar aerially, but he’s not shocking. ‘He’s a Rolls Royce of a defender, son’ is what he said.
Mr Bielsa won the Championship with the centre back playing nearly every game, conceding 35 goals across 46 games. Pretty decent when you consider how Leeds play.
More propaganda? Foden and Saka were asked who’d impressed them the most at training camp, they both picked Ben White. He wasn’t even in the full squad, so he must have been doing something right. How about Sergio Ramos IDing the player when he was on loan at Newport?
How about some data to inject right into the HYPE part of your brain? Chun Hang penned this piece over at Medium. I’ll steal one of his graphs.
Ben White isn’t just a good passer that can move the ball out the back with precision under pressure. He’s basically a midfielder that prefers defending.
‘Perhaps the real reason White is sought after by many is due to his ability on the ball. The defender exudes a sense of calmness as he strides down the pitch with the ball from box to box. His pace alongside his ball control has makes him untouchable at times, with defenders struggling to put a foot through him as he dribbles with the ball. His ball progression abilities help the Seagulls get the entire team up the pitch, instantly creating overloads which causes teams problems. Last season, White completed 0.69 dribbles per90, which is only second to his team-mate Dan Burn (0.74 per90), who played the majority of the season as a left wingback.’
David Luiz had this skill that was much more effective when he was younger, but imagine Arsenal having a centre back that can has progressive pass numbers up there with Harry McG, combined with the ability to break the lines on his own by moving at speed with tight control? That is a bag of unpredictability we don’t have at the moment. Arteta and Edu appear to be adding players all over the pitch that move the ball faster and give the team more options. Very good stuff.
We still need to move on other positions, the CAM is absolutely key. The ITK that dropped the Madders news is now backtracking that Arsenal might prefer to spend more money elsewhere, so he might not land at Arsenal. Makes sense, it’s what most of us suspected. Martin Odegaard for £35m seems much better value at this point and the stories coming out of Spain suggest the player love Madrid but he feels better at Arsenal.
I also want to clarify the idea that Odegaard can’t pick up positions out wide. He picked up 6 goals and 6 assists there during his spell at Vitesse. I’m pretty sure he’s said that he likes to operate there because he can attack more. Anyway, point being, there’s more flex in his game than people give credit.
No movement on a backup keeper, our right-backs are all still here, Xhaka still hasn’t moved… it’s very, very slow out there. Hard to be too savage on Edu, you can’t complain about the lack of sales if he’s telling clubs to f*ck off with their derisory bids. There’s not a lot of players moving at the moment, we’re either going to have a slow summer in general, or things will heat up as club look to deal with the savage deflationary pressures in the game. I suspect one of the things the club are cognizant of is our bloated squad and what that did to the club at the start of last summer… better to keep Xhaka than sign his replacement and have him benched. We need to have a lean squad come the end of the window so everyone feels they have a chance to play. Bloated positions combined with big names without squad numbers nearly ended Arteta last time around, there will be no such errors in this system this time… which is why I have big doubts on us spending on a right-back as things stand.
Anyway… let’s see if there’s big news coming.
Let’s see if there’s a Friday news drop. Until then, check out the podcast OR the video.