Gooners sign new centre-back…six year ago

WTTGT Writer: Tashan Deniran-Alleyne

Not by any of the current centre-backs, not by youngsters in Kyle Bartley or Ignasi Miquel, but by Alex Song.

How many of you noticed a missing key player from my article last week? When I compared the 03/04 ‘Invincibles’ squad to the current 11/12 squad.

Yes, that player was the blonde Cameroonian, and it was intentional that I left him out. I chose to leave him out of the current midfield crop because I feel he could be the answer to Arsenal’s ongoing problem in defence.

It must not be forgotten that Arsène Wenger has stated in the past that he views Song as centre-back and that he will end up there in the future – could the future be this season? Though, he has played his two pre-season games in his usual defensive midfield role but with more games coming up, don’t be surprised to see play centre-back at some stage. In fact he did play there during the Carling Cup runs in the 07/08 and 08/09 seasons and did look suitably comfortable there.

De-Ja-Vu is another reason why I feel he could end up in that position. Take a look at the summer before the 03/04 season, when Wenger was on the lookout for a centre-back to partner Sol Campbell – ring any bells? Instead of dipping in to his pockets and splashing the cash on a new arrival, he promptly converted midfielder, Kolo Toure into a centre-back – I’m sure you see the theme that is occurring here. Who is to say he won’t do the same thing with Alex this season?

A final reason is the demand amongst fans for Wenger to revert back to 4-4-2, which served the club so well in the past. Should he agree with the fans and change the formation then instead of five across the midfield, it will be four, and therefore one will be the unlucky odd one out.

Now assuming Arsène will play with two strikers up top with two wingers, and with Jack Wilshere’s place pretty secure, then that leaves the remaining spot being awarded to an attack minded player like a Samir Nasri or Aaron Ramsey. With Alex Song more defensive minded and being regarded as an important first-team member, then the only compatible position for him in a 4-4-2 would be at the heart of the defence.

There is no question that Arsène needs to strengthen his defence and has been linked with defenders such as Gary Cahill, Chris Samba and Phil Jagielka, but we all know how stubborn he can be.

The prospect of seeing Alex Song playing centre-back should not be ruled out just yet considering he fits all the requirements that Wenger looks for in a player. He’s young, athletic, versatile, and has Premier League experience. Most importantly, he provides the cheaper option!

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3 Responses to Gooners sign new centre-back…six year ago

  1. fsuclaypool@yahoo.com July 22, 2011 at 1:34 pm #

    Quite the opposite, Wenger has said repeatedly in the last few years that Song is destined for the midfield…which is a shame b/c while he IS a pretty good holding mid, his virtually talentless knack for going forward is going to be his, and I fear OUR undoing. Song's gotta be told to stop going forward! But he's not moving back to CB….Sorry, author.

  2. AidanGooner July 22, 2011 at 2:43 pm #

    Why would you play him at centre back? I dont agree at all. I know our CBs are sub-standard apart from Vermaelen but we are highly vulnerable to crosses and set-pieces, and Song is frankly rubbish in the air. Also we have no one else to play DM apart from Frimpong who is unproven, but agree with MattinFlorida that Song needs to be more disciplined in his defensive role and not get carried away going forward. We definitely need to sign a new top draw centre back, there is no escaping that fact- it is a glaring weakness. Squilaci is not good enough, he is too slow for one thing. Djourou & Koscielny have so much to learn positioning wise, in addition to needing to add physical strength. I think it is pretty clear that Manchester Utd, Manchester City, Chelsea, Tottenham, Everton and Stoke all have better centre-backs than we do. How can we challenge for the title when that's the case? We also only have one top draw striker, unlike the teams who finished above us last year- and that needs sorting too. Fingers crossed Wenger will fix it, but I question the persons' sanity who still has unwavering belief in Wenger.

  3. tuneric July 22, 2011 at 3:09 pm #

    no no no i do not agree,you are just trying to make up for your mistake.i do not agree with you at all

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