One of the most pleasing aspects of the season so far has to be the return of Abou Diaby.
Ever since arriving in North London back in 2006 from Auxerre, the big man has been dealt injury blow after blow which has really held up his Gunners career.
It’s amazing to think that he has been with the side for over six years now and yet we have barely seen him in action.
He has already played more minutes in the current Premier League campaign than he did for the entire duration of last year.
But his return from injury has reminded us of what Arsene Wenger has been saying all along, and that is that he can be a big player for Arsenal.
Like many of you, I still expected and though that Wenger would need to buy a defensive midfielder because Diaby is not the new Patrick Vieira.
He may be French and resemble the Gunners legend physically, but that’s where is ends.
Diaby doesn’t mind doing the dirty work and getting a foot into the tackle, but he is far too agile and skillful to be a holding midfielder.
He isn’t Alex Song either and, as the player has said himself, is more like Manchester City’s Yaya Toure.
Toure has been one of City’s best players over the past number of years and has had so much to offer the club.
Not only is he big and robust but he also has no problem in charging forward and certainly knows where the goal is.
We have seen the same from Diaby this season, and he was without doubt the man of the match for me in the win at Liverpool.
He almost seems to be the complete box-to-box midfielder and can do it all.
We’ve still got Jack Wilshere to return as well, but along with Santi Cazorla, Arteta, Tomas Rosicky and Aaron Ramsey among others, Arsenal are shaping up to having a pretty formidable midfield.
If Diaby continues to play the way he is, I’d expect him to be a near-permanent fixture in the middle of the park this season alongside Cazorla and Arteta/Wilshere.
He has certainly given us a glimpse of what he can do so far, but only time will tell if he can do it for the rest of the year.
And at the age of 26, this could be the defining season of Abou Diaby.