Variety is the spice of life

Theo Walcott has been very vocal in his belief that he should play a central striker role in Arsene Wenger’s 4-3-3 system.

The England international has even cited it as one of the reasons that he has been hesitant in signing a contract extension with Arsenal but that is simply a smokescreen as we all know that is all down to money.

I digress. Walcott could very possibly play as a central striker in the 4-3-3 system but maybe it is time for Wenger to change the whole formation altogether.

When the 4-3-3 works it is one of the finest free flowing sights in football and Arsenal have been the pioneers in the Premier League as everybody gushes over their ‘beautiful football’. Unfortunately, beautiful football hasn’t translated into trophies so a change in system would be a wise move.

A return to the 4-4-2 could be the right option and Wenger could utilise Walcott in the central striker role alongside Oliver Giroud. Wenger would lose wide options if he used it, though, because in order for the formation to work he would need four across the midfield. 

The 4-3-3 gives Wenger the chance to embrace the ‘total football’ style of play with the full backs overlapping which provides numerous options for width. It works best if you have the right front three, too, and Lukasz Podolski on the left side of the that trio is not maximizing the German’s talents. Following the FC Schalke game midweek, Podolski even said that he didn’t feel comfortable out on the left and would favour a move to a more central position.

For me, the best option would be a diamond 4-4-2. Mikel Arteta would play at the bottom of the diamond, just in front of the back four and doing what he has done all season and keep play ticking with his industrial performances. When available, deploy Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Theo Walcott on the wings and Santi Cazorla in the advanced position just behind the front two. 

I recognise that this leaves no space for Jack Wilshere but Cazorla can also play out on the wing and move Wilshere inside. As an Arsenal fan, I understand Wenger’s dedication to his system and philosophy but I would welcome a little shake up, especially when you take their recent form into consideration.

Jerry van wav

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