One thing I look forward to every season is which player, who was previously doubted will step up to the plate and make himself undroppable. We tend to have this scenario every year and what I love is that it’s always in a position we need someone to step up in most.
The obvious most recent star who rose to prominence was Coquelin. A position we’ve needed to fill for years, it was truly a blessing to have him come and glue everything together.
13-14 – Ramsey
12-13 – Walcott
11-12 – Gibbs
10-11 – Sczezney
09-10 – Van Persie
08-09 – Song
07-08 – Adebayor
One thing they all had in common was that they were previously doubted and certainly not expected to be as influential as they became in these respective seasons. In Van Persie’s case, staying fit was a shock.
With Petr Cech coming in we are strengthening the team and he now takes us up to 5 world class players besides Mesut Ozil, Alexis Sanchez, Laurent Koscielny and Santi Cazorla. Arguably the most in the league and certainly the most we’ve had since The Invincibles.
We will be a force, no doubt but as I stated in my article a couple of weeks back I still feel there’s a couple more areas in the first XI that we need to improve to be joint favourites for the title. If we weren’t to add much else (I can only see another DM coming in) then I truly hope that someone makes a big step up either at CF or CB and we have options that fit the criteria.
Danny Welbeck or Calum Chambers are going to get my prediction for a big surprising season. Welbeck isn’t truly appreciated by us yet and Giroud being placed straight back into the team on his return to fitness may suggest that even Arsene isn’t fully convinced.
I really do hope that Danny can shine because he has the ideal attributes we require in attack but consistency wise he’s not up to scratch, he seems to also lack the natural instincts but a pre-season with Wenger could really be decisive in his development.
He’s shown glimpses earlier on in his Arsenal career and for England that he can be unstoppable upfront and I think he needs to build on that. In his defence he played at a time we were in shocking form but he combined well with Alexis, Ozil and Cazorla a lot last year.
His performance at Old Trafford showed he can be useful even on a bad day because his pressing and hunger still created the goal he eventually scored and that’s important.
If we don’t buy a new CF then I’d like for either he or Theo Walcott to step up next season because pace and mobility in attack is our identity, we have so much creative talent to utilise. If he could get maybe 20 goals next year (big ask I know) then we’d largely benefit as Alexis will also be getting more than that.
Central Defence is also a position I’m concerned about, I think I’ve shared my distaste for Per Mertesacker more than enough. As it stands he remains the safest partner for Laurent Koscielny, I hope Gabriel can break in next year but I’m still unsure about how he’d suit Laurent as a similar player.
Chambers though has really become a forgotten man since Swansea away and it hurts me because I was particularly impressed by him in his first few games centrally. Besiktas performance stands out as a Terry-esque showing from him, he battered Demba Ba and committed to everything.
I’m a bit biased here as I’ve always wanted a Lion-hearted English defender somewhere at the club and he may just become that man in a few years. Next season could be too soon for him to make an impact at Centre-Half but after Mertesacker he’s Koscielny’s most suitable partner on paper when you look at his style and strengths.
The sudden emerging superstar could be anybody to be honest, Sczezney is back to being doubted, some are open to the selling of Wilshere, Arteta has been more or less written off, Flamini is deemed useless (think that will remain tbh), people aren’t convinced Theo is the answer at CF, Debuchy is being forgotten too.
So there are loads of candidates to shock and become key fixtures in the side but I’m hopeful it’s either (preferably both) of the two I’ve written about above as I’m keen on those positions being improved.
Special mention also for a bright young talent that tends to emerge for us and become a first teamer with the most recent being Hector Bellerin. I think there’s a case for Chuba Akpom and Krystian Bielik to see more action next year, most especially if we don’t add more to their positions.
My Vote: Danny Welbeck