All entertaining sides have a spine of core players on which the team bases it’s effectiveness on. The Invincibles and Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona side had that. Its also a trait we saw in Jurgen Klopp’s Dortmund side who secured back to back Bundesliga success. Now it all seems to be coming together for Arsenal, who seem to be building something special in midfield. But to eclipse the achievements of the aforementioned trio, Arsene needs to explore new possibilities.
To produce attacking football of the highest quality, I think there needs to be a formation change from the current 4-2-3-1 we adopt, to a more fluid 4-3-1-2 system. This will afford the team to include the duo of Aaron Ramsey, Jack Wilshere and Mesut Ozil in their best positions, without it affecting the need to purchase a mobile game reader to screen the back four. Win win.
More so, this system would be extremely fluid. With a three man pivot, we finally get the chance to see Aaron and Jack strut their stuff in central midfield without holding back, with a more defensive minded player in between them to cover ground and anticipate opposition attacks. That’s not all.
Mesut, acting as the “one” in this formation would have the liberty to roam left or right (which he absolutely loves to do) while still remaining at the core of every move the team makes. His ability to work the channels on the wings would also afford the duo of Jack and Aaron to make their respective on and off the ball forays. How exciting for the team and devastating for opponents.
Then there’s the small matter of the two forwards. With the high possibility of bringing in at least one attacker this summer and the imminent return of Joel Campbell, this is where the spine tingles most. The system should also finally see the team get the best out of Theo Walcott, Olivier Giroud and Lukas Podolski, who all love to be partnered in attack. Remember they have an embarrassment of creativity behind them.
Then there’s the bench. I feel extremely sorry for Santi as a change to this system means he might not hold down a regular spot in the starting XI but the 29-year-old will get games, nonetheless. His versatility and craft from the bench will be priceless for the side and affords us the unusual luxury of bringing on a world class player to add another dimension to our attack. The occasional change to a 4-3-2-1 system in some games, would also bring the Spaniard back to the helm of affairs, where he’ll be able to partner Mesut.
Another explosive option from the bench would be Alex Oxlade Chamberlain, who’ll be directly competing with Jack and Aaron for a spot in central midfield. This keeps the trio on their toes, whichever way you view it. He could also occasionally debutize for Ozil, which I feel is an interesting prospect for different reasons.
Other potential impact players will be Serge Gnabry and Joel Campbell who can both play as the “one” behind the striker, as well as the “two” furthest players in attack. Looks like that persistent issue of depth could well be a thing of the past. Make the change Arsene!
Finally, Jack’s inclusion in this XI would be timely and re-assuring for the England International. Like he stated few days ago, he’ll be 23 next year and is entering a crucial phase of his career. He was shuffled in and out of the team last year owing to competition and niggling injuries but still managed to provide his best tally of goals and assists for the team. I genuinely believe we’ll see a more matured Wilshere next term, springing up consistent performances similar to his excellent 2010/2011 campaign.
So there you have it. We all complained about the team’s predictability at some point last season but perhaps a formation change is all we need to correct that, and ensure we get the best out of what Arsene deems our core players.
And of course you can’t rule out the possibility of a few additions to the side can you?
A young Nigerian columnist who loves to spot a hidden link. There’s no such thing as coincidence in football. Massive fan of The Arsenal and a little obsessed with tactics.