One of the real unanswered questions this season is why Arsenal, having looked so potent in the first half of the season with Alexis Sanchez up front, have moved away from that almost completely.
Whether results are a consequence of that is open for debate, but it’s not something Arsene Wenger has really explained.
The manager was asked about his role as a wide man at his press conference today, and admitted it takes something away from him as a goalscorer, but that it brings out more from him as a creator.
“I felt that he had a very good spell when he played up front,” he said. “When he plays on the flank, he’s more a provider than a goalscorer.
“At the moment he plays in a mixed role between the flank and the middle. He can always turn up with something special in the game.
“He has been remarkably efficient.”
Sanchez bagged an FA Cup semi-final winner for the second time in three seasons, scoring Arsenal’s second in the 2-1 over Man City, and Wenger believes he’s a play who really digs in when the occasion demands it.
“The difficulty of the game always makes him more focused,” he said.
“He starts sometimes and has problems to get into the game and during the game he becomes stronger and stronger and more determined. He has the individual quality to make the difference.
“I think he adapts to the difficulty. He tests and he finds the way himself during the game to become dangerous.”
Just offer him (Sanchez) the damn money.
We were affected by Alexis’ performances. I think most of the players during the bad patch just didn’t have much application. Whether that was down to confidence or motivation, I would never know but they all looked close to their levels against City as did Sanchez. I think I also understand Wenger’s rationale behind using Sanchez as both a creator and a goal threat. Ozil had not been his usual creative best and needed support in that otherwise, it probably could have been a lot worse.
Just shows how important Santi is to the way we play. for 2 seasons running now, we have lost him at a time when we were on form. After our game capitulates as he is the one that gets the best out our best players aka Ozil and Sanchez.
Possession machine, and incredible distributor, with a capability to dribble, and has the occasional penchant to score a nasty one. I don’t think there’s a more underrated player, but perhaps he also shines best in Wenger’s system.
Why is it that the unique players (TR7, Diaby, Wilshere…) who bring Wengerball to fruition end up injured so damn often?!
I would’ve loved Wenger yo keep playing Sanchez as the striker , its not a coincidence that arsenals best form coincided with Alexis and ozils when alexis was playing as the striker. Somehow santis injury affected the way we play so wenger changed sanchezs position to wing. But instead of changing the striker i would’ve loved if wenger work around something in the midfield change something there so that we can keep sanchez as yhe striker
I understand what your saying, though I do feel we needed someone like Sanchez to have more of the ball in the absence of Santi, he can carry the ball through players and is reasonably good at keeping the ball. Santi, by far is our best player in terms of retention and getting out of tight spots and creating the space needed to bring others into the game/attack. Ozil while similar is more in the role of creative distribution, spreads the play and can pick out that killer pass or assist. Unfortunately, Santi’s injury and Ozil’s loss of form have… Read more »
Not the crazy money we heard about couple of weeks ago. We need a bit of social ethics in football.
I’d like to see him up top again in the current system. Is Perez likely to be fit anytime soon? Hwo is Iwobi doing for the Under 23s? Maybe Ramsey can move up and play in his free dream role on the right with Ozil on left and Elneny can come back alongside Granit.
I totally agree, drop Giroud, push up Alexis, push up Ramsey and bring in Elneny.
Agreed.just want to see how Ramsey will do in a free role like he does with Wales
Problem with that is we would have to dead with Ramsey endlessly moaning about not being a winger and how he wants to play in the middle after every game.
Anyway Ramsey is far too wasteful upfront…. So no..
I’m also not convinced that Ramsey should be moved forward, but it’s worth pointing out that in the 3-4-3 Alexis and Ozil aren’t really wingers, more like old fashioned “inside forwards” (combination between dual number 10’s and wide forwards). So maybe Ramsey would like it there. Personally, if we want Alexis as CF again, I’d prefer to see Iwobi or Lucas come in in his current role.
Sanchez was moved wide after two losses in December and was tried back at 9 three times this year all for poor results (Draw and 2 Losses). A burst of form from Giroud helped the original decision and a drop of form and then the loss of Ozil was further reason. Poor team performances in Sanchez return to 9 just showed that the problem lay elsewhere, namely the center of the midfield and defense. The new system probably suits Sanchez better as a player in behind with freedom to create and also get into the box. With the Ox providing… Read more »
The best I can read from that is that we don’t have any providers/creators on the flank outside of Iwobi, who’s badly out of form (and his line into the first group was mainly out of necessity as no one else has what he has). It seems moving Sanchez back to LW was a necessity as he has striking options, but probably no other wide creative player outside of Ox and Iwobi. Ozil could do it on the left, but would certainly leave our Left WB exposed. If Wenger stays (and we have to assume he will), then other than… Read more »
Because Giroud scored that wonder goal and Wenger felt vindicated in purchasing him again. Great option off the bench but doesn’t have the legs to play a full game like Sanchez.
Did anyone else notice that we pretty much started on our run of shit form after an interview about how we were scoring so freely? I think after the Stoke game in December. We then lost to Everton and Man City in a row and haven’t really looked the same since.
Funny because I thought he created more at CF for Walcott, Iwobi and Ozil. Would move him back there sharpish, personally. But if we go for 3 at the back, his wide position does make sense