Initial signs encouraging as Mavropanos adapts to life at Arsenal

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He may yet to have played for the first-team, but Konstantinos Mavropanos has still made a significant impact since joining Arsenal earlier this month.

It was initially anticipated that the powerful centre-back would be heading out on loan, but, after impressing in training, he was retained and added to Arsenal’s first-team squad.

While he has benefitted from training with the senior squad, Mavropanos’ most notable involvement so far has been at U23 level, where he has featured twice so far against high-profile opponents in Manchester United and Bayern Munich.

Arsenal won both fixtures and Mavropanos emerged from both games with much credit as he demonstrated both his composure in possession and his defensive attributes.

Mavropanos has slotted in on the left side of the back three for the U23s and it immediately became apparent that his passing is one of his strong suits, with the prospect frequently playing inch-perfect balls into the path of his team-mates.

The Greek youngster is also strong aerially and especially relished the physical battle that ensued against Bayern Munich this week as he helped Arsenal to withstand the pressure of difficult opponents.

In addition, there have been a couple of occasions when Mavropanos has demonstrated that he is capable of striking the ball extremely hard, and it surely won’t be too long until he scores his first goal for the Gunners at youth level.

Despite the undoubted quality that he possesses, however, it seems Mavropanos isn’t set for immediate involvement in the first-team setup, despite being on the bench for the first leg of the Carabao Cup semi-final against Chelsea.

With several centre-backs ahead of him, it appears rather unlikely that Mavropanos will make any competitive appearances for the club this campaign barring an injury crisis.

Next season opportunities should start to open up for him with Per Mertesacker retiring, and Mavropanos will hope to play a major part in Arsenal’s pre-season preparations.

Until he features in a competitive first-team game, it is difficult to say with any surety that Mavropanos will be able to succeed at Arsenal in the long term.

He has certainly made an instant impact for the U23s, however, and will look to continue doing so until the end of the campaign before hopefully becoming increasingly involved with the first-team next season.

Jeorge Bird is the author of www.arsenalyouth.wordpress.com Follow him on Twitter @jeorgebird

 

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Putney
Putney

This is a difficult position for Wenger. Our best three is definitely Nacho – Musti – Lolo, but with the laters fitness issues and form we definitely need another strong player there. If we get Evans for the spot, what does that mean for the development and future of Chambers, Holding and Mavropanos?

Trez
Trez

One of Chambers or Holding will get sold

Alexit
Alexit

Simple, don’t buy Evans!

Lucas Sam
Lucas Sam

Also Bielik and Sheaf

santori
santori

No Evans.

He’s not even quality and he is old and on the wane. Why replace with someone with more injury issues possibly coming up shortly?

His name is only in the trades bc his agent is fishing for a move and as per usual being linked to us makes his stock look better.

Then gullible Arsenal fans as always pick it up. Anything new and shiny even if its actually old and average or a reject that is low on confidence is better for the Arsenal fan too lazy to logically weigh benefits. No offense intended of course.;)

santori
santori

Good god evans no.

Alexit
Alexit

This speculation about Evans is utter bullshit. But it came out too frequent of late. Perhaps his agent is building up stories to get Evans into top 6 teams. We don’t need Another Silvestre/Gallas.

Clins
Clins

How is Mustafa our good player ?? He is a disaster . Every time he plays he makes odd mistakes. I’ve never seen any other player that makes as much mistake as him in recent years for arsenal. Monreal is our best defender by far and koscielny is not at his self best but he still he one of our best defender

Mein Bergkampf

We aren’t great at raising our own CB’s, Miguel looked decent, Nortdveit could’ve made it, Hoyte almost did. And Djourou was pretty shite. Here’s to hoping Mavropanos has a bit more luck and aptitude.

Chippys chip
Chippys chip

Stepanovs, squillaci, kallstrom, silvestre to name but a few…not raised but panic buys. Has beens and youth? So much cheaper.

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

Miquel was never good. Full of errors at academy level.
Nortdveit is a strange one. Had all the tools but never got a look in. I would say the fact he got to mid-level of Germany showed he had the raw attributes, if he had better coaching. Not sure why he left without a shot.
Hoyte (either of them) were never that good.
Djourou got “Arsenaled” in that he was never a CB, but a DM and as a CB always looks and played like a DM (so constantly out of position and ball-watching in dangerous areas). Did it to that kid who’s now at Newcastle at 22, and we’re currently doing it to Shaef and Bielik.

Andy Mack
Andy Mack

Nordtveit was really poor at West ham last season (my brother tells me).

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

I’m talking about the youth version, not the current one. He’s become an average player but it doesn’t be necessarily mean he was always a player without potential.

He had a lot of potential, but for numerous reasons didn’t fulfil it. My point is that his baseline attributes at least got him to the too divisions. Usually our academy players who don’t fulfil their potential and rely on their baseline attributes plunge down the football leagues after leaving us.

Andy Mack
Andy Mack

Yes he had a lot of potential.

Araj
Araj

Which part of the list does Bartley fall in?
Captained the FA Youth Cup winning team. Never got any real game time for the senior side.

Faisal Narrage
Faisal Narrage

He’s another one. Can’t put my finger on. Clearly his baseline potential was decent enough to get him to the PL. I think he just wasn’t technical enough to be an Arsenal CB.

Whynot
Whynot

Funnily enough i met nordveidt the other day

Merlin\'s Panini
Merlin\'s Panini

Err… Hoyte is a full back and Nordtveit a defensive midfielder. If you want to point out another one who didn’t make it there is always Senderos.

Jackbut
Jackbut

mavro what? lol

Onenil
Onenil

It’s his name. What’s the joke?

Good luck to the lad.

Mr November
Mr November

Take your disrespect somewhere else please.

Arun
Arun

You surely must be JackBUTT!
Gosh, some ppl…

Fuhgedaboudit
Fuhgedaboudit

It may be off topic related to Mavropanos, but I just read Buffon is not planning on retiring next year. Lets correct a horrible mistake and buy back Szczesny. We absolutely need him here. Cech is beyond his top point, way beyond, and we have no one coming up behind him that is near ready. We finally got rid of the disruptor on the team, let’s bring back a top notch goalie who loves Arsenal and wants to desperately play for Arsenal.

420Gonerblayzeit
420Gonerblayzeit

I think that would be great, but at this point Juve would ask for a fortune. They got him for dirt cheap, to find a replacement for Buffon of the same caliber as Sz would be insane money. It’s a good idea, but cost prohibitive methinks.

santori
santori

Poor choice by Wenger to let him go.

Szsc should be competing with the older Cech. He potentially has more ability to command his box than Ospina.

Instead the gaffer sells him.

Like he sells Coquelin admittedly not the best midfielder in the world but a steady tackler and one better than Elneny (Except in the Egyptian’s case he is looking a handy third player in a back3)

We now end up short in midfield with maybe the prospect of Mhkitaryan rolling into the base eventually albeit there are no guarantees to end of season if this may be a success.

The other poor case of mollycoddling was Wenger pandering to the Ox.

In truth he should have promoted Gnabry when he was itching for first team action and at the same time forced Ox to put pen to paper or ship out. In the end he stuck to the Ox (out of position) and we eventually lost both players!

Go figure.

SantiSandler
SantiSandler

Popular idea but too late for that. Juve aren’t dumb enough to sell for him peanuts like we were

gibir
gibir

How many good game Szczesny had here??
C’mon, Premier league is not suits him.
Let’s hope the Dortmund guy scouts a good gk.

420Gonerblayzeit
420Gonerblayzeit

I’d like to see more of this from Arsenal. Nowadays it’s excellent business to take gambles on young promising players for a few million and see how they do.

Holding was only a couple million and he appears to have a career in the top flight ahead of him (even if it isn’t at Arsenal). The Jeff has shown flashes of promise, he may still break into the first team. Bielik was also another one of these who while further away from the first team, by all accounts is getting closer.

These types of transfers are almost all upside. The best case scenario is that you uncover a real gem and with proper training can become a starting player. The worst case scenario is you move them on for close to what they were bought for or even a bit more.

Chippys chip
Chippys chip

I’ll stick swiss tony in me pocket and fetch squillaci from the van. Cos if you want defenders, then you dont ask wenger. George Graham he’s your man. Cos where they all come from its a mystery. Its like replacing cashley cole with gael clichy. But heres the one thats driving me beserk. How is arsene wenger still in work. Lalala lalalalala. Loving yeovil fans treatment of $anche$

MrSymes
MrSymes

Too subtle for the downvoters. The people of Peckham applaud you.

gee
gee

er Toure, Cambell, Kos, Per maybe Gallas

Chippys chip
Chippys chip

In 20 years? And no, not gallas

Fuhgedaboudit
Fuhgedaboudit

Added to the first post, just checked, Szczesny has 7 clean sheets and Buffon has 5 and Buffon has played more matches than Szczesny. Damn, I am so bugged by the Szczesny sale to Juventus. Don’t know what the hell AW was thinking. Looks like it was just a grudge because of the cigarette incident after the Southampton game. Stupid stupid.

James
James

Because Buffon plays in big games who are more likely to score and Szc is played in the easy games where the pay steam roll over the little teams. Look beyond the basic stats mate

Fuhgedaboudit
Fuhgedaboudit

Juventus will also play their weaker players in front of Szczesny, so it should basically balance out.

caligunner
caligunner

No thats not necessarily true. Unless there is a CL match involved but there hasn’t been any since November I believe. For last 2 months where he’s gotten most of his matches he’s been there with the frist X1 in alot of those matches

Andy Mack
Andy Mack

Are all their ‘stronger’ (1st choice) players in need of rest games like Buffon is? I think not…

santori
santori

Wenger continuously makes the same error.

Case in point Gabriel. Not the world’s best defender but an improved one last season and an experienced player by then.

Instead he sells him and banks on two young players for back up (and here’s where its important) BEFORE they delivered on promise.

Now he adds another young player into the mix. I suppose he is banking on law of averages that surely 1 out of 3 is better odds.

Also a mistake (for the player), retaining Per when in truth he should have retired into academy after FA cup. It was again penny pinching as Wenger retained Alexis in the hope goals will out weigh the need for a more permanent solution at the back with experience (and cost from market).

Araj
Araj

Not sure what consistent error you saw in all these separate cases.
For me the consistent error is the mix. A good squad is balances age wise, talent wise and ability wise. Our squad hasn’t been that and the defense right now is clearly unbalanced.
There is 1 CB in the prime of his career, one just at the end of his prime. Then 2 younger ones (now 3) and 1 who is totally done. And the abilities dont match either since they are all quite similar in their weaknesses.
Ideally it would have been 2 first choice, 2 younger ones coming through (for a 4 at the back). Chambers and Holding are in something like what Ramsey-Wilshere have been throughout their careers so far. Same aged, same positions players who cant play together.

Safe Hands
Safe Hands

I think one of the problems in recent years has been that we’ve been a bit too reliant on young defenders. I don’t mean that in some cases it hasn’t worked really well (Bellerin etc) but CB’s generally don’t develop until a little later than other players. Sending 2 of Holding, Chambers and Mavropanos on loan next year would make sense to me (unless we only get Europa league next season). Get an established CB in now and in 18 months time we’ll have Holding, Chambers, and mavro ready to step up when koscielny and nacho get too old.

Araj
Araj

What would a loan achieve? Chambers had a pretty good spell at Middlesborough. Did it significantly improve how the manager sees him? He was almost gone in the summer, then we kept him but dont play him.
Would personally suggest that both Holding and Chambers need to get enough game time this year that the club can make a long term decision on them in the summer. One of them must go.

Andy Mack
Andy Mack

Chambers was injured for a fair part of the season (so far).

Safe Hands
Safe Hands

My point was that neither will be close to the finished article for at least a couple of years, maybe more. A loan achieves a huge amount because they’re good enough to play every week at a mid table premier league club. This will develop them far more than 15-20 games maximum a season at Arsenal and will really toughen them up (something our club doesn’t do very well). It is far too early to write either of them off.

Bob\'s Mexican Cousin
Bob\'s Mexican Cousin

LANS

renwahh
renwahh

This kid has what it takes, and we have a lot of aging defenders.. get him on the pitch ASAP!

Easy tiger
Easy tiger

Happy days. Aubemiang deal is off. Fuck Wenger and the rest of these cunts….

COYG
COYG

Funny how easily the media can manipulate the simple minded.

Cygans parting
Cygans parting

I can already hear his name being chanted from the north bank to the tune of “Rock me Amadeus” by Falco!!! Mavropanos Mavropanos, Mavropanos, Mavropanos Mavropanos, Mavropanos, Mavropanos Mavropanos ooh ooh ooh Mavropanos……… I’ll get my jacket.

para
para

Mavropanos does look a composed player, saw him in the U23 match, hope he can force his way into 1st team with his quality.

Db412
Db412

Cool

Zyrth
Zyrth

Incoming ton of unpronounceable names due to the Sven effect! I love that man!

karl
karl

He looks like part of the Kolasinac family

Jhendry
Jhendry

I sometimes think that seniority gets in the way of our promising youngsters. I understand the experience element but if the more senior back up options aren’t performing, and he is, then surely he should be given a chance sooner rather than later?

Renwahh
Renwahh

I love how someone is mad enough to down vote this and my comment. Clearly we need bigger, faster and more composed with the ball. Quite often Wenger is too nostalgic to make the hard decisions but Kos has lost a yard from years of cleaning up, Mustafi isn’t bad, but holding and Chambers could probably learn a thing or two from “the Greek kid”

MrSymes
MrSymes

“Mavropanos has demonstrated that he is capable of striking the ball extremely hard”

This pleases me.

cultured determination
cultured determination

we dont need Evans. we have 4 youngsters in chambers, holding, mavro, bielik to partner 1 senior player in mustafi/kos/monreal in CD. with a proper DM who can protect them and transit play from defence to midfield more effectively than a CD, we should be quite ok if we are more compact.