Firstly let’s look at what ‘versatile’ means:
“Capable of or adapted for turning easily from one to another of various tasks, fields of endeavour”
Arsène Wenger is a well-known for being a visionary and a game changer; we’ve all heard the stories about how he changed certain aspects of the team when he first arrived. But are we seeing a new change on the horizons?
Players have evolved over the years; they are bigger, faster, and stronger. The ‘New Breed’ is starting to come through and they can do it all. Koscielny is the complete defender; he simply has no flaws in his game. The ox has the world at his fingertips; striker, winger, attacking midfielder, central midfielder…it doesn’t matter really because he will excel anywhere, and be bloody world class whilst doing it. Song has adapted and become a complete midfielder. First a defensive midfielder, now an all-rounder that can now thread the needle with the best of them. Young Jack: first thought of as an attacking midfielder, now he can play defensive, central or attacking. The list goes on really but is this simply natural athleticism? Yeah that definitely has something to do with it! But the real person behind all this is Arsene.
He has made players become more versatile, they are not one dimensional, and this has brought with it countless positives:
- When injuries strike players can slip into the team seamlessly. Bugger Jack is down who is going to slip into the attacking midfielder role? That’s ok! Move ox there and chuck Podolski out on the wing, and bring Giroud on as the striker. This can happen in games also. Look how often Song has dropped into CB and we have not dropped an ounce of defensive quality.
- If a player is shut down it will not impact the team as much. For instance if someone sits on our attacking midfielder the weight can shift over to Arteta and Song to create chances. This is imperative because nullify a key player and teams often panic and shut down completely. Arsene says “not here, not in my town!”
- The team is more fluid like in nature. If Vermaelen surges forward, Song sits back. Santos moves forward Arteta slips to LB, and Song sits centrally protecting the back four. This leaves us with less chance of getting caught out on the counter.
Welcome to the New Breed of player, the COMPLETE Arsenal
Written by oz gunner