What positions will Emery prioritise in the transfer window?


#81

If we get rid of Mustafi we’ll have to, because Sokratis isn’t going to be enough, after losing Kos to injury as well.

We’ll have to see what happens with Cech.
Maybe Emery can get more out of him when he has organised the defence into an actual defensive unit, rather than a shambles.


#82

Wing play is actually so important, I think the lack of true penetration and presence out wide is another reason why our teams under Wenger served up the cancerball.

Too many #10s shoved out wide trying to the #10 role there just served up endless sideways passes in front of defences, who never looked like being stretched by a proper winger and we’re happy enough to let our bunch of shysters pass around in front of them all day.

You look at ALL successful teams these days, and they place huge emphasis on wing play.

The team that put in by far the most crosses into the box (low or high) are reigning 3 in a row European champions Real Madrid.

Crosses from the likes of Marcelo, Carvajal, Isco and Ronaldo are crucial to how they break teams down and they certainly wouldn’t have won three CLs in a row without this wing play.

Look at Man City, with Sane, Sterling and KdB putting in crosses and stretching teams out wide, Liverpool with Salah, Mane and Robertson, Roma using Perotti to pump balls in for Dzeko, France at the world cup with Mbappe, etc etc.

Good wing play is essential in this new era, as we move past tiki taka football. Whether that’s through great attacking full backs that cross the ball perfectly (low or high - I’d love to see our team use more pinpoint low crosses, they can be quite a potent attacking weapon) or fantastic dribbling wingers, it needs to be employed if Arsenal are to improve and do anything in future.


#83

I agree.
With Wenger there were too many players that weren’t specialist wingers that were pushed out wide and were ineffective because it wasn’t their natural position.
I never understood why Wenger did that, rather than buying a proper winger.

Like you say, other clubs that play with good wide players, like Man City and Liverpool, have very good attacking teams and, in fact, Wenger did as well when we were successful.


#84

Yes, a proper winger please. The only player not given a chance who could contribute there is Lucas. He has a wicked cross and has played that position. He could be backup/rotation there, but we so need a top class player there.


#85

Could this be the position where Emery really makes a statement in the transfer market?
Surely Torreira can’t be our biggest signing of the window.


#86

I’m not sure this holds weight. For one in his last years Wenger was playing with wingers and it was worse, see Theo, Gervinho, Podolski, Chamberlain, Alexis Sanchez, Welbeck and Iwobi. Post Cesc he went more direct and the football wasn’t as good. I suppose you can point to Rosicky but he salvaged more than one of our seasons playing there.

The other thing is those sides attacking play is not built around crosses, it’s more with 3 interchanging forwards with loads of movement for the most part. Our front 3 players simply haven’t been upto those standards. Could we do with upgrading on Welbz/Perez/Iwobi, yes but we could upgrade other positions too.


#87

With the exception of Sanchez the quality of players you have mentioned aren’t up to standard for a top club, that would explain largely why it hasn’t worked.


#88

And Theo and Podolski aren’t/weren’t wingers. I could be engaging in semantics, because yes they did play out wide for most of their career, but for me they simply aren’t wingers.


#89

Thanks for posting those points, both of you, was going to say the same thing.

Wenger playing Ox (who wanted to play central) Theo (more of a wide forward and somebody who wanted to be a striker) Poldi (who really wasn’t that good as a winger, and again a wide forward) Rosicky (#10) Arshavin (#10, although I admit this worked well in 2009 when he was giving us that wing play, but still wasn’t ideal) Nasri (#10) etc etc is not a genuine attempt at the kind of wing play I talked about, using the kind of players I described.

The last genuine winger we seemed to have that would stretch defenses and pop in some nice crosses was Hleb.

Gervinho was an attempt but he was shit. I am talking about hopefully getting wingers that aren’t shit.

If you look, Real Madrid’s gameplan places quite a bit of importance on crossing. Just as much as anything else as they have various ways of bamboozling the opposition.

Their versatility in the ways they attack and break teams down is why they have been so successful, as they seem to have a way/find a way vs any team they come up against.


#90

So Theo is ‘a wide forward who wanted to play striker’ but CR7 is a winger who ‘put’s in crosses’.

And Arshavin, Nasri and Rosicky aren’t wingers either because they’re playmakers but somehow Isco is an example of wing play and not a playmaker too?

Now obviously we don’t have as good players as Real Madrid but I don’t see how those tactically are any different. They just have better players.


#91

Look, you may object to my examples but surely you agree wing play is important?


#92

I’m not sure I agree, because a traditional winger as a player who hugs the touchline and whips in crosses time and again. Good teams have always had some playmakers out wide, from 80s Liverpool, to Barce’s tica taca to the current Real with Isco. And I doubt anyone would complain if we had Isco out wide either.

Early Wengerball with Overmars, Pires and Lungberg consisted of wingers becoming inside forwards that cut inside to link up, play 1-2s and score at a higher rate than an average winger would. But then again Pires was more playmaker than inside forward himself.

Then you had players like CR7 and for us Alexis who took that inside forward role to another level so much so that systems were built around them.

For me City/Liverpool are playing with inside forwards that interchange more so than wingers but obviously there is cross over in both positions.

People talk about the tactics of Emirates Arsenal but in truth it’s the economics of Emirates Arsenal. We never invested big money in centre forwards or wingers because those were the most expensive positions. Every one post invincibles was a bargain buy and it so happened more bargains were to be had with the playmakers who were underappreciated see Cesc free, Rosicky 6m, Arshavin 16m, Cazorla 12m, RVP 2m and RVP wasn’t considered a proper number 9 until late into his career either.


#93

I’d say that I hate to be pedantic, but I clearly don’t. Cesc wasn’t a post Invincibles signing, he was signed in 2003.


#94

Bargain buying was Arsenal policy before 2013. Pires came in for 6 million and Ljungberg for something like 2-3 million.

Arshavin was a club record at the time btw.