Arsenal - Does Arshavin Still Have a Role To Play?
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Does Arshavin Still Have a Role To Play?

There are reports coming out at the moment saying that Arsenal are struggling to find buyers for Andrei Arshavin as it seems Zenith have decided not to sign the Russian on a permanent basis. Obviously this proves a massive obstacle for Arsene Wenger and Arsenal as he is one of the players who we are looking to clear.

For me it seems as though the problem with Andrei's below par performances are three fold. Firstly he is played as a left winger when he isn't one. Secondly he doesn't have the stamina to track back and help the full back when he plays as a left winger and finally we, the fans have to take some responsibility for getting on his back when he under performs and severely denting his confidence. However, by making a slight tweak in the way we play, I think he could still prove to be an important member of the team.

As I said, Arshavin has never and will never be a left winger. His best performances during his career have been playing in the roaming number 10 role, so the first thing would be to play him there. Watching the Carling Cup game against Bolton last season where he did play in his favoured position I thought he had a good game, far better than most of his appearances particularly in the second half with a well taken goal and an assist.

The only thing with this though was that he had Frimpong and Coquelin playing behind him, two tough tackling defensive midfielders. As our first choice pairing is Song and Arteta/Wilshere, none of those you would describe as being tough tackling defensive players. However should this matter? No I don't think so, as long as the two behind him to be a bit more disciplined I don't see there being a problem whatsoever.

As it is looking increasingly unlikely Van Persie will stay, we will lose not only goals but also assists too and by playing Arshavin in his favoured position we would at least be able to supplement the loss of the assists from our Captain as well as chip in with a few goals as we know he can finish. Surely a front four of Podolski, Giroud, Arshavin and Walcott will strike fear in to any opposition defence and who knows we might even bring back the player who we signed in January 2009 again.

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

The Journalist

Writer: itsup4grabsnow Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Wednesday July 18 2012

Time: 9:01AM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
i think he is a quality player tell me if im wrong you gooners?
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18/07/2012 09:08:00

He's quality when he plays well, but when he doesn't he's actually more of a hinderance than a help, we'd do better with 10 players. But as IU4GN says, he's always been played out of position. If nobody wants to buy him then I think we should consider using him in his correct position when we need someone to fill in. He was brilliant in the Euros, it went some way to show he still has the skills.
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18/07/2012 09:17:00

He will probably go out on loan again, find him a club in Turkey or somewhere that will take him. I am a big fan of Arshavin - he is certainly not as big a flop as is being portrayed but he does not qualify as a success either. If Wenger is not going to use him in his preferred position, he is now too old to adapt to any other way of playing.
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18/07/2012 09:44:00

A good player can start from the left and still have an impact centrally. Pires and Ljungberg didn't have much problem doing it. Arshavin produced brilliant form from the left when he first signed, it didn't seem to be a problem then. I really think the whole "he's played out of position" thing is a total misnomer. It's like we're saying, "Oh he's lazy, so let's just put him somewhere where he can be as lazy as he likes. Oh and by the way, Arteta, Song, you need to increase your workload even more to cover for him." Changing the system of the whole team around a fitful 32 year old would be a retrograde step in my eyes.
Little Dutch
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18/07/2012 09:47:00

If he stays then we can most likely kiss Affelay goodbye. Unless Walcott leaves. Wenger will never play him as a number 10 so he will have to show he can adjust. But maybe, just maybe the fact that nobody has shown any interest in him will be a swift kick up the backside and we'll get a fully focused Arshavin. We will definitely be a better team for it.
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18/07/2012 10:10:00

Infairness Pires and Ljungberg were part of an extra special squad the likes of which we may not see again. They could have done what ever they liked and we'd have had the talent to make it happen.
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18/07/2012 10:10:00

Maybe, but then consider Pires and Ljungberg played in a 4-4-2, they had less cover than Arshavin is afforded and still made it work. Arshavin has that level of talent, just not the level of application and he's far too old to learn now.
Little Dutch
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18/07/2012 10:15:00

The problem with Arshavin is that he doesn't really have the mentality to play for a top-level club. He wants (and needs) a team built around him but can't produce the work rate consistently enough to merit a place. Best role at Arsenal is as an impact sub, but I'd rather he just went and we gave Miyaichi his place.
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18/07/2012 10:29:00

Why stay with perennial losers??
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18/07/2012 11:38:00

Because it keeps him away from clubs with witless boring tw*ts for fans?
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18/07/2012 14:18:00

c'mon rock we've heard enough of this bitter little troll, swing low sweet ban hammer!
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18/07/2012 14:24:00

I think we should keep him - although not a starter he could be an asset if we get injuries....
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18/07/2012 15:34:00

I am not so sure that at 32 and having made almost zero premier league impact thus far,that he would expect to have any TOP side built around him. I also do agree that he was played out of position - something that I am afraid to say happens a bit too often for my liking - I just hope that AW doesn't decide the Ox will be a right winger for the next three seasons.
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18/07/2012 16:04:00

See, I understand that Arsh would rather play off the centre-forward - who wouldn't, it's a 100% creative role with little in the way of defensive duties - but that really doesn't explain his form. Without going into the whole 'a good player can play in any position' argument, the fact that last year he couldn't play a five yard pass or trap a bag of sand is not down to the position he was played, it has to be something else. Also, don't think he was that good in the Euros... did he do owt?
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18/07/2012 16:26:00

Regarding Arshavin he'll only remain if we can't get rid, just the worst levels of fitness in a premier league player I've seen since big fat tommy 'ketchup' huddlestone used to get chalk on his boots running to all perimeters of the centre circle, shocking really knowing how anal Wenger is in terms of diet and fitness that this was allowed to slide unchecked, Wengers' language skills obviously don't extend to Russian as otherwise he'd know it was chocolate bars not muesli bars that the chubby meerkat was wolfing on the tourbus.
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18/07/2012 17:08:00

You crack me up, Niko. Seriously, I know I have seen him stoop to catch his breath a few times after making an effort at "tracking back"(yes, he does track back) but I am not sure his fitness level is a problem. So, why else did he play the full 90 in games for his country? I think he is weighed down by the expectations of some demanding fans and tries too hard sometimes; which will be my explanation for the "down to something else" comment made by Damiano_Tommassi above.
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18/07/2012 21:00:00

Personally, I would want him off so he can have a new lease of life in another club side. I don't think he would improve much, beyond what we have all come to expect. Here's a thought. Why not hand him the captain's arm band? The trend suggests he will have one big season and ask to leave us in the summer after Zenith suddenly discover he shares the same DNA as the core of the team. Lol.
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18/07/2012 21:09:00

Something completely off topic guys, is it possible, that Wenger was aware of Rvp's Juventus romance, and then proceeded to muddy the water by highlighting the obvious monetary motivation behind the agitation for a move away? Could it be that Rvp really wants a better longer contract and whilst he would gladly move abroad, he has issues with staying on in the Premiership? Could his statement have been motivated by anger with the club and Wenger for taking the moral high ground from him in the battle for the heart and mind of the average fans? It's uncharacteristic for Wenger to acquire two quality strikers with the speed and despatch that has attended the purchase of Poldy and Giroud, and it suggests that they were already planning for just the scenario we are now dealing with. Just a thought guys
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18/07/2012 21:21:00

To be fair he had shed a fair bit of excess poundage having ot seen him for a while then watching him at the euros but everything else had the whiff of deja vu about him, ie one excellent opening game which he had obviously been saving himself for two years now followed by two games of exhausted relative anonymity. Wish him the best wherever he goes as he is a character but the good ship Arsenal has for too long been a passenger liner and it's time to get back to being a f***ing destroyer.
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18/07/2012 21:28:00

deledudu - not sure the exact rationale but i agree that it's completely unlike Wenger and AFC to buy two forwards when they already had RvP. Perhaps they just knew after that meeting in March that he was definitely off and just made their move for Giroud. If he had agreed at that meeting to a new deal, perhaps Giroud wouldn't be with us?
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18/07/2012 21:54:00

Some angle there, Deledudu. Some things, we will never know. I agree, though that Robin's written outburst was, quite frankly, out of character and did look to be a reaction to a perceived threat; or an attempt to elicit a response or move by the club (and fans) to make his stay at the club an impossible option. I fear that whatever is the true position, we may never know.
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18/07/2012 22:05:00

Hmmm....before the RVP debacle I would say get rid, now with the possible loss of RVP I think we should keep hold of him. I just think with the loss of RVP and possible (no, definite) injuries, we will need all the creative talent we can get, no matter how fat and lazy.
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18/07/2012 22:23:00

Wow. Didn't think this would get published on the main site as just posted this in the forum so thanks Rocky! In regards to LD's post regarding a good player can play well centrally even if he is played on the wing, I just think that if he plays on the left wing that when it comes to defending, he has to do a lot more running to attack and also cover Gibbs or Santos and knackers himself out and appears lazier due to that than if he were to play centrally and we would get a lot more out of him. Agreed he isn't a workhorse, however with RVP likely to leave, a tweak of formation maybe needed anyway,so it wouldn't be something just for Andrei. However it probably won't need any tweaking at all as I think he feels at home playing just off the front man and Song and Arteta will play exactly the same anyway! Finally thanks for all your comments :)
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18/07/2012 22:55:00

He's a lazy, little thing whose contribution is so infinitesimally small he no longer ranks as an Arsenal player, to me anyway.
Scotch Eggs Rule
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19/07/2012 13:03:00

Why stay with perennial losers? @Mq or he could play for a club like yours with c***s for fans. Easy choice really.
Scotch Eggs Rule
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19/07/2012 13:04:00


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