Anyone who has watched England play over the last few years will agree that it is in desperate need of a more potent strike-force. It has been dire up-front for a long time, with Rooney just not able to deal with the pressure being put onto him when it matters most (and the Dutch suffer the same with his grey-haired strike partner).
A lot has been said about Wenger wanting to build a strong core of British players at Arsenal. I still believe he picks the players on their talents and value to the team rather than the origin of their passports; but of course there is something to say for finding, moulding and readying for the very top of a number of players from these beautiful shores. It could well become Arsene’s biggest legacy in the long term both for country and club…. well, other than the Invincibles of course.
And with Jack, Rambo, Gibbs, Chambers, Ox, Theo and now Welbeck – all young and now playing together in a proper team that plays proper football – something beautifully, predominantly British is about to be created at Arsenal.
I have a good feeling about signing Welbeck, but must admit I did not see this one coming. At Arsenal, his role as ‘holding striker’ will allow him to miss chances and to be able to get over it; and in return, this will build his confidence and form the basis for realising the potential he has within him. Wenger’s philosophy is based on a multi-dimensional goal-threat, rather than a narrow, super-sharp arrow at the very front. The paradox being that the better the CF is the more the other players – often very astute finishers themselves – decide to channel the attacks through to him rather than take responsibility themselves. And over time, this will make us over-dependent on him and one-dimensional as well.
And Welbeck’s role will be about a lot more than his lethality in front of goal. We needed a nr.2 to Giroud who has enough in him to surpass him eventually. I rate Giroud highly, but there is room for improvement and Welbeck will get the time to make the holding CF position his. And in the process he will be helped by Alexis, Giroud, Pod, Theo, Ozil, and many more to share the goal scoring load.
I am convinced that when everybody is fit we will mostly play with TAO up-front: Theo, Alexis and Ollie, but I am also getting excited about the prospect of playing Walcott, Ox and Welbeck – WOW! – up-front, with Ozil, Jack and/or Ramsey, or even Alexis…. to feet them quality balls to really hurt the opposition.
Would that not be an exciting alternative? Can you think of a trio of attackers with more thrust, speed and menace than the WOW-boys?!
I admit that all three are still a work in progress, although Theo is furthest of them all (and let’s hope the big injury he suffered has not put him back too much). Ox. like Jack, will have to move it up to the next level now, and of course Welbeck is not the finished article either. But they all have youth on their side and are surrounded by experienced players they can learn from constantly. Maybe we will even see Dennis or Thierry join the coaching staff any time soon…..
One day they will be leading the line between them for England, with Jack feeding them from behind and together creating the WOW factor again – putting this proud nation back at the level where it belongs. It is about time, and that is coming from a Dutchman! :P
Written by: TotalArsenal.