What to do in midfield: push, buy or marry?
I like our midfield options when all are fit, yet could we, should we, strengthen in this area? I am interested in your views.
I guess it depends to some extent whether Arteta wants to play the midfield triangle pointing forwards or backwards, one solid DM type or one all orchestrating nr10 type?
I like us to be able to play both Martin and Emile in the team. These boys are growing and growing and we should get more from them again next season.
Partey when fit and in his groove is top class. The problem is he is injury prone. XhakA, our only 250 games man, is solid and luckily seldom gets injured. I prefer him playing deep rather than pushed up, but Arteta has been doing the latter recently.
Wherever the Swiss clockwork plays, a fully fit combo of Xhaka and Partey is a very good central duo. Back up is a bit of an issue, though. Elneny is a solid option but injury to Granit had/has us weakened, at least organisationally. The lining seems to go out of the team then.
So what happened to Sambi Lokonga? What is Mikel’s plan with this promising Belgian? He featured very little this calendar year. Is that why Arteta appears to be looking for (a) Tielemans? And where would this enigmatic Belgian play? Next to Partey or Xhaka, or in front of them instead?
And is Tielemans really an improvement to what we have and will not be in the way of Emile and Martin’s development?
My view is that if Sambi needs more development then we need to buy a player who can replace both Granit and Thomas without too much loss in quality. But don’t spend too much money here and use it instead for a second quality CF, LF type of player.
Finally, is any of our returning midfield loan players worthy of a squad place next season? Any youngsters?