Van Persie, not Fabregas, the key to Arsenal’s season

photo by: KasschEveryone knows Arsenal play beautiful passing football. But you can’t reliably pass the ball into the net. Over the last few years they have often lacked that cutting edge in front of goal and as a result have sputtered in the league.

Arsenal have loads of pacy, technically gifted players in the likes of Arshavin, Nasri, Walcott, and Rosicky. They are the prototypical Arsenal players and Fabregas is the perfect orchestrator. But what Arsenal have lacked since Henry is the guy who can get a goal when the beautiful game breaks down in the driving rain at Wigan in January. Adebaeyor was no doubt a good player for Arsenal, but he often squandered chance after chance or failed to strike when the gunners most needed it. Of course that is a generalization, Adebayor scored a lot of goals, but he lacked the same venom of Henry and he rarely manufactured goals out of nothing or against the run of play. Coming into this year it Arsenal looked more vulnerable on this front with the loss of Adebayor – and that could be the case – but Van Persie has emerged as one of the top strikers in the league and a true replacement for Henry.

Van Persie has scored a number of goals out of nothing – against Fulham and Spurs for instance – often scoring the crucial first goal that allows Arsenal to counterattack in space leading to an onslaught. He has 7 goals in 10 Premier league matches Football365 argued that the total neglect of Van Persie by Premier League commentators is due to typical jingoistic English bias. That is true to an extent, but it is also due to the fact that Van Persie has often not been used as a prototypical number 9 until this year, as he was often deployed in a wider role. Still the fact that he has received so little attention is mind boggling.

The big fear for Arsenal is that Van Persie suffers an injury, as he has been quite injury prone throughout his career. Without him Arsenal are very very thin up top. Eduardo looks more as a goal poaching second striker rather than a #9 and while Bendtner could play that role he just isn’t quite good enough. On the other hand, while an injury to Fabregas would be a devastating loss, there is enough in reserve for Arsenal for cover him. That’s not the case for Van Persie. How Van Persie goes, so goes the Gunners this season.

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2 Responses

  1. […] wrote earlier that Van Persie, not Fabregas, was the key to Arsenal’s season. We shall see if that pans out. But ever since Henry left […]

  2. Fabregas is one of the best players ever! He is so young yet so talented. He should be winning much more awards than he already is. At this pace, by the time he’s in his early 30’s he’ll definitely be crowned the best footballer.

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