50 Goals And Counting: It Is Time People Start Giving This £31.5m Arsenal Man More Credit

Aaron Ramsey

Why Aaron Ramsey Deserves More Praise Than What He Is Currently Receiving

Aaron Ramsey continues to be a controversial figure at Arsenal. When he scored Arsenal’s winner against Swansea last weekend, the goal had a bigger significance since it was the Welshman’s 50th strike in a Gunners shirt. Reaching that landmark is not easy for a central midfielder, and it’s about time fans gave him more credit.

Interestingly, only 10 other players have scored 50 goals for Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal. Of Course, names like Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp, Robin van Persie and Alexis Sanchez will obviously grace that list but in terms of midfielders, there’s just Freddie Ljungberg, Robert Pires and Cesc Fabregas. What makes Ramsey’s achievement even better is that a good number of Fabregas’ goals came from penalties, whereas Ramsey has actually never taken a penalty for the Gunners.

According to Squawka, Ramsey’s 9 league appearances this season have yielded 25 attempts on goal – a figure that is more than Arsenal’s first-choice centre-forward, Alexandre Lacazette. While the fans were excited about the Frenchman’s performances, many failed to take note of Ramsey’s relentless contributions. He has had his ups and downs over the course of his Arsenal tenure so far, but the player has become a mainstay.

It may have taken Ramsey 9 years to reach the 50-goal mark but he fought through injuries and fitness concerns. His best season was probably the 2013-14 one, when he scored 16 times despite a major thigh injury ruling him out for several months. In some respects, that campaign could be deemed responsible for the way expectations sky-rocketed, and when the player failed to live up to those standards, fans and critics branded him a failure.

However, Ramsey has faced anything but failure. The Welshman deserves to be celebrated, not condemned. He has shown loyalty and quality – two extremely rare traits in footballers of the modern era. With his current deal due to expire in 2019, Arsenal should make a move to tie him down to a new contract. It is an absolute priority instead of sweating over the future of Alexis Sanchez.

Going forward, there will also be the question of the captaincy to consider. With Per Mertesacker set to retire at the end of the season, and Laurent Koscielny ageing with time, Ramsey is likely to be a front-runner in the race to succeed the skipper.

At 26, there’s still so much more to come from the £31.5m rated Ramsey. If he stays with Arsenal, it’s not impossible to suggest he could eventually double his tally and become a fully-fledged centurion. If Sanchez and Mesut Ozil leave, Wenger will need to build his teams around exisiting stars, and Ramsey is likely to become a pivotal figure.

Written by Meghna Sengupta

Editor @ Soccersouls. Lives in Chennai, and a Manchester United fan.
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