Arsenal Target Mathieu Debuchy Under The Microscope: Everything You Should Know About The Newcastle Man

Although there are plenty of marauding right backs playing right now, there are few who can combine the ability to stay solid and resolute in defence with their more attacking instincts. The 28-year-old Frenchman Mathieu Debuchy is one of the few who is not solid at the back, but also more than handy going forward. Since signing for Newcastle in 2013, he has been one of their key performers and was also one of the few shining lights in an otherwise dismal season last time out. With Arsenal set to snap up the Frenchman, let us take a look why Arsenal are so interested in him and whether he is what they need right now.

Career history

Born in 1985 in Northern France, Debuchy began his footballing career at the tender age of 7. He joined his hometown club Union Sportive Frétin in 1992 and spent a year there before joining Lille. After spending a decade in the club’s youth system, Debuchy finally got his big break in the 2003/04 season and made his professional debut on 31 January 2004 in a league match against Metz.

Debuchy had to wait until the 2005/06 season to become a regular in the starting XI. But in March 2006, he suffered an injury that ruled him out for six months and forced him to miss the UEFA U-21 European Championships, He returned at the end of the year and continued playing for Lille cementing his status in the side and also earning a national call-up before too long. He made 300 appearances for the club in 10 seasons before leaving for Newcastle in January 2013.

Style of Play

Debuchy is a good old-fashioned full back, who is solid at the back and can go forward if and when necessary. Although he is only 5’10, the full back is well built for the physical game and is more than handy both on the ground and in the air. Although he has been playing as a right back in his entire professional career, the fact that he started out as a midfielder means that he can fill into a central midfield role if the situation demands it. Debuchy is a rare breed in the world of modern full backs, as he is concerned more with his defensive duties and has the positional awareness and defensive discipline to hold his own at the back.

Strengths

One of Debuchy’s biggest strengths is his aerial ability. Although he isn’t one of the tallest full backs, his ability in the air is nothing short of extraordinary. Last season, the Frenchman won 70% of his aerial duels, a number even many centre backs fail to come close to. Another reason why he is so sought after is his concentration levels. One of the main reasons why he wins so many tackles and makes so many interceptions and clearances is because he is aware of what is around at all times, something most modern full backs aren’t accustomed to.

Not only is solid at the back, his attacking instincts shouldn’t be taken for lightly. Although he doesn’t score or assist too many goals, he is a constant option on the right flank. His ability to provide a telling through ball and whip in delicious crosses is another reason why he is an attacking threat when on the ball.

Weaknesses

Although Debuchy has no real weaknesses both going forward and at the back, there is still one thing that he can certainly work on. Whether it is as a result of the way his side plays or is just how he plays, Debuchy’s passing numbers are nothing to write home about. One of the quintessential needs of any Arsenal player is to be comfortable on the ball and that is something that the 28-year-old must work on if he is shine at Arsenal.

Possible destinations

Arsenal are on the verge of completing a deal for the right back, who has surprisingly not caught the eye of too many other clubs. Whether it is due to his age or due to existing talent at the top European clubs, the Gunners are within touching distance of securing a ready-made replacement for Bacary Sagna.

Verdict

Solid at the back and a constant threat going forward, Debuchy is every manager’s ideal full back. Although he is 28, he still has plenty in his tank and will provide a welcome addition to Arsenal, a side who were desperately in need of a ready-made replacement for the departed Bacary Sagna. Not only will he provide some much need stability at the back, Debuchy has shown that he can hold his own in attack and that is something that will certainly please most Arsenal fans.

Written by Dinesh V

Co-founder of Soccersouls. Living a start-up life 24/7
Follow @dineshintwit

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