Arsenal have been fragile in defensive midfield as they lack the dynamism that a natural, aggressive defensive midfielder offers. Captain Mikel Arteta plays the role of the holding midfielder, ideally partnering Ramsey. Arteta is not a natural defensive midfielder, but he is rather the deep seated player who keeps the passes rolling. While he does a good job in holding possession, he isn’t quite as good when the team loses possession, because he lacks the energy, speed, strength as well as defensive techniques to stop top teams’ attacking midfielders. Arsenal require top players who can do Arteta’s current job of passing continuously and keeping possession, but also someone who can ably defend against counter attacks and match the top teams as well. Here are three players who fit the bill.
Morgan Schneiderlin – Southampton
Schneiderlin was heavily rumored to be seeking a transfer away from Southampton in the summer, but the club held on to him in rather unceremonious conditions and it paid off as he is the part of a high flying Saints team that sits second in the table. But, we know Southampton are not genuine title contenders as the chances are there that soon the bigger teams would start getting their form and adapt to their fixtures, exactly like last season.
Schneiderlin is a great short passer, strong physically and has good mobility, while he is also well adept at tackling and intercepting. He is an overall package and a good defensive midfielder. He has been decisive in the big games as well and has always been an important part of the Saints squad. He also made it into the French team for the World Cup.
He has all the qualities that Wenger sees in a defensive midfielder. He is not solely the destroyer as he can involve himself in great passing moves while he definitely has the destroyer element to match his offensive attributes. Plus, he has the added benefit of being French, which would help him connect better with Arsene Wenger.
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