Arsenal Player of the Season: Attack atones for shaky defence
Despite acquiring the services of defensive coach Steve Bould at the start of this campaign, the red half of North London have still struggled to stop their opponents scoring goals. Whilst they have been more solid, they arguably do have their vibrant attack to thank for maintaining their place as Champions League (very) hopefuls. Their star performers have been the injury-hit Jack Wilshere, the rampant Theo Walcott and the Spanish creator Santi Cazorla.
Wunderkind Englishman Wilshere still makes the shortlist despite missing many weeks of the season through injury because of his impact on the Arsenal team whenever he does get on the field. Few can deny that the Gunners play better, and look more dangerous going forward, when the 21 year old sits in the heart of their midfield. Although he hasn’t contributed as many goals as he would have liked, his overall impression on the Arsenal team is great and there’s no wonder that Arsenal fans, when asked, so vehemently deny that he will ever leave the club.
Pacy winger Walcott has also had a great season in Arsenal colours, with 18 goals in all competitions. On his day, he can terrorise absolutely any defence and he loves nothing more than running with the ball at his feet. However, something that was lacking in previous years had been his scoring-boots; this season he has been Arsenal’s top scorer (in all competitions) and looks like a truly potent goal threat. He is a major part of how Arsenal attack.
Creative midfielder Santi Cazorla has impressed in his debut season in the Barclays Premier League. The 28 year-old Spaniard has been an inspired signing from the canny Arsene Wenger and it hasn’t taken him long to become a fan favourite at the Emirates. Along with the two players above, he is a crucial cog in the Arsenal attacking machine and deserves equal credit for the fact that Arsenal are the league’s equal-second top scorers.
Whilst this season cannot yet be regarded as a success until top 4 is completely wrapped up, current form suggests that Arsenal are in pole position for another place in Europe’s elite next season. This is in no small way due to the attacking potency of Messrs Cazorla, Wilshere and particularly Walcott.
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