60 second pundit
Should Diaby or Arteta anchor the Arsenal midfield?
Despite the excitement over the forward play likely to be on show at the Emirates this season following the signings of Santi Cazorla, Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud, there is still a nagging concern about who will play the defensive midfield role at Arsenal. Although not a specialist, Alex Song had been doing a decent job before he departed to Barcelona. In the absence of a specialist, the Daily Mirror’s John Cross expects Arsène Wenger to play Abou Diaby [pictured] either on his own or with Mikel Arteta in front of the defence. But he doubts this is ideal, especially with what is likely to be a highly physical clash with Stoke to come on Sunday.
“This is the midfield worry for me,” say John. I do think Diaby is probably seen at the moment as the most likely person to anchor that midfield. Maybe Wenger sees the opportunity to play two deeper lying players, so you’ve got Diaby and Arteta. I think Arteta was one of Arsenal’s best players last season, he had a magnificent season. But he’s not your classic anchorman in that midfield, although he certainly does a job there.
“We’ll know a lot more about this team, the spirit and whether it’s physically strong enough, whether their dynamism is stronger than opposing teams [after the Stoke game]. I do think it’ll be an acid test for this Arsenal team.”
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