Arsene Wenger has indeed gone ‘internal’ for his side’s need for a physical midfield player. Addressing the media after the Gunners elimination from the Capital One Cup, Wenger revealed his desire in using Abou Diaby as Arsenal’s defensive midfielder in the not so distant future.
Diaby is a real beast of a player and he does make a difference to the side when he is playing. But given his injury history you can’t really rely on him for six months never mind a full season. Now I am not being critical of him, I would be glad if he remains injury free. His fitness is such that it would be so negligent on us to bank on him for such a vital position in the side.
On the flip side, Diaby has the perfect mix for that ball playing monstrous defensive midfielder we have been craving all these years. His long legs and imposing physique allow him to rob the ball off opponents and make those Viera’s que runs into the box.
Arsene Wenger told Arsenal.com:
I try to transform it, yes because I feel because he was injured for a long time and he has the physical potential to win the challenges, to face the game will be easier for him than to play with his back to goal with the injuries he had.
I tried to develop him in a deeper role, I think he can do it. He can be very interesting because he has all the attributes to do it. After, he must love it as well because he’s more of an offensive-minded player.
Yes playing him in a defensive midfield would put him in a less dangerous position where he would not have to deal with the likes of anti footballers like John Terry, Dan Smith, Ryan Shawcross. ..
His qualities are unique and with a fit Diaby in the team we are a different proposition, hark back to your mind some two years earlier, we travelled to Anfield and won 2-0. Podolski and Santi scored that day but Diaby stole the show. He was irresistible and Arsenal hadn’t conceded a goal in their opening three games. He was set for a big season then but it didn’t turn out that well. Let’s hope he stays fit this time around, a man of his mental resolve deserves atleast a run in the side.