Ex-Egypt coach Bob Bradley has spoken out about new Arsenal signing Mohamed Elneny, letting the fans know exactly what they can expect from the 23-year-old midfielder, as reported by the Express.
We’re yet to see Mohamed Elneny feature for the club, despite the former FC Basel star making the bench for our goalless draw against Stoke City this past weekend. Arsenal fans are obviously hoping to get a glimpse of the Egyptian international against Chelsea this Sunday, but it’s unclear how soon Arsene Wenger will be willing to throw him in at the deep end.
Speaking to NBC (via the Express), Bradley explained to us exactly what we can expect to see from Elneny this weekend – or whenever he makes his Arsenal debut.
“He is an all-round midfielder capable of playing different roles,” Bradley said.
“He reads the game, he moves well and he can play a little bit deeper.
“He’s an all-round midfielder who can play deeper when needed, he can move forward and shoot from distance but he’s not just a guy who stays in there and breaks up plays.
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“It is an adjustment for anybody but I think that his experience of playing against Premier League teams in the Champions League and Europa League is going to help.
“When Elneny started he was still young, he was only 19, but you could see that he trained really well every day.
“In training he was improving technically. You could tell how he worked and how he wanted to get better. Little by little he became an important part of our team.
“His passing got sharper. He started to improve his ability with long passes. He was always a player who didn’t hesitate to shoot from distance and at that time it wasn’t always that he was scoring a lot, but you could see all these starting points.”
This sounds like exactly what we need, and his versatility would no doubt have been a major factor in Arsene Wenger’s transfer decision. Francis Coquelin is likely to remain our first choice defensive midfielder, but not only does Elneny look capable of filling in when needed, he also looks as though he could play alongside the Frenchman and give us a slightly more defensive platform to build from.
Regardless of his defensive qualities though, any Arsenal player needs to be technically sound. Wenger wouldn’t sign a player he didn’t believe suited our free flowing passing style, so Bradley’s analysis seems to really confirm that the manager made the right choice.
Arsenal transfer news
Nowadays everyone wants to see marquee signings with big price tags attached, but then when a quality player emerges elsewhere who didn’t cost an arm and a leg, we constantly hear ‘why didn’t we sign him?’.
We’re the ones who have taken a bit of a bargain gamble this January though, and it will be exciting to see whether he settles into the Premier League and proves Wenger’s gamble right.