Jul 12

Red Detective’s view: van Persie, Podolski and Giroud

The comments from Robin van Persie recently about his reasons for declining to renew his contract with Arsenal will have many consequences.

It will hurt Arsenal’s fragile prestige, which had been in recovery since getting into the Champions League in third place,  and signing some of Europe’s super middleweight strikers Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud. It continues the emerging pattern that Arsenal can develop but not retain a world class talent for long. It cements a precedent of Arsenal being a choice mid-step club for young players keen to move on after a few years. Perhaps the age bracket of Podolski, Giroud, Mertesacker, Arteta, Santos might be a reaction against this – all 25 years plus and less inclined or likely to be a target for a Manchester City when they peak. Wenger grows tired of his projects being cherry-picked from his grip and used to supplement teams with powerful financial backers.

For years Wenger has worked with Clichy ironing out his concentration issues, improving his crossing, changing his positioning tendencies – all for him to be taken at a point where, in theory at the very least, he should have reached something near his peak. The same with van Persie. Wenger has changed from a flaky number 10 into a more robust and reliable super striker of deadly efficiency. A comparatively short period of exceptional form against an extended career of injuries and he has decided to leave. More interestingly, is the fact that there is a change among Arsenal fans – they succumb to the modern power balance, accept and expect such big players to leave eventually.

The likely departure of van Persie will cause ripples in the tactical strategy of the team. Losing the Dutchman, so adept at orchestrating the beginning of a counter attack with a sweeping left foot pass to the far flank or opening space from a defender with a slick move. Furthermore, no Premier League player ran further than him last season. Arsenal are losing the hardest working, best finishing, most individual talent the country has seen since Thierry Henry in 2004. What they are replacing that with is a more balanced product. Podolski works extremely well on the left side of a 4-3-3. He works as hard as any winger-forward I have seen and will perform his role effectively. Podolski’s best form out wide seems to come out when he works with a strong front man that allows him to run off him. Giroud is a more agile version of Mario Gomez, albeit a less polished version of what the Bayern frontman offers. But, they are both muscular, broad shouldered, stronger with their back to goal and quick thinking near goal.

Henry and van Persie have ideas, a vision, exceptional feet. Without him the team remaining has a creative deficit – whether it will be Arteta and Wilshere that fill that role by playing further forward, I suspect not. Currently being linked is Stevan Jovetic, who has massive ability. His ego and intensity intrigues me. I think Wenger will replace a special player with another mercurial talent.

Follow me on Twitter: @Detective82

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10 Responses to “Red Detective’s view: van Persie, Podolski and Giroud”

  1. Ramy says:

    Good read.
    Stevan Jovetic is a very, very special player. He would give us technical and creative qualities we require upfront. We were too dependent on van Persie not only for goals, but for the creative touch too. Jovetic has the ability to actually replace him. I mean, he would be a like for like replacement unlike other strikers we are linked with such as Lewandowski or Llorente. But with what Fiorentina are asking I can’t see it happening, unfortunately.

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  2. Alex says:

    Arsenal use to be a big and talented team so let the bord spend the cash and bring in more players for the fans

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  3. Alan says:

    great article and i fully agree. i would have loved to see RvP slotted into the creative cesc role, behind giroud and next to podolski, pulling the creative strings. if that is not to be the case it is crucial that the position is filled properly. that lack of creative spark behind RvP was one of the things that was severely missing last year. if RvP did not create and finish the chances we were basically lost offensively when teams sat back.

    the stat about RvP logging more miles than any other EPL player last year is astounding, if true. GREAT WORK!

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  4. Afghan Gunner says:

    Although a big player… and a super-talented one…. Van persie would have been nothing without all the service that he got from Arsenal midfield and left wing…. Theo made almost 15 goals from him and so did the attacking midfield trio….. Song made around 4 of them and arteta 2… I doubt he will be as prolific elsewhere as he was in Arsenal….

    Gr8 talent…. but a greedy one…. we will forget his 48 goals in comeing seasons… when other players step up to the plate… but we Gunners will never ever forget how he degraded and betrayed his fans, fellow team mates and the world’s most decent person… Wenger…

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  5. Dax Muhamad says:

    Exit RVP, Enter sadness. Top writeup and opinion.

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  6. gooner_girl says:

    If Arsenal are to continue to b a feeder club, and recent buys of mature players make that less likely, it will not be RVPs doing. Neither did he insult the fans.. unlike na$ri. Sadly we have to move on from this great player, but we can afford a little optimism with our new additions. Let’s hope we keep Theo for his assists at least.

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  7. i need lastest news

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  8. billy jaxon says:

    The latest news is RVP is going to JUVE….

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  9. Habdulquadry says:

    Up gunners 4 life,we need more fantastic players.

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  10. krap says:

    Nice article…
    I do feel the need that Arsenal should try and keep RVP. If the news that Afellay is offered to Arsenal is true, we should buy him and increase the depth of the squad.
    I guess we may have to shift from a conventional 4-3-3 to a more of 4-2-3-1. This way we may have various options available. Giroud can play upfront with L.Podolski/Gervinho/Walcott/Chamberlin supporting him. Wilshere/Arteta/Song/Ramsey can be in the 2 man defensive. If RVP leaves, may be we need one more striker assuming Chamakh and Bendtner both of them also are leaving this summer. If Afellay comes in it can make path for Arshavin to move out. Also we have Rosicky, Diaby (hopefully he will be fit this season), Coquelin as back-ups in the mid-field positions.
    At the back if Fabianski leaves, we need one more keeper or we may stick with Manone.
    Also I guess we should move for Bosingwa (may be 1 or 2 year contract?) as he is available for free. last season we did not have a proper back-up when Jenkinson and Sagna got injured. Moreover, if one of the LB’s are injured Sagna can play on the left as well as he has done previously.

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