There’s no denying, the full-back position has been an area of concern for Arsenal this season. Kieran Tierney was brought in to challenge Sead Kolasinac, but both of them have been injured for the majority of the season until now. This has meant that Bukayo Saka has been required to fill the void and fill that void he has done, expertly I must add.
However, the plan for next season seems obvious. Bukayo Saka should return to his more natural position on the wing and Tierney should be integrated into the starting XI at left-back again. After all, this would only strengthen the Gunners as a defensive unit because Tierney is much better at defending than Saka is.
Tierney appeared in a few matches for the Gunners before his injury and the Coronavirus stoppage. Whenever he did play, he was somewhat of a cult hero. He shown a terrific ability to get in the final third and cause mayhem, often beating his opponent with his dribbling ability. His creative ability is also second to none, so he would be the ideal person to overlap Bukayo Saka or Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on the left.
Mikel Arteta has spoken high praise of him, judging him from what he’s seen in training I’m sure. According to Metro, the Spanish boss described Tierney as “special” and thought that he would bring a lot to the starting XI next season.
“I am really looking forward to working with him and giving him the opportunity to play. His attitude, his commitment, his willingness it’s incredible. I think he’s going to bring something special to us.”– Mikel Arteta on Kieran Tierney (quote via Metro)
The left-back position seems to be one that crops up quite frequently when looking at Arsenal transfer news. However, perhaps this could be a sign that Arteta is putting a lot of his trust into Tierney and perhaps he doesn’t feel the need to sign a full-back in this window.
Cover image: Kieran Clarke, 2014