It’s a Shame Pablo Mari Isn’t Right Footed
Two full Premier League outings on the bounce and Pablo Mari has impressed. By no means an elite central defender and among the best in the division, this short spell in the first team has to be praised.
For someone so slow, the aggression he shows off the ball to press those in front is well-calculated. It’s brave, too, since make those mistakes and your lack of pace will catch you out. It’s the sign of intelligent defending.
In the air there are few qualms about his capabilities. His tall frame is a welcome addition in either box, especially since Arsenal recently find themselves clinging on to results in the latter stages of matches.
When Gabriel recovers from COVID-19 and is available to play, he’ll obviously (rightly) take up his usual left centre-back slot. That’s unfortunate as, on this form, a right footed Mari would be a welcome addition alongside him for his decent distribution and effective reading of play.
We’re only two full Premier League matches into seeing Mari play to this standard so there is no telling yet how long it can be maintained, but it’s nice to see solid cover in an area of the pitch for a change.