3 reasons why Ilkay Gundogan is perfect for Arsenal
2. Positional knowledge
Gundogan knows the left eight role better than anyone in world football right now, so much so that Pep trusts him explicitly in every big game they play.
He knows how to score and create, but he also knows how to defend space, cover ground without burning himself out and take up clever positions to create more attacking room for his side to play in.
I never advocate for signing ageing players, but İlkay Gündoğan would be a shrewd addition for #Arsenal on a free. He knows the left 8 role inside out, is a leader who wants to be a coach and he’s averaged 47 games a season for the last 5 years. A wise head in a young squad. #afc pic.twitter.com/OOIIccneRx
— Adam Keys (@adamkeys_) January 14, 2023
In seven years at City, Gundogan has predominantly played against low blocks and has become an expert in stretching and working teams to pull them out of position and create space early in games to break them down and open the game.
While there are other left-eights out there, few have his positional understanding, or the experience in Arsenal’s playing style, and against opponents who will defend in such a deep, disciplined way.
Arsenal have struggled at times against deep-lying defences this season, and having an intelligent technician of that ilk with experience of how to break them down could be key.
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