Arsenal’s Oxlade-Chamberlain learning from Alves

Image for Arsenal’s Oxlade-Chamberlain learning from Alves

Arsenal regular Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has admitted he is seeking tutelage from Juventus star Dani Alves as he adjusts to his new wing-back role.

The 23-year-old midfielder has been deployed in an unfamiliar right wing-back role for Arsenal in recent weeks, as Arsene Wenger sought widespread tactical changes towards the end of the 2016-17 campaign.

Following the success of Premier League champions Chelsea in playing with a back-three, flanked by two attack-minded wing-backs, Arsenal have attempted to deploy the same system.

That has seen Oxlade-Chamberlain withdrawn from his traditional role as a midfielder, and utilised as a right wing-back; a move which has brought reasonable success.

However, while the England international reiterated his preference to play as a central midfield player, he admitted that he is learning how to perform in his new role by watching Juventus and Brazil icon, Dani Alves.

He told the Standard: “There are a lot of teams who have played with that formation, so I watch the full-backs, the left-back, the right-back.

“When I’ve watched Dani Alves recently, he might not play the five at the back but the way he plays, he marches on and he adds a lot in an attacking sense as well as defensively.

“Players like that, you watch and you learn from them. I’ve looked at their starting positions and positions out of possession because that comes a little bit more unnaturally to me.”

Alves, who has made 100 caps for Brazil and has won three Champions League titles, is still regarded as one of the best full-backs in the world despite his age at 34.

But he could add a fourth European title to his decorated CV if Juventus beat Real Madrid in the Champions League Final on June 3.

Oxlade-Chamberlain, meanwhile, has had an impressive season with Arsenal despite their continued failings in domestic and European competitions, silencing a number of his critics.

He scored six goals and supplied 11 assists from 44 appearances in all competitions, having played in a number of different roles, including on both sides of midfield, at right-back, and in central or defensive-midfield.

His versatility can be of great use to Arsenal and Wenger, and it will be a pleasing sight for fans that he is looking to learn from one of the world’s best in a bid to become more accustomed to his new role.

Share this article