Arsenal writer Charles Watts has claimed Mikel Arteta has a ‘big call’ to make ahead of the club’s trip to Burnley in the Premier League.
In the game, Arteta opted to line up with a four-man defence that contained Kieran Tierney, Gabriel Magalhaes, Ben White and Takehiro Tomiyasu. However, this weekend the Gunners travel to Burnley where they are likely to face a much more physical battle. With this in mind, Watts claimed that the Arsenal boss is ‘going to seriously consider’ shifting his formation to include an extra centre-back.
While speaking on his own YouTube channel, Watts said (11:05): “It’s a big call for Arteta to make this one, I think he’s going to seriously consider it because he going to know exactly what Burnley are going to do, and the areas they’re going to try and target.
“So I think it’s gonna be really interesting to see what Arsenal do. Do they stick with a back four, do they go 4-2-3-1, do they play with a 4-3-3 that we saw in the second half against Norwich?
“Or do you really shake things up, think about what Burnley are going to do and potentially add a little bit of extra security, extra bit of height to the central area and play with a back three?”
TIF thoughts on Arsenal’s possible defensive options…
The introduction of Tomiyasu into the team may well help Arsenal deal with the potential aerial threat of Burnley, indeed, against Norwich on his debut, he won seven aerial duels.
Should Mikel Arteta play a back-three against Burnley?
The Japanese international’s versatility could also come in handy for this game. Tomiyasu is more than ready to be moved from right-back into a central position, which could see him play alongside White and Gabriel, while Tierney and one of Cedric, Calum Chambers or Ainsley Maitland-Niles could then occupy the vacant wingback spots.
While Arteta’s choice remains to be seen, Arsenal fans will possibly be very glad to see the strengths of their new defensive signing from Bologna already proving useful, especially if he can help them get a result against Burnley on the weekend.