While the other English clubs are all set to splash truckloads of cash left, right and centre to make the necessary ramifications in their squad, Arsenal have tightened the screws of one of the most criticised and problematic areas for free.
The left-back slot had been an issue of late, with Nacho Monreal waning as days progress coupled with the sporadic run of form of Kieran Gibbs and without any doubt, Sead Kolasinac’s entry to the Emirates Stadium would be much more than a morale booster for the Gunners as they gear up for the upcoming season.
Career So Far
In what could be the bargain of the summer transfer window, Kolasinac was born in Germany and has emerged through the youth ranks of Karlsruher SC, TSG 1899 Hoffenheim, VfB Stuttgart and Schalke 04.
Although he represented Die Mannschaft in U18, U19 and U20 levels, he chose to ply his trade for Bosnia and Herzegovina, the country of his parents.
The 23-year-old has made notable progress ever since he surfaced onto the scene in the shirt of the Royal Blues and has cemented his stature with the national side as well.
Despite the fact that he is valued in gold, his Schalke contract was to expire in the summer and he personally chose a move to arrive under the tutelage of Arsene Wenger who is renowned for polishing the blossoming gems and taking them to a whole new pedestal.
What Do The Statistics Say?
Kolasinac bagged 25 appearances in German Bundesliga last season for Schalke, whilst which he banged 3 goals and registered 5 assists to his name. Defensively speaking, he made 2.8 tackles, 3.2 interceptions, 2.1 clearances and 0.2 blocks per game on an average and has carved his name in the good books of football fraternity.
While his pass accuracy was a cause of concern as he clocked a pass accuracy of 71.7% in the German top division, someone like Wenger could do the needful in enabling him to eliminate this flaw of his and help him in enhancing the ability to cross the ball into the box in a shrewd manner.
What Will He Offer
The Bosnian international is a tree-like modern-day fullback who caters to the defensive as well as the offensive aspects quite meticulously with his daunting frame.
He is versatile enough and can readily be pencilled in as many as four positions, namely, left-back, defensive midfield, left wing-back as well as the central defence.
Kolasinac might not be the most creative men to have been signed by Monsieur Wenger but he is an athletic monster who marauds up and down the pitch like a speeding truck with stunning stamina, is an intelligent defender who barely finds himself caught in two minds and never refrains from getting into hostile physical battles.
Besides, in the rarest circumstances, one could see him going to the ground, has the knack to breeze past the opposition with his bursts of pace and has a handsome control over the ball.
As the North London outfit were in the dire need to lay their hands on a prolific player who could contribute in attacking areas as well, Kolasinac fitted the bill pretty well as he offers excellent dribbling skills, has an appealing tendency to score goals and is good aerially which makes him a compelling asset for any top quality side like Arsenal. And mind you, he came free of cost!
Not A Typical Arsene-al Signing
Every team needs characters on the pitch that could shake the troops out of their apathy and erect an element of solidity. Premier League has had engrossing figures like Roy Keane for Manchester United, John Terry for Chelsea, Patrick Vieira for Arsenal and Steven Gerrard for Liverpool to name a few.
While he is yet to ink a footing for himself in the English top division, Kolasinac’s game is based on toughness and resilient mental attitude.
He certainly isn’t the brand of typical Wenger-like signings who would eject silky passes and attract limelight with his fluidic movements and creativity.
Instead, he is an aggressive player who would bully the opposition, would not back down from animosity and would bring the much-needed fortitude in Arsenal’s setup, much like the way Granit Xhaka brought last season.
He is extremely strong, powerful, willing and unorthodox and these traits haven’t hindered the quality he brings to his employers.
Where To Use Him?
While the former Schalke man could fix Wenger’s apparent woes on the left-back slot, testaments to his adaptability, grit and exuberance might enable Wenger into using him as a wing-back or a left-sided midfielder.
Or else, owing to his work-rate and imposing figure, he could be engineered alongside someone like Xhaka or Santi Cazorla to do the dirty work in the middle of the pitch to get the best out of the midfielders.
The safest option, however, would be to place him on the left-hand side with Hector Bellerin on the right wing-back role.
Statistics Credits: WhoScored
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