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3 internal solutions to three midfield openings

Arsenal, Mikel Arteta (Photo by Harriet Lander/Copa/Getty Images)

Arsenal’s midfield is going to be the canvas Mikel Arteta paints on, but some of the pain may be in-house already. Here are three internal solutions.

Let’s make a few assumptions before I kick this off. Seeing as how Arsenal‘s midfield is likely coming up on a major facelift this summer, let’s assume that we get Thomas Partey (huzzah!) and pair him with Granit Xhaka (double huzzah!).

Now, let’s assume we sell Torreira, lose Ceballos, manage to offload Mesut Ozil (triple huzzah!), and thus require some serious personnel additions to the midfield. Particularly the midfield pivot position, which needs long-term solutions. For Matteo Guendouzi, whether he stays or goes, we still don’t know what he can be counted on for, so he’s a nonfactor in this situation.

There have been plenty of names bandied about. Orkun Kokcu, for instance. Carlos Soler. All these guys that would cost gobs of money without being a sure-fire solution.

Arsenal can use these three internal solutions to save money in the midfield

Why spend the money when you can stay in-house (for most problems, anyway) and still grow the future of the team alongside Mikel Arteta?

Again, let’s assume that Partey and Xhaka are the main pairing. Who do we call on to be the No. 10, or pivot midfielder when the situation and formation warrants? Not £30m Carlos Soler. Too expensive. Too unproven.

Call on these three internal solutions instead.

3. Emile Smith Rowe

Smith Rowe is the only one-dimensional guy on this list, which is why he’s third. And he’s not even really that one-dimensional, I just mean in terms of what he accomplishes. He’s an attacker. Through and through. Whether at No. 10 or on the wings, he attacks. But since the Gunners are so stacked on the wings these days, it’s time to turn him into the No. 10 that he’s becoming at Huddersfield.

Smith Rowe was already on the cusp when the year began. You could have made the argument that he should have stayed, but the loan is proving to be immensely beneficial and it should push him over the edge to be a solution for the Gunners’ midfield when he returns.

Why drop £20-30m on Kokcu, who is unproven, when we can keep the faith in Smith Rowe, who is also unproven, but has a leg up on the competition?

On to No. 2.

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