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Tactics Column: Arteta’s back three is just an undersized security blanket

He switched to the back three recently didn’t he after the Mari injury? Same thing Wenger did once towards the end of his reign. In both cases it provided some short term security and confidence to our defence, but just like clockwork the cycle of stability came to an end at the worst possible time. Mustafi’s run of good games ended (as expected) and Kola never looked good at LCB.

Arteta doesn’t want to play a back 3, he’s a back four manager in a 4-3-3 or 4-2-3-1 style, but he had no choice with the injury and quality situation in the defence. We desperately need to overhaul the defenders, and it’s laughable to even think about giving Mustafi a new contract. He has to go this summer. Kolasinac should also be sold for anything around 10m. We need height, physical strength and speed in our back line. In addition to a step up in basic quality.

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