Wednesday, 10 June 2009

This season is make-or-break for Abou Diaby

I've a feeling that this coming campaign is make-or-break for Abou Diaby's Arsenal career.

He is naturally a central midfield player but he has often found himself on the left of Arsenal's midfield, behind the front man or on the treatment table keeping Tomas Rosicky company.

Last summer Flamini and Gilberto left the club and I thought that then was the perfect opportunity for Diaby to take his chance in his favourite position.

Instead Denilson produced the best statistics and made the most appearances ever seen in an Arsenal shirt. And I mean EVER.

Of course he doesn't pick the team, Arsene Wenger does. Wenger, after all, is almost as notorious as the Notorious B.I.G for players playing out of position. So that probably explains why Diaby is stuck out wide most of the time.

However, despite Wenger's ways has Diaby really impressed you much with his displays in the middle of the park when he does play there? I'm split to be honest.

Diaby confuses me. I never know what he is going to do with the ball and I think most of the time he doesn't either. And that, I must say, is a huge disadvantage for a professional footballer let me tell you.

People have compared him to Patrick Vieira and I think that is unfair on the lad. Just because he is tall, slim, black, French and a midfield player, it doesn't mean he is similar to Vieira. (Except for his looks)

I actually think Diaby looks like the Pepperami stick from the Pepperami advert but that's another story..............

I think many Gooners are frustrated with Diaby, the same as me. I believe there is potential for great things there but I also believe that maybe Diaby is in the last chance saloon.

His injury against Sunderland a few years back set him back in his progression as a player but that was a long time ago now.

It all comes down to trust and either Wenger trusts him or he doesn't. That is the bottom line. We will see if Wenger trusts Diaby to make an impact in the middle if he doesn't sign that midfielder we need.

Only then will we see if Diaby will sink or swim. It will make or break him.

Keep it Goonerish..............

39 comments:

Goonergazz said...

Gud article........He needs to grow up, some days hes exceptional and others he is one of the worst on the field! He needs to find the right balance, otherwise hes going to be playing for somebody like rangers or wolves or somebody else rubbish.

jimbob trianglepants said...

i thought last season was make or break for him?

it was break.

Wrighty7 said...

Too right Gazz!

Almost agree Jimbob!

CescIsGenius said...

Well put Wrighty. I'm the same way. He's got his good days (Man Utd in the fall / Newcastle away) and his really bad days (all the other matches).

He was a machine against Newcastle, but he's SOOOOOOO inconsistent.

The best thing you said is that he doesn't know what he's doing before he gets the ball. You're taught that as a young boy, so he needs to get back to basics.

I can't stand when he gives the ball away cheaply in the midfield!!!!

Wrighty7 said...

Thanks CescIsGenious,

I think you are right mate.

He can be a world-beater on his day but the worst in the world on an off day.

Anonymous said...

I'd like him to go. He's always just rated 3,4 or 5 in every games.

CescIsGenius said...

His biggest problem, as we have already pointed out numerous times, is his indecision, but to compile his issues he has poor vision.

He's not one to slide a through ball from 20 yards, but rather try to dribble through no less than 17 players on the pitch (of those some are his teammates)!!

Does anyone else think he lacks some basic fundamentals, but is physically gifted??

Keown's_Fury said...

Why keep a player that is constantly injured, without a position and usually ineffective? Most importantly he does not have a winning mentality - when the chips are down you cannot rely on Abou Diaby.

If we want to have a chance to win something Diaby has got to go (along with Silvestre). Simple as that really. Would any other top manager have persisted this long with him? No, he'd either by last choice or sold.

He can't be the more defensive minded CM/DM just doesn't have the desire, mindset or tactical/positional awareness.

He could be 3rd/4th choice in Cesc's role, but that is a waste of our limited resources (wages) and anytime that Cesc, Denilson and Rosicky are not available, I'd prefer to see Ramsey or Wilshere get an opportunity, or to reshuffle and play two holding players.

On the left, he is basically a disaster and we've got Arshavin and Nasri over there with Gibbs (great in midfield), Traore and Wilshere in reserve, not to mention the more attacking options of RvP, Vela and Eduardo.

As for playmakers operating behind the striker(s), we have Arshavin, Nasri, RvP, Cesc, Rosicky and Wilshere.

So what exactly is Diaby's role?

And why wouldn't we be better served replacing him with Senna, Cana or Matuidi ? - to give a few examples...

Diaby is a player who has been hampered in his development not just by that shite from Sunderland who took his leg off, but by his lack of a football brain coupled with his power carrying/dribbling with the ball. You can tell that football was always too easy for him as a youth player and that he did not develop as he could always put his head down and make something happen - well it doesn't work that way in top flight football at least in the Premiership. He should try his luck in Spain...

Anonymous said...

i think he lacks brains.

Anonymous said...

Diaby has been given his chances to impress at Arsenal, but he has never quite done it. Even in his initial period, Fabregas was forced to move to the right baceuse he was so unreliable and tactically stupid.

He has declined as a player and Denilson has more than surpassed him (and Flamini in my opinion) and even Song now looks like a more accomplished player.

He has not got a chance/

davi said...

i dont think he fits arsenal's tactics
hes like baptista in that respect.

if he could nail down a position and really work at it, say as a 2nd striker, he could be world class.

i do think however we need to sell him. i think diaby needs a knock in his career to wake him up so he can realise his potential.. hes just been a waste of space for us in most matches.
give his spot in the side to bischoff - he looks to be very talented as well but he actually works hard

Armourist said...

Wouldnt say he lacks vision, his pass for Van persie at Everton springs to mind. I think the boy is hugely talented, but like any job if you arent given a sustained long run at it, you never really settle. Wenger likes him and this is a problem as he always sticks him in to big games which isnt bad except Diaby is invariably coming of the back off an injury and lacks match sharpness.

I think the kid can dominate the midfield and invariably the good performances we have seen, involve him running at midfield and back lines.

He just suffers from lack of tactical awareness rather than basic fundamentals which is something that can be levied at a few in the squad, however games bring this awareness, so unless we go to a 433 formation, his days might be numbered and it would be a huge shame. As I think he is a special talent, goals against newcastle, dominating Chelsea at carling cup final, goals against liverpool, aston villa, newcastle this season and the header against stoke. However Fenerbache was where he showed his full range.

davi said...

btw I REALLY hope there's something to the pandev link

i swear hes one of the best european players

Anonymous said...

i think he's just a different player post-injury. he hasn't been the same. even when he tries to get stuck in, he ends up being clumsy. i have been more than willing to give him time, considering wenger said he was the replacement for Gilberto until he got hurt, and flamini took his opportunity. i was hoping he'd follow flamini this year and take advantage of his opportunity, but he can't seem to turn the corner. since he either has a spectacular game or a terrible game, i don't think we should keep him. like him, but he's had his chances. it's time to move on.

Anonymous said...

He's shit and getting in the way of other players. He has no future, sell him.

Armourist said...

He isnt shit by any stretch of the imagination.

Anonymous said...

His firct touch is shit. Lets be honest about that at least. And his general passing ability is not quite up to scratch.

Armourist said...

His is one of the most technically gifted members of the squad so when you his first touch is shit it makes you look silly.

He doesnt play enough games to get everyones movement is more what i'd say than his passing ability is shit. I've seen it in all our players when the first join or are out for prolonged periods. Rather than jus asy he is shit back it up with some thoughts and opinions.

Anonymous said...

Mate, have you seen Diaby play. because if you had, you would know his first touch is the worst of and current attacking player in Arsenal's squad (and a few defender's)

I appreciate you are defending him, but he has not got a chance. Nothing to do with him not playing regularly, his quality and mental attributes are lacking. If he was not 6'2 and a physical, would he be at Arsenal right now? I don't think so. Saying that, I have never seen a player be less physical than Diaby considering his physique.

Anonymous said...

Diaby plays best in the centre but he has the annoying habit of dithering on the ball and not passing quickly enough. He has an awesome shot, when he can unleash it, and can look dominating at times. However, his concentration rarely lasts an entire game. He cannot impose himself on the game for the full time. His biggest problem is his propensity to pick up injuries. He just isn't the kind of player you can rely on. I say we sell him. We have too many midfielders as it is and he is just not worth the money.

elmo said...

ramsey is already better, diaby should not get ahead of any other wingers we have..... so sell him!! we get more now than next year when he hardly plays again teams will pay for his potential

Armourist said...

I'm sorry ive seen this kid dribble and if you know how to dribble you no its all about touch so when you say he has the worst touch, you dont have a leg to stand on mate.

He lacks match sharpness I will accept but you cant even critize him from a technical point of view.

I've seen him win tackles and be physical so I also cant accept that he is weak in that sense in the aftermath of his break, he shyed out of tackles but Carling cup final against Chelsea's midfiekd he dominated.

Recently he has been playing deeper and doing well to be honest holding more. Like all players when they start they think and want to go forward, its the adrenaline, and yes he has rough edges but this kid is awesome.

You have to look past the bad touches, the bad passes and see what he can do, because those things can be got rid of, tactical awareness can be coached in, but he has the raw attributes, he is technically and physically gifted.

He is in fact no different really from Nikky B. Jus need the chances to get a run, get a groove going and then they will shine, I dont understand why anyone cant see that.

Anonymous said...

i think your a racist prick ever heard of the word ethnic or does your mentalty or knowledge not stretch that far , im a gooner and i think your attitude sucks you couldnt manage a suday league 5yr old kids team !!!!!

Armourist said...

You really show how little you know when you say Ramsey is better. That is so short sighted, flippant, and dereft of any kind of knowledge.

You think Ramsey could have scored those goals at Newcastle or set up and finish the chance at Villa. You must be a child to say that.

Anonymous said...

I think we should loan him out to someone like... West Ham etc. A smaller club in the prem. he could get experience and mmight turn out amazing. We could also keep an eye on him if he moves on loan to a prem team.

Anonymous said...

i just dont think he has a footballing brain, he is just an athlete who can sometimes pass the ball, i did have high hopes before he got injured but now id be happy if he could actually find his team mates now and again

Anonymous said...

I am the guy who said he has a bad "first" touch - hopefully you are not calling me racist. And honestly, you cannot tell me that he has a good first touch. if you don't believe me, watch him closely from now on. The guy almost always makes the most out of any pass in his direction, often having to stride a few steps before reaching the ball.

Why would I say it if I have never seen him have a bad touch? I would not maike it up. You say he has a great first touch, but I have seen literally hundreds of eqamples of bad first touches whuch totally disprove your opinion.

Armourist said...

You know what only time will tell.

Begeegs said...

I don't see the persistence with Diaby as making sense. His decision making is pretty poor and the mind is slow which is why he gets caught in possession alot. He'd be better in Italy or another league where you get more time on the ball, but he just hasn't cut it for me. I'd like him sold.

Rob said...

I really don't know what his best position is and I don't think Wenger really knows either. If we sold him, i don't think he'd be missed and I dont think we'd be short in midfield either.

Anonymous said...

"jimbob trianglepants said...
i thought last season was make or break for him?

it was break."

Me too Jimbob.

The guy seems to be asleep most of the time.

Anonymous said...

the thing that frustrates me most abt diaby is wenger use him when he thinks that diaby adds that extra needed 'power','agressiveness' and protection for gibbs on the left when he doesnt provide us with any of those.

being played out of position doesn't excuse a professional footballer of constantly giving away possessions, try to dribble his way out of dangerous positions through 3 opposition players and hold the ball up for way too long(when our play is base on fast, one-two touches)

he's not shite by any means but he is not suited to the fast paced epl. I would rather see vela on the left than diaby any day!

gunman said...

Diaby is a talent. At training he has a deadly accurate shot and shows can hold and find pass off very well. When given a long run of games you would of seen this. Injuries have plagued him at Arsenal. Until that game in May 2006, against Sunderland, when a 19yo Dan Smith maliciously smash his ankle, Diaby hasn't really reached that same level of consistency. Back then I remember comparing his skill and ability to win and keep the ball to that of the great Viera.

I think Wenger regards him highly and that's why he has continued to tolerate him. Honestly I think that all Diaby needs is stay fit to rebuild his confidence and hopefully reach that level again. IMO Wenger should have him find his form in the 2nds with a long string of games there, and not in the first team.

This season must be the season that Diaby shows what Wenger believes he is truely capable of.

Anonymous said...

I am someone who used to like diaby, but injuries or no injuries, played out of position or not, given a continuing run in the team or not there are fundamental flaws in his game.He seems to think he can dribble past players from impossible situations.As someone above suggested he frequently has problems with his touch and awareness of others around him.And he constantly swtiches off in games, making mistakes that a school kid wouldnt be allowed to make.Also if you observe closely he doenst track back with any vigour to offer a resistance to opposition attacks.As jimbob and others said last season was his last season.

Anonymous said...

diaby is most talented player we have at midfield ,that why the expectation for manager his high.

Anonymous said...

Why is it always the slightly wrong-uns who support Diaby?

As some have said, Diaby is not actually all that good. Even in his "prime" (as a 19 year old) he made Cesc shift out on the right because he was so unreliable.

The only player in the team he could displace is Fabregas, because they both play in the "same" position (play if differently of course) so people must be mad if they think that a run of games would give him that consistency, because he has flaws in his game which cannot be solved by playing five in a row.

Anonymous said...

Diaby will become a super player if hes played in his attacking role CAM not CDM he can play behind a main striker on problems and should play in front of fabregas plus hes not the only one its make or break for RvP Bendtner,Song,an even Theo who all havent made the grade...yet! so its not fair to single out one person!

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