Look let me start with this. I’m not football scout. I’m just a guy who watches a lot of football and enjoys the game. We all have opinions on players and sometimes we go out on a limb against the vocal majority. For example I always thought Yoshikatsu Kawaguchi could be a success in the old division one but the vocal majority of Pompey fans thought he was just too short. They wanted old man Dave Beasant back in the team and eventually that is how it went down. I thought the reason we conceded so many goals had to do with the fact our defence stunk – in fact we conceded goals at the same clip when Beasant was between the sticks but that is facts that go against the perceived wisdom.
However every so often I look at a player and I just do not see what a manager sees in them and one of those is Aaron Ramsey. Arsenal are on the tellybox a lot and Ramsey seems to play a lot and yet every single time I watch him I see a technically solid player who takes too many touches and always turns back instead of barreling forward. He doesn’t have that killer pass in him but he does slow everything down and if you slow everything down when you play for a team which are at their very best when building up a head of steam then you have an issue.
He has played at the right side of a front three and yet he can’t cross a ball for toffee nor can he beat a man one on one. Today at Spurs twice he had the ball running at Spurs in a counter attack and both times instead of passing it in an attacking fashion or taking on the man he was running at he turned around and regrouped allowing the defence to get back in place.
Now I know Santi Carzola also often slows things down but he has the quality and the eye to pick a killer pass that would actually create a chance – and of course he chips in with a few goals. Ramsey today went put clean through in the inside right channel and you never fancied him to even hit the target. He dragged the chance wide (although a corner was given) but the initial shot was going wide anyway.
Ramsey doesn’t have it. If Abou Diaby is fit then surely he has to play in midfield every single time. He can tackle, has strength and has the eye for a wonderful pass. I was watching El Clasico yesterday and even Pete playing in that midfield position played more good attacking passes than Aaron Ramsey did today – and Ramsey is considered as a genuine midfielder – Pepe most certainly is not.
It wasn’t just today that got to me about Aaron Ramsey. He just doesn’t seem to have it to play at the very highest level in this team. Maybe he would be a fine player in a team that didn’t play in the style that Arsenal do but Arsenal are only really good when they build up a head of steam and play one or two touch football. Ramsey plays three or four touch football and slows the game so much that it leads to other players getting frustrated and not being able to play at the speed that they want to play at.
Look I’m sure he’s a lovely chap and a very good footballer but he doesn’t suit this Arsenal side and the fact he keeps getting the nod shows that either Arsene Wenger has a weakness for him or has no-one else that he trusts in these roles – which says a lot about what he thinks about the likes of Tomáš Rosický, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Abou Diaby. If Arsenal are going to be successful then Aaron Ramsey needs to be benched.