Bukayo Saka continues to flourish in new function in Arsenal’s win at Southampton
A month in the past, Arsenal had been being written off as relegation fodder, whereas Southampton had been being tipped as unlikely prime 4 contenders.
It’s testomony to the nice job that Mikel Arteta has completed in motivating his squad that when the 2 sides met within the Premier League on Tuesday night time, the Gunners managed to safe a reasonably easy win.
Prior to now, conceding within the opening three minutes may need been sufficient to down Arteta’s mentally fragile fees. Nonetheless, on Tuesday this was not the case. As a substitute, the Gunners rallied brilliantly, ultimately securing a 3-1 victory.
The credit score for such a end result mustn’t go to only one man – whether or not that be Arteta or a participant – as collectively, the north Londoners had been very robust. Regardless of this, somebody who is worthy of additional particular reward is Bukayo Saka.
Deployed for granted ahead, Saka as soon as once more impressed. Since being transfer to the alternative flank by Arteta 5 video games in the past, the Gunners type has improved dramatically. Previous to the swap, Arsenal had gained simply 4 of their opening 14 video games.
Since swapping him, they’re unbeaten, with Saka registering six direct aim involvements in as many video games. His newest two contributions had been very spectacular as properly. Simply earlier than half-time, Saka slipped freed from Jake Vokins and raced onto Alexandre Lacazette’s by way of ball. Regardless of travelling at ridiculous tempo, he confirmed the velocity of thought to skip previous the onrushing Alex McCarthy earlier than firing the ball into the empty web.
After the break, he was at it once more, this time returning the favour to Lacazette with an incredible help. Drifting freed from his marker on the again submit, Saka was discovered by Cedric Soares’ lengthy ball. With out breaking stride, Saka latched onto it earlier than placing an appetising ball throughout the field for Lacazette to bundle residence.
The aim put the sport past Southampton’s attain but it surely was simply the most recent, decisive impression that Saka has had whereas working down the right-hand aspect.
In fact, it might be overly simplistic to place Arsenal’s sudden upturn in fortunes all the way down to the tweaking of 1 participant’s function, however his success within the place does recommend that his long-term future might lie there.
Beforehand this season, when deployed as a wing-back, there was a sense that Saka couldn’t affect issues sufficient within the last third. There may be little hazard of that now and the England worldwide’s environment friendly, but engaging performances have performed a major function in reworking Arsenal stodgy, predictable strategy play.
Contemplating he has solely been capable of legally purchase a pint for slightly below 17 months, that’s, fairly frankly, ridiculous.
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