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Do We Need A CAM For Next Season?
MightyMatty (Aston Villa) 4 years ago
I'd say it all comes down to Wengers aspirations next season. If you want to push on in the Champions League then you need more than a CAM my friend. Arsenal would need to match the likes of Man UTD in the spends.... Which is a tall order. Man UTD are certain to spend big and go for glory in the champions league next season but I think Arsenal would be wise to focus on the PL
Chargui (Arsenal) 4 years ago
When I say compete in the champions league, I don't mean win it, I mean semi final, something like that. My point was you have to have depth in your squad if you want to still be in different competitions at this time of the year (April). And the position where we lack depth the most is CAM imo. Maybe CDM too
Soundslikefail (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Do we need a new CAM for next season? Probably not. Should we get one regardless? Most certainly.

Rosicky is one of my favourite footballers of all time. He's an amazing talent. But he's getting on in years. He's probably only got a few years left of his amazing talent, and if he gets injured again, then even less. He's not someone we can really rely on in the long term.
Ramsey, on the other hand, I think, has it. You see flashes of it every now and then. In the long term, he'll be an amazing CAM. Maybe never as good as Rosicky in his prime, but nonetheless amazing. But, as with all talented youngsters, who says he'll ever reach his potential. I think he's amazing, but Wenger clearly thinks we can't rely on him in the short term, and we can hardly rely on the fact that he'll get great in the long term.

Logically, we should get an established CAM. It still could be someone young, but someone who knows exactly what is required of them from that position. They could compete with Ramsey for the role of covering Rosicky in the short term, and compete with Ramsey for the starting position in the long term. It's win/win.

As to who we should sign, I have no idea. No doubt Wenger will pluck someone from relative obscurity like he's done so many times before
Soundslikefail (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Also, Wilshere would be a great CAM, but his amazing box to box talents would be far too wasted if he was stuck that far up field.
And our youngsters, Ozyakup will, in my opinion, have an amazing future. But I can't see him, or any of his fellow youngsters, coming of age much before Rosicky retires. By the time that happens, we'll need someone already gelled with the first team, not more young blood
Chargui (Arsenal) 4 years ago
I agree with everything you said. We would still be a good team without a CAM, but we would be great with a good one.

On who we should sign, I have a few ideas, regardless if it is likely or even possible we get them. Just some thoughts.... I think the perfect fit would be Götze or Kagawa, seems really difficult to get them though. Reus or Hazard might be it too, but I don't really know about their defensive work rate. Marvin Martin, I don't know about his current form, but he said he is ready to play outside of the Ligue 1. Jovetic, from Fiorentina, he might be a bit light for the PL but I really like him, very technical, very good passing, scores some goals too
Cloudst (Footytube Mod) 4 years ago
Honda ;D
Chargui (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Yep. I don't know about Honda's current form though?
Cloudst (Footytube Mod) 4 years ago
He's doing good after his injury back to his best but won't be enough as Zenit will win the title
Chargui (Arsenal) 4 years ago
You think it's possible? How expansive is he? Around 15M? He would fit quite well !
Cloudst (Footytube Mod) 4 years ago
0m he's free transfer in the summer but he's highly injury prone though
Chargui (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Honda for free?

Oh. Oh

Injury prone or not, it would be a great deal, especially if Arsha does not come back and we don't keep Benayoun
Cloudst (Footytube Mod) 4 years ago
Believe Lazio want him and are willing to pay over the odds for him
Deffyduck (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Firstly - I'm very glad this was made into a thread. Its a subject that has been mentioned a lot over the last few weeks and now there is a fixed stage to talk about it.

In my humble opinion, we shouldn't spend any money on reinforcing the CAM position, and if you're patient enough to read my extensive ramblings I will explain why below:

1. Over-reliability on the CAM

When I first really got into football as a boy at primary school, we used to use the classic 4-4-2 and 4-4-1-1 formations when we had the likes of Wrighty and Bergkamp up front, and players like Platt, Petit, Viera, Parlour in the middle. These guys were enforcers, straight up machines that ran the midfield. They weren't particularly gracious (in the same way players like Fabregas and Na$ri are lighter, faster and more skillful) but they were effective in that set up.

Since the time of the invincibles, Wenger has switched from a 4-man midfield into the more open 4-2-3-1 where 2 of the midfielders sit a little deeper the designated 'flair' player sits between the opposition lines of midfield and defence, threading clever through balls that could unlock defences with 1 pass. That worked brilliantly for several years but what I always noted was that it could be defended relatively easily with the right tactics.

Arguably the best player on the planet right now is Messi, but I haven't really seen him have the same effect on the international stage as he does for Barca. What I noticed at the last world cup was that coaches chose to man mark him for 90 minutes and cut him out of the game. It requires immense concentration and dedication from the defenders but even the best players in the world will struggle to have an impact when they are continuously hassled and do not have a moments rest.

This was regularly true of Fabregas during his Arsenal days. I would watch so many games where he could look incredible on the ball and his passing would create dozens of goal scoring opportunities. The common theme when I watched analyses and match reviews afterwards was that he would have so much time and space on the ball.

People often said that when if/when Fabregas had a bad game, the team didn't perform well and that was partially true. It wasn't always the case that Fabregas or anyone else in the team was playing badly, but the good managers knew how to counteract that playing style - stop the flair player. We were dependant on players like Fabregas and Na$ri to produce some magic but if they were being marked out of the game, we never had a plan be.

Now that we have not replaced that CAM role, several other players have stepped up and taken the responsibility onto themselves, which is why the goals and the assists come from all over the park now with players like Walcott, Arteta, Song, Ramsey and Rosicky all creating goal scoring opportunities for eachother. I think if we bought a traditional CAM to occupy that role, we might be in danger of trying to make the CAM the hub for all our attacks and that single mindedness is easy to defend against.

2. The abundance of talent we already have at the club

For several years now, people (pundits/commentators/fans) have been keen to point out that when we sell our players, Wenger refuses to spend money and replace them we people of equal quality. One of my first arguments against this is that players with the same kind of ability as Fabregas and Na$ri do not come cheap. To suggest that you can pop down to 'Best Players In The World Store' and just instantly buy a replacement of equal quality is ludicrous, never mind the budget and wage restraints we operate under.

If however, Wenger decides that we absolutely MUST have a dedicated CAM, I think we should use what we already have. There are a lot of players who are very versatile and can play just about anywhere in our midfield.

I will take out the 'anchors' I. E. More defensive minded players who would not do so well in a position where vision and accuracy are essential.

Imagine our usual 4-2-3-1 with the following line up:






In my mind, anyone of the following players could fill that CAM role:

Arshavin (if he comes back)
Van Persie (always said he prefers the deep 'Bergkamp' role)
Aoc - in the future

Plus the fringe/youth players:


In a league with a 25 man limit (exclusing under 21s) I see at least 10 viable options for a CAM role.

3. Market forces

In the modern game, average players are being overvalued and bought at prices that far exceed their abilities. If we must resort to the CAM playmaker, what viable options are there?

Established players? My definition of established means they have experience of the premier league and will not need a period of adjustment. So, any world class CAM players hanging round the premier league? - I can't name one off the top of my head.

Young, highly-rated foreign players? Players regarded as top quality but have not played the English game to fully understand the toll it takes on you (see how David Silva has burned out in the second half of the season) - Mario Goetze? Eden Hazard? Marvin Martin? All names I have seen bandied about too often, but what impact will they realistically have with no league experience and the comfort of usually having a winter break?

If you haven't glossed over this due to its size, I wouldn't mind hearing your views and counter-arguments.

Davian (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Maaaaaaaaaaadddddddddddddddddddd!! Deffy me likes
I especially liked the last part about young highly rated foreign players who are used to a (winter break). And its true silva has burnt out and this is his second year....

I think modric can be a good CAM, his passing abiity and vision is superb

{dont attack me for calling a spurs player lol}
Davian (Arsenal) 4 years ago
By the way diaby isn't really defence minded    The only truly defensive minded midfielder we have is dench!
Chargui (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Chargui (Arsenal) 4 years ago
First of all, thx for the interesting read.

You may be right but I disagree with you on some points.

1. On this over reliability.

Imo we always rely a bit on the playmaker, who is supposed to be the creativity in midifield. That is why I think Rosicky has been so important this season for us, if he had played at this level all season, I'm sure we'd still be in the title race.

I agree that we maybe relied too much on Fabregas and when he left, it allowed Song to show that he could also bring something offensively. Now that he has shown that, he won't just go back to do only defensive work even if we get a CAM. As long as we have a midfielder who can cover for him when he goes forward (Arteta has been great in that sense and Wilshere could also do it greatly IMO, Diaby aswell but we all know the problem....) he will continue to deliver good through balls. So we would be less dependant on the CAM than we were in the past IMO.

2. I think our display is more a 433 than a 4231, the difference being the fact that the CAM has more defensive responsabilities and must be able to defend well. In that sense, I think using RvP or Arshavin would not be ideal. I also doubt Chamberlain for the same reason, he is really offensive minded. Arteta is used to perfection in the double-pivot role IMO and gets along with Song really well. Diaby is too injury prone, I really hope he stays fit though, he could be our next Pat Vieira. The youngsters should be integrated levely into the squad IMO, and not be given huge responsabilities in the heart of our midfield quite yet.

So we're left with Rosicky (32 years old), Ramsey (out of form), Wilshere. IMO we are a bit bare there....

3. Experience in the PL is important but is not an absolute requirement IMO. Look at Cabaye, Papiss Cissé, Juan Mata, Demba Ba, Chicharrito, Valencia.... They have adapted very quickly.
Soundslikefail (Arsenal) 4 years ago
I don't know about Valencia adapting quickly to the premier league. He did, after all, play several years at Wigan before moving to United.
That being said, I don't think premier league experience is as important as some make it out to be. Sure, some foreign footballers come to England and never make it, but it's not like all English footballers in the PL make it either. Players of any nationality who can adapt tend to play well (Cabaye, Mata, Ox, etc), but for every one of them, you have a Robinho or an Elano
LeeChungYong (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Even though Arsenal don't have a true CAM, I don't think that getting one is our primary concern. We have done quite well so far without one. And yes Rosicky's form is likely go through swings at times but Wilshere can fill his shoe.
What we really need is a LB and a forward. RVP has been god-like this season, but there is no guarantee that he will stay at Arsenal, and even if he does stay, he may suffer an injury or require some rest from constant playing time. When RVP is gone, we only have Chamakh who is inconsistent when given limited playing time. (BTW despite what most people here are saying, I think Chamakh is a good forward. He's done okay in his first year with 29 app, 7 goals, 6 assists. But like so many footballers, with limited playing time, he suffers from lack of confidence). I think getting a good young forward is key. He can benefit by learning from RVP and be a backup forward
Chargui (Arsenal) 4 years ago
On the forwards. Podolski looks likely to become a done deal, we have Chamakh and we have Park(!), nobody believes in him we barely saw him play, everybody was so excited at the beginning of the season and now nobody ever talks about him. I'd really like Wenger to give him a chance. Anyway, we have depth in forwards, Wenger just doesn't use it.

LB maybe, but we do have Gibbs and Santos I think we're fine there.

Finally, I don't think we have done so well without a CAM, we are just 3rd of the PL and no trophies, not even a final of a cup or something. It's great to be 3rd looking how the season went through, but it's still not an incredible season...
LeeChungYong (Arsenal) 4 years ago
I would be more than happy with Podolski. As for Park, he showed class when he scored that goal against Bolton in Carling cup but I suppose jury is still out on how he would do as a regular player in the EPL. I think he has potential and as a fellow korean I am rooting for him, but it may take a while for him to get used to the league especially when given such limited playing time.
As for being in 3rd, look at last year. We finished fourth with Fabregas who was arguably the greatest CAM or creative midfielder last year in the EPL, not to mention Nasri who was absolutely spectacular. Despite not having a CAM with Cesc's quality, we are still managing to be in third place as well as tallying up 66 goals in 33 games which is close to 72 goals in 38 games last season
Chargui (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Park was subbed in once in the league, and never started. How on earth is he going to get used to the league....

Last year was a different team. Looking at the team this season, I really think what has costed us is the injuries in defence, and the lack of a CAM. As soon as we got everybody back in the back 4 and Rosicky started to play well, we became great. If we don't want to depend on Rosicky, we have to get a CAM.
Chargui (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Double post
Sn3kyn00b (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Plus Park has been scoring goals for the reserves decently often (as far as I know Chamakh can't even claim that).... But would you ever not play Robin Van Persie when fit?
What about playing Arshavin there though? It's where he plays for russia and zenit (?)
Chargui (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Arshavin's defensive work rate might be too low for this position.... I like Chamberlain better for example, but the problem as I see it is that we don't have a true CAM in the squad apart from Rosicky. Ramsey or Wilshere could also fit but IMO a talented true CAM would give another dimension to our midifield and to our attack.

And it's obvious RvP is the starter as CF, though it does not mean he should never get subbed, when we are ahead for example. If we don't give a chance to Chamakh or Park, we become more and more dependant on RvP
Nastytrick01p (Everton) 4 years ago
Hey guys, check out barca wonderboys Gerard Deulofeu, and Kiko Femenia. Both are fabregas potential and we all know what wenger can do with young talented players
Cloudst (Footytube Mod) 4 years ago
Jon Toral nuff said
Sn3kyn00b (Arsenal) 4 years ago
And ozyakup!
Barracuda (Manchester United) 4 years ago
Only for them to run back to spain after they established themselves lol
PeterzeGooner (Arsenal) 4 years ago
All we need is podoslki a left back.... The rest of our signings should be used for replacing the players we are looking to sell like chamakh.... Benayoun could be ashravin's replacement
Chargui (Arsenal) 4 years ago
We need to develop our youngsters, that's true, but I think that if we really want this drought of trophies to end, we need a good, talented, full time CAM and we don't have that, unless we count on Rosicky for that. The youngsters who are coming seem to be really good but I think we need to develop them levelly and not count on them to win trophies. Having very good starters at all positions does not mean that the youngsters won't develop IMO, they can still integrate the team and if at this stage of the season we are still qualified in 3 competitions, they can prove to be very useful and fully participate. Look at Barca (Pedro a few years back, Cuenca, Tello, Thiago Alcantara....)

I completely agree with you on Arteta. Ramsey has not shown that he can be the CAM we need IMO I see him better in Arteta's position
Ghanaboy95 (Arsenal) 4 years ago
Fair enough but when we do sign a player they will need time to adapt to the premier league which means they could not be the star we wanted and I really do believe Ramsey can play that role. When him and Wilshere played together during pre season they looked like they had real chemistry and that could be are the Prems answer to Xavi/Iniesta. The games against Chelsea and Stoke, Ramsey looked every bit the part and he is just missing that composure that is needed to be world class. I hate when Ramsey plays in the double pivot cos I think he leaves Song too exposed and Song likes to attack as well. Who says the youngsters won't step up when needed? All we should be wary of is 'sqeeky bum time' with them. As for Barca when they bring in youngsters they normally take over someones position
Ghanaboy95 (Arsenal) 4 years ago
I don't think we need a CAM because we have more then enough. For me first choice CAM is Ramsey and we have Rosicky as his back-up. If you go to our reserves you have people like Ozyakup, Henderson and Eisfeld to come in. And we even have Aneke (who I think will be able to play there but I see him as a more of a box to box midfielder). Not to mention Chamberlain is being groomed to play their in the future so it looks bright.

Cloudst wrote a piece on our youngsters and he was right that they deserve the chance to prove themselves and they all look capable. It is much easier for youngsters to come in as they won't have to adapt to a new playing style or a new league. If we were to sign a CAM it would only hinder the youngsters mentioned and when would Chamberlain get his chance there?

I think next season the double pivot should occupied by Song/Wilshere with Ramsey playing CAM. I don't like the idea of Arteta as a CAM as I think he is the Xabi Alonso for us and his much needed experience is needed during the double pivot and he covers for the DM all the time. I think CAM would be too much running for Arteta, even though he covers a lot of ground playing CAM involves finding space where its available (meaning he might have to drift wide a couple of times to find space) and I think that's too much running for him and his abilities are needed elsewhere. As for Wilshere I can see him sometimes playing there but I like him playing box-to-box as he can defend as well as attack and he has not developed properly to play CAM full time. Even when Wilshere does develop his attacking qualities I like him box-to-box as I see him as a complete midfielder (such as Gerrard).

I think we should sign Holtby as he can cove a lot of positions so he will not hinder any ones progress in the team
Chargui (Arsenal) 4 years ago
I have read several people discussing on the forum of our need to get a new CAM for next season, and not one everyone agreed, not for the same reasons. I thought it might be interesting to start a thread about this.

I am of the opinion that we should get a CAM next season. I agree that our midfield might be the best of the PL in the last 2 months, that Song has developed his playmaking well this season, that Rosicky is having a 2nd youth right now and that Wilshere could fit the role quite well when he comes back.


I feel that it is not Song's duty to make the plays, he has done it well sometimes and delivered great assists this season, but let's face it, he's still a CDM and it's not his natural role. He can go forward from time to time and does it well but you can't compare him to a true talented CAM; his speciality is still the defensive work. And even if we get a new CAM, nothing impedes him to go forward every now and then. We would only be more creative in midfield.

Rosicky has done incredibly well in the 2nd part of the season and we would not be 3rd without him. He's been the creativity of our midfield. But he has had a long long period of unconsistency and it might come back. Or not. But it's still risky to count only on him IMO. Also even if he still plays at this level next season, he is already 32 and we are going to need a substitute for him sooner or later. So why not get it now? It would be great for our depth too.

I'm confident that Wilshere could fit in Cesc role very well, might even become better than him because of his defensive work. In the midfield Song-Arteta-Wilshere I would like Wilshere better than Arteta as a CAM. But Wilshere could also take place in Arteta's shoes and play between Song and a CAM. With a talented CAM, this midfield could really prove to be deadly. And again it's all about depth also because we need depth if we want to cope with injuries and compete for trophies in all 4 competitions (PL, champions league, FA Cup, Carling Cup).

Maybe we have other positions to reinforce (full backs, CDM?) but I would really be delighted to see a new CAM coming in next season, I think we need it.

Any thoughts? Be my guest!

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