Should Gibbs be first choice at Arsenal?
From Winterburn to Cole to Clichy, the left-back position in the Arsene Wenger era is always seen as one of the most vital ones. There are countless of attacks that originate from Arsenal’s left hand side. Thus, a well-coordinated system between the left side full back and the left winger is extremely essential to the Arsenal offense.
Since the departure of Ashley Cole and subsequently Gael Clichy, Kieran Gibbs has established himself as Arsenal’s first choice left back. Possessing both pace and stamina, he can help out on the offensive end without getting caught on the counter. He has proven himself to be one of the best left backs in the country, often clearing up the mess from Arsenal’s ‘lazy wingers’. That includes both Podolski and to track back a little further, our ill-fated relationship with Andrey Arshavin.
With Alexis Sanchez almost certain to start on the left flank for Arsenal, his partner on the left is very important in order for Arsenal to get the most from our blockbuster Chilean signing. The left back must both provide enough support with overlapping runs but also be discipline in terms of when to go forward.
Gibbs has had a decent season last year. However, there were many instances where he preferred to shoot from an undesirable angle rather than play in a Giroud with a lot of space. Furthermore, Alexis came from Barcelona. Thus, he may find it easier to communicate with Monreal compared to Gibbs.
Despite all these, I still feel Gibbs is more suited to start for Arsenal as he is quicker and can deal with pacey wingers more effectively. He is also more disciplined when it comes to positioning unlike Monreal. He was also recently given the no 3 shirt when Sagna left. He has established himself as Arsenal’s number one choice in left back and I believe that there is much more to come from the young English international.