Arteta may have just dropped a big hint over a brand new left-back option for Arsenal against West Ham - TBR View
Arsenal finally have Takehiro Tomiyasu back from injury and ready for action after months on the sidelines.
The 23-year-old was one of the Gunners’ best players in the first half of the season.
However, Tomiyasu was struggling with a calf problem back in January.
Although he managed to play in the second leg of Arsenal’s Carabao Cup semi-final with Liverpool, he then didn’t feature until last week.
Tomiyasu came on as a late substitute in Arsenal’s 3-1 win over Manchester United.
The Japan international could potentially replace Cedric Soares at right-back against West Ham and beyond.
However, Mikel Arteta arguably has a bigger problem which Tomiyasu could potentially solve.
Kieran Tierney is out for the season, and Nuno Tavares’ defensive capabilities arguably need more work.
Granit Xhaka could also fill in at left-back, but he’s far too important in Arsenal’s engine room.
Therefore, Tomiyasu could potentially fill in at left-back, something Arteta hinted towards at his pre-West Ham presser.
“It’s such a beneficial thing”
Arteta told his press conference – as quoted by football.london – about his defender’s ability with both feet.
“Well, when we follow the player and we identify him as one of the candidates, obviously it one of the things that I came across and it gives you a lot of solutions.
“Not only because he can use both feet, but he can play right centre-back, left centre-back, he can play left-back so that gives you enormous variability.
“And it’s the way they’ve been raised and coached since a really young age, that’s what he says so for him, left and right is the same.
Arteta also revealed he spoke to Tomiyasu about using his weaker foot.
“I asked him how he’s been coached,” he continued.
“It’s always very interesting things that we can take on board and get involved and implement in our club.
“Because it’s such a beneficial thing, so it’s important to understand other coaches and other ways of coaching.”
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