'Frustrated': Arsenal warned their 'outstanding' star may be unhappy now
Sky Sports pundit Clinton Morrison believes that Arsenal defender Kieran Tierney “must be frustrated” at present.
The Scotland international was first-choice at left-back last season.
Indeed, when Tierney got injured, Arsenal suffered in his absence.
But this season, the 25-year-old is struggling for starts, and was a shock omission against Liverpool.
In Oleksandr Zinchenko’s absence, Tierney would’ve seemed like the logical replacement for the Ukrainian at left-back.
However, Mikel Arteta opted for Takehiro Tomiyasu in that position, a decision which reaped dividends.
The Arsenal boss seemingly felt that Tomiyasu would’ve dealt better with Liverpool’s tendency to switch play with long balls.
Tierney admitted to Sky Sports that he was “gutted” by Arteta’s decision, which the Arsenal boss said was a tactical change.
The Scotland international stressed that he’s “not going to be angry” over it, but Morrison feels the player may well be unhappy.
“Tierney must be frustrated at the moment,” he said on Sky Sports News (15/10, 12:12pm).
“Zinchenko is not fit, Tomiyasu comes in.
“I think Tierney is an outstanding defender, but if you want to win trophies, you need competition for places.”
Tierney unlucky at present, but the needs of the team come first – TBR View
It’s a shame to see such a quality player struggle for starts, when last season Arsenal couldn’t cope with his absence.
However, the needs of the team come first, and at present, Zinchenko seems to be first choice.
As for the Tomiyasu starting decision against Liverpool, it was a shrewd tactical call which helped Arsenal win.
The Gunners have been superb so far this season and will fancy their chances of winning a first Premier League title since 2004.
With such an opportunity at stake – not to mention so many games in all competitions – Tierney will no doubt understand.
And it’s also good to hear how much he wants to be playing – no top player worth their salt will ever be happy to sit on the bench.