Glen Johnson has told TalkSPORT that he believes Arsenal have made the wrong signing in David Luiz, as the former Chelsea star is not the “solid” centre-back the Gunners required in the summer.
French newspaper L’Equipe broke the news that 32-year-old Luiz could be set to make another deadline-day splash by swapping rivals Chelsea for Arsenal. Indeed, the Brazilian has history on the final day of a transfer window.
Back in the summer of 2016, Luiz surprised many by rejoining Chelsea from Paris Saint-Germain on the final day of that window. On Thursday, he completed one of the most shocking moves as he moved across London.
Arsenal have needed a centre-back for some time after leaking 51 goals last season, but Johnson does not believe Luiz is the type of centre-back they require – given that he is known for the odd mistake or lapse in concentration.
“He’s great to watch and a fantastic player, but you don’t necessarily want him in your team,” Johnson said. “He’s won everything and I am a fan, but Arsenal need a backbone and I’m not so sure he can be that man at Arsenal.
“Arsenal needed something solid. I don’t think he’s the man for that. You’ve got to wait for the unexpected to happen with Luiz. You’ve got to babysit him. If you’re his centre-back partner, you’ve got to babysit him.”
TBR’s view – Can Luiz be the centre-back Arsenal need?
Johnson is right. Arsenal need a defender that can finally sort out the backline and plug the leak. Arsenal did it with Virgil van Dijk a couple of seasons ago, Manchester United have looked to do it this summer with Harry Maguire.
Both van Dijk and Maguire, aside from the fact they are big-money signings, are both renowned for being very defensively solid and the ability to organise a defence. Luiz is different.
Indeed, Luiz is more than capable of a mistake at the back and can suffer from losing concentration. He has the technique to be a midfielder, but forgets that he is the last line of defence. Johnson is right, he needs babysitting.