In the eyes of many, Lucas Torreira could be Gunner’s best defensive midfielder, but Arsenal’s head coach, Unai Emery disagrees. The Spaniard instead wants to him play further forward.
Unai Emery suggested that he is ready to deploy Lucas Torreira in a more attacking role even more regularly. He hinted this after Torreira impressed on his return to the starting line-up during their Europa League campaign against Eintracht Frankfurt. Arsenal gave punters the chance to make money with the bet9ja promotion code by walking away with a convincing 3-0 win. That was all thanks to goals from Bukayo Saka, Joe Willock, and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
Torreira has been named in Emery’s starting squad two times this season and made it through 90 minutes for the first time, with Emery praising his influence on the team. The Uruguay midfielder has played mainly alongside Granit Xhaka in a two-man midfield since his arrival from Sampdoria in 2018.
However, the 24-year-old enjoyed a more attacking position against Frankfurt, moving from box to box and leading a couple of counter-attacks. Indeed, he could have ended up scoring only for him to waste two chances – first blazing over from 18 feet and then being declined by the goalkeeper.
The coach heaped praise on the midfielder and believes he has the required attributes to play in a more attacking role in the pitch. According to Emery, Torreira played very well and was physically fit as he was able to go from box to box, which had a significant impact on the performance of the team.
After focusing on Torreira’s ability and energy in aiding Arsenal press their opponents, the coach suggested he may choose to use him in the forward role in future. The Spaniard further added that Torreira’s qualities are that he can win the ball high up the pitch, and give an excellent pressing to provide the team with the possession to score.
Unai’s idea of pushing him closer to the attacking area has some advantages as he can occupy the role of the most advanced presser from midfield. Torreria’s energy and willingness to fight for possession can be the key to the pressing philosophy Unai is trying to employ.
A high and steady press requires relentless and intense midfielders to harass the opposition. Arsenal doesn’t have those midfielders after over 20 years under Unai’s predecessor, Arsene Wenger. The Frenchman opted for a passive and more patient style with his players taking care in the possession and sitting off waiting to break when out of it. Wenger’s way required more languid technicians like Granit Xhaka and Mesut Ozil, who are defined more by their skills than industry. However, Torreira is a different mold as he suits a pressing game better than a passive and patient game.
It’s a bold idea by the coach, mainly since his defense hasn’t received sufficient protection from the midfield. But, using Torreira to help boost Arsenal’s defense from the front could be crucial for the Gunners to improve in both phases of the game. Furthermore, he fits Unai’s desire to turn Arsenal into a pressing team.