To say it’s been a terrific start to life in Arsenal colours for Takehiro Tomiyasu is an understatement.
The Japan international was acquired for a fee in the region of £20million from Bologna and almost instantly looked like a very shrewd piece of business for Mikel Arteta.
Tomiyasu was rightfully named the club’s September player of the month following a string of faultless performances and he was quick to recognise the love and support Arsenal fans have shown him.
In his latest Instagram story, Tomiyasu wrote of his recognition: “Thank you. Because of you all who [are] supporting me always.”
Certainly, the relationship Tomiyasu cemented with supporters was key to him winning the award and, without a shadow of a doubt, there are clear differences between himself and the likes of Willian and other recent signings who did not manage to establish that connection with the fanbase.
At the heart of this burgeoning relationship are the key qualities that added up to a perfect playing profile for Arteta’s Gunners.
In the current 4-2-3-1 system, Arsenal play out from the back in a 3-2-2-3 shape during the first phase of play.
The right-back in this set-up is instructed to drop into the backline to create a back three to facilitate ball progression.
Moving into the final third, the shape morphs into a 2-3-5 structure, with the right-sided full-back predominantly staying deep in midfield, ensuring the centre backs are given enough protection, although the player will bomb forward and create an overload if an opportunity arises.
Tomiyasu performed a similar role at Bologna, which is why it hasn’t come as a huge surprise to many who have followed his career.
Arsenal’s number 18 has displayed great qualities on the ball, comfortable in providing forward penetrative passes with both feet, thereby quickening the transition from defence to attack.
The most apparent strength that has stood out is the aggression he shows in duels.
So far in north London, Tomiyasu has managed to win 15 out of a possible 20 aerial duels, giving him a 75% success rate in this department.
Tomiyasu will hope that he can continue his fine form after the international break, when the Gunners will be at home to Crystal Palace, in the hope of getting back to winning ways following their stalemate against Brighton at the Amex Stadium.
Source by Football London