Who Will Ease the Goalscoring Burden on Lacazette?

Fadipe Forensics

Arsenal have had a relatively decent start to the season. Six wins from our opening 11 games and currently sitting in 6th position. However, one area that we haven’t set alight is scoring. Now, although 19 goals in 10 games may seem like a decent return, context must be added to the situation for further understanding. The two table-topping teams Manchester United and Manchester City have scored 23 goals and 38 goals respectively. Their goal differences are at +18 and 31 while the Gunners are at a lowly +4. Summer signing Alexandre Lacazette was brought in to shoulder most of the scoring responsibility but who else can chip in with the goals when he’s not firing on all cylinders. Here are my top 5 candidates:

ALEXIS SANCHEZ

Premier League Record:

  • Games: 110
  • Goals: 54
  • Assists: 24

The Chilean hasn’t been in his superhuman form of last season. With a long summer and niggling injuries, Sanchez didn’t start the season with the sharpness of his other teammates. He has only managed to score once in the league so far but make no mistake about it, Alexis is still a worldly talent and on his best day, is one of the best strikers in the league. In his 110 Premier League games for the Gunners, he has 54 goals and 24 assists. For someone that doesn’t play as the central striker regularly, those numbers are incredible and Arsenal will be hoping he rediscovers that form as soon as possible.

MESUT OZIL

Premier League Record:

  • Games: 124
  • Goals: 24
  • Assists: 44

The much maligned German magician showed his goalscoring prowess last season. Playing in a more advanced role behind Alexis, he was able to utilise his knowledge of the game and make the runs in behind to get into more threatening positions. However, like Alexis, he hasn’t had a flying start to the season with a number of muscular injuries hampering his availability to the team. With the amount of goalscoring positions that Ozil finds himself in, he should most definitely be adding to his goal tally and possibly looking towards double figures. The trio of Alexis – Lacazette – Ozil has only started two games together but in that time, the team has managed seven goals. With the fluidity and creativity of that front 3, Ozil should be expecting to beat last season’s goal tally of 8.

AARON RAMSEY

Premier League Record:

  • Games: 219
  • Goals: 32
  • Assists: 34

The Welshman has proved that he has the quality to have a productive scoring season as in the 2013/14 season, he managed to grab 10 goals. However, since then, he has failed to reach those heights again as the subsequent three seasons combined only yielded 12 goals. Since that breakthrough year, Ramsey could be accused of seeking out goals too much rather than letting them find their way to him. He starts as the box-to-box midfielder but often finds himself closer to the striker than to the defence. Ramsey makes excellent 3rd man runs which means he can be left untracked making runs from deep, and when he gets in the position to score, he can put them away.

DANNY WELBECK

Premier League Record:

  • Games: 176
  • Goals: 39
  • Assists: 18

Welbeck started off the season in fine form scoring three goals from the opening six games. But what seems to be a reoccurring narrative, he got injured when he was in his best form. Welbeck will never be the striker to get you 20+ goals in a season because he isn’t that clinical, however playing alongside Alexis or Lacazette means he doesn’t have to be because they will be expected to do so. I fully believe Welbeck is capable of chipping in with 10 goals to due to his innocuous playing style. He somehow manages through sheer determination to find himself in positions to thrive and with a bit of added composure and improved finishing, he could be a real asset to the team. Whether he can make it onto the pitch and stay there is a whole other matter.

OLIVIER GIROUD

Premier League Record:

  • Games: 173
  • Goals: 70
  • Assists: 23

Since Lacazette has arrived at the Emirates, Giroud has been demoted to the bench indefinitely. The Frenchman can count himself unlucky as he has always given a decent account of himself. However, when looking at his goal tallies, they don’t scream world class. Since his arrival, his highest goal tally in the league for one season is 16 which he accomplished in 2013/14 and 2015/16. However with his new role coming off the bench, he has flourished and scored a number of important goals, most recently the header against Leicester in the opening fixture. Having him coming off the bench when defences are tiring is a luxury that not many teams can boast and there is no doubt that Giroud will be an important asset as the season progresses.

All in all, Arsenal have an embarrassment of riches that can match up to any in the league. It will be up to Wenger to utilise them in the best way possible to secure the best outcome. The aforementioned players boast a number of different traits that will be needed at various times in the season such as: Pace, Height and Physicality. All will be needed to produce at various stages of the season and will be expected to be the difference when they are put on the pitch.