Arsene Wenger has backed Alex Iwobi to succeed as a No.10, following his performance in Arsenal’s win over Reading.
The Royals travelled to north London in Round Four of the EFL Cup on Tuesday evening, with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain securing the Gunners’ progression.
Indeed, the England international netted a goal in each half to seal a 2-0 victory for a much-changed Arsenal side.
While much of the attention was on the likes of summer signing Lucas Perez and young prospect Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Iwobi’s display was among the most noteworthy.
Rather than play out wide, as he has done in his seven Premier League appearances this term, the Nigeria international was used centrally.
Indeed, he acted as the creative hub of the side – usually a role taken by Mesut Ozil in the regular starting XI – with Oxlade-Chamberlain to his right and Jeff Reine-Adelaide to his left.
Reacting to the midweek win, Wenger insists that Iwobi has a good enough “final ball” to play as a No.10, but must improve his finishing – evident by his failure to score across all competitions this season.
The manager said, as reported by the club’s official website: “You see, he is not a typical winger and I think he can play in that role.
“He turns the game forward, he passes the ball through the lines very well. He has a final ball in him. He is now a little bit, I think he has it all in the locker to pass and give the final ball.
“What you want from him now is the finishing, you know. That’s still a little part that is missing in his game. I think he is too nervous at the moment when he has the possibility to finish.”
This post has already been read 2454 times!