Arsenal’s Aaron Ramsey played all of pre-season in his favoured central midfield role but, after an opening weekend loss to West Ham, was moved back out wide for the win over Crystal Palace.
Starting from the right wing to allow the double pivot of Francis Coqelin and Santi Cazorla to reunite, Ramsey was still extremely effective in the game at Selhurst Park.
The Welshman didn’t manage to get on the scoresheet but found himself in dangerous positions more than once as he looked to influence the game from the right-hand side.
“It was the manager’s decision and he tweaked things around,” Ramsey said to Arsenal Player after the 2-1 victory. “He told me to try and get in between the lines, not stay outside, to come inside and I thought I did that by getting into some dangerous positions.
“Some of the combination play was really good and on another day we could’ve scored more.”
Though he started on the right flank Ramsey was clearly given a fairly free role to roam when Arsenal were in possession, allowing Héctor Bellerín to provide the width from right-back.
Ramsey himself was unlucky with a first-half flick at the near post from a Mesut Özil cross, as well as putting the ball over the bar when Özil put him through with Arsenal already 2-1 to the good.
Ultimately it came down to an Olivier Giroud scissor kick and a Damien Delaney own goal to get the Gunners over the line.
“I had a couple of chances,” Ramsey confessed. “Maybe on another day they would’ve gone in. I’m just happy for the team, for Olivier to get his goal and to get the win.
“It was a great goal and a great ball from Mesut. It was good build-up play and it’s not an easy ball to control and put into the back of the net. Oli managed to do that.”
On the whole, though, the midfielder was very happy with the way the team attacked.
“We played really well, got into some dangerous positions in between the lines and on another day we could have scored a few more.
“Even though we conceded we never questioned our ability to go on and score again.”
The performance was unquestionably better than the one we witnessed a week earlier against the Hammers. Next up is Liverpool, and we will have to be at the very top of our game to take all three points.