Ball-winners like Francis Coquelin, creative playmakers such as Mesut Ozil, goalscoring midfielders like Aaron Ramsey and industrious box-to-box players such as Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Arsenal are blessed with options in the engine room.
But how did they all fare during an inconsistent season?
The 26-year-old midfielder started the Premier League campaign with a regular place in midfield. But as the season continued, inconsistency saw his place under increasing scrutiny.
Granit Xhaka and Aaron Ramsey eventually forced the Frenchman out, whose limited abilities in an attacking sense ruined his chances of featuring more regularly.
Hesitant when in possession in cental areas, Coquelin was seen as a real flaw in Arsenal’s build-up play and performances against Watford and Chelsea didn’t help his chances of retaining a starting spot. Another poor season. 5.5/10
Very much a squad player in Wenger’s eyes, the Egyptian midfielder has done fairly well with the limited minutes he has been afforded across the campaign, but it may not be enough to keep him at the club next season.
A workhorse and one that offers a genuine attacking threat, he is seen as a refreshing alternative to Coquelin’s ball-winning abilities, and his performance against Crystal Palace earned plaudits.
However, Elneny has struggled for consistency and often looked like a second-choice that has been afforded an opportunity to play, rather than a confident midfielder eager to retain his place in the side.
To improve, he needs to start playing with the type of swagger that he shows on international duty with Egypt, where he was a runner-up in this year’s African Cup of Nations tournament. 6.5/10
The Welshman has continually divided opinion among supporters as his performances have often flattered to deceive. He can often score a goal or provide a crucial assist despite playing poorly and it makes you wonder what he’d be able to do if he was more consistent and stopped trying too hard to replicate that 2013/14 campaign.
Injuries and inconsistency meant that for large periods of the season the 26-year-old found it tough. The new 3-4-2-1 system has helped him establish more creative freedom, though he needs to remain positionally aware when Arsenal are out of possession and avoid giving Granit Xhaka too much defensive work. Poor start to the season but a much stronger finish. 6.5/10
Although his season was ended prematurely with a serious ankle injury, the experienced Spaniard’s quality was regularly on display and it would’ve been intriguing to see him paired with Xhaka during the latter months of the campaign.
More positionally aware than Ramsey, he’s able to mix his attacking capabilities with defensive responsibilities to good effect. Arsenal have missed his presence in midfield and many will be hoping that surgery to repair his ankle doesn’t limit him from performing at a consistently high level for the forseeable future. 7/10
Expectations of the silky German are very high and when he performs well, you can understand why. It’s tough for him to replicate these types of performances very often when he doesn’t get the ball regularly or his team-mates are focused on defending rather than creating chances.
With 12 assists and 14 goals in all competitions, you’d be lying if you said he’s had a poor season. His impact, especially in big fixtures, will always be argued among supporters and critics, but provided he continues to improve whilst blocking out negative thoughts, his creative genius will shine through regardless of the system that Wenger decides to play. 7/10
Although many were quick to brand the Switzerland international a flop following his move from Borussia Monchengladbach last summer, Xhaka’s impressive performances have largely gone unnoticed by many at the tail-end of the season and perhaps due to his disciplinary record in England.
With 12 bookings and two red cards across all competitions this season, it’s a shame that his ability and potential to develop even further are being ignored by referees’ card-happy nature.
Averaging two tackles and an interception a game, as well as regularly creating key passes from a deep-lying midfield role, it’s clear to see that he has improved the team despite regular criticism for his tackling technique. 8/10
This season has been the coming of age for Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, one that supporters have been patiently waiting for.
He’s shone for the large part of the season in a number of different roles for Arsenal, and was a standout performer when the Gunners were enduring their worst run of form in the campaign.
The Ox hasn’t stayed injury-free but managed to avoid too many regular knocks, whilst highlighting his versatility by playing at right wing-back, left-wing-back and centre-midfield.
His decision-making has improved and he’s becoming a more efficient threat in the final third. At 23, this is only just the start of big things to come in future and he fully deserves a contract extension. 9/10
Arsenal’s midfield has been okay this season but unspectacular.
There are players within the squad that have played far better than others, and with Jack Wilshere to return, it’ll be interesting to see if Wenger upgrades his options across the position this summer.
There’s definitely room for improvement. It’s just a question of whether it will be acted upon now that the season is over.Click here for reuse options!
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