Football FanCast guest columnist Jon Cullen wonders if Wenger ever rues the decision not to sign the Honduran enforcer.
There are very few spud players that I will look at this lunchtime with any real envy; however their Honduran enforcer is one of them. In many ways he represents the missing link and everything we need in midfield and I am sure a day doesn’t go by when Wenger doesn’t rue the decision to let him go.
It certainly wouldn’t be the first time that Arsene has failed to take up the option of a trialist (Yaya Toure anyone?), but you do sense that this decision to pass up this opportunity, especially with the benefit of hindsight, represents a huge error of judgment.
I know I risk the wrath of those who hold Alex Song in high regard, but I know who I would rather have alongside Cesc in this midfield as his tough tackling, robust qualities is everything we are crying out for in central midfield at present. He has a massive presence and would provide an excellent barrier to the back four.
We all know that this is where the problem lies in this Arsenal team and a big reason why we are prone to leaking goals this season is that the back four is terribly exposed. Gallas, Vermaelen, Clichy and Sagna are all good players’ man for man, but with Wenger’s formation it is vital that you have a strong pivot to hold the team together to give them the protection they need. Chelsea were very successful playing the 4-3-3 formation, but they did have a certain Makelele holding the midfield together and why Song has taken giant strides this season, he is still lacks the sort of presence that not only Makelele had at the Bridge, but what the spuds enjoy with Palacios. I know you shouldn’t live in regret, but I wonder if Arsene will look over at his opposition today and rues what might have been.