Is Tomas Rosicky being underused by Arsenal?

The Czech player has had injury problems, but even so could have been played more by Arsene Wenger. Given his form last season, should Rosicky be seeing more time on the pitch for Arsenal?

Tomas Rosicky will no doubt count himself amongst the most unlucky players in the Premiership over the past few years, with serious injuries constantly blighting his chances of making a major impact at Arsenal.

However last season he did enjoy a rare spell of playing regularly, and was a key figure in Arsenal's surge to claim third place in the closing months of the season.

This year he has once again had trouble with injuries, but has been fit for some time now only to spend most of his time on the bench. Since the start of December Rosicky has been an unused substitute seven times, and has not played a minute of Premier League football since the 8th December, when he came on in the 80th minute against West Brom.

Clearly there is competition in Arsenal's ranks for his position, with Santi Cazorla currently amongst the first names on the team sheet at the Emirates. Cazorla showed his quality with a match-winning brace at the weekend, however the Spaniard has also shown some mixed form in recent weeks, and could have perhaps been given a rest allowing Rosicky to have a run out.

The Czech player's only starts have come in the FA Cup this year, with his impressive performance against Blackburn undermined by the eventual result. Despite his injuries, Rosicky has not lost any of his ability to create chances in the final third, and his aptitude for playing a quick pass rather than slowing down play is something that Arsenal could have used on several occasions in recent weeks.

Perhaps Wenger has been trying to protect the player, and with Rosicky's injury record that would not be unreasonable, but it now should be time to give him more playing time.

At this stage last season he was instrumental in helping his side secure a Champions League place, and Arsenal might just need him again as they attempt to overhaul Tottenham Hotspur.

images: © wonker, © Ronnie Macdonald

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