Arsenal have had two bids for the Liverpool front man rejected and they would be well advised to just pay Liverpool’s asking price of £50 million for Luis Suarez because he could create a superb partnership with current midfielder Jack Wilshere.
Everything is pointing towards the possibility that Suarez could be wearing an Arsenal shirt before the start of the new season with the striker keen to talk to the club and some reports suggesting that he’s ready to hand in a transfer request.
The reason Wilshere and Suarez could create such a productive partnership in the Arsenal team relates largely to the sort of football Liverpool played last season when Suarez was close to his very best form.
Liverpool tended to use pass and move football, based on dominating possession and using clever attacking players in the final third to set Suarez up, making his life slightly easier in terms of converting chances.
Assists are certainly one area of Wilshere’s game that he will be looking to improve as he only came up with three in the Premier League last season.
However, his ability to pass accurately in all areas of the field, especially the final third, is significant because it would give Arsenal a greater chance of getting the ball up to Suarez more quickly.
His pass success rate in the Premier League last season was just over the 86% mark, which guarantees that close to nine out of every ten passes he plays in Suarez’s direction will find the Uruguayan.
Also bear in mind that Wilshere was injured for large parts of last season so his assist and passing numbers may have been even better had he been able to play more games.
Suarez’s ability to run at a defence and dribble in a confined space, playing deliberate ricochets off of legs and various body parts, means if Wilshere can just funnel the ball to him quickly then Arsenal will be in business.
Both players also have a superb understanding of space and when to move, dragging opposition players out of the way.
Make no mistake about the fact that Suarez’s main job in an Arsenal shirt will be to score goals but his cleverness in terms of the way he moves should also increase Wilshere’s chances of scoring more frequently.
Wilshere is at his very best when he can get on the ball and drive out from midfield, powering into space as the opposition defence drops back.
Watch any of Suarez’s Liverpool performances last season and you should find examples where he latches onto a centre back before gradually and subtly drifting wider, dragging that defender out of the way.
That creates a bigger hole through the heart of the opposition’s defence and that is definitely something that Wilshere could exploit.
How important do you think the Wilshere and Suarez partnership would be to Arsenal?
image: © Ronnie Macdonald