When outlined on Arsenal’s official website that his signing had been completed, the 17-year-old youth international - who had made just five appearances for Legia before transferring to England - was listed as a 'Poland youth international [who] can play in both holding midfield and at centre-back’. His versatility was obviously a big draw for Arsenal, who have long suffered in both the defensive midfield and the central defensive areas, but Bielik himself has come out to confirm that he cannot actually play at centre-back, telling Przeglad Sportowy that his game is all about dictating play from midfield.
Despite being tall and physically built for his age, that does not automatically translate into being a top quality central defender, and Bielik’s quotes reveal that he has played centre-back just once before, in a reserve game for Legia, and he does not believe he could fulfil that role permanently.
When asked by Przeglad Sportowy why he was listed as a central defender on the official Gunners website, Bielik responded: “I think someone made a mistake.
“Do not worry, I’d rather not play as a stopper. I remember one game in the reserves of Legia, when for the first time in my life I played in central defence.
“I do not assume that I will be a stopper. I’m such a player who wants to create a game and dominate in the middle.”
Regardless of his inability to play in central defence, the knowledge that Bielik is an accomplished deep-lying midfielder will be a welcome addition, with defensive cover in the middle of the park severely lacking. On top of his defensive duties he also has a desire to be something of a playmaker, and he will undoubtledy fit well into the Arsenal way of attractive passing football that is so ingrained in the club's culture.