Why Lucas Torreira is the final piece of Emery’s Arsenal jigsaw
After facing back to back losses against Manchester City and Chelsea in the opening weeks of the Premier League season, Arsenal have since gone on to win 9 consecutive games under new manager Unai Emery.
There’s a certain positive aura around the Emirates at the moment and the Gunners now look a completely transformed side under the Spanish coach. Emery also brought in a couple of signings in the summer who have made a significant impact for the club this season.
One man who has proven to be a standout performer and the engine in the middle of the park is Uruguayan midfielder Lucas Torreira. The 22-year-old made the move to the Emirates from Sampdoria this season for £26.5m and after making a slow start, he is now a major component of Emery’s philosophy.
Torreira’s relentless running and determination are unrivalled in the squad. His work rate and work ethic have been excellent so far. A tireless worker and an able distributor in the middle of the park, everything good Arsenal produce start with Lucas Torreira.
After enjoying a splendid summer with Uruguay at the World Cup, the youngster has continued his fine form with the Gunners in the Premier League. He has proven to be a defensive machine in the middle of the park.
Torreira was initially resorted to coming off the bench but the midfielder has started the last 3 games and there’s no doubt Arsenal look a completely different side with him on the pitch. The 22-year-old has averaged a tackle success rate of 50% in the league so far, which is the highest by any Gunner this season. (Stats courtesy – Premier League)
He has also made a whopping 33 recoveries. One of Torreira’s best qualities is his willingness to track down the attackers to hand them a tough time. The midfielder has also won 33 of his 52 personal duels against other players. (Stats courtesy – Premier League)
Torreira has also been very fruitful with his crisp and short distribution in the middle of the park. He boasts a pass success rate of 88% in the Premier League despite making just 3 starts so far. He has flourished playing in both 4-2-3-1 and the 4-4-2 formation under Unai Emery this season.
What’s even more noticeable is the rise in Granit Xhaka’s form. The Swiss international has thrived with Torreira doing the dirty work next to him, providing Xhaka with a lot more free space to play his game.
The Uruguayan is excellent at attracting players towards him, allowing his teammates a lot of space to make runs and surge forward.
He has been extremely calm and composed when put under pressure as well. Torreira seems to be the final piece to Arsenal’s puzzle and as they aim to return to the Champions League, he will surely play a key role in that journey.
The Gunners’ fixtures now take a tough turn but this is where the 22-year-old needs to prove his worth.