Arsenal made a stunning last-gasp comeback against Manchester United on Saturday in what was a hotly-contested clash, and Wenger sure has Olivier Giroud to thank for the 1 undeserved point secured.
The France international came off the bench to grab an equaliser in the 89th minute of the game, and many believe Arsenal might have had more than just 1 shot on target if he had been on the pitch much earlier or started the game.
With Sanchez now Wenger’s permanent first choice striker following his sharp form in front of goal after he got drafted to play as a makeshift when Giroud became unavailable, it looks almost near-impossible for the French player to reclaim his spot.
However, his continued absence in the starting XI might continue to hurt Arsenal’s chances, and Wenger must find a way of fielding both players if the club is to have a very big say in the title race this term.
And he must do it in such a way that the goalscoring threats both players possess must not be hampered by whatever tactics he chooses to deploy.
Reverting to Arsenal’s 4-2-3-1 formation with Sanchez on the left and Giroud upfront won’t be the best of options for so many reasons.
While the Chilean would still be able to roam around the attacking positions, he wouldn’t be able to score as much goals as he has scored this season.
The potential reason being that Giroud’s lack of versatility means the French number 9 can only play his role as a centre forward, and Alexis wouldn’t be able to get into that position any longer.
Hence, Wenger might have to adopt a 4-4-2 diamond formation that concentrates on the team having a double striker and opening up more goalscoring chances upfront.
But where would that leave the centre attacking midfield prowess of Ozil?
The German will have to occupy a centre midfield position that can allow him to concentrate on going forward alone and attacking regularly as much as he has as a number 8.
It would also mean Wenger will have to do with just a single defensive midfield whose role will be just to help cover for Ozil and the backline.
However, the fluidity of the attackers deployed means the formation is able to be interchanged with the 4-1-2-1-2.
Here, Ozil is right behind the front 2 strikers, while a defensive midfield plays in front of the defence and behind 2 wingers.
Similarly, a 4-4-1-1 formation could accommodate both strikers, with Sanchez playing right behind Olivier. With the Chilean playing in the hole as a second striker, it wouldn’t hinder his love for dropping deep into the midfield to pick up passes, whilst he is also available to wreck havoc up front when the likes of Ozil and the wingers mount an attack.
Perhaps, those formations pose a threat to Ozil’s creativity, a 4-3-2-1 might just do. With it, Ozil and Sanchez play behind Giroud, with the makeshift striker given enough room to act as a supporting striker, while the wingers play either side of a defensive midfielder.
Wenger has often been accused of being rigid and refusing to change his tactics for sometime now. But right now, he is equipped with 2 strikers who have to play together as they can combine their qualities and scoring abilities to fire the Gunners to a first title win since 2004.
Will Wenger take his last chance or remain a tactically extinct manager?