Alexandre Lacazette is Arsenal’s club record signing (for now😉). He arrived from French club Lyon for a fee of around £52 million including add ons. Following an impressive season where he netted 37 goals for Lyon, Lacazette started perfectly for Arsenal scoring the clubs first goal of the season. Lacazette is currently Arsenal’s top scorer with 9 league goals and has been the subject to much debate.
My analysis so far:
Whilst Lacazette has missed a few big chances to me he has been impressive. He makes intelligent movement when the ball is deeper and in and around the box, he’s better in the air than I expected, he’s strong, he can hold the ball up well and link up in Arsenal’s intricate one touch football and he has shown efficiency in front of goal when he’s confident. Confidence is the key, recently that is what has been lacking and it has been noticeable. However, that seems to be on the up and the signs are getting better once again.
My only criticism of Lacazette so far, and this has frustrated me quite a bit, is his lack of movement when we have the ball out wide. I often find myself urging him to make a run to the front post (or even back) but instead he seems to prefer to stay central then drop away from goal into the hole around the penalty spot. Whilst this can be effective it is often easy to defend, whereas if he made a run in front of the centre back to the front post he is a problem. Take a look at Sergio Aguero for example, one of the most deadly Premier League strikers ever. He is always changing his runs: front post, back post and dropping off. That’s what I’d like to see more off and I feel it would bring him more goals, as well as, offer the wide players an option in the box, something they don’t have at the moment.
Some stats about Lacazette since he joined Arsenal.
- He has appeared in 24 League games this season (3 off the bench)
- 9 goals and 3 assists, 2 wrongly disallowed goals and a couple of penalty decisions that could’ve gone our way deserve pointing out
- 75% pass accuracy
- 72% shot accuracy
- 25 dribbles completed
- 23 chances created
- 24 key passes
It is the last two stats that interest me. This shows how much of a team player he is and why he is a perfect fit for Arsenal. To me, the best players don’t always score the most goals but they always make the best decisions and have good all round play. Lacazette fits the bill for this criteria to me. He does not shoot needlessly in the hope that one might go in, he shoots when he believes he can score and there is no better option, and to me this makes him a very top player. He knows the right time to pass, hold the ball up and shoot. He is very unselfish and this stat shows he is also a very creative striker, he is unique and there are very few better because of this. If he could find a poachers movement when we cross the ball in I believe he would be touching on close to the best striker in the league.
Now, onto answering the question in the title. To me, Lacazette is world class. He has that aura around him, he oozes class with everything he does. He has a calmness to his game which is ice cold and he has shown he can battle in the physical aspect of the Premier League. Let’s not forget this is Lacazette’s first season at the club and it has been an adjustment period; but, even so, in this period he has shown true promise with his adaptability to our style of play and clever movement, he’s a team player and is Arsenal material down to the tee. A world class striker and a great signing.