When Arsenal confirmed the signing of Sead KolašInac on 1st of July, many sceptics made their feelings clear. Seeing as not many neutrals had heard of the left-back, his transfer was instantly dismissed. “How can he be any good if he was on a free transfer?” They cried. “If he’s that good why didn’t any of Europe’s elites go for him?” They shouted.
These sceptics weren’t just among of the footballing public; they were among the Arsenal fanbase too. The signing is still looked back in disdain by Arsenal fans as many felt it foreshadowed a summer of many incomings, it didn’t, and instead, he was looked at as another one of Arsène Wenger’s cheap buys. But ever since arriving in England, Sead Kolašinac has taken the league by storm.
Such is his versatility, Arsène Wenger has started him in both the LWB and LCB position. In both the positions, he’s excelled, but it’s clear to everyone that at LWB, he’s unstoppable. His unrivalled strength, close ball control, unprecedented power and wizardry crossing technique have made him a force to be reckoned with down the left flank.
In 6 Premier League appearances, Kolašinac has already provided 2 assists, completed 320 passes, created 3 chances, made 15 tackles, won 12 aerial battles and made 5 interceptions. He’s been an influential force in both defence and attack, perfectly suiting Arsenal’s 3-4-2-1 system. Even in pre-season, the Bosnian scored his first goal for the club in the Community Shield against the PL Champions, Chelsea.
In the 3-4-2-1 formation, Sead Kolašinac is given the license to roam forward and occupy the final third as much as he wants. Arsène Wenger has clearly instructed him to form an intricate partnership with whoever’s at LAM, ensuring they double up on the opposing team’s full-back. Kolašinac always aims to go out on the outside, looking to get to the by-line and deliver a whipped cross. But when Giroud is playing, he opts to produce more lofted crosses.
Such intelligence shows that Sead Kolašinac is not just a physical specimen, he has the football brain that suits Arsène Wenger’s tikki-takka style of play. He knows when to hold his runs and when to pass inside or cross on the outside. The Bosnian has shown that the pace & physicality of the Premier League doesn’t affect his decision-making or composure in games. In a league where the back three phenomena has taken over, Sead Kolašinac may be the best LWB in the league today. He will only further prove that point as Arsène Wenger continuously starts him.
Sead Kolašinac has not just been a revelation in the attack; he’s been impossible to get by in defence. His industrious work rate has meant that despite him always contributing in the final third, and he’s never left Arsenal exposed on the counter-attack. Often, he senses danger early and positions himself accordingly, thus helping his back three in the defensive transition.
Sead Kolašinac will go down as the bargain of the year. Let’s not forget the Bosnian was in the Bundesliga TOTY last season, he’s a real coup, and the Premier League are lucky to have him.