Arsenal saw their unbeaten run in the Premier League come to an end yesterday as they fell to a 3-1 defeat against Manchester United at Old Trafford.
One player in Mikel Arteta’s side that struggled in the game was Ben White.
Having been deployed at right-back again, which is where he has played in every league game for the Gunners this season, the defender ultimately earned himself a rather disappointing overall match rating of 6.3/10 from SofaScore, making him Arsenal’s joint-lowest rated player on the day.
In addition to this, Football.London said that the Englishman “did his best to cover back when Arsenal’s high line was exposed in the second half but couldn’t do enough.”
Whilst predominantly a centre-back, this performance against United should, in our view, make Arteta think about taking White out of the right-back position and replacing him with someone more suited to playing in that role – Takehiro Tomiyasu.
Arsenal signed the full-back from Bologna during the 2021 summer transfer window in a deal worth a reported fee of £19.8m.
After replacing White at the 80th-minute mark on Sunday, the Japanese defender made one tackle and one interception, which is one more interception than the 24-year-old managed to make in the game, in addition to winning the one duel he was involved in.
With 21 league appearances to his name last season, the 23-year-old managed to end the campaign with the fourth-highest combined total of tackles and interceptions (74) in the Arsenal squad, further highlighting how much of a capable defender he is.
White has previously shared his admiration for Tomiyasu by saying that he “does the simple things at a world-class level.”
Taking all of this into account, if Arteta wants his side to be stronger defensively, now could be the right time to bring an end to White’s time as a right-back and bring the former Bologna man in instead.
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