Calum Chambers Deserves a Chance at Arsenal

Calum Chambers

Calum Chambers was named in Arsenal‘s first starting XI of the season away at Newcastle United. The English defender put in a decent enough performance and the team kept their only clean sheet of the young campaign.

Fast-forward six weeks and Chambers still has just the one appearance under his belt. This is despite a number of high-profile errors from both Sokratis Papastathopoulos and David Luiz.

Calum Chambers Should Receive a Premier League Opportunity

Done Nothing Wrong

One appearance doesn’t usually show the quality or lack thereof in a player, but it is worth mentioning that Calum Chambers really didn’t do anything wrong in his display against Toon.

He only made the one tackle but managed three clearances and a block. With the ball at his feet, Chambers completed 88.3% of his passes and even contributed with three long balls.

Again, a sample size of one is just too small. However, it is very difficult for a neutral observer to delineate exactly why Unai Emery doesn’t wish to give Chambers another chance.

Of course, fans just don’t know what happens on the training pitch. It could easily be the case that Calum Chambers just isn’t doing what Emery wants from him in training, resulting in a lack of selection.

However, it is difficult to imagine what he could be doing that is worse than giving away two penalties in four matches or helping to concede eight goals in the same time span.

While Others Have

While it hasn’t been all bad from Sokratis and Luiz, it certainly hasn’t been good. The Brazilian is averaging six clearances per 90 yet has given up two penalties in just four games.

Meanwhile, Sokratis was directly culpable for goals against both Watford and Tottenham Hotspur. When Emery first named these two as his centre-back partnership, fans could easily see why.

David Luiz is the best ball-playing defender that Arsenal have and Emery wants to play out from the back. The former Chelsea man has helped with the ball at his feet but in a league where any club can hurt you, that doesn’t always make up for defensive mistakes.

This is especially true in matches where the backline is sure to be exposed. Watford are a dangerous team that can hurt visiting clubs, even when Troy Deeney is unavailable.

Sacrificing the ball-playing ability of David Luiz for the slightly more secure Calum Chambers would have been prudent. It would have meant playing out from the back less, but that tactic was only so effective at Vicarage Road.

Probably Just a Rotation Option

Last season, Emery didn’t stick to his system of playing out from the back for long due to inconsistent results. He has yet to abandon this tactic, so Calum Chambers likely won’t get a Premier League chance until if and when Emery loses his nerve.

With a visit to Eintracht Frankfurt coming on Thursday, Unai Emery will surely rotate his squad at least partially. This means that Chambers will likely get his second match of the season.

With the two senior central defenders misfiring, perhaps this is the former Southampton man’s chance to earn back a place in the starting XI. Should he impress, it may lead to a measure of defensive solidity in the continued absence of Rob Holding.

Should he not, not only will his Arsenal future be up for debate, the Gunners’ defensive fate this season may also suffer.

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