Can the new Arsenal manager solve the Ozil-Ramsey conundrum?
Arsene Wenger's departure from Arsenal FC brings the curtain down on one of the greatest managerial reigns in history. Arsenal fans will now see a new man at the helm of their beloved club, as Gooners will witness a new era starting with their opening match of the 2018-19 Premier League season.
No matter who the new Arsenal manager will be, he will be inheriting a squad filled with potential but lacking in both confidence and consistency in key areas of the field. Arsenal's decade long issues at the back continue to remain a major head ache, while their lack of robustness in midfield is also a cause for concern for their fans.
One man though who should be the focal point of this new Arsenal team is Welsh midfielder Aaron Ramsey. In what has otherwise been a terrible season for the club as a whole, Ramsey has shone the brightest, as the dynamic midfielder showed us all why he is considered so highly around the Emirates.
In spite of missing large chunks of the season, Ramsey scored 12 goals and assisted 9 more in the 36 matches that he played all season, making him one of the most effective midfielders in all of Europe.
Still only 27 years old, Ramsey brought back memories of his remarkable 2013-14 season, when he was the best midfielder in England and famously scored the winner in Arsenal's FA Cup final win against Hull City.
Injuries have been a major drawback for Ramsey, as his inability to remain fit for an entire season has often seen him go in and out of the side. But at his best, like he was for the majority of last season, Ramsey is one of the first names on the team sheet, as his dynamism in the middle of the park is something that sets him apart from most players playing in his position.
We have seen Ramsey put in some outstanding performances at international level as well, with the Welshman part of the Euro 2016 team of the tournament. For Wales, Ramsey plays as the number 10, with license to roam the field and dovetail with the attackers up front.
Unfortunately for Ramsey, Mesut Ozil occupies that position at Arsenal, as the Welshman often needs to curb his attacking instincts while playing for his club. That does not stop Ramsey from bombing forward at every occasion, as his knack of scoring goals is one of his best attributes.
This though leaves a huge gap in midfield, which other teams often exploit and catch Arsenal out, especially away from home. So can Ramsey and Ozil bring the best out of each other in the same team?
People forget that Ozil was a part of the Arsenal side when Ramsey had his brilliant 2013-14 season, with the pair gelling really well in midfield. Both Ozil and Ramsey were superb for Arsenal in parts of this season as well, as they were instrumental in Arsenal's deep run in the league cup and Europa league.
But with neither player renowned for their defensive prowess, the new Arsenal manager needs to find a good defensive midfielder who could complement Ramsey and Ozil's attacking dynamism. Granit Xhaka cannot do this alone, which is why Arsenal must bring in a defensive midfielder in the summer.
Arsenal are rumoured to be after Nice's Jean Seri, a tough tackling midfielder in the mold of N'Golo Kante at Chelsea. The fact that Arsenal refused the opportunity to sign Kante a couple of years ago must be a huge regret, which is why they should do everything in their power to bring Seri to the Emirates.
Now how do you fit in Ozil, Ramsey, Lacazette, Mkhitaryan and Aubameyang in one side without compromising the side's defensive stability?
That's the million dollar question isn't it!