Petit: Top dog Torreira shows Gunners are fit for a scrap without Ozil

Manu's been impressed by Arsenal's new midfield terrier. He's setting an example for some of the flashier members of their squad....

Emmanuel Petit

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Lucas Torreira is like a dog. He’s everything Arsenal have been missing for the last few seasons. His work rate is very impressive, he’s very strong mentally.

He’s not the most talented player but in terms of setting an example and fighting spirit, he’s a leader in the team now.

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Arsenal haven’t had a player in this mould for a long long time. They have Mattéo Guendouzi but he’s young and will take some time to develop.

Xhaka is also much better player with Torreira there. Torreira has made him a better player because Xhaka wasn’t like that before. Since he moved to Arsenal I hadn’t seen him improve as a player and now he looks like he has come on leaps and bounds.

Ozil can’t handle physicality

We all know how beautiful a footballer Mezut Ozil is – when things are easy. It’s easy not to have to be physical when you are winning but it’s when things are not beautiful, when you have to fight, that you can lose him for 60 minutes.

I think what happened with the national team has had a big impact on him in terms of motivation and it’s taken a couple of months to recover from that. I’m not surprised by Emery’s comments (about Ozil not able to handle the physical confrontation) because I have seen so many times how he disappears on the pitch when you need fighting spirit.

If Arsenal want to reach the level they are going for then they need him to be at his best.

Sissoko emerging for Spurs

I like Moussa because you need a player like him in your team. He can play different positions and what I like about him is he knows what type of player he is and never tries to be something he’s not. He’s been brilliant for Spurs lately.

You have to look back at when he first went to Spurs and it didn’t start well for him.

Pochettino was making comments about his commitment, the way he used to train and then he lost his position with the national team and wasn’t in the squad when they won the World Cup.

He was one of the soldiers for Deschamps in 2016 and was probably the best player on the pitch for the final at the Euro’s.

Then all of a sudden everything was over. He kept training and working and now he’s getting what he deserves because he shut his mouth, didn’t make any trouble and waited for his time.

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