ARSENAL legend Ian Wright has claimed that the Gunners’ bore draw against Crystal Palace proves they are over-reliant on Kieran Tierney.
Mikel Arteta’s decision to rest the Scot backfired as his side looked toothless in attack during the 0-0 stalemate with the Eagles on Thursday evening.
Ian Wright claimed Arsenal cannot function without Kieran TierneyCredit: AP:Associated Press
Tierney has chipped in with three assists in his last four games in all competitions with fans even calling for him to be made captain.
The 23-year-old is easily the club’s best crosser of the ball, creating six chances in Arsenal’s recent 2-0 FA Cup win against Newcastle.
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And Gooners icon Wright admitted his old team looked a shadow of themselves with Ainsley Maitland-Niles deputising for Tierney.
He said: “One player does make such a difference and I think it’s a bit of a worry because you take him (Tierney) out the team and that side doesn’t function.
“And when we are talking about the way Kieran Tierney gets up and down, and we are talking about for the full 90 minutes, he never stops and this is why, you look at someone like Aubameyang today, didn’t quite get the chances he normally gets because Kieran Tierney is normally flashing things in and around the box.
“It didn’t happen today really on either side with the same amount of crosses when Kieran Tierney is playing.
“It has to come from somewhere else. I think the set-pieces today, when you consider Arsenal have a set-piece coach, the balls that were coming in were very good balls they weren’t being attacked very well.
“Those are the things when it’s not quite going for you when you are trying to play your game you’ve got to find another way.”
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In Tierney’s absence, Maitland-Niles struggled against Palace and was eventually substituted with 25 minutes remaining.
And SunSport revealed that the England defender is once again peering towards the possibility of an Emirates exit.
Tierney meanwhile is hoping to be fit for Arsenal’s clash with Newcastle after undergoing a scan on a muscle injury on Friday.