Continuing the trend of “Aaron saw this on Twitter recently so he’s going to base CF around it,” today we have the all-time Arsenal 6-a-side team. One of the big accounts suggested one team had the best 6 players to farm engagement, and people took the bait and argued in the mentions. We’ll put aside the fact that with any Champions League-level club, the six best players in club history are just as good as the six best players from any other club.
To be fair, it’s a neat idea and a fun mental exercise. We love to debate about sports hypotheticals, don’t we? But I’m going to go a step further. I’m going to base my picks on how I’d like to set up a side. In my version of 6-a-side, there aren’t keepers.
It’s really close on whether I’d take a defender for my six. Part of me thinks that Patrick Vieira can hold down the fort on his own. But the temptation to pick Tony Adams is strong - for his ball-winning, for his mentality, but also because any all-Arsenal list feels wrong without him on it. By that same token, it feels like Ian Wright merits consideration because even though Tony Adams is Mr. Arsenal, when I think Arsenal, I think Ian Wright. And he scored bags of goals, too.
Vieira and Adams make it. Ian Wright is the first guy off the bench.
Thierry Henry and Dennis Bergkamp are no-brainers. 6-a-side is all about individual skill, and those two have it in spades. They’re both in.
The tough choice is having to pick two of three from Robert Pires, Santi Cazorla, and Mesut Özil. Pires makes it, I think, if only to recreate the magic of that Henry, Bergkamp, Pires attacking trio. And even though I think Mesut Özil is a slightly better player than Santi Cazorla, Santi makes it over him because of his two-footed play. In tight spaces, it’s much more difficult to defend a truly two-footed player like Santi.
To recap, I’ve got: Tony Adams, Patrick Vieira, Robert Pires, Santi Cazorla, Dennis Bergkamp, and Thierry Henry. Ian Wright is my first guy of the bench / chief of vibes.
Who are you taking? What other clubs have formidable 6-a-side lineups?
Oh and Arsenal have the best manager in Arsene Wenger. Sir Alex can take a seat. No, that is not up for debate.