Kevin Campbell has claimed that Arsenal defender Kieran Tierney could be sold at the end of the season, highlighting the improvement in our side when Oleksandr Zinchenko is selected.
The Gunners have been in top form this term, with or without the Ukrainian defender in the side due to injury absences, but he has been the first-choice ahead of the Scot since joining from Manchester City.
Tierney place in the squad is now in question, with the likes of Nuno Tavares also impressing out on loan also, and Campbell believes that while he has a role to play for the remainder of the 2022-23 campaign, this could well be his last season in our side.
“He (Tierney) didn’t influence the game (against Oxford) the way we know he could,” Campbell told The Highbury Squad. “But that’s because of the level Zinchenko is now playing at. You look at when Zinchenko comes on, and then all of a sudden, we click because we dominate the ball. Why? Because he dominates the ball. He’s technically so gifted.
“Kieran Tierney isn’t that type of player. He is your typical left-back. He will get it and he will move up and down. Sometimes he can do that (come into midfield and dictate play), but nowhere near as Zinchenko does because he’s a really good midfielder.”
On KT no longer being suited to how Arsenal play: “I think sometimes it depends on who we play. I think there will be times when Kieran Tierney is preferred at left-back, in some of those Europa League games, Kieran Tierney could be starting. I think, for the league, for the domination we want to have with the ball, then I think Zinchenko is the preferred player.
“He might be surplus to requirements at the end of the season. Let’s see. But I still think he definitely has a part to play from this point until the end of the season.”
It seems a little crazy that Tierney has gone from being ranked amongst our best players and a future club captain, to someone who could well be surplus to requirements in less than a year. I still have a lot of love for the former Celtic man, but it really is evident that he has now become the back-up option. That isn’t to say that he can’t adapt his playing style a little to break back into the manager’s plans, but whether he can overthrow the former City star is another story.