Saw a few fans during yesterday’s game between Egypt and Uruguay question how good Lucas Torreira must be if he “can’t even get into his national team”.
As the majority of us at England fans, is this view not a little arrogant? And extremely ignorant.
Uruguay are ranked 14th in the world. That is just one place below England – a side which Jack Wilshere can’t even get into the squad for.
They are ranked above the likes of Holland, Italy, Columbia and Croatia.
Ahead of him in the Starting XI is Rodrigo Bentancur. The 20 year old had a break through season for Juventus last season, who secured first option to sign him when he was just 17.
Also ahead of him is 26 year old Matías Vecino, who Inter Milan paid €24m for last summer.
Let’s not pretend this Uruguay is a poor team. They have an array of talented young midfielders, including Nahitan Nández (22) and Giorgian De Arrascaeta (24).
It is no shame that Torreira did not start.
Uruguay are not exactly Scotland or Republic of Ireland. They are a good outfit.
One player who did start the game was Egypt’s Mo Elneny.
He put in the solid if unexceptional performance that he has become known for.
If Arsenal do go ahead next year and play 3 in the middle of the park, Elneny has to be in with a shout if being the deepest of those 3.
He covers a lot of ground, is disciplined and defensive aware.
You do not win the league with 11 Lionel Messi’s. You need a Sergio Busquet’s or Fernandinho.
Elneny can do that job (although it would be good to also secure Torreira so that we have competition in the area.
Not everyone’s cup of tea but Granit Xhaka signing a new contract is great news for the club.
With Jack Wilshere looking like he is off and Aaron Ramsey still yet to sign a contract, Xhaka is a man who the modified can be built around.
Still just 25, Unai Emery needs to get the balance of the midfield right to get the best out of the Swiss international.
Signs Lucas Torreira could be just what is needed to allow Xhaka to excel.
A midfield 3 of:
Xhaka Torreira Ramsey
Has a lot of balance to it.
Since joint Arsenal two years ago, he has had to deal with a lot of criticism from fans and the media.
Xhaka gets a lot of blame for the team being set up unbalanced. He has never really played as the deepest central midfielder.
He needs to be allowed to press and be aggressive. Sitting deep never suited him.
By having someone behind him will allow him to get further forward, to be more aggressive in the middle of the park, and know he has a safety net behind him.
I am predicting that Xhaka playing the ball from deep over the top to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will be a route for a lot of goals next season.