Aaron Ramsey has come under fire to say the least over the past two seasons, with the Welshman struggling to find the form that made Arsene Wenger splash out on the youngster.
Since his horrific leg break back in 2010, the midfielder has lost the faith of many Gooners with slack passing and a lack of venom unlike the younger Jack Wilshere who consistently looks a threat with his agility and precise distribution. Ramsey, to be fair to him, has been played out wide recently which not only failed to pay dividends since the successful performance in the Manchester City fixture earlier in the season, but it has affected his confidence within the side and seems hesitant on the ball when in attacking positions.
Fellow Welshman John Hartson believes Ramsey requires a run of games in his favoured central midfield role, and as mentioned in earlier articles here at allarsenal.com, he should be loaned out for the remainder of the season to regain his confidence and spark.
It has been a turbulent year for Ramsey as he has also been stripped of his countries captaincy this season, with his national team manager wanting Ramsey to focus on playing and developing as a player, rather than carrying the weight of expectancy that is associated with wearing the armband. Despite the Welsh international making 25 appearances for the Gunners this term, he has only completed the full 90 minutes on six occasions, and Hartson believes Wales’ star midfielder looks unhappy with not completing full matches.
The former Celtic player told BBC Sport.
I just think he [Ramsey] needs that run of games.
Maybe if he did go out on loan [he'd get that], because he doesn’t seem to start many games at Arsenal now and when he does start he’s brought off and he doesn’t look happy.
I’m sure Arsene Wenger knows he’s a top-drawer player, because he wouldn’t have given him a new deal otherwise.
[On the 2010 horrific injury] I don’t want to keep going on about it because I’m sure he [Ramsey] is fed up of people talking about his injury.
He’s been back now I think it’s about a year-and-a-half fit again and it’s just where his best position is because for us with Wales he’s central midfield.
I don’t think playing on the left, wide left, is his position. [Against Swansea on Sunday] he looked lost at times.
He did some very good things in the game but obviously Arsene Wenger didn’t think it was his greatest performance because he took him off.
With Arsenal you look at their midfield. [Mikel] Arteta, [Jack] Wilshere, [Theo] Walcott, [Santi] Cazorla, [Alex] Oxlade-Chamberlain, they’ve got some really, really gifted players in the midfield.
So it’s up to Aaron to put in the performances week-in, week-out and on the training ground.
I just don’t think he’s quite hit the heights in terms of where he was before he got injured, but he will, I’m sure he will.
He needs to play play with a smile on his face, get back to enjoying football. It just seems as if there’s something holding him back at the minute.
Ramsey is woeful when played as a winger as he does not have the pace or confidence to take on the backs, he should only be played centrally but Arsenal are stacked with quality options in midfield, so it is hard to see Ramsey getting a look in at present. A loan move would be perfect for him as he will get the opportunity to play regularly in his favoured position, regain his confidence and (hopefully) return next season good enough to battle the likes of Wilshere and Arteta for the box-to-box roles.
Last season the Welshman had a lot of weight on his shoulders, he was named captain of the national team, had to deal with the loss of Gary Speed as well as having to fill the creative void left by Fabregas and Nasri. But now he is able to focus solely on his own game and there is no pressure to carry the creative spark of the team. He has the ability to be a big player for Arsenal but for now a loan move to a Premier League side would do wonders for his development, especially with the imminent return of Abou Diaby adding further depth to the central positions.