Wednesday, April 24News That Matters

Takehiro Tomiyasu reveals why Ben White does not pass to him in Arsenal matches

Takehiro Tomiyasu claims there is a simple tactical reason behind Ben White often snubbing the chances to pass to him during Arsenal matches.

Both summer signings have been regular players in an improving Arsenal backline that has amassed 10 cleans sheets in all competitions already this campaign.

Japan international Tomiyasu has been a steadying and reliable presence at right-back position having taken over from Hector Bellerin, who was sent out on loan to Real Betis.

White, meanwhile, is yet to justify his £50m transfer fee, but he has formed an impressive partnership with Gabriel Magalhaes at the heart of Arsenal’s defence.

The ability of both players on the ball was displayed by their part in a slick nine-pass move which culminated in Alexandre Lacazette’s opening goal in last weekend’s 3-0 victory over Southampton.

Eagle-eyed Arsenal fans have noticed, however, White’s reluctance to pass to Tomiyasu, but the former Bologna player insists there is a simple explanation.

Tomiyasu said: ‘It is because Ben White is a good player. Often, passes from the centre back to the full-backs become ‘pressure passes’.

‘I play centre back too, and simple passes to the full-backs are actually the last option I consider. If the full-back is not under opposition pressure I will play the pass, but if the winger is right in front, you’ll end up caught by the press.

‘So Ben White is a good player who doesn’t play passes that put you under pressure.’

Both players will need to be at their best this evening as Arsenal entertain West Ham at the Emirates with the Gunners hoping to build on Saturday’s victory.

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