BT Sport pundit Martin Keown has sent some praise towards Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s way after Arsenal’s 5-0 thumping of Southampton.
Many anticipated a tough evening at the St. Mary’s stadium for the Gunners this weekend but a dominant first half display eased any concerns as the away side went 3-0 ahead by halftime.
With the likes of Mesut Ozil and Aaron Ramsey not involved in the FA Cup tie, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain was ordered to feature in central midfield for the first time in quite a while.
And after watching the 23-year-old help Arsenal secure a place in the next round of the competition, Keown pointed out his vital contributions on the night.
“Arsene Wenger is particularly interested in the artistic part of the game. He wants to see artists and you saw one at work [against Southampton].” the former Gunner said
“He’s got willing runners but you need someone to pick out the pass. There was a variation to his play. He [Oxlade-Chamberlain] has played in the centre-midfield role as a young kid.
“There’s a lot of injuries and it’s almost been forced on Wenger but I feel that it’s his natural position because he has that pace as well. He was always looking for a pass. You need that player to make those passes. It’s balance.”