Kai Havertz, No 9

Kai Havertz began the season as a left-sided No 8 but his performances as a striker demand that he continues playing there


Mikel Arteta did not expect it. Neither did the man he was watching — Jorginho.

The statesman of this Arsenal team can make walking football look like speed chess, but on this occasion, after straining to reach Martin Odegaard’s through ball, it appeared the Italian needed time to familiarise himself with his surroundings.

He found himself moving along the Brighton & Hove Albion byline, two gears higher than usual, waiting for a clearer picture to emerge.

All Jorginho could see was the imposing frame of goalkeeper Bart Verbruggen guarding the near post and a quartet of Brighton players enclosing Kai Havertz, who was standing on the edge of the six-yard box.

Carlos Baleba was a yard to his right, Jan Paul van Hecke was behind him and Lewis Dunk was within touching distance to his left, between him and the goal.

With two simple steps to his right, Havertz told those Brighton defenders he was anticipating a cutback.

They believed him — but Jorginho knew better.

He delayed and delayed until the German’s decoy registered. One feint to lure Dunk towards him and throw his body weight off-centre, then a sharp dart in the opposite direction to get behind him.

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