Prior to Arsenal's 0-0 draw with Liverpool Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville let rip at the Gunners, particularly their midfield duo of Francis Coquelin and Santi Cazorla who he lambasted for being lightweight.
As per WhoScored, the Frenchman made five tackles and interceptions, won two aerial duels and registered an impressive 91% passing success rate.
Overall, the 24-year-old has made 3.7 tackles per game, 2.7 interceptions per game, has won 1.3 aerial duels and has completed 90.1% of his 57.3 passes per game. Simply put, the numbers he produced against Liverpool are not a fluke and make a mockery of Neville's scathing criticism.
Whilst Alexis Sanchez looks at home on the left wing, Mesut Ozil continues to flatter to deceive as a central attacking midfielder (or indeed anywhere in an Arsenal shirt), Aaron Ramsey looks uncomfortable on the right wing - a position he has stated on numerous occasions he would rather not be in, and Olivier Giroud, for all his endeavours is just not good enough to lead the frontline.
Admittedly the Gunners do need another defensive midfielder, but this should purely be for the sake of depth and not to replace the ever impressive Coquelin.
The great Arsene Wenger sides were built on the back of two defensively responsible, yet technical central midfielders (Emmanuel Petit and Patrick Vieira 1997-200 and then later Vieira and Edu/Gilberto Silva 2001-2005). In an ideal scenario Wenger would have signed Arturo Vidal, Morgan Schneiderlin or Paul Pogba and placed either on alongside Coquelin, pushing Cazorla into the attacking midfield three or changing formation from 4-2-3-1 to 4-3-3 and taking out an attacking midfielder whilst allowing Cazorla to remain in central midfield.
Unfortunately, the latter two have found new clubs in Bayern Munich and Manchester United, whilst Pogba is above Arsenal's radar. With just one week left in the transfer window it will be interesting to note how the Gunners maneuver, but no matter what Coquelin has earned his first-team status at the club.
*Statistics from WhoScored