SCOUTING REPORT: Exactly how will Marouane Chamakh fit in at Arsenal?


Arsenal have this evening finally done what we all knew they eventually would and completed the signing of Morocco star Marouane Chamakh.

The deal brings a close to over a year of speculation which has seen the striker linked with, among others, Tottenham, Sunderland, West Ham, Blackburn and Fulham.

Here is our Scouting Report in the new darling of the Emirates...

Marouane Chamakh Date of Birth: 10th January 1984 (26 years old) Nationality: Moroccan/French Position: Forward Career games: 293 Goals: 79

Career History: In January 2003 Chamakh made his first appearance in the Bordeaux first team during a League Cup match against Metz.

He played in his first Ligue 1 match a month later and went on to play ten matches alongside Portuguese striker Pauleta in the second half of 2002/03, scoring one goal.

Although he was born in France, Chamakh was selected to play for the Morocco national team in June 2003, and has gone on to play over 50 times for the national team. In his eight seasons at Stade Chaban Delmas, Chamakh scored 55 goals in 227 Ligue 1 outings, scoring a further 24 in 66 cup and European matches.

His best season was 2008/09, where his 13 goals helped les Girondins to their first Ligue 1 title in a decade.

Playing Style: A strong but elegant player, Chamakh plays just off the shoulder of the last man in the opposition defence. His aerial ability usually sees him labelled as a target man, but to coin the painful cliche, 'he's got a good touch for a big man', and is more than just a target for long punts up field or balls lobbed into the box.

In the past he had played with a big centre forward alongside him, but his recent success has come playing as the lone striker in Bordeaux’s attack, with an attacking midfielder or withdrawn forward laying off of him - it's not hard to see how he could possibly slot in ahead of Robin van Persie, Andrei Arshavin and co.

Strengths: The Morocco striker provides a massive aerial threat, which is something the Gunners haven't possessed in quite the same degree since Emmanuel Adebayor's departured the Emirates Stadium last summer.

He combines his excellent heading ability with great jumping, strength and agility - he certainly won't be found wanting when it came to the Premier League's more physical fixtures.

Weakness: In the past he’s been accused of trying to over-complicate play, even trying to tee-up team-mates when it would be easier to just go for goal himself (another reason he could fit in well at Arsenal...). He seems to gradually be eradicating this from his game, however could still benefit from working on his reading of the game and positional awareness.

But if anybody can drill that into him, it's Arsene Wenger. Talentspotter ratings: • Shooting 7.3 • Passing 6.5 • Heading 9.4 • Tackling 3.5 • Pace 7.8 • Work-rate 8.3 • Crossing 4.1 • Creativity 6.0 • Dribbling 7.9• Overall 8.0

NEWS: Arsenal complete Chamakh signing