Gervinho: Inconsistent Forward's Performance vs. Togo Proves Worth for Arsenal

Pete SchauerCorrespondent IJanuary 22, 2013

BRADFORD, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 11:  Gervinho of Arsenal and Carl McHugh of Bradford compete for the ball during the Capital One Cup quarter final match between Bradford City and Arsenal at the Coral Windows Stadium, Valley Parade on December 11, 2012 in Bradford, England.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Much has been made of Gervinho's play as a member of Arsenal this season, but his performance against Togo on Tuesday in the Africa Cup of Nations match proves his worth to the Gunners.

In a Group D 2-1 victory over Togo, the forward assisted on a beautiful goal by Yaya Toure to put Ivory Coast up 1-0.

After Togo evened the match, Gervinho netted an 88th-minute goal to seal the win for Ivory Coast (h/t YouTube).

Gervinho is one of the most scrutinized players in the English Premier League, as Arsenal fans have grown tired of his inconsistent play.

ESPN's Iain Macintosh wrote an article back in late October detailing the frustrations surrounding the 25-year-old forward following a loss to Schalke:

He's an awkward winger. The damage he causes when he cuts in is usually neutralised by the lack of awareness of his surroundings. He's certainly not a lone striker, either, regardless of the goals he's scored, because he can't provide anything other than a fleeting threat. He's not terrible, but at the same time he's not particularly good. 

Gervinho received more flack when he missed a chip-in shot that knocked the Gunners out of the Capital One Cup.

Gervinho certainly hasn't lived up to his contract, as the Telegraph points out:

"Since he joined Arsenal in July last year for £10.5m the Ivorian has scored only nine goals. That's £1m per goal so far."

He certainly hasn't had it easy with Arsenal, but his play in the Africa Cup of Nations should encourage Arsene Wenger and the Gunners.

Not only was he looking to make plays and dish to his teammates, but the Ivorian found the back of the net on a gorgeous cross in crunch time of a crucial match.

Despite the lack of goals, Wenger continues to support his inconsistent forward, and the vote of confidence from his coach is always a confidence booster (h/t the Telegraph).

What Gervinho lacks in size and physicality he makes up for in dribbling skills and attack.

Look for the 25-year-old forward to take his success from the win over Togo and translate it onto the field with the Gunners. 


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