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Striker or winger?
Striker or winger?

Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro - Is He Really a Striker?

By: Chris Baldock
Date: 07/12/2009

WHEN he joined Town on a free this time last year, he was widely admired for his lightning pace, light first touch and dribbling skill. But Jean-Louis (we're on first name terms) has fizzled out since his arrival. Is this because he is being misused?

Living away from Grimsby in Bucks, I rarely get to games other than the odd away game which we can make in a short time; I haven't seen an awful lot of him. The last time I saw him play he came off the bench for 25 minutes and struggled to get into the game. But having seen him a few times last season, notably against Wycombe where he was excellent, and from highlights I can draw reasonably that his shooting ability and composure matches that of a drunken toddler, surely supported by the 18 games without a goal so far this season. However also having seen him I can see that he appears, as far as I can draw out, to be a top notch crosser of the ball, shown again by the Wycombe game in which he provided the cross for Jarman's goal.

It has been obvious to me for a while that if played on the wings and given an attacking license, he would, in my opinion, create more goals than he could ever score playing up front. The main problem that would be faced would be getting him into the game out wide, but if you can get the ball to his feet, or anywhere in front of him and he can beat the defender to it, he's bound to cause major problems for League Two defences. A key feature of his play when I've seen him play well was dropping back into spaces between midfield and attack to receive the ball and run at defenders and if he can emulate this on the wings and get balls into the box there's no reason he can't develop into one of the best wingers in the league, if not the best.

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