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Silly season is here, who's in who's out, who was seen house hunting in north london etc. Everyone has an idea of who their team needs at Arsenal we are constantly told who we need and who we dont need usually big names in small names out.The managers budget is reported to be from £20m to £60m key players such as William Gallas are expected to leave, injuries ruined our season again and we came up short in the big games so clearly some money has to be spent.
So far Maroune Chamakh has signed for £0 which is a great piece of business he should walk right into the first XI.Our goalkeeping crisis is alarming Almunia has never inspired confidence as our no.1 solid as second choice though which is why he should stay Fabianski is young and talented but he makes very poor decisions and has zero confidence a loan to the championship could really help his career. Manchseter United have won a lot in the last few years and it started when they signed an experienced world class premiership proven goalkeeper from Fulham for £4m now Fulham have another experienced world class prem proven goalkeeper in Mark Schwarzcer not a gamble but a very safe purchase which is guarenteed to improve our situation.
Defence: has been an issue in recent years players like Silvestre and Senderos are leaving Sol Campbell and William Gallas(our best defender) might be leaving our centre backs for next season are Djouruo and Vermaelen hopefully Campbell will stay another season if Gallas has a good world cup he will get a big contract offer from sombody else and take it. 3 centre backs is not enough Gary Cahill has been linked i think hes worth £10m but no more Mertesacker for the same money would be a great signing and the versatile top quality Heitinga for around £7m would offer cover and competition across the back4 and in the DM role. The most heavily linked is Laurent Koscielny a little known defender from a european club that only wenger rates highly just like TV5 and Bacari Sagna 2 of our best recent signings.
Midfield: is always an issue if you read newspapers, personally I think our midfield is in great shape with one missing link who was in the team just 2 seasons ago Matthieu Flamini a terrier in the middle, runs all day, a very sharp tackler and passes the ball very well imagine how well he would compliment Song and Fabregas the 3 kind of midfield players that can dominate everyone. Speaking of Fabregas Barca want him, he might go and he would be very hard to replace luckily i dont think Barca will pay the money Arsenal should demand £60m which will be needed to replace him if Barca do decide to spend, to replace Fabregas we would need two players one to fill his actual footballing role in the team. Yoann Gourcoff at 21.8m perfect the second player has to be the kind of star player who can change a game in a second, rip a team apart on his own and most importantly let every team Know he can do it before he steps on the pitch
Strikers: the second part of operation "replace Cesc Fabregas" is one of either Sergio Aguero or Alexander Pato either would cost £40m and play in a front 3 with Van Persie and Chamakh (scary frontline). Our frontline next season could be a lot more powerful and faster and less reliant on RVP staying fit which is never a good idea. Eduardo hasn't hit the form he showed before his injury since his return its not his fault he needs games and he wont get them at Arsenal loaning him to another prem side could revive his career.Speaking of needing revivals has Andrei Arshavin died because he looks lifeless on the pitch he does not play for the team he always chooses the option that will make him look better hes a wonderful talent but i can see why nobody signed him when he was younger if we can get £20m I would sell him to fund transfers of players who will actually run.
In short ins:Schwazcer, Heitinga, Cahill, Mertesacker, Flamini=£34m
outs:Fabianski(loan), Senderos, Silvestre, Eduardo(loan), Arshavin=£20m
And in the event of Fabregas' departure Gourcoff and Aguero/Pato in for a combined £60m thats a big squad overhaul hopefully only the 5 defensive-minded players will have to be brought in.Well thats my transfer plan all young players coming in who will make a short and long term difference.
Mean Lean's Response
Thank you for the article Podge. Silly season is well and truly here, the amount of players that have been 'linked' to us has just been a bit mad but it is nothing that we are not used to I guess.
It looks as if a goalkeeper is on the mind of our manager as we had a bid turned down for Mark Schwarzer, I am not quite sure how much better if at all, Schwarzcer is to Almunia. The last two games I have seen him play, he has made two errors which have cost his team goals. Fulham against Arsenal on the last day of the season and then Australia's first game against Germany where he came for a ball he could not reach, we have seen that same error more than one occasion at Arsenal last season.
I think we are in need of a goalkeeper to challenge for the number one spot, at the very least for a mental change for the defenders and the team but how many error free goalkeepers are available? That is the question and we have to hope that Arsene can find the right person.
Personally I do not think that Almunia should be shipped out, I would like to see him stay on and fight against someone with quality whilst sending Lukasz Fabianski on loan to iron out those errors. We could make a better judge of him after a season as a number one elsewhere.
The center of defence looks like it will need work done to it, I am worried that three of our central defenders could be heading out of the exit door. None of Gallas, Campbell and Silvestre have signed contracts as yet which is a problem for Arsene. If they all leave then Wenger will have to bring in at least two central defenders. No matter how good the new players would be, it would be a disruption to our team and players would need to learn new partnerships, new combination and possibly a new league. That for me is a problem.
I think Flamini would be a no no. He was player of the season in his last year for me but it was his only good season for us, he was playing with his friends Cesc and Rosicky, playing in the side who were top of the league for 3/4 of the season and then he chose to leave for the money. He had proved himself at Arsenal and then promptly said his goodbyes and left. Bringing back Flamini would not send a good message to the rest of the squad. However I loved Flamini's passion and energy on the pitch. I will always remember his performance in the San Siro, a truly fantastic midfield display. A display that ultimately sealed his future to be honest. A future as a bit part AC Milan player.
I wouldn't frown on another defensive midfield addition but with Denilson and Eastmond having the best years ahead of them, I would not be surprised if that type of signing does not come.
I do not think our frontline needs any tinkering. We have not had problems scoring goals and the arrival of Chamakh will strengthen us further. I was disappointed with Arshavin last season but hopefully that is all in the past. He needs a good pre season and to come back without the extra wfaeight he brought back last season.
It will be interesting to see how the weeks unfold before the new season gets underway.