Tuesday morning greetings, fellow carbon life-units.
A lot of sites will claim to have insider knowledge. We’ve all seen the tall tales floating about the interwebs of irrefutable claims from ‘a friend’ or ‘Nicklas Bendtner’s taxidermist’ pertaining to the latest acquisition heading to Arsenal. I claim to have none of this information. I’m just an idiot who’s decided to share his opinion on the matter.
To prepare for today’s entry, I’ve done a good amount of scouring. I’ve scoured many pages of many websites looking for clues. Think of me as the Inspector Clouseau of the Arsenal blogging community; my bungling may inadvertently unearth the truth…
First of all, I’m not convinced we’ll bid for Ajax’s Jan Vertonghen. I think the likelier destination for the Dick Law phone call is PSG. Arsenal last year tabled a £13 million pound offer for Mamadou Sakho, and he’s long been a player admired by Arsene Wenger. Having been a regular starter for the French club in recent seasons, Sakho has found himself on the bench for the majority of this one. We all know the boss likes a bargain, and if he’s surplus to requirements at PSG, I reckon that’s the first place we’ll be bidding. Vertonghen would, I assume, expect to command an immediate place in the team, and with the real need to add a quality back-up to Vermaelen and Koscielny, Sakho is a better bet.
The topic of a new keeper is often overlooked when enjoying a thorough transfer discourse. We already have an excellent No1, but what we lack is a quality, experienced No2 who can pressure Szczsney for the starting position. Almunia will leave in the summer, Fabianski isn’t happy to play second fiddle, and I don’t see a future at the club for Mannone. It is conceivable we could lose all 3.
As it seems is the case every season, the name frequently linked is Sebastien Frey. Along with compatriot Philippe Mexes, not a transfer window passes without someone in the press reporting we’re after them. Frey wouldn’t be a bad addition. At 30, he has a wealth of experience playing in Italy. I doubt he would move countries and clubs to be an understudy. An experienced Premiership player like Mark Schwarzer would be perfect, and there’s James Shea in the reserves to be promoted.
Finally, we have potential attacking options. It’s universally expected Lukas Podolski will be announced as an Arsenal player at some point in the not-so-distant future. Call me a dreamer, but I hope Wenger doesn’t leave it there. Chamakh and Park do not make for adequate back-up, and we’ll need a minimum of three strikers. Assuming Robin van Persie extends his contract in the summer, and assuming the Podolski deal isn’t an elaborate ruse; we still are short in that department.
A third striker who can affect game isn’t a luxury. Oliver Giroud is a player I know next to nothing about, but one that seems the most favoured choice. Gilles Grimandi is alleged to have compiled a dossier to send to Wenger detailing his performances – by ‘dossier’, I can only assume YouTube compilations. However, I see little chance in Wenger signing anyone if Podolski’s on the way. He’ll opt to promote from within; Benik Afobe, for example.
An attacking midfielder, someone in the mould of Marek Hamsik, isn’t essential – for the record, I think Hamsik is a brilliant player and I’d love him at Arsenal. Should fortune smile of the careers of Abou Diaby and Jack Wilshere and grant both a full season, we have numerous options in that area. Admittedly, putting faith in that happening is akin to hoping that hideous blemish on your penis will ‘just go away’. My point is, I don’t think it’s a key area to address.
In summation, I can see 3 incomings over the summer, with the obligatory sprinkling of U16s signed from obscure and far away lands. Would you be happy if the squad remains the same with the addition of Sakho, Podolski and a back-up Keeper? Do you think a larger upheaval is needed to compete for the prizes? Let me know your views in the comments.
Thanks for reading, you beautiful bastards. Don’t forget; you can keep up with all my curious and idiotic tweets on Twitter – @_ArmchairGooner