What would Benzema Add to Arsenal? by JH
This is a story I have been following on twitter for a few days now, Emanuele Giulianelli has been tweeting almost constantly, that Karim Benzema is joining Arsenal, he has agreed a 120K a week contract, and has agreed to be Arsenals new number 9. He is in fact arriving on Sunday for his medical, or so Giulianelli claims. (ADMIN COMMENT – JustArsenal has also received this info from our very own Arsenal insider)
Now, I do in fact remember a couple of things about this guy, Last year he was first to break the news that Arsenal had signed Alexis Sanchez. He also stated Arsenal where in talks with Kostas Manolas, something the player himself has claimed. He did however also claim that Eduardo Vargas was joining Arsenal, which obviously never happened. Until today, it was only Giulianelli tweeting this story, so I took it with a pinch of salt.
Upon logging in today, I have seen that everyones favourite Arsenal fan Piers Morgan claims he has been told Benzema is close to Arsenal, by who he doesn’t say. Jake Humphrey, the face of BTSport, tweeted “A source who is rarely wrong tells me Arsenal are close to the signing that would make them genuine title contenders” Benzema? Only name I can think of, the only name we seem to be linked with right now.
Granted, Both Morgan and Humphrey could have heard the news from Giulianelli, but then why the need to tweet about it?? Plus they could mention his name as he is in the process of telling the world.
But if both have heard from someone different, well then it all gets interesting. That would make more than one person in the know CONVINCED that Benzema is coming to Arsenal. Here’s hoping….
Now to the main part, What does Benzema add?? Well if the rumours are true, then Wenger believes he adds something worth over £40million. All stats are from Whoscored, and cover only La Liga and the Champions League.
Last year, Karim Benzema scored 15 league goals in 29 appearances and 6 CL goals in 8 appearances. Coupled with 10 league assists and a solitary assist in the CL, Leaving him with 21 goals and 11 assists, 32 goals he was involved in last year in 37 appearances. The season Before, he finished the season with 17 league goals in 34 appearances, 5 CL goals in 11 matches, along with 9 league assists and 5 CL assists, thats a massive 36 goals he either scored or created that year. thats 68 goals in 2 years.
Now I know people who aren’t Benzemas biggest fans will say “Yeah but he plays for Real Madrid”. In the 2 years where Benzema has scored 43 goals, Ronaldo has scored 106. Now that comparison is not to make Benzema’s return look poor, it is to show that Real Madrid’s entire team is geared to give Ronaldo the majority of the chances, And so it should be, Benzema is and always will be number 2 to Ronaldo. But my point is, If you are the go to man no.2, you will never shine as bright as no.1. Check out Alexis Sanchez’s first season at Arsenal, stepping from under Messi’s shadow to finally claim his own spotlight.
Now comparison with O.Giroud is quite tough due to his injury last year. Last season Giroud scored 14 league goals in the 27 appearances, and one in the CL in his 2 games, along with 3 assists in the league, none in the CL. Giroud was involved in 18 goals last year in 29 appearances.
The season before, Giroud scored 16 league goals in 36 appearances, adding 2 goals in the CL in his 7 games, his league assists came to 8, with just one in the CL. Thats 27 goals he was involved in that year. Thats 45 goals in 2 years Giroud either scored or set up. 23 behind Benzema, in 10 less games.
Last season Benzema scored a goal for every 4.6 shots in La Liga. Giroud scored a Premier league goal for every 5 shots.
The season Before Benzema struck the net for every 6 shots. Giroud on the other hand hit a goal for every 7 shots.
Not a huge difference in terms of finishing in the last 2 years, but it is almost everywhere else that Giroud is left behind.
I have long complained that Giroud is unable to beat a man, he wont dribble past a defender, he wont run in behind and beat his man for pace, in general unless he is in front of goal, our moves go down a gear whenever he gets the ball.
On the other hand Karim Benzema can dribble past defenders, his pace will take them past defenders, his holdup play (Giroud’s main defense) is phenomenal, I firmly believe he is a class above Giroud. Another positive with Benzema is that he loves the Champions League. He scored more goals last season in the Champions League than Giroud has in his Arsenal Career (6-5). He is up to 42 in the Champions League, split perfectly in half with 21 home goals and 21 away, in fact out of all the top scorers still playing European football, only Ibrahimovic with 43 and Messi and Ronaldo 77 each are above him. Also keep in mind he is just 27, he will take over Zlatan, he may even take over Van Nistlerooy at 56, which would put him only behind Messi, Ronaldo and Raul.
This season is a real season of hope for all Gunners, this is in fact the first time this decade I have really believed we can do it this year. But if we can get Karim Benzema wearing the Number 9 at Arsenal this year we WILL do it.
What do you guys think, can we trust these rumours? Twitter? Would Benzema win us the league? Is he worth £45million?