Arsenal are making all the right moves to overhaul huge problem area

The biggest problem for Arsenal last season was the defence, though the midfield hardly covered itself in glory and on the face of it, Unai Emery is doing the right thing at long last.

It does seem that at a very minimum three defenders will be gone and it can be argued that more need to be jettisoned as well but sometimes it can be counterproductive to make too many drastic changes in one go.

Stephan Lichtsteiner is already gone and it is almost certain that both Laurent Koscielny and Nacho Monreal will follow him out of the door.

That is three defenders from a squad of ten and it can be argued that Shkodran Mustafi and Carl Jenkinson should also be on the exit list but offloading 30% of your defence is still significant.

It is hard to conceive a squad with less than ten defenders, especially when you consider we will be battling it out on four fronts next season and so you have to believe that at least three new defenders will be in the squad next season.

For some that will not be enough but for me, it is far better than the status quo and if the three newcomers are good enough it could make a world of difference at the back.

Of course, we are limited with our budget but there have been a lot of rumours linking us with enough defenders at reasonable prices that I believe getting the right sort of player is achievable.

But as things stand right now, I am satisfied with what I am hearing, it seems to me that Emery knows what needs sorting and is getting on with it.


  1. Loosing mustaphi should be a priority he’s the main reason we missed out on top four.
    Kos is now too old and monreal is done too.
    But with no budget to speak of I wonder where do we go from here ?

    1. If there is no offer for Mustafi, his contract has to be extended immediately since it will expire in 2021 and he is one of few senior CBs left

      He made a lot of blunders in this season, but he is still consistent in creating excellent tackle and interception stats

      1. Agreed, if we can’t shift him we need to secure him to a new contract with better wage terms. No matter how bad he is, he should still be worth £15-20 to someone unless he is in his final year. (or am I dreaming?)

          1. On the contrary, I desperatly want him to leave (second only to Ozil). But I see no reason for letting players leave for free. So if we can not sell him we should still not let him run down his contract into its final year but rather extend it. For obvious reasons a player with 1 year left has a lower value than if that same player has 3 years left. And no matter how badly I want Mustafi gone I don’t want him gone for free.

    2. The single greatest problem is Xhaka. But I am really surprised that we are getting rid of Monreal and Koscelny, but somehow keeping Mustafi? Ozil is right, Unai Emery is not a coach. He does not have a clue what he is doing,, The job is clearly too big for him.

      1. A proper coach would sell Ozil for saying that in public, I certainly would if I was his coach, but then again I’m not sure Emery is a proper coach.

      2. Have you been seeing Ozil’s matches last two seasons, Akan?
        He was ABYSMAL and his opinion on the gaffer is completely irrelevant. I’d like to see him play under a manager he believes is fit for him.

  2. If Koscielny and Monreal leave, Xhaka or Ozil would be the captain

    Since there is no good tall CB with expiring contract available, Arsenal should focus on De Ligt. His current price tag should be reasonable for his age and quality, because his contract will end in 2021

    If they don’t want to spend too much on a new CB, they had better make Sokratis and Mavropanos work together, at least until Holding is fully fit again. Chambers is more suited to be Torreira’s competitor in central midfield

    1. De Ligt is one of the best young CD in the world and will go to Barca or another big team. Unlikely to want to go to Arsenal if we could even afford his price tag.

      Let’s all stop dreaming about us buying big name players.

    2. After Ozil insult Emery he has no future at Arsenal also Xhaka it’s a matter of time when we sign Praet he will be gone you can’t have a senior player like him make stupid mistakes after mistakes and that also will include Kolasnac, Kozy and Mustafi they all need to go

  3. Just a small calculation I made on wages and transfer fees
    Name Wages Transfer
    Monreal 3.6
    Danny Welbeck 6.5
    Ospina 2 5
    Jenkinson 2.3
    Lichtsteiner 3.9
    Macey 0.3
    Koscielny 4.6 5
    Mustafi 4.6 15
    Elneny 2.6 10
    Cech 5.7
    Ramsey 6.2

    That many players leaving, frees up 42m wages, and brings in 35m in transfers. Chambers should play first team, and sign Bielik on an extension to keep him longer. May be give Sokratis a year extension. The figure is without Ozil or Mkhi wages/transfer considered. Add that to a 40m budget and we have decent transfer fees+wages that we can invest to strengthen the positions we want

    Wages source : spotrac

    1. Not sure I understand how to read your wage/transfer table but if I am correct, how do you think we will get £2.0 million for Ramsey? Has he not left on a free?

      Licht was on a one year contract so he is unlikely to fetch £9

      Welbeck is also on a free, so no transfer fee for him

      Cech is retired

      1. Welbeck/Licht/Cech/Ramsey have only wage figures that we are going to save compared to this year

      2. I think the figures mentioned are yearly wage expense on those players, who once sold, will definitely free up some funds.

  4. For me, I won’t count a move until it is announced. So it is hard to say we are making the right moves at the moment since we have not bought or sold any of the players in question.

    I would also, I know this sounds like Wenger, count Holding and Mavrapanos as effectively two new defenders since Holding mist an important part of the season and Mavro was hardly used.

    I would be happy if we managed to sell Mustafi and use the funds we get from that for a new CD. Then we could use half of our current £40-50 million to buy a new full back.

    I would bring Chambers back to function as a back-up RB, defensive midfielder and in emergency CD. Chambers is probably better at RB than Lichtseiner or Jenkinson, better than Elneny in midfield and better than Mustafart or Nacho as a CD.

    1. We don’t need sloppy players ,we need pact,energetic and combative players in d mid field because this is a very important area to sort out as it is d real problem area.Arsenal problems is sumed up in a midfield of slow,weak,and uncompetitive mid field of xhaka,torriera,elneny,etc The defence is always exposed as they are slow to regroup and shield defence or quick to help the attack.They can’t win balls fight back opposition-y d defence is always under siege.Arsenal needs youths with quality,hungry and physical presences.Thy are every where and affordable.We only need to look well and get d choice players to excel next season.

  5. These players should go – Kos, Mustafi, Ozil, Iwobe, Jenks,Michy. On my reckoning that will save us at least £ 600,000 – £ 700,000 a week plus
    it would bring in probably £50m in transfer fees we would hope. Add this to the transfer kitty and we could have around £ 90 / 100m to spend plus with Ozil off the books quite a good pot for the new wage bill. One new central defender, Beilik in at CDM instead of Torrera who is not up to prem football [ poor version of Kante who we could have had ] – go all out for Rabiot to take over from Ozil and find a winger – if not use Nelson and Sako

    1. Tony, agree with you I said that before Toreira might be a good footballer but physically he will struggle in EPL and I am glad if we can get Praet who is very strong and good technically.

  6. Wrighty wants us to bring in De Rossi… he’s thirty bloody five!!
    We have too many 30+ yr old players as it is, do not need anymore! I’m fed up with stop gap players… long term is what I want

    1. Sometimes I really question our legends way of thinking sometimes maybe they just need attention

  7. Yeah Rossi at 35 as a midfielder could hit a brick wall at anytime soon, come on Wrighty I love you to bits mate but that would be a bad move,as Sue said we need to be building for the future not a team that’s going to get us by for another season.Emery has had a season to weigh up what he has and had he secured a CL place would have had in mind what was needed, that has all been blown out of the water now and his job has become much more difficult I cannot see how he can make much improvement with the current resources at hand.

    1. Akan, and what are your qualifications for calling Emery an “eediyot”, whatever that means in the English (or any other) language?

  8. I will prioritize kolasinac leaving than koscienly and Monreal… Or better still all 3 should go… Bring in a new LB… And promote one from the youth team

    1. The only defenders we should keep are Bellerin, Holding,Mavroponas,Chambers and Bielik.All the others, including Socratis, are inadequate or past their sell by date.Chambers and Bielik have had excellent seasons and have the versatility to play in Def Mid if need be.I believe Emery will hold on to Kolasinac as he is a natural left footer but a quality centre back and left back are a must if we are to improve as a defensive unit.

  9. Koscielny and Monreal were our best Centre Back/defenders last season. Why on earth would we get rid of him BEFORE MUSTAFI who was dreadful

    First get rid of

    Then get rid of others

  10. “It smells like a new car in here.”

    I noticed our article title is now black (used to be red) same with the article body. save for that, I love the new theme.

    Hope comments are now moderated faster than before.

  11. I hate Giroud.

    Ramsey is ten times the Gooner he ever was.

    Koscielny would never tweet ..thanks Arsenal hahahahaha.

  12. Out: Cech, Ozil,Welbeck, Mustafi, Ramsey, Elneny,Kos.
    In: De Ligt, Javi Martinez, Isco/Nabil Fekir/Ryan Fraser.
    Recall Chambers and Ospina from loan. And we are good to go.
    Emphasis should be getting 2 top quality Central Backs and a winger. Our defence next season: Martinez,De ligt, Holding, Mavropanus, Monreal, Kolasinac, Chambers, Bellerin and Sokratis.
    Midfield: Torrera, Guendouzi, AMN,Mhkitaryan,Iwobi,Joe Willock, Reiss Nelson.
    Forward: Aubameyang, Lacazette, Isco, Eddie Nketiah.
    Goal Keepers: Leno, Ospina.

    Play a 433 formation. Move AMN to the midfield. Sack Steve Bould.

  13. Koscielny
    Iwobi (loan)


    This is how we cut the fat. Players left have some good usefulness. Some youngsters we can take a look at, but this could be one busy window.

  14. Honestly, apart from Leno, Sokratis, Auba and Lacazette,no other player in our team fills me with confidence. This team really needs serious injection and I am not sure our owners are ready to do that. I think we will struggle a lot next season unless some magic happens. This is me being realistic

    1. Realistic? And you say SOKRATIS, wrestling Sokratis, fills you with confidence( I agree on your other players) but in Gods name how can you be confident with the “wrestler”? He always looks to me as if he is about to get sent off. Doubt many share your odd “confidence” in him. I don’t for one! Yes he tries; I will agree that but even a half decent CB, which he is plainly not, NEEDS JUDGEMENT, POSITIONAL SENSE , SOME SPEED AND HEIGHT TO TO HAVE A CHANCE OF SUCCESS AT CB IN THE PREM. All a proper judgement can say for him is that he is a touch better, only a touch mind you, than CALAMITY MUSTAFI.

  15. Liking the new site, was definitely different coming onto it today after years of the previous lay out… took me a minute.

    If we have the £45m budget suggested plus the wages freed up from Leichstenier, Welbeck, Ramsey & Cech leaving, the latter retiring, then that’s around 300k saved in wages per week before we sell and try and add on the budget.

    As you mentioned to sell;
    – Koss £5m? £90k?
    – Mustafi £14m? £90k?
    – Monreal £6m? 70k?
    – Jenko £3m? 50k?
    – Ozil £10? 350k?
    – Mhiki £15? 200k?

    Now if we sold them and either or Miki/Ozil, we would nearly save around £600k in wages (300k already saved) plus around £35-£40m to add on to the £45m already there;

    Roughly £80m to spend
    Roughly £900k per week in wages

    CB – Holding Mavro Sokratis Holding

    That has to be better than what we have saw this season, give it a go as we are going with youth apparently.

    Ozil – Iwobi AM
    Miki – SmithRowe AM/CM
    Rams – MaitlandNiles CM
    Koss – Mavro CB
    Must – Holding CB/CDM (when needed)

    Personally I would sell Xhaka as Guendouzi can do a better job than him so can take his spot easily.

    Attacking wise we have Reiss Nelson, Joe Willock and Baka all coming up, let them fight it out for RW. Nkeitah also for back up winger or striker.

    RB, LB, CM & LW to add on to Leno, Bellerin, Holding, Torreira, Laca & Auba.

  16. comments are up and down.

    with the low kitty we need some cheap english defenders like Djamaal from Magpies.

    we are going to manage the players for another difficult upcoming season… smh

  17. It seems you guys out there have overlooked to make provisions for the important issue of, for option and to cover for, which is being provided for by the coach/manager at every PL club side in their 25 man first team squad list in every season campaign. This is being done to take care of any occurrence of lost of form to a player or players at the club and injury suffered to him or them during the campaign. Which often than not have been occurring at all the clubs in the PL in every season.

    Therefore, Arsenal in my own view cannot sell nearly every Gunners at the club. But buy some as required and sell some that are no longer wanted. But most of the suggested suggestions made on this site as regards to Arsenal incoming and outgoing transfers this summer window by Gooners are not bad. But care must be taken when making such suggestions to not in anger throw away the bath and the water with the baby inside it.

    It is been agreed in the Gooners camp that our first team squad of last season needs to be substantially reinforce with new and young top quality additions to squad this summer. And the new young additions should imo largely be between the age of 24-25 year old when doing the upgrade of the squad toward having a better performance in the PL in particular and in the 2 domestic Cup competitions and in the Europa League Cup competition next season than they had last season.

    I saw Jenkinson name been mentioned here in comments posting that Arsenal should sell him this summer. But let it not be forgotten that he’s a home grown player. But I agree he can’t remain at the club on the basis of just being a home grown player. His football game at the must be up to the required high level to allow him be at the club as a player. But did Emery give him game time sufficiently to play last season to prove himself?

  18. Letting go of some of the senior players is a good sign. Short term we might see issues but long term we will find new leaders.

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