Arsenal have squad decisions to make BEFORE buying

Why Arsene has a lot to do before he can consider buying any more players. by DW

Pre-season training will be in full swing over the next couple of weeks as we build up for another hard fought campaign. While Gooners everywhere will be eagerly awaiting the next big name through the Emirates doors. It may be worth considering some of the issues Arsene will be facing before he plunges back into the market for new outfield players.

First on Arsene’s to do list, will be to nail Theo down to another long term contract. He excelled before he was injured after ripping Sherwood and his sorry crew to pieces and his return was painfully slow, but once he returned he exploded into life for the last few games of the season. This included breaking the deadlock against the Villains in the FA Cup final. He has started to build into a big game player being as he is one of the only players in our squad who has scored against Man Utd, Man City, Liverpool, Chelsea and Tottenham. Having spent many a year watching and waiting for him to reach top level Arsene and us Gooners will not want to see him plying his trade elsewhere just when he gets there and Arsene will also want to avoid a repeat of the January saga he had last time when he finally managed to tie Theo’s signature down.

The second major issue for Arsene to contend with is the 25 man squad rule. Many will look to Arsene’s sale of Podolski and release of Diaby and feel like he could at least bring in someone. While this will help reduce our wage bill, Podolski was on loan from January and Gabriel has already taken his place. As things stand the number of players that fill the over 21’s on shows that we currently have 26 squad players. Therefore Arsene must sell before he buys or risk wasting a player’s wages and his career, both things Arsene hates.

So he will be looking to sell or loan before he can decide where he can strengthen so most rumours at this stage will be just that, rumours I’m afraid to say, and it will be a good way through pre-season before he decides what areas will need to change but these are the things that he will have to consider.

Goalkeepers – With the signing of Cech we have a nailed on number 1 keeper but who will be our back up? Arsene will want to sit Ospina & Szczesny down and see how they react to Cech’s arrival. Reports say that Ospina wants out and Szczesny has been ‘lied to’. However both players have made contradictory statements to this, claiming that they are happy to stay. Then there is the forgotten Martinez who also takes up a squad position as he is 23 years old. I think that as long as Ospina is happy to challenge Cech then Sczezny should be loaned and Martinez sold.

Gabriel – Arsene has commented that this guy will be revolutionary for Arsenal this season but this will depend on how well he has developed his English and how well he can play alongside Koscielny, something which wasn’t experimented with much but looked good when it happened. However if it becomes apparent during pre-season that it isn’t going to work Arsene will not sell Gabriel but he may consider another option in the CB role.

Thomas Rosicky – Reports have materialised during this summer indicating that perhaps Thomas did not want the year contract extension that Arsenal triggered and that he would like to leave. Rosicky again has contradicted these reports somewhat by making a statement that he had always known that Arsenal would take this option. This however does not explain how he feels about this happening and I think that Arsene will want to know whether he wants to stay on knowing that he cannot guarantee that he will play other than in the cup competitions.

Santi Carzola – Santi has repeatedly stated that he is happy to stay at Arsenal but there was definitely a problem at the start of last season, when the reports of his unrest first materialised and whether it was the fact that he wasn’t happy playing out wide or the weather, the problem seemed to rectify itself eventually. With Atletico Madrid sniffing around and with a big bid a possibility Arsene may let Santi go if he asks, especially as this could give Wilshere the platform to become a more regular starter.

Mikel Arteta – he has just signed a contract extension so I do not think he will be sold but with a long term injury and his aging legs Arsene will want to see during pre-season how well Arteta can cope with the competition before he decides whether he needs a new defensive midfielder.

Flamini – If Rosicky’s chances of making the starting eleven come the opening game of the season, against the Hammers are slim, then Flamini’s are almost non-existent. It shows how far he has fallen down the pecking order now that Le Coq managed to stake his claim in the starting 11 in the first place. With links for him to return to France I think Arsene will want to discuss what Flamini will want to do and whether he can off-load him at no cost to Arsenal as his wages will surely be considerably reduced.

Joel Campbell – I still think this lad could play for us. He has pace and skill, self-confidence and desire but unfortunately what he lacks is patience or more to the point his agent lacks patience. Before we had even got to the end of September, his agent was digging Mr Wenger out for Joel’s playing time. Arsene will want to see if he and his agent’s attitude has changed but I fear that with Wellington Silva entering the fray he may not get the chance.

Wellington Silva – This guy has been dubbed the new Neymar and he has done nothing to make anyone question that label during his loan spells in La Liga, but Arsene has only been able to admire from afar waiting for his eligibility to become official. Arsene will want to get a closer look and only then will he know if he is the real deal or not. If he is, he will be like a new signing, if he is not then it will be a loan spell, hopefully to a premiere league opposition to beef him up and show him that he may not be allowed the kind of time and space in the EPL as you would in La liga.

Yaya Sanogo – I feel sorry for this lad. Arsene introduced him into a Baptism of fire where he looked like a rabbit caught in the headlights. Games like Bayern & Liverpool in the FA cup was somewhat harsh. His one goal finally came at the beginning of last season and we all hoped that he would kick on from there but in an Arsenal team that was struggling at the time he was shelved for the likes of Sanchez and Giroud. He didn’t fare much better on loan at Palace but again in an unlucky twist of fate Glenn Murray, who no-one had ever heard of before, came back from a loan spell himself in amazing form and pushed him out the team. While the majority of Gooners will say he is not good enough for Arsenal – Arsene will want to see what shape he is in during pre-season because anyone who has watched him in the U21 French team will all know that he has great quality in the right environment, it will be up to Arsene to decide whether that is with us this season.

The third thing that will affect his decision of when and where he will strengthen will be;
Long term injuries – At the moment we only have Danny Welbeck who has a question mark over his fitness following his injury at the back end of last season but knowing Arsenal there will be more. Ironically it was Giroud’s injury that forced Arsene back into the market for Danny Welbeck on transfer deadline day. Any injuries that look like they will run up until January will throw a curve ball at any plans Arsene may have.

You never know Arsene may throw caution to the wind and sign two world class players and play it by ear after but it doesn’t sound like him to me. Whatever he does I hope it is soon as the list of top draw players available for transfer is dwindling quickly.

By Darren Woolford.

Tags Cambell Sanogo Silva


  1. Flamini needs to go. Appreciate his service but he has lost a lot and no longer Worth his wages

    1. We should sell arteta,flamini,yaya(loan),Campbell (loan). That will open up the room for 2 more top class signing

      1. No higuain plz. Although he seems to be the only cf available at the moment. Wish we had got Martinez, big mistake. Wenger’s biggest mistake. Just watch Martinez shine with

  2. we will obviously move on a goalkeeper, along with campbell

    i think jenks will go out on loan together with sanogo.
    gnabry and silva wil fight for a space, but might be moved on as well. i am not sure if silva or gnabry warrant a squad spot. i think they might be loaned out. i mean if cambpell can’t get a look in…

  3. unless some chain-reaction happens and a WC striker becomes free, there really isn’t anyone available if we re honest.

    i have a hunch that if walcott is moved centrally to compete, we would have ox on the right wing and alex on the left. welbeck can cover the wings, and CF, so we would have 3 wingers for two spots. chambo gets injured a lot and we didn’t have enough goals from the right. my hunch is that wenger might find it easier to find a very good winger than central striker.

    i’m also hoping for a dm of course. the dilemma for wenger will be if he wants to bring in a WC CM, who will want game time, how does that affect coquelin? and why bring in someone who is average to cover, if that player isn’t better than flamini or arteta… tough calls for AW to make.

    1. History shows we shouldn’t be worried about how bringing in aWC player will affect some1 like Coquelin,having greater quality around should help him improve,an what if he get injured?many fans seem to be 4getting that one of the reasons Coquelin never had a good run in the team over the years is down to his record of injuries last season aside.The team as a whole is more important than the individual,bringing in top quality improves the squad/team,so i disagree with you,there should be no dilemma.
      Also the writer of this article says that Wenger will look at the players in pre-season then decide who to buy.LOL.What a silly idea,we need to buy players early an have them play during our pre-season to get settled,so that we start the season running,this is what chelsea did last year,i know its hard to get all these deals done,but they managed it with Czech,this is what annoys me the most.Wengers held back again like every season because of sentimentality,and it just keeps holding us back

  4. Not sure who u have left out? But we currently have 27 players classed as over 21.

    However, the 25 man squads do not need to be finalised until September 1st, meaning we could actually start the season with 30+ over 21s then reduce the squad accordingly.

    Here is how I think it will go:

    Guaranteed over 21s
    1 Gk – Czech
    6 Defence – Debuchy Gabriel mertesacker koscielny Monreal gibbs
    6 Midfield – coquelin cazorla wilshire Ramsey chamberlain ozil
    4 Forwards – alexis Walcott giroud Welbeck

    That leaves 10 players currently fighting with any new signings for the remaining 8 places in the 25 man squad. But remember, the rules for the champions league and the EPL are different.

    So who is fighting for their place?

    At least 1 keeper (ospina, Szczesney or Martinez) will leave either on loan or permanently. Matt matey and dejan iliev could both operate as 3rd choice keeper thus freeing up an extra space in the 25.

    Defenders – I think Jenkinson could go out on loan, I personally don’t think another defender is required and would love to keeps jenks, using him or Debuchy as 4th centre back.

    Midfield – may be one or more from arteta, flamini or rosicky could still leave. Personally I think all 3 will find it difficult to get game time this season, especially if one more midfielder is added to the pack.

    Forwards – Campbell, sanogo and Wellington are most at risk of missing the cut.

    For me we should keep ospina, loan out both Szczesney and Martinez. That brings the squad to 25.

    I would keep jenks as stated above. Squad still at 25

    I would replace flamini with carvalho and arteta with vidal. Squad still at 25

    I would replace Campbell with reus or griezmann and replace sanogo with benzema. Squad still at 25.

    Maybe rosicky, Jenkinson and Wellington go on loan in January.

  5. Heard we ready To bid £43m for higuain,but obviously that’s agents tryna hike hez price

    1. Anything above £24m for Higuain is too much in my view. He’s not worth any more, but of course Napoli wouldn’t sell at that price.

  6. ‘Arsenal will be making the transfer of the season ! The deal isn’t to far from being complete ! Will update in the coming days ‘
    Tweeted by Muzzi Ozcan who is supposedly a pretty big-time agent. Met with Giroud and a few other players. A brief google search kinda points towards him being a pretty successful guy and not a kind of guy to risk tarnishing his reputation or hunt headlines.. Well linked with numerous clubs.

    Sh$t could be gettin real..

    1. Vidal…..? Copa America’s done.. It’s been quiet.. Juve have denied pretty much everything, but in Vidal’s case they simply repeated ‘we have yet to receive any offers.’

      1. nah! vidal wouldn’t be classed as the transfer of the summer for us, it would have to be truly punching well above our weight in the transfer market, to be the level this agent is talking about. he is highly rated when it comes to his news he is more know for knowing bundasleaga big transfers then he is for seria a league. so i would imagine that it will be from german club than Italian club the player will come from.
        could it be that wenger has found a way to get either gotze, lewandoski or even reus from there respective clubs, any of these would instantly make us title challengers, and put the absolute fear up our rivals. come on wenger do your magic.
        also this is what it was like when we got ozil small murmors from one agent or another, and boom he arrived at the emirates it has classic wenger transfer written all over it.

    2. I highly doubt a move of a major player could be kept this secret. Arsenal are quite good at keeping their business secret as we all know, but other big clubs certainly aren’t. This superstar would presumably be at a big club already too. Plus if a major player was going to move, surely the selling club would make it as public as possible to attract more bidders and get a higher price?

      But anyways, we all like a good rumour we can put our hopes into, so I’ll ignore that reality. If by some miracle this is true, I have a funny feeling Mario Götze might be this player. Young, undisputed talent and a player that has said he really likes Arsenal, with no secret Arsenal like him too. A little unsettled at Bayern too. Bayern let Toni Kroos go at quite a low price because he wanted to leave – another young German star, and Götze is supposedly unsettled so may look at a move too.

      Of course, there isn’t really a spot open for him here at Arsenal – our creative midfield positions a packed full of quality players. But we all like hoping, so I’ll ignore that too.

      1. No Kroos had 1 year left on his contract. Do you genuinely think bayern would barely get a fee cause “kroos wanted to go”

  7. decisions alright Get rid of the rubbish and buy just like chelsea,utd,city are going to do Fact.

    Wont hold my breathe everyone knows Wengers biggest downfall is his Loyalty to average players arteta,jack,gibbs,szech, walcott,giroud just to name a few who get preferential treatment. Who cares if they want to stay etc if your not good enough Get rid as does the rest of the football world bar Arsenal.

  8. @josh37, Khederia bought therefore Vidal could potentially be sold by Juve for the right price, worth 30-40mill easy what will wenger bid 20 and someone else will snap him up lol,

  9. What utter rubbish. Surely he has had enough time to have considered and resolved these issues long ago. If he intended to strengthen the squad, new players should be here now in order to integrate. No he has no mind to buy and he is happy to let all these rumours circulate so it appears that he is busy. Or maybe he has gone to see the Pope again. Who knows or cares. I have one prayer that this is his last season….

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