Has Unai Emery finally found a replacement for Arsenal flop? (with video)

There are three or four Arsenal players that have been consistently lambasted by Arsenal fans, pundits, blogs and former players but one, in particular, seems to attract more criticism than any other player and that is defender Shkodran Mustafi.

So it will no doubt be music to the ears of his detractors that Unai Emery is lining up a move for Espanyol centre back Mario Hermoso, according to the latest transfer rumours in the media.

Hermoso is highly rated and only last November was rewarded with a call up to the Spain national squad following a string of quality displays.

The 23-year-old is valued at £18 Million, which is well within our budget, however, there is a complication that could see that price rise.

Hermoso has a buy-back clause in his contract put there by his former club Real Madrid for just £6 Million and there is a school of thought that they will trigger that clause in order to sell him on for an immediate profit.

And if that was not enough, Paris Saint Germain and Bayern Munich are also said to be interested in the signing the player.

So, it will not be easy to land Hermoso but what transfers are these days?

But let’s assume we do sign him, the question I have is will he be an upgrade on Mustafi?

The knee jerk reaction would be to say yes, even a drunk grasshopper would be better than the German defender but that would be ridiculous, Mustafi is not as woeful as he has been made out to be.

Of course, it would be silly to deny he has had a bad season, he has, but he was the best defender for our last few games and is not totally useless.

But I have to accept it would be in both the clubs and Mustafi’s best interests if he was to leave, he is 27-year-old and there is no guarantee he will be able to turn his form around and if we are ever going to try and get a decent fee for him it has to be now.

Hermoso is clearly highly regarded with Bayern Munich, PSG and ourselves all interested in signing him and if we can sign him we certainly should.

This video gives you an indication of the sort of player we would be signing.


  1. LOL! Drunk grasshopper. That’s hilarious.

    But I totally agree with this assessment. We should go in for Hermoso. He and Djene have formed an incredible defensive partnership and I even think we should go for both. In any case aren’t we going to sell off Mustafi, Chambers, Jenko and Monreal? Possibly Kos too?

    1. Yeah Drew, those are the 5 positions we desperately need but i can’t see us getting top players for all. The younger players need to be given a chance next season and maybe some will take it and establish themselves.

      Off topic, Dortmund are making some fantastic deals in the market, with the Pulisic money, they’ve signed Schultz, Hazard and Brandt and they still have a postive balance. Brandt and hazard are players i have admired and wished we were interested in.

      1. Spot on about the Dortmund transfer deals @Lupe. Been saying it here for a while that all you need is to be serious with the business and get the needed players on time to ward off competitors who will inflate the price for no good reason. I mentioned Schultz and Brandt in one of my comments little did i know they were already done deals for a serious team. Until there is a visible level of seriousness in this Arsenal team they will remain where they are for a while.

        1. Great business in today’s market by Dortmund and early in the transfer window. It makes you wonder about the effectiveness and efficiency of Arsenal’s scouting and contract negotiation staff.
          Brandt would probably not be willing to leave Germany, but you have to try!
          Arsenal get connected with so many players (media talk) but few come to fruition.

    2. The team could easily look at her academy to feel up these positions buh if they are to look outside then i would suggest Federico Chiesa/Cengiz Under/Nicolas Pepe/Hirving Lozano for the LW, Angelino/Bertrand for LB, Nicolo Barella for AM, Abdoulaye Doucoure for B2B and Maguire for CB. The dream is just so big tho

  2. Why are Arsenal always linked with small CBs?? Is it because those small CBs are cheaper??

    Tall and dominant CBs like Zouma and Maguire are available. But Arsenal do not seem to be able to buy someone taller and faster than Mustafi and Koscielny

    If Arsenal cannot get a more dominant CB, they will always be vulnerable in set-pieces. Surely there is another Laporte out there

    1. Chelsea wouldn’t sell Zouma to us! As for Maguire, who knows where he’ll end up!
      After what we’ve witnessed from Mustafi this season, I just hope we buy someone, anyone … even if he’s that little dwarf guy from Game of Thrones..surely even he’d do a better job ??

      1. Tyrian (sp?) didn’t do well at defending his family… Think he and Mustafi would have comps over who messed up the hardest XD

        1. Tbh Midkemma, I haven’t watched any of it.. only saw a clip the other day… but I’ll take your word for it ?? haha imagine how long that would last then!!

          1. Sue is the worst season ever! They kill off Danny 🙁 sorry for the spoiler but am sure is everywhere by now.

                1. I hated this last season, it felt rushed and almost as if the writers just wanted to end it with no loose strings, even if it meant annoying the viewers.

                  Did you hear GRRM talk about how a story shouldn’t be changed just because the reader has guessed what might happen, the example he used was: “The butler did it”, in a typical murder mystery, you don’t change it from the butler doing it to some random maid because the reader guessed it.

                  I think he was referring to Jon Snow not being the big hero that the whole story was building towards and then Dani going crazy as a spud fan because Jon said no to sleeping with her who he found out was his aunt.

                  I watched the end season for the completion but I kinda regret it, I should have blocked it and deluded myself to thinking the story ended earlier 🙁

                  1. Yeah I heard about that. I didn’t like how they rushed Danny’s story either. From being a hero to Hitler in one episode.
                    Also Tyrian did Jon dirty. He told him to kill Danny than is fine with him being send to the wall ? I should have stayed with the books.

          2. There are some brilliant moments in GoT, it is a credit to storytelling… Well, up till the last season, maybe two.

            I can’t eat a long sausage without one scene from GoT popping into my head, and now I can’t eat long sausages! Ramsey Bolton basically tortures a guy and chops his manhood off, then later there is a scene when he has a well done sausage on plate and he picks it up and wobbles it infront of the castrated guy.

            I couldn’t watch GoT for a second time, a bit like Breaking Bad, great story but once you know the story…

    2. Only 3 defenders have won the Ballon d’Or, the last one was only 5ft7, Fabio Cannavaro. Not exactly Andre the Giant is he…

      Matthias Sammer was another one, 5ft9.

      Wow… 2 out of 3 CBs to have won the biggest individual award are not even 6ft.

      Now for the legendary Franz Beckenbauer, the very first defender to win the award, the defender who helped defending progress.

      Only 5ft9 as well.

      All 3 CBs who have won the award are all under 6ft.

      Only an idiot would say small CBs are not any good when the only ones to win the Ballon d’Or were small CBs. Seems that either height isn’t such a factor if the player has the physical skill/quality.

      1. Also the magnificent Frank McLintock at 1.78m/5’-10”.
        The imperious Bobby Moore at 1.78m/5’-10”.
        Skill and positioning, both of them.

        1. He was signed as a ‘wing half’ from what I have read but not sure what that exactly was, closest I can find when reading about it is between a fullback and winger. Luckily he got moved into the middle 🙂

          It wasn’t till Don Howe moved him to CB that he stepped up, well , according to Arsenal website.
          “In his original position McLintock’s tireless work rate, enthusiasm and commitment could not be questioned. But it was that very same anxiety to contribute all over the field which often proved his downfall, his ill-advised wanderings over-burdening his team-mates.

          Then came an injury crisis in 1969/70 and coach Don Howe drafted a somewhat reluctant McLintock into the heart of defence. It was a masterstroke in every sense. The Scot thrived and swiftly earned the captain’s armband.”

          I have heard some say that Frank was the key to GG, allowing GG to be the player he was.

          He was only 5’10? Some names for me are names in the history books and when a big reputation is attached to them, I dunno…. They seem like giants and surprising to hear they was under 6ft XD

          Fantastic example of why we need to give (some?) players another chance under new management.

          1. The wing half reference goes back to the original formation of 2-3-5. 2 full backs, 3 half backs – center half with a wing half each side and 5 forwards – centre forward with an inside forward each side and wingers each side of them. Oh those were the days.

            1. Thanks Declan, it also makes stuff I read about G.Graham to make a bit more sense, I read he was a center-half but in my thinking that was CB and it was wrong XD lol I knew he wasn’t and yeah, makes a lot more sense now 🙂

              Not far from the formation we have with Emery, that 2-3-5.


              I know I shown the fullbacks pushed forward but otherwise it would be a 433 in modern formations, suggest only having 2 CBs today and I don’t think many people would take it serious.

              Emery, like Wenger, likes his fullbacks to push forward. I find these things interesting 🙂 Evolution of formations is a regular curiosity for me.

          2. I can remember my Dad driving me what seemed at the time all over London for a proper Arsenal shirt with the embroidered canon on the breast.

            We finally found one, and he also bought a fabric number 5 for the back, which my lovely old Mum painstakingly hand stitched on, i can still remember standing on a dining chair while she pinned it place.

            i still have that shirt in the loft

            Very happy memories indeed.

            1. Mums are the best 🙂
              We put them through so much as kids yet they still do those kind things, most mothers are like saints 🙂

        2. Bobby Moore was precisely 6 feet tall, NOT five feet ten. Frankie Mac WAS five feet ten.

          1. Both the same according to records I looked at today but hey it’s no big deal. One of is right and one is wrong.he certainly wasn’t a giant centre back.

      2. Beckenbauer was close to 6 feet. Unlike you, I was there and saw him many times , including the 1966 WC final. Books and journals are notorious for getting players height wrong as are players who lie to say they are taller than they are. In this case Beckenbauer was five eleven and a half and stood level with Moore who claimed to be 6 feet exactly. Maybe half an inch difference at very most.

        1. So you ran onto the pitch and got a tape measure out and measured him?
          Well done Jon, you must be the invisible man in disguise, being able to sneak onto the pitch with how many thousands of people watching.. and not get seen.

          Ninja Jon!

          If you didn’t get onto the pitch and measure him then could you admit that you could be wrong?

          Do you accept that your memory is fallible?

          When I was a kid, my dad was a giant! His arms were massive, his hands were large enough to handle the moon, he was like a hero.
          My perspective of him has affected my memory of him, no shock here?

          Fair play to you remembering the players to be bigger than reported and saying as much, to try and claim that all those are wrong and you are right… I don’t believe it. I do not feel it is said with any accurate authority, it is as accurate as those people who got probed by little green men.

  3. I hope we give him a miss for like Mustafi and Socratis he lacks height and the pace to shine in the Premier League. We really should be pursuing William Saliba of St Etienne who is a tremendous young player who would be well known to our own Kocielney .

    1. I’ve seen a fair bit of Saliba on YouTube and he does look like he has the desired attributes, from what I have read as well, Saliba isn’t going to break the bank to buy.

      £25 mil from what I have read and that seems like a good price if reports about him are true, we could get those funds from the sales of Mustafi and ElNeny…

      Only 18 as well. Plays on the right side of CB which would kinda go nicely for Holding and Mavrop to compete for the Left CB role. Thinking about our future 😛

      Chambers can also play Right CB, that would give us 4 young CBs, two for each side.

      That kind of prospect is exciting 🙂

      1. Midkemma, if we are talking young CB’s what about Medley and Ballard in the successful Arsenal U23’s being given oportunities in preseason?

        1. a lot of people know I’m all for the kids to be given more time, Medley has done very well and I honestly do feel he could be a backup next season, the one after at the most.

          I would like to see Medley go out on loan, get a bit of experience at a higher level, let him grow without being thrown in the deep en (as the saying goes).

          I was upset to read Pleg will be leaving us, he is a talent and I bet in 2-3 years time we will read reports of EPL teams wanting him, I really do rate our youth setup 🙂

          The biggest let down to it in previous year was Wenger, I defended Wenger and respect what he has given us fans over the many years he was with us, he was poor at coaching defenders though 🙁

          I would also use those younger players as a aim to replace a couple CBs if it isn’t working good enough/kids prove to be a big hit. For example, Chambers in my post earlier, he could fetch funds and help us invest in a different pos. If he does well then the funds will be greater 😛

  4. Apart from the incredibly wrong part about him being our best defender in our last few games, the rest of this article is spot on. This joke so called “defender” MUST GO THIS SUMMER.

    1. I’d like to back Mustafi but he has upset me too often in his few years with us 🙁
      Shame as he has the physical attributes to be a top defender, he just doesn’t have the mental attributes.

      I honestly think Mustafi would make a much better DM then CB, he is comfortable on the ball which at times as been his downfall in CB (Holding onto it too long) and he can do some nice crunching tackles… again, can be costly as a CB and around the penalty area.

      I’d prefer to see other players given time at DM for us so not saying we should keep him and play him as a DM, it is just an observation.

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