Is the latest Unai Emery transfer target the right player for Arsenal?

One of the biggest areas of concern for Arsenal is the defence and it is only natural that we are being linked with a number of high profile defenders.

According to reports in Italy, Unai Emery is looking at making a move for Roma centre half Kostas Manolas who reportedly has a release clause in the region of £31 Million.

Manolas has been with Roma for five years and in that time has appeared for them in 156 games, scoring on five occasions.

The Greek international is viewed in some quarters as a reliable strong defender that would be an upgrade on some of the defenders currently in our squad.

I am not so sure.

The 27-year-old has been a part of a Roma defence that has gone backwards since last season when they conceded just 28 goals, however, this campaign they have let in no less than 47 goals from 36 Serie A games, not far off what Arsenal have conceded and Manolas has been a central figure in that porous defence.

There is no guarantee that he would be the upgrade we are seeking and at a cost of £31 Million, it can be argued that there is better value out there, especially when you also consider that there is no evidence he would adapt to the English game.

I am not saying that Manolas would not be a success but I am saying that he has declined over the last 12 months and his acquisition is risky.

Juventus are also said to be keen on the player and therefore we would have to qualify for the Champions League if we are to be as attractive a destination as what the Italian Champions would be.

That said, it is positive news that we continue to be linked with these high profile defenders, I just hope that we end up landing the right one. The last thing we need is to spend a lot of money and to get it wrong.


  1. As far as defenders go manolas would be really good buy given his age(28 in june), ability, height and greek communication with sokratis plus he has a release clause so no bidding war. You cannot judge a defender on goal conceded because defending is a team effort.
    Let’s put van dijk with mustafi and you’ll see how good he is running around like a headless chicken gone mad from covering when mustafi does a mustafi.

    1. yip, mustafi is not realible.
      I just hope that we get a decent defender, i dont care who it is!

  2. Defending isn’t a single issue. One of the problems with Arsenal is lack of continuity with players in a given system. Defending is learning a system with ones teammates and beginning to understand how the teammates react and their ability. Couple that with individual abilities and you have a defense. This year there was too much tinkering with the back line of Arsenal and that contributed to poor defending. Sure Mustafi lacks in certain respects, but it’s the lack of understanding between him and the constant rotation of players that made the defense poor.

    1. Injuries are the main reason, why we have had to change personnel so much in defense.
      But we also lack leadership in defense. We don’t have the one player, who can take the lead and direct the rest. I don’t know enough about Manolas to say, whether he can do it, but if he can, I hope we get him.

    2. Yes, it is not only Mustafi. Xahka gave away to silly penalties that cost us a place in the Champions League

  3. Just wish we could include Ozil is whatever deal. Buy any Arsenal player and get Ozil free. Anytime to get him off


  4. I haven’t seen a lot of him, but enough to know he’d definitely be an upgrade on what we have. He could form solid partnership with Sokratis, as they have with Greece.

  5. Was reading an earlier article about Xhaka, I’m amazed how many fans are wrong about him. We have a CDM player this season, great, so who has won the ball back on more occasions than any other this season, Torr… nope, Xhaka!. Xhaka has won the ball back per ninety, on more occasions than any AFC player, not just that, he has won it back more times than any other PL player, he’s on top with retrievals. Which is strange considering that he is simply one of our best passers of the ball, both short and long, not just one of ours but he’s consistently led many times in the entire league with this as well. What makes it ever more excellent, is there is no-one in the league who plays the ball so consistency well at a fast pace. If you also add that in all of our big match displays, the type that Lacazette is a consistent shower in, Xhaka too is most often instrumental in those performances. He’s a roughian, an ogre, but he is also very very slick for a rugged player. I’m amazed that so many people can’t see the sense in keeping him around, it reminds me of when people done similar and still do with Rambo. It’d be different if I could never see how their qualities could be worth keeping around the club, that is not the case here. When we talked in the beginning about who should be captain, we talked about maybe grooming someone, I said that Lacazette and Xhaka have the qualities more so than the others at least until we groom or get in another, nothing I’ve seen this season has changed my mind. Xhaka has improved a great deal his season, I’m just amazed that everybody has not seen it, it is why he made the player of our season category, and is why only Laca and Auba could’ve beaten him to it in my opinion. I know, stats are not always the best judge, and I am not only going by stats because some of us have been noticing before we even realized that he topped any chart. Some stats are unavoidable, forward passing into the final third is an unavoidable stat, as is winning the ball back on a consistent basis. Goals, assists, unavoidable stats. I hear people talk like, we have the CDM, we’re sorted, now we just need to add creativity everywhere, it doesn’t work like that at all. Rounded, Torriera will be required to improve going forward, as Xhaka’s been required to defend with the rest of our midfielders. The team can always be improved on, and we need more added, some chopping and changing but I think people are starting it all wrong. Emery will not sell Xhaka this summer, I see it, fans and people who put him in the top five category see it, but for whatever reason you don’t see it. He still has much room for improvement, he’s not alone there, but under Emery’s first season I think he’s been a big player, we looked solid for the most part in CM. Wingers, replacing Ramsey with a quality option, and of course defenders, this and our squad depth is the area we need to be totally focused on.

    1. That was a load of verbal diohrea. Zhaka is the worst I have ever seen. But you are right, he has improved, from downright shit to awful. I remind you of the game against Brighton in case you forgotten already. Retrieving statistics? You’re making yourself look a real eeediot there as anybody can retrieve a ball, yes anybody, even your Granny. And that is the key to Xhaka, he is a con artist who struts around the pitch making easy plays look spectacular conning idiots like you.. Soon as he is gone we will have a vastly improved team

    2. What a load of sickening to read sheer fantasy! Why not forget stats and use your eyes and brain like intelligent fans do when they KNOW Xhaka is rubbish. J.K. Rowling clearly has a major rival in you in writing fantasy, so watch out J K!

    3. B.O.T: Because you rate him, everybody should, apart from the occasional long ball Xhaka’s a nightmare, Don’t suppose you saw how he ruined our last chance of Champions League football with the most stupid, child like, piece of defending I’ve ever seen when he pulled the Brighton player back when in the penalty area and thought no one was watching. Another thing for you to ponder, why does he continue to insist on taking corners, he’s a defensive midfield player for crying out loud. When the opposition breaks from one of his corners you see Xhaka walking back, yes walking back from the corner flag. His concentration when defending is non-existent, and to think we paid 34M makes him one of the biggest waste’s of money ever to come to Arsenal. Funny that you liked Ramsey as well with his 3 goals a season over the 12 years he was at our club. Ramsey gone at last and Xhaka will hopefully follow.

  6. Ajax have confirmed that Hakim Ziyech will leave this summer!! There are so many players I’d love us to get!! If only…….. now back to reality!! ?

  7. Another transfer window and Arsenal are being linked with a lot of players. Arsenal dont have money. So if they gonna buy someone. Its gonna be someone cheap and useless. Why dont they take the 40 million they have and buy Umtiti. Sell all the useless players and buy another defender. Arsenal need to sort out there defences. And get a propper winger. Then they are sorted

    1. Just posted a comment, didnt read yours, Sounds like i repeat. You perfectly rightt, Samuel wabrs out of Barça. Thé winger is Atal. Need LB as Good, play all wing long, a poison for défense & attackers… Or takes 3 players, well picked to bring a plus next year. Sell all average ones, 7 at least, replace 3, give young lads get chance and devellop bzfore they gone, England is where lots if youth gets snatched from lately. We got many…. Keep up accurate comment mate! We winning Europa zvzn if it kills on the field. Go gunnaz!

  8. Manolas was a very good CB 4/5 years ago but has not been at all impressive recently.As for Umtiti, high quality but unfortunately injury prone.Pass on both please.Interesting stat on Xhaka but as someone who is not influenced by them at all I consider his weaknesses are greater than his strengths.That said, I am pretty sure he is part of Emery’s plans for next season.

  9. He’s okay, Samuel ulmity wants to leave Barça. Hat solve center back’s end. Can team up with Kos, sell mustafi.

    The one we must buy is Atal, if didnt check, please do so, videos.. phénoménal WB who Can play all wing, do what da heck he wants, a nightmare for opponent, chases like a pit. When attacks, it is effortless, all slick moves and dribles, takes 3 players out, in a small perimetrer, a rocket when hé takes off, he’s gone, outa here fo sure! They value him at 19 millions, snatch him for 30 mullions be a steal. 22 years old., A year later, he’ll be worth 2 to 3 times more.

    Get This kid, he’ll be happy here:)

  10. I’d be happy if we spent some money on a defending coach! The players we have at centre back have played for other teams and been successful. it seems when they put on an Arsenal shirt they cannot do their job. Other teams have less experienced players that do better .

    1. Why can’t we bring Tony Adams in as coach, surely he knows he’ll never cut it as a manager so let him have a go as a backroomer

  11. Arsenal’s midfield is the worst I’ve ever seen and it’s the cause of all defensive problems. OK compare midfields of the other five team. Man U: Pogba, Matic, Herrera. Chelsea: Kante, Kovacic, Joginho. Tottenham: Sissoko, Wanyama, Eriksen. Liverpool: Wijnaldum, Keita, Fabinho. Man C: Fernandinho, Silva, Debruyne. Ours: Torreira, Xhaka, Guendouzi.
    So you simply can’t compare.


  12. We need to get rid of Steve bould more than anything. He’s been shocking as defensive coach.

  13. Arsenal simply need pace & creativity.
    Lately we lack skillful players that can dribble past players and make runs in behind, especially in the Midfield position hence the sideways and backward passing.
    Dribblers distabilizes organized defences as it draws players away from positions and create spaces for team mates.

    We simply need pacy dribblers period!
    CB – Dunk
    LB – Tierney
    CAM – Rabiot
    AM – James Rodriguez
    LW – D Costa

  14. Shrewed Business:
    Dunk 25M
    Tierney 20M
    Rabiot (Free)
    D Costa 35M or (Loan)
    James Rodriguez 35M
    Martinelli 6M

    D Costa…………Auba………….Lacazette
    ……………Rabiot…………James R………..


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