Arsenal’s winter transfer window and transfer policy
As we reach 2 weeks into the winter transfer window Arsenal have been linked to many players but still yet to sign anyone. Denis Suarez, who looks like he could be joining the club, could be a good addition to the team but still not filling the crucial position we need, which is a centre back or maybe even a winger. Keylor Navas, who was also rumored to be joining after it was reported he was frustrated with his lack of game time at Real Madrid was shot down a couple days later as it was announced that he signed a new contract for his club. Other rumours suggest that we are interested in Yannick Carrasco who would be a great signing for the club, but it’s never a good thing to be too confident about a transfer especially when your an Arsenal supporter. Even now we’re hearing that the players signed in this window will be on loan, as we apparently don’t have enough money to sign players on permanent deals.
In my opinion our transfer policy over the last couple of years has been one to be concerned about. We may have got some players that are helping us this season, but it still seems like we’re neglecting the positions we need to fill in order to be competing for a title again. Yes, Sokratis and Lucas Torreira were great additions to the team to help out those needs in those crucial positions, but it is still clear we need to sort out the defence, especially with the injury to Rob Holding, and Laurent Koscielny looking like he lost a yard of pace after returning from his long-term injury. Lucas Torreira has seemed to have fixed our problem with a proper defensive midfielder, but with Aaron Ramsey on the verge of departing maybe Denis Suarez would be a good addition after all.
Part of this whole dilemma with transfers and contracts can be the fact that our owner refuses to back the club and the manager with funds as it was recently reported that Stan Kroenke invested nothing over the past 8 years. We’ve been left with a self sustained structure which ended up leading to us losing crucial team players, such as Alexis Sanchez, Jack Wilshere and what seems to be inevitable; Aaron Ramsey. All these players have gone for nothing mainly due to the fact that we don’t want to, or can’t, pay a player the wages their demanding. Another issue that I think can be contributing to our contract dilemma is the fact that Mesut Ozil is on £350,000 a week. This season it is clear that Unai Emery does not rate Mesut’s attitude towards playing, and that he has been injured a lot, making a player with wages like that into one we need to get rid of if he won’t be a player Emery is going to get along with. I think the renewal of Ozil’s contract was a hurry, because we knew a club was eventually going to swoop in for him and get him for free, and that’d put a huge burden on the negotiation team.
Mentioning the negotiation team, I’d like to express my thoughts on the Aaron Ramsey and Danny Welbeck contracts situations. First of all it’s obvious by now that Aaron Ramsey will be leaving, but whether he’ll be leaving this month or in the summer is still up in the air. It was announced early into the season that Arsenal are no longer trying to extend Aaron Ramsey’s contract as they could not agree terms. The Welsh midfielder reportedly was asking for £250,000 but Arsenal were holding out for £170,000 eventually leading to a fall out in both party’s. We call ourselves a big club and are supposed to be attracting the biggest players in the world but we’re struggling to pay £250,000 to a player that proved himself more than Mesut Ozil did last season? Even this year when he’s not a regular starter he’s still the club’s top assister with 6 and scoring 2 goals. I’m not sure if it’s the lack of funds that are preventing us from tying players down but losing Aaron Ramsey will be a crucial loss to the team and we’ll see how much we’re going to miss him when he leaves. Another important squad player that will most likely be leaving for free is Danny Welbeck. After receiving what looks like a season ending ankle injury against Sporting in the Europa League, missing Welbeck off the bench has shown how much we need him. Eddie Nketiah is not a plan B off the bench, so losing Welbeck would look like a disaster if we fail to re sign him. There hasn’t been news about renewing his contract, so we can pretty much assume he’ll be gone in the summer.
One thing our negotiation team can do to prevent these players from leaving for cheap or even free, is by tying players with more than a year on their contract. We didn’t want to pay £250,000 a week for Ramsey’s contract this season, but maybe last season he would’ve agreed lower wages. Players will know that the club is desperate to re-sign them so they demand high wages and if they don’t get it they’ll leave for free and go to a club where they will get their demanding wages. Whereas if we were to re-sign a player with more than a year on their contract, we have the advantage of getting a player tied down for less wages.
It has come to times at this club where we have become helpless being a self sustained business. Whether you blame it on Stan Kroenke, the board or our negotiation team, it’s clear to see that something needs to change if we want to compete with our top 5 rivals. Champions League Football is 100% still in reach this season but we still need to buy players in order to actually call ourselves competitors for the Premier League or Champions League.