My Transfer wishlist 2012

18 06 2012

Well, well, well if it isn’t my old friend the transfer window.

Is it really only 6 months since you last reared your ugly head?

I have decided that maybe, just maybe the problem with the transfer window isn’t the rumour-mongering and ridiculous hype. No, maybe it is actually me.

Maybe I am just missing the spirit of the thing and being an old stick in the mud… As such I have decided to sell my soul to the darkside, embrace the crazy and draw up my very own transfer wishlist 2012.

I have tried to be fairly realistic and not just redesigned the team from top to bottom with clones of Messi. Who knows Arsene might even see this (I know you are a fan AW) and decide to run with it.

So without further ado…

OUTS:

Denilson – fairly obvious… has never lived up to potential and is taking up space in the squad what with the 25 man rule.

Park – Who???

Chamakh –  The Moroccan had a decent spell when he first joined the club but the resurgence of RVP and Chamakh’s apparent lack of confidence has hampered both his playing time and his contribution, might be a useful make weight as part of a swap deal.

Arshavin – As much as I would love to see Arshavin come back to the Emirates and show some of the form he has exhibited for Zenit and Russia recently I just don’t see him having the will to do it.

The little meercat is a luxury player who this squad really can”t afford to carry. His decent Euro showing should mean we recoup a good percentage of what we shelled out for him.

Niklas Bendtner – Well whilst he might not be the greatest striker who has ever lived the not so great Dane has had a decent run in the Euros and was Sunderland’s top scorer last year.

I actually think he might have a decent career, just not with Arsenal.

Squillaci – Never really found his feet and looks like he never will, goodbye and good luck squiddy.

Fabianski –  Szcz is the real deal and has been for a while now. His rapid development has really put the final nail in Fabianski”s Arsenal coffin.

The pole in the goal is not happy to play second fiddle and I can perfectly understand that, time to move on.

Vela – A decent showing whilst on loan should mean it is finally time to say goodbye to Mr Chips.

Mannone – See Fabianski

Johan Djourou –  Djourou wants first team football and lets face it, he is very definetely 4th choice at the Emirates behind, Kos, TV5 and Mertesacker. I say let him go and have his chance elsewhere, especially as we can still get

Bartley, Botelho & Lansbury –  As much as I hate to write anyone off, particularly Lansbury, I just don’t see any of these 3 cutting it. Time to let them move on and ply their wares in pastures new.

Frimpong –  Now before you get all uppity about selling our talented younglings I am not about to advocate selling Frimpong, simply sending him out on loan for the season. I reckon a year long stint under the tutelage of someone like Owen Coyle would do the youngster the power of good.

And now for the fun bit…

IN:

Olivier Giroud – Unlike a lot of people I am not just jumping on the Giroud bandwagon because it looks like it might actually happen!

Now that I have cleared that point up let me explain why I think he would be a great signing…

Giroud is 25 so should hopefully be over some of the adjustment that young footballs seem to go through in terms of being a bit of a dick, he is 6 ft 4 and strong in the air and seems to hold the ball up well so might actually do the job that was asked of Chamakh and Bendtner in terms of giving us a plan b.

He scores goals…. quite a lot on them in fact, he bagged 25 in 43 appearances for Montpellier last season (making him joint top score in Ligue 1)along with 9 assists. I think most people would agree that is impressive enough to warrant some serious interest

Benyaoun –  I don’t think there is any coincidence that 3 of our best midfielders last year were all over 30 (Arteta, Rosicky and Benyaoun) Benyaoun is pretty much the definition of professionalism, even when he wasn’t getting many oppurtunities he trained hard, stayed positive and took his chances when they came.

In my not so humble opinion Benny is exactly the sort of player we have lacked in recent years, level headed, calm, experienced and hard working. Throw in the fact that any fee would be negligible  and I think you would have to agree that Benyaoun would surely be a better option than say Denilson.

Jose Bosingwa –  Two times Champions League winner Bosingwa hasn’t always had the best of times at Chelsea resulting in him being released at the end of last season.

Personally I reckon that should Wenger take a gamble on him it might just be one that pays off…. At 29 Bosingwa has got to be looking at his last big payday, much like a certain Dutchman we all know and love, and might well be convinced to try and prove to his former employees that he can still cut it at the top level.

At the least he would provide a more than capable option which might allow us to rotate a bit more freely than we have in recent years.

Joel Campbell – Yes I know we have already signed him but after a decent season at Lorient I would really like to see Campbell given a chance in the first team for us next term, work permit pending of course.

He is young, quick, has good feet and seems to know where the net is. The sooner we bring him under Wenger’s wing and let him start getting used to the Arsenal way of doing things the sooner he will start to deliver. Particularly as for the first time in years we might just have a decent attacking line meaning that the pressure would be off to some extent.

Junior Hoilett – Junior Hoilett is an elusive dribbler, who is just as good behind the forward as he is out wide. He’ll come for free, he’s only 21  and looked impressive last season so why not sign him?

Julien Féret – 29 year old Feret from Rennes could be just what we need as an attacking midfielder not only is he capable of playing some extraordinary football – he scored four goals and provided four assists in a six-game stretch,but he would provide some competition for Rosicky and is the perfect age to fill the position without hindering the long termof younger options like Ramsey and Wilshere.

With his 6’2″ frame, he has the physicality to shrug off opposing players whilst making pin-point passes. Yoann Gourcuff or Féret? Féret every day of the week.

Yann M’villa – Another deal that looks like it might just happen M’villa could well be the key to Arsenal managing to close the gap on the two Manchester sides this year.

The 21 year old plays with a certainty that belies his young age and has a fearless style and physical presence that could go a long way to adding some steel to Arsenal’s spine.

I have argued for a while now that Alex Song isn’t actually a defensive midfielder, he just happens to be the most defensive of our midfield options. M’villa would give us what Song sometimes doesn’t quite manage to deliver….

Genuine cover for the defense and a tough tackler who is more than happy to sit back and pull the strings without feeling the urge to bomb forward at every chance.

 

Do I think that all of these will happen, nope.

Realistically I can see M’villa and Giroud coming after the Euros and maybe one other midfielder.

If I had to pick I would go with Feret but obviously I don’t have that luxury. I can see Wenger taking a gamble on Miguel as fourth choice centre back which might just pay off but personally I hope he continues to ease him into the role.

 

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10 Replacements for Fabregas

2 08 2011

As seems to always be the case these days us Arsenal fans are having to face the spectre of talismanic club captain Cesc Fabregas being lured away from the Emirates by boyhood club Barcelona.

If you compare the stance of the club this Summer with that taken in previous years it does look as if the end could well be nigh for Fabsters 8 year tenure at the gunners, that is assuming of course that Barcelona are willing to cough up more than the £2.50 and some Panini stickers they are currently offering.

The big question is of course who would / could be the best replacement for the talented Spainard, will it be one of Wenger”s homegrown wonderkids or will “Le Prof”  be forced to break the habit of a lifetime and spend big in the transfer market.

For what it is worth here is my pick of ten of the best possible replacements:

 Jack Wilshere:

Young, superbly talented and no fee to pay….on paper Jack Wilshere would seem to be Arsene Wenger’s dream signing, throw in the fact that he is already an Arsenal player and firm fan favourite to boot and it would seem that Jack Wilshere is the perfect man to take on Fabregas’ role within the team.

Over the past season Wilshere has emerged as a tenacious box-to-box midfielder like former Arsenal legends Patrick Vieria and Emmanuel Petit, albeit a much more technically gifted midfielder than either.

The only downside for me is if you replace Fabregas with Wilshere than who do you replace Wilshere with, that is how important this young lad has become for the Gunners.

  Samir Nasri:

Following what has been his best season to date in an Arsenal shirt I personally will be more than a little saddened if want-away Frenchman, Samir Nasri, manages to secure a move from the Emirates this summer.

I think he has the quality to be a really great player for the club and rather than adopting the role of the pantomime villain this Summer (NasriBayor anyone?) I for one think he should be focusing on showing the World just how good he can be, especially as it was only really half a season that he managed to shine for and after Christmas looked rather lacklustre on occasion.

With the impending departure of Fabregas and the arrival of new boy Gervinho should Nasri stay he would be well placed to earn himself the spot in the centre of midfield that he craves and could one day find himself mentioned in the same breath as club heroes like Dennis Bergkamp or Thierry Henry. Surely that is preferable to joining the likes of Adebayor or Ashley Cole?

 Xabi Alonso:

A World Cup winner and a great attacking midfield option, Xabi Alonso can play anywhere in the middle of the park and impress greatly.

Out of any of the options from outside of the club Alonso with his experience of the Premier League could well the quickest to find his feet and make an impact

His price wouldn’t be terrible either; Real always sell their players on the cheap to make room for shiny new ones.

Turning 30 this November, Xabi Alonso would have the age and experience that the Arsenal midfield sometimes seems to be crying out for.

 Danielle De Rossi:

 Tipped by many as the man Arsene Wenger had lined up to replace Fabregas should he leave Danielle De Rossi would truly be a World class signing for Arsenal fans to get their teeth into.

 The 28-year-old, who has made over 350 appearances for Roma, has less than a year to run on his current contract, and the clubs new owners are desperate to tie him down to a new deal before he is able to sign a deal with another club in January leaving them high and dry.

I would love to see De Rossi in an Arsenal shirt and should he fail to sign a deal with Roma this just might happen, but not until next Summer as I just can’t see Wenger spending money on a player he knows he can get for  free later, Chamakh anyone?

  Aaron Ramsey:

Having recovered from the horrific injury suffered at the hands of Ryan Shawcross, young Welshman Aaron Ramsey, rounds out the list of possible replacements from within the club.

Ramsey has adapted quickly to the Arsenal style of play and can become an Arsenal great, especially when you consider the fact that he is much more mature than pretty much everyone his age, a testament proven by the fact that he is Wales’ captain—the youngest player in history to captain Wales—and one of the youngest national captains in history.

After coming back from injury, Ramsey was almost instantly back to his best form, scoring against Man United and helping Arsenal win their first game  in two years against the Red Devils. He has continued his rich run of form in pre-season where his determination and skill has marked him as one of the stand out players during Arsenal’s friendly matches.

Juan Mata:

 If  internet rumour is to be believed we have more than a passing interest in Mata and have even gone so far as to make a £17.5 million bid which cash strapped Valencia have rejected.

 I seriously hope that Wenger digs a little deeper and ups his bid as Mata is a very tidy player who can play either out on the wing or through the middle. His passing seems to be good  and with a decent return of goals, 33 in 129 appearances for Valencia, it  looks like he could be the sort of midfield option we have sometimes lacked since the departure of the free scoring Pires and Ljungberg.

  Eden hazard: 

Until seeing Gervinho play I did wonder if we had signed the wrong Lille player, (luckily that isn’t the case) the tricky young Belgian international would suit Arsenal’s style of play, and he would complement players like Nasri and Wilshere on the pitch wonderfully.

Sadly Lille aren’t interested in losing their star player just yet and even if they were a reputed transfer fee of well over £20 million would probably make this a most un-Wengerlike signing.

Marek Hamsik:

 At nearly 24 years of age Marek Hamsik would be a fantastic addition to the Arsenal midfield.

 He is a really classy player who could would add some real creative spark, something the side lacked on occasion when Fabregas was absent last year.

Another plus side is that he looks strikingly like Frankenstein’s monster and would most likely strike fear in the hearts of opposing players… handy for the likes of Stoke and their team of lumbering inbreds.

Yoann Gourcuff:

Should Arsene Wenger decide that he needs to look outside the club to replace Fabregas then many people think he could do a lot worse than to consider a bid for French international Yoann Gourcuff.

His ability to split a defense in half, along with his technique and his eye for goal, would make him the perfectreplacement for Fabregas and a perfect signing for Arsenal.

Gourcuff is one of the most talented players on the planet, but he has never had much of a chance to really shine and is almost always away from the spotlight. If any coach could bring out the best in him and make him into the superstar he could be it is Arsene Wenger.

That said Wenger would have to nearly double the current transfer record at the club in order land his man and I’m sure I am not the only person who just cant see that happening.

Riccardo Montolivo:

 Fiorentina and Italy midfielder Riccardo Montolivo  is widely regarded for his excellent passing and vision, there have been some concerns in the past regarding his mentality and lack of character, but we are hardly talking Joey Barton here.

Fiorentina management have admitted that they expect to sell the 26 year old Italian international this summer after the midfielder refused to open new contract talks. Who knows this could even drive his price down to one that Arsene Wenger would be willing to pay








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