Thursday, 13 June 2013

Possible Arsenal Transfer Targets This Summer

With money in the bank to spend and a squad that needs improving this could be a busy summer for Arsenal. They need to add some real quality to their squad and as a result they have been linked with a lot of players already. I'll attempt to assess the chances of some of those players actually joining Arsenal.

Chief Executive Ivan Gazidas has been quoted as saying Arsenal have the funds available to pay big fees and high wages too. If that really is the case they could well be shopping in the same places as the clubs with seemingly bottomless pockets. I have my doubts about Arsenal's ability to or intention of spending that sort of money, but I will be glad to be proved wrong.

Marouane Fellaini:

Marouane Fellaini is one of the most recent players reported to be on his way to Arsenal. He has had a very good season for Everton and has plenty of Premier League experience too. He not only is capable of scoring goals, but he can also do the really hard defensive work that some players shy away from. Fellaini has had his disciplinary problems of course and gets more than his fair share of yellow cards.

I think he could be a very good addition to the Arsenal squad and I would certainly be quite happy to see him join the club. If the reports elsewhere are to be believed Fellaini has a release clause in his contract and Arsenal are prepared to pay the fee to activate that clause. I doubt if Everton would be too willing to sell Fellaini but the lure of Champions League football might be difficult for the player to resist. Of course there could be other teams after his services and if Arsenal really interested in him it certainly won't be easy for them to land him.

Gonzalo Higuain is another player to have been heavily linked to Arsenal in recent weeks. He is currently at Real Madrid but he hasn't been as regular a starter as he might have liked to have been this last season. With a new manager on the way to Madrid his future is uncertain to say the least and plenty of clubs are bound to be interested in signing him.

Fellaini to Arsenal chances - 5/10.

Gonzalo Higuain:

Higuain is a very good finisher and I think he would be a very good addition to the Arsenal squad. Santi Cazorla set up far more chances for team mates than any other player in the Premier League last season, but Arsenal failed to convert as many of them as they should have. Higuain is the type of striker who would be a lot more likely to put those chances away if they came his way.

As with Fellaini there should be plenty of interest in him from other clubs and he will probably have a wide choice. If Arsenal are genuinely interested in him they will have to pay a lot of money for him and prove to him that they are a club worth joining. That won't be an easy task but hopefully it's one they can accomplish if they really want him.

Higuain to Arsenal chances - 2/10

Wayne Rooney:

Wayne Rooney is yet another high profile player said to be interesting Arsenal this summer. His current wages at United would surely prove a stumbling block for Arsenal though and his transfer fee could be another one. Rooney has expressed his desire to leave United but I would imagine they will do all they can to hold on to him.

If the rumours are to be believed he isn't too happy with the role he has had to play since the arrival of Robin van Persie and wants to play as a striker again. Maybe Arsenal can offer him a striker's role at the club, but he would surely have to take a cut in his wages to join them. I'm not so sure Rooney's best years aren't behind him after bursting on to the scene at such a young age. His physical stature leads me to believe he mght have problems with injuries and fitness considering how many games he has played already and he could be a very risky investment for any club.

Rooney to Arsenal chances - 2/10

Stevan Jovetic:

Fiorentina's Stevan Jovetic has apparently been a target for Arsenal for quite a while now and he looks like another player who might fit in well at the club. He has been with Fiorentina for five seasons now and looks set to move away from them this summer. There are other clubs interested in him too and if the papers re to be believed he could well be Juventus bound.

Of course Higuain is also supposedly on his way to Juventus and as always players don't always end up where the papers say they are bound. Jovetic has an eye for goal and is still young enough at 23 to improve an awful lot over the next three years. If he were to join Arsenal he might get the chance to fulfill that potential but the chances are his career will progress elsewhere.

Jovetic to Arsenal chances 2/10.

Cesc Fabregas:

Cesc left Arsenal two years ago to return to his hometown and boyhood club Barcelona. It was his dream move and I would be very surprised if were to jump ship after only two years. He is rumoured to be unhappy with his omission from the Barcelona team for their most important games and as a result to want away.

I have no doubt that Arsenal would welcome him back with open arms and he would be a hit in the Premier League again. If he was to become available I have no doubt there would be a huge queue of clubs looking to avail of his services, but Arsenal would surely have the upper hand on any of them. Cesc has shown he is prepared to take a pay cut to join the club he wants in the past and I don't think money would be a huge issue.

Barcelona wouldn't be too keen on losing a player of his talent though and he is still seen as the long term replacement for Xavi. I'd love to see him back at Arsenal but I can't really see it happening.

Cesc to Arsenal chances - 1/10

Nicolas Gaitan:

Nicolas Gaitan joined Benfica three years ago and has progressed with each season at the club. He plays as an attacking midfielder and could maybe offer the Arsenal team something it needs to improve it. He has the ability to take players on and beat them and can score and create goals too.

He would cost an awful lot of money though as Portugese teams rarely let their star players go for anything other than a very large fee. If Arsenal are interested in him the depths of their pockets will be tested but he could possibly be a success at the club. I would be surprised to see him in an Arsenal shirt next season but football never fails to surprise me.

Gaitan to Arsenal chances - 1/10.

David Villa:

David Villa is a prolific striker whose style could well be ideally suited to Arsenal. There were rumours of him joining Arsenal in the January transfer window and they have resurfaced again. With Naymar joining Barcelona he could see his chances of playing limited even more next season and he will want regular football before the World Cup next summer.

Villa will be 32 later this year though and Arsenal aren't too fond of signing players over 30. Since his broken leg in 2011 he hasn't always been a regular in the Barcelona team and that could be a factor in him looking to leave the club. If he does decide to leave Arsenal could be a possible destination as long as the fee matches their valuation for a player of his age.

Villa to Arsenal chances 1/10

It's almost impossible to know what players will join what clubs this summer and Arsenal are no different. Many of the players I have mentioned will probably move this summer but it's impossible to tell where they will end up. If Arsenal were to sign Fellaini, Higuain and Cesc I would be absolutely thrilled but the chances of that are slim to none.

That's it for today.

See you tomorrow.