Last night we completed the job against Fenerbahce with a 2-0 win (a 5-0 win overall), making it an astonishing 16 years in a row competing in the Champions League and an extra £25 million at our disposal.
However, with Lukas Podolski picking up a hamstring injury, which is set to rule him out of action for at least three weeks, it is well known by everyone that Arsenal need to buy players, especially with long-term injuries to Thomas Vermaelen, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Abou Diaby and now Podolski. We need to bring players in to fill the gaps and bolster our squad in general.
So what areas need strengthening? The short answer is pretty much everywhere, but our main priorities should be the following:
A goalkeeper – we desperately need competition for Wojciech Szczesny. We have been linked with Iker Casillas recently, as well as Tim Krul. In my opinion, either of these two would provide decent competition for Szczesny, with Krul set to cost around £10 million and Casillas perhaps costing a little more at £15 million.
A centre-back – Toby Alderweireld has been recently linked with us and is thought to cost about £6 million. He only has a year left on his current contract at Ajax. We have also been linked with Ashley Williams, although Swansea’s price-tag of £15 million has proven to be a problem. Out of the two, I have a feeling we will look more towards Alderweireld especially as he has turned down a contract with Ajax and wants to leave the Dutch outfit.
A defensive midfield and a creative one – Angel Di Maria would be a great signing and provide more depth to our wing options, or Mesut Ozil, who would suit our style perfectly, could also be on the market, so why not attempt to sign the German. I still think we need a defensive midfielder to cover Mikel Arteta which could be another reason to look at Williams from Swansea. There are also reports that Juan Mata’s father was at the Emirates last night, adding fuel to the rumours that the Spaniard may be on his way out of Chelsea. We have also been linked with Yohan Cabaye, who is reportedly refusing to play for Newcastle and trying to push through a move to Arsenal in the upcoming days. They want £20 million for him, and I think it would be a bargain for us.
A striker – With Podolski injured it has now become more of a necessity to sign a striker, especially after selling Gervinho and loaning out Marouane Chamakh. We have been linked with a number of forwards like Wayne Rooney, Luis Suarez, Michu and Karim Benzema, but all look set to stay at their respective clubs.
Nobody is sure what the situation is with Suarez anymore. We have been big in the past but it remains to be seen now that we have Champions League football for another season whether the player would be willing to move to Arsenal. Suarez would be everyone’s first-choice and would probably cost around £45-50 million, with Michu coming in at around £25 million – a better option perhaps?
There we are then, these are the players that Arsenal are or have been linked with this summer. In an ideal world we will sign a player for every position; however, it boils down to whether Arsenal and Arsene Wenger are willing to splash the cash in the next five days!