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What Positions Do Arsenal Need To Strengthen This Summer?

I cannot pick up a newspaper without seeing an article about Arsenal being linked to some new summer signing.

But before we get into who Arsenal are signing, lets look first at their needs.

This was the one area that Arsenal fans were screaming for Arsene Wenger to fix via the transfer market 18 months ago. But Szczesny seems set to be the Arsenal number one for years to come. Behind him, Almunia and Fabianski are expected to move on this summer, creating the need for an experienced back-up goalkeeper.
Need: Back-up Goalkeeper

Arsenal signed three defenders last summer, and I can see them adding another one or two this year. The fullbacks seem al set. Sagna and Jenkinson on the right and Gibbs and Santos on the left. Wenger invested in those positions last summer and I cannot see him doing that again.

That leaves central defenders. Currently Arsenal have Mertesacker, Vermaelen, Koscielny, Squillaci and Djourou for central defenders. Squillaci and Djourou are poor and need to be replaced with better players. Arsenal have been strongly linked with Ajax’s Jan Vertonghen and he would be a huge improvement over Squillaci. The other question is whether any of the Arsenal kids are ready to step up and become that 6th central defender?
Needs: Two Central Defenders

This is an area that Arsenal seem to have the biggest need. One thing to keep in mind is that Arsenal played the whole season without Jack Wilshere, who was one of the Gunners best players last season. Getting him back, will be like signing a new player.

Currently Arsenal’s midfield consists of Diaby, Rosicky, Arteta, Ramsey, Song, Wilshere, Frimpong, Benayoun and Coquelin. Benayoun goes back to Chelsea at the end of the season and I am 50-50 on whether Arsenal should buy him. Let’s assume that they don’t.

That leaves Arsenal with three holding type midfield players (Diaby, Song and Frimpong). Defensively Song played really well this season, but you have to wonder whether Frimpong can recover from his serious knee injury while Diaby is always injured. This is an area that Arsenal must strengthen this summer with a top quality player.

I their squad Arsenal have five creative players (Rosicky, Ramsey, Wilshere, Arteta, Coquelin). That is not a list that will frighten the big names in the Premier League and Champions League. Rosicky adn Arteta are nice players, but they are a cut or two below world class. Wilshere, if he is healthy, can be world-class, but this is an area where Arsenal need to invest money to bring in a top quality player who can open up the best defences in Europe.
Needs: Defensive holding payer and creative maestro.

This is the area that gets the most attention, but if RVP and Walcott sign new deals I don’t think Arsenal will add much here.

Arsenal currently have six strikers on their squad: Park, Van Persie, Walcott, AOC, Gervinho and Chamakh.

Assuming that Wenger goes with one six strikers next season, and knowing that Podolski has been signed to replace Chamakh, that leaves only one potential spot to fill.

That will be a battle between Park, Ryo Miyaichi, who has impressed at Bolton this summer, and Joel Campbell, who Arsenal signed from Deportivo Saprissa last season and I expect Campbell to win that battle.
Needs: Filled by Podolski and Campbell

Loan Players
I expect Arsenal to permanently rid themselves of the wages of Arshavin, Vela, Bendtner and Denilson.

So in summer, I believe Arsenal need to sign this summer:

  • Back-up Goalkeeper
  • Two Center Backs
  • Holding Midfield Player
  • Creative Midfield Player
  • Striker (already signed)

Do you agree or disagree with what I see Arsenal’s needs to be?

8 comments… add one

  • Samuel April 19, 2012, 7:35 pm

    Wenger needs to start playing two strikers we also need a shap left winger walcut is playin well from the winge

  • PEter April 19, 2012, 8:09 pm

    Most important is an attacker for bench, in case RVP gets injured.

    Next we need a good creative midfielder, and not Ramsey (I see rosicky as a quality bench player, or the new signing as a bench player).

    Holding midfielders, we have frimpong/song and arteta/wilshere to go with them.

    LB–> we havnt got a quality LB. we need one.

  • Thiago April 19, 2012, 8:25 pm

    Well 2 centerbacks is a bit much,esspecialy when they will be replacing players who are not even playing.I think we are good at CB,unless we could get Rami and start rotating the team.In the holding midfield role i thought we should have bought INLER last summer but he moved to Napoli,so i think Miguel Veloso or Naingolan would be perfect along with Dembele,but all these players might be outside our price range.For the striking department,I urge everyone to go and watch Joel campbell whenever you can,he is a pure finisher.the closest thing to henry’s class you can find around at that age.And coquelin is a defensive player and diaby is an attacking player.

  • 49Unbeaten April 19, 2012, 8:56 pm

    For me this a bit of an odd question. We do need to strengthen but we also need to get rid of a whole raft of hangers on. The question should be who should we replace and promote. For starters we need to get rid of Bendtner, Vela, Chamakh, Park (4 strikers @ £25-30 mil’). Arshavin, Diaby and Denilson (3 midfielders @ £15-20 mil’). Squillaci and Djourou (2 defenders @ £6-10 mil’). So before we even start to add to the squad we need to replace 9 squad players and can use the £46-60 mil we make from all the sales plus about £30 mil’ from the board which then turns into £76-90 mil’. So, assuming we have finalised the Podolski deal, we still need 3 strikers. Promote Afobe and Campbell and perhaps get Berbatov on a free (OUT – Bendtner, Vela, Chamackh & Park. IN – Podolski, Campbell, Afobe & Berbatov). Midfield – We should do all we can to sign M’Vila! The guy is quality and will only get better. I’d also take a punt on Hazard (£25 mil’) or see if we can get Marvin Martin(£10 mil’), Schweinsteiger(£25 mil’) or Junior Hoilett (free). OUT – Arshavin, Diaby, Denilson. IN – Hazard (£25 mil’), M’Vila (£20-25 mil’) & Hoilett (free). Defenders – I personally would move heaven and earth to buy Hummels. He is without doubt the best in his postion….ANYWHERE! But I cannot see this happening and I’m very happy with Kozzer and TV5. So….buy Vertonghen (£15 mil) and promote Ignasi or Bartley. Out Squillaci & Djourou. IN – Vertonghen and Ignasi.

    New players:- Vertonghen, M’Vila, Hazard, Hoilett, Berbatov, Podolski
    Full spend – £76 million.

    ———- Shezzer ———–
    Sagna, Kozzer, TV5, Vertonghen
    ———— M’Vila ———–
    ——- OX —– Wilshere —
    Hazard ————– Podolski
    ————- RVP ————

    Now make the best bench from – Flappy, Mertesacker, Gibbs, Santos, Song, Frimpong, Coquelin, Rosicky, Arteta, Walcott, Gervinho, Ryo, Afobe,

  • zdzis April 19, 2012, 10:12 pm

    Two centre-halfs? Back-up goalkeeper? What’s wrong with Djourou and Mannone? Don’t know if you noticed, but which EPL team has a star 4th choice CB? Which EPL team keeps a star keeper on the bench just in case? In both positions, what we need are squad players.
    I’d actually say we need a DM capable of playing as CB or fullback (or the reverse), a creative midfielder capable of playing on the wing, and a striker also capable of playing on the wing. So, if we consider Podolski as a done deal, this leaves us with only two necessary signings. Not 5.
    You seem to possess some highly insider knowledge. For instance, who told you Diaby is a DM? He’s actually box-to-box. And Coquelin? He’s a DM. There are also several players you don’t mention, like Ozyakup, Miquel or Bartley, who have also impressed, whether for the Reserves or on loan, and were included in the Arsenal squad on a number of occasions this season, as well as the last. Add Eisfeld, who’s an unknown quantity – who knows, maybe he’ll make some inroads into the 1st XI next season. And then there’s Chamberlain, who might be readied for a midfield role – or at least could feature as a creative midfielder if necessary.
    I think you’ve missed something there.

  • Bruno April 19, 2012, 11:46 pm

    You people make me sick…We have to figure out how to sale all those dead woods before talking of BUYING anyone..

  • Archimedes April 20, 2012, 12:25 am

    The big hole to plug is playmaker role. Fab and Nasri gone, the stats from Arteta/Rosicky/Ramsey not good enough. Arteta adequate replacement, Rosicky a positive surprise, Ramsey fading like Denislon. None of these are consistently delivering world class play maker football.

  • gman April 20, 2012, 6:32 am

    Always like reading blogs like this altho its a bit off..
    Goalkeeper.. If fabianski and almunia move out we need to sign a half decent backup.
    Defence.. Squid needs to go but djourou shud stay as a fourth choice cb he isnt that bad. Miguel and bartley shud get promoted either way. The wing backs are fine.
    Midfield.. Diaby is NOT a holding mid..!! So in the role for holding mid we only got song frimpong and coquelin, and with frimoong injured we need to sign a quality def mid to either play for or with song. Coquelin shud be our utility player as i think he can cover left and right back and def mid if really needed. With arteta ramsey and diaby we have enough box to box midfielders i think.
    Attack.. Id sign a decent striker who can double as a winger or cf when van persie needs a rest or grts injured and an attacking midfielder to play either on the flank or in the att mid role for rotation wit wilshere.

    Mvila, gotze and hulk wud be my choices.. But more likely would be vertonghan hoilett and Podolski
    So the would leave my team line up something like
    Bench.. Fabianski..jenkinson..mert..vertonghan..ramsey..gervinho..podolski
    Reserves.. Everyone i havent named

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