Arsene Wenger’s recent signings in the current transfer market – Alexandre Lacazette and Sead Kosinalic – have silenced the complaints of most of the club’s vociferous fans that are normally critical of his reluctance to splash the cash for marquee signings. And feelers from the club and the media show that the veteran manager is not done with the signing of players just yet.
While it is true that talented players are needed to win trophies in modern football, but experience has shown that there is always the need to spend wisely, especially as it relates to signing the right players needed to improve a team. The dismal results recorded last season by Manchester City, and to some extent, Manchester United after spending colossal amount of money on players is a sobering reminder that purchasing expensive players does always guarantee winning trophies.
Arsenal’s signing of Lacazette has addressed the need for a prolific out-and-out striker in the team, a role the duo of Danny Welbeck and Olivier Giroud has been unable to perform effectively. And Kosinalic’s signing also shows that Wenger has seen the need to shore up his defence line before the season begins.
The next area Wenger should address, as a matter of urgency, is the mid-field. The Gunners are sorely in need of a world-class box-to-box mid-fielder to complement the work of the attackers and the defenders.
Arsenal, it must be admitted, have been lacking a mid-fielder that ticks all the boxes since the legendary Patrick Vieira left the club.
The trio of Aaron Ramsey, Mohammed Elneny and Granit Xhaka, if the truth must be said, has been found wanting whenever they tried to function as box-to-box mid-fielders last season .
This write-up will now direct its search light on highly-talented box-to-box mid-fielders that Wenger should sign for his team.
The Schake 04’s mid-fielder answers the description of a modern box-to-box mid-fielder. Goretzska , standing six-foot-two inches tall – has excellent ball control. He possesses a wide passing range which enables him to locate his team mates in vantage positions in the pitch . Aside his passing ability, Goretzska adds goal scoring to his game. His versatility enables him to play as a defensive mid-fielder and from both flanks. His spring-heels coupled with his height allows him to win most aerial duels.
In terms of experience, the German international has been heavily involved with age group competitions; he participated in the last Olympic football competition in Rio 2016, where Germany lost the Gold medal via penalty shoot-outs. Goretzska showcased his brilliance in the recently concluded FIFA Confederation Cup in Russia, a competition Germany won and he contributed three goals.
Matuidi is the prototypic box-to-box mid-fielder. He is an energetic tackler, a good distributor of passes and an excellent dribbler.There is virtually no position in the mid-field that Matuidi cannot play effectively and efficiently. His stamina and technical abilities enable him to influence the game in its three principal sections – the mid-field, the defense and the attack.
Matuidi has represented France in the Under-19 and under-21 levels. His professional career has seen him playing for Troyes,Saint Etienne and his current club Paris Saint Germaine. He has also played football at the height levels – the Champions League, UEFA Euro Cup and the World Cup finals.
Keita was part of the RB Leipzig team that took the Bundesliga by storm last season.The Guinean international is an excellent passer of the ball and good goal scorer. His employs his lightning speed to chase down opposing strikers and in initiating his own attacking play. Keita, though naturally right-footed, is equally comfortable using the left foot .
Keita has played for Horoya,FC IsTres, Red Bull Salzburg and his current club – PSG. He has been playing for the Guinea national team since 2014.
Among the three mid-fielders discussed in this write-up, Goretzska appears to be the one that would be the easiest to sign by the Gunners : because of the fact that there are not many club scrambling for his services. Matuidi may not appeal to Wenger because at the age of thirty he does not have great re-sale value . Keita would be extremely difficult to prize away from RB Leipzig because of the hard-line stance the management of the club has taken over sales of their players ; and reports have it that the club has set a price of £70 m on him: a valuation that is way above his actual worth.
Wenger should see to it that he gets one of the afore-listed mid-fielders or another one with the right qualities to solidify his mid-field for next season.