With Wenger set to stay on at The Emirates we take a look at five of Arsenal’s top summer targets.
The final day of the season saw Arsenal brush aside a now relegated Norwich by two goals to nil with relative ease, and Wenger confirmed afterwards his intent to remain at the Gunners for the 2014/15 term. It’s likely that he’ll sign a two year deal, and the upcoming transfer window will show us just how serious Arsenal’s financial firepower is. We’ve rounded up five players who Wenger might sign this summer in his attempt to turn Arsenal from 4th place finishers to league winners. The latest odds are available at Betfair.com where you can find all the latest football
Wenger has tried and failed on more than once occasion to sign the French striker and, with Real Madrid’s interest in Luis Suarez growing, he may be successful this summer. No one expected Arsenal to land Mesut Ozil last summer, but Madrid’s willingness to sell him to offset the £86m they paid for Bale meant Arsenal landed their man on deadline day. If Madrid can persuade Liverpool to sell then they’ll be likely to listen to offers for Benzema. Suarez will almost certainly have had a release clause inserted into the new contract he signed midway through the season, and Madrid will have the budget to match it.
Should Wenger be successful he may need a bid in excess of £30m, and Arsenal have already confirmed that they finally have the ability to spend that kind of money if need be. Benzema would fit in well at Arsenal, having played with Ozil at Madrid, whilst playing for France alongside Koscielny and Giroud.
Arsenal’s pursuit of Draxler was one of the most, if not the most, talked about topics of the January transfer window. With excellent close control, a thumping shot, and outstanding stamina, many felt that Draxler was everything Arsenal needed. In fact, since the January window closed, Schalke have confirmed that they would have sold Draxler but that Wenger baulked at the asking price.
Should Wenger go back once more he’ll be the favourite to land him, with the odds slashed on SkyBet to just 1/2 for Draxler to become an Arsenal player this summer. Compare that to other possible destinations for him and you’re looking at 7/2 to Bayern Munich, 8/1 Man United and 12/1 Chelsea. If the German international does move, Arsenal seem his most likely destination by far.
With Bacary Sagna’s new contract still not signed and Wenger recently stating that things have reached a stalemate, it looks increasingly likely that Arsenal’s French right back will leave this summer after 7 years with the club. Wenger has Carl Jenkinson, who scored his first club goal against Norwich just recently, but might feel he’s not yet ready to step up to the regular starting XI.
Richards currently plays for Man City, but would surely be tempted by an Arsenal offer, especially given his lack of involvement since Zabaleta made the right back spot his own. Richards’ current deal runs out in 2015, and City are likely to favour selling him this summer to losing him on a free next year. Not only does Richards possess the strength which Arsenal could do with, he can also play at CB if need be. Odds on him joining Arsenal sit at 10/1 with Bet Victor, whilst with Skybet you’ll get 7/4 on him joining Liverpool and 7/1 Newcastle.
With Wenger in desperate need of a striker to share the workload of Olivier Giroud, QPR’s Remy could be the perfect fit for Arsenal. With odds of 4/6 with SkyBet and 1/3 with Bet Victor, the Gunners are favourites to land the Frenchman, and his attendance at Arsenal’s last home game of the season – when they beat West Brom 1-0 – only added to the speculation that he could soon be wearing the red and white of North London.
On loan to Newcastle this season, Remy showed the killer instinct in front of goal which Arsenal lacked. His pace would fit in well with Arsenal’s tendency to hit teams on the counter attack, and could see him team up nicely with Walcott’s balls in behind the defence.
Fabregas joined Arsenal as a 16 year old back in 2003 and quickly rose from academy player to first team regular. In his 8 seasons in North London he racked up 212 appearances, scoring 57 goals in total, 35 of which came in the Premier League. He also amassed 98 assist in total, 77 in the league, and was captain from 2008 until his departure in 2011.
The circumstances surrounding his transfer to Barcelona are often contested amongst Arsenal fans, with some seeing him as their boy wonder who went back home, whilst others claim he refused to go on a pre-season tour in a bid to force a move away from Arsenal. Whatever the truth may be, his incredible skill means few would contest his return, and if reports in Spain are to be believed then it may not be unlikely.
When Arsenal sold him to Barca they included a buy-back clause, giving them first refusal if Fabregas was ever sold on. Should Barcelona accept a bid from another team the release clause would trigger and Arsenal would have to be given first option to take him back to London. If you think Fabregas might return to his former club then Bet Victor will give you 12/1 for him to sign this summer, whilst Skybet price out at 14/1.