Midfield Targets Who Could Help Solve Arsenal’s Midfield Problems

Emirates Stadium

Before the end of the summer transfer window, most of us knew that Arsenal couldn’t afford injuries to central midfielders or forwards.

As we head into the January market, Arsenal have lost key players in Santi Cazorla and Francis Coquelin. Both players have been in fine form this term and will be sorely missed. It’s been estimated the Cazorla will be out for four months and Coquelin could be back in two.

Add to the fact that Jack Wilshere  is still on the injury table, while veteran duo Mikel Arteta and Tomas Rosicky are also out, and you can see why the Gunners may wish to quickly see the back of the festive period.

The striking options aren’t much better with Alexis Sanchez sidelined for the next few weeks due to a hamstring problem and Danny Welbeck still out with a meniscus tear.

But at least Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain both return in the 3-1 home win over Sunderland on Saturday.

While I think Gunners boss Arsene Wenger still needs an extra attacker this winter, his priority during this up and coming transfer window needs to be a new defensive minded midfielder.

Arsenal stalled and stumbled badly in the Premier League last month and having a large amount of injuries doesn’t help. But it was predicted back in August and stubbornly Wenger ignored what everyone else could see… A lack of personnel!

Even in that win over Sunderland, it was their goalkeeper that they needed to thank with Petr Cech winning the man of the match award. We all know Aaron Ramsey is better pusher further forward and that Mathieu Flamini’s best years are behind them and the Frenchman can no longer cover the required ground each and every week!

But thankfully for Arsenal fans and the manager, no other side seems desperate to find the form required to go on a run of wins and provide a meaningful gap at the top of the league.

Chelsea are closer to relegation than the top four, Liverpool re still making silly mistakes in games they should be winning, Man City seem to get stage fright when the reach the summit and Man United have little to no goal threat at the moment.

That has seen a unlikely leader in Leicester City reach top spot with thirty-two points on the board and Arsenal are second just two points behind the Foxes.

The Premier League fixtures haven’t been too unkind to the Gunners. They do have Man City coming to the Emirates on the twenty-first and also travel to Southampton on Boxing Day. But it’s not impossible for them to get to January the first unbeaten between then and now.

But Wenger cannot see that as being enough of a sign that his squad don’t need freshening up come the next transfer window.

It will be just a case of papering over the cracks.

For me, there are three potential new signings out there that can help sustain a challenge at the top for the North London giants.

I’d imagine that the new man has to have a bit of experience and pedigree. Someone who can step straight into the side and not crumble under the pressure of a title push. I know Wenger has a history of putting in youngsters but I just don’t think its the right time for that kind of risk.

First off we have Lars Bender, a German international middleman who operates in the holding role for Bayer Leverkusen.

The Bundesliga outfit have recently said that they do a deal at the right price for their best players. That news may have reached Wenger, it certainly found its way to the fans as the media have been peddling the story about for a few weeks now.

Arsenal have been known suitors of Bender in the past and the player certainly has the right attributes to fill in the gaps but unfortunately he’s just had ankle surgery.

Now I know Wenger has brought in injured players in the past, this winter window could be make or break and I think that will put him off going after Bender this time.

A pretty strong contender could be William Carvalho who currently plays for Sporting Lisbon.

He too has all the attributes needed to succeed at the Emirates but the question with Carvalho is could he come in and play straightaway?

The player is strong, athletic and can get around the pitch.

At twenty-three and with fifteen caps for Portugal already to his name, you’d think he’d be ready but he has shown his full potential yet. I doubt Wenger would go near him at £35m (his release clause), but would Sporting do a deal under £25m?

Polish rock Grzegorz Krychowiak could be another that takes Wenger’s fancy. The Sevilla man is well known at Arsenal and with Sevilla lying in mid table in La Liga they could be open to a substantial bid.

The twenty-five year old has quite a successful pass rate. enjoys a tackle and can spot an interception.

Has reportedly said that England would be ‘too cold’ for him but I am sure a bumper wage would soon warm him up.

Closer to home you have Southampton’s Victor Wanyama and Everton’s James McCarthy. Both would appeal as they have valuable Premier League experience.

Out of the two, I’d imagine that Wanyama would be the most attractive as Southampton are easier to deal with when it comes to buying their players.

Yet another that would cost £20m plus but as I said earlier, it could be the window that Wenger steps up and takes a few risks to gain the ultimate prize.

Powerful unit Victor has shown himself off in the English top flight and won many plaudits. The Kenyan also won many admires during his Champions League campaigns with Celtic earlier in his career.

He’s also suggested that he’s ready to make that next step up in his career.

January is going to prove to be an interesting time for the Gunners. They will have plenty of options if they choose to spend big and recruit a top class central midfielder. But will Wenger be once again be overly cautious and watch the league title slip out of his hands?

Leave a Reply