Well, it had to come. Wasn’t a priority, but was necessary. Arsenal completed the signing of Stephan Lichtsteiner after the Swiss ran out of contract at Juventus.
The Gunners needed a proper Right Back to ensure that he shares the load with Hector Bellerin and competes for the spot. Hector played almost every game in the last season due to the unavailability of an established right back, which affected his performances at numerous occasions. Calum Chambers and Maitland Niles were the ones who were forced to play few games out of position so that Bellerin got some rest.
But it looks like, it won’t be the case anymore, as the Swiss International brings immense experience and ability in the squad. He was a regular at Juventus for around 7 odd years scoring a dozen goals in 201 games which led to him being judged the Swiss player of the year in 2015.
After appointing Unai Emery as the new head coach, Arsenal have wasted no time in finding the gaps and have already started to fill them. The transfer budget as reported by many outlets is not very high, but it will be interesting to see how the summer goes.
With a host of new signings coming in and a fresh managerial setup at the Emirates, Many bookies like FootballPredictions.com are offering excellent odds on the Gunners finishing within the top four and even challenging for the top honors next season.
Emery stressed on the mentality and attitude that Stephan has, which led to him signing for the Gunners. The boss added:
“Stephan brings huge experience and leadership to our squad.
He’s a player with great quality with a very positive and determined attitude. Stephan will improve us on and off the pitch.”
It is clearly visible that the new boss is delighted to have him onboard for his new project. The 34 year old is known as an attacking right back but also knows how to maintain proper balance between marauding forward and staying back. He can also play in central midfield.
Arsenal have lacked leadership and experience for past many years in the defensive department, and certainly they should improve in the next season. With Lichtsteiner uniting with his Swiss counterpart Granit Xhaka, and Bellerin available, the right back spot is well filled by Arsenal.
They already have Monreal and Kolasinac at Left back. This leaves Maitland Niles as a proper backup in central midfield position and Calum Chambers as a contender for Central Defense.
But the job is far from done, Arsenal may have sorted out their wing backs, but they still need to strengthen in Central Defense. With Laurent Koscielny and Per Mertesacker past their prime, the Gunners only have Shkodran Mustafi as the experienced defender. Chambers, Holding and Mavropanos are still young and have plenty to learn.
Their are whispers of an imminent deal for Dortmund’s Sokratis Papastathopoulos and should that deal go through, Arsenal will look better defensively than last season. They also need a goalkeeper and a central midfielder as well coupled with the need of extending Ramsey’s contract.
But for now, with the signing of Lichtsteiner, if the Swiss man gives 2 good years to Arsenal, which definitely is not a lot to ask for, this business will be surely be seen as a success.