There’s a great deal of speculation regarding incoming players at the Emirates this summer, so let’s join the tabloids and throw a few names into the mix just for funsies.
At six feet 2, Geoffrey Kondogbia (26) is an imposing midfielder that can also play at the heart of defence or as a left back.
Powerful, durable and determined, he reminds one of Patrick Vieira in his ability to surge forward but also with his capacity to retrieve the ball from the clutches of the opposition.
A number of six feet plus players are awkward in possession with the ball, not so Kondogbia, who is very much at ease with the ball at his feet.
You may remember that a few years ago, the Frenchman was in Arsene Wenger’s wish list and I’d be very surprised if he wasn’t on Emery’s.
His likely cost would be between £22-£27m but it would be money well spent.
Maxence Caqueret (19) currently with Lyon and his star is in the rise. He was said to be on Sven Mislintat’s radar before he left the Emirates and Arsenal have continued to measure his progress.
Blessed with great passing and vision, Caqueret builds and supports the attack but is also equally adept at tracking back to put in a tackle or bail out the defence.
He is very much an Emery type of player that gives the team an edge in both areas of the field and he could probably be picked up for £2 or £3m.
There’s been a fair bit of attention given to the likes of Nicolas Pepe and Wilfred Zaha in relation to Arsenal but the eventual transfer fees for that particular pair, seem to make any possible move by the gunners unlikely.
Senegalese footballer, Ismaila Sarr would be a prefect choice on the flank for the gunners and would cost around £25m as opposed to the £36m for Pepe and £80m for Zaha.
The figure for Zaha is simply staggering for a player that has no European pedigree and who failed in his brief 18 month stay at Manchester United.
It’s said that his temperament is the real issue and that although talented, he can be frustratingly difficult.
Brazilian Felipe, could be an interesting and reliable alternative to the names being suggested for central defender. Many seem to think that Arsenal are somehow going to afford to prize Harry Maguire, who will cost between £40 and £50m.
Filipe would cost around £15m and for that trifling sum, Arsenal would have purchased someone that is good in the air. Imposing in defence (1.84m) with his aggressive style, ability to read the game and snuff out danger.
Jonathan Tah (23) is a ridiculously well developed central defender, who currently plays for Bayer Leverkusen and at one stage was linked with Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool.
Very imposing, which is exactly what Arsenal need. Strong on the ground and dominant in the air, he would be an asset in set pieces, an area Arsenal continuously leak goals.
He is quick to close down the danger from attack by squeezing players out wide or presenting himself in such a way that they offload the ball from a key area.
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Yet, Teh is not just a blocker and a clogger, he has a good touch and can pass and belongs to the new breed of defender that can play out from the back.
There’s an Emery tick. How much ? in excess of £30m but he has the potential to be sold on for three times that amount.
Finally, Newcastle’s Ayoze Pérez (25) is an attacking midfielder with an eye for goal, having notched up 13 goals in all competitions.
He’s get more in Arsenal colours and is the type of player that will wipe away any tears still being shed over Aaron Ramsey’s departure.
He has skill, poise, vision and speed which makes him of interest but more importantly, he has proved his worth in the premier league as one of Newcastle’s biggest stars.
The expected £20 million transfer fee could represent the biggest bargain of the season for this type of player.
I may be wrong, I may be way off target but it’s better than waiting for the papers to make it up. Stay tuned as the transfer market hots up in the coming weeks.
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