Yesterday Arsenal issued its latest financial update - and guess what, the club is in pretty rude health. Profits might have dropped a little, but just look at that whopping £123 million reserve in the bank. And there’s also sponsorship money to be added, plus season ticket cash and maybe even Stan’s idle millions (dream on…).
So the money clearly is there and in the summer the rebuilding programme needs to begin in earnest.
The big question for Arsene Wenger is how much re-building is really necessary? Are we looking at a wholesale clear out of the Arsenal team, or just some minor pruning but with some big name additions?
The rather huge sized elephant in the room is whether Arsenal will qualify for The Champions League? Not qualifying will lose Arsenal possibly as much as £20 million – thought I have seen it quoted as much more.
The more worrying thing would be trying to attract players to a club that aren’t mixing it with Europe’s finest. However Liverpool and Spurs have signed some pretty impressive players in the knowledge that they will be busy on Thursday nights rather than Tuesday and Wednesday.
So, Arsene, here is my take as to how you should spend your cash. Of course I personally think it unlikely that you’ll spend more than £40 million (0ne striker, one midfielder and a keeper), but we can all dream…
My little spree would come in at £120 million with most of that cash going on Cavani and Di Maria and that is assuming we have CL football next year. If we don’t then it comes in at about half that figure. Maybe the latter is more realistic anyhow…
Btw I think we should cash in on Vermaelen as well as losing fringe players like Arshavin, Fabianski, Mannone, Bendtner, Chamakh and possibly Gervinho too – which could generate as much as £30-40.
So what do you think? Who should Arsenal sign?
Well, where do you start? I think there is a contributing factor in that the lack of holding midfielders has left Arsenal's centre backs more vulnerable than in the past, but still all three have under performed this season. Mertesacker seems to play well in one game, then make silly mistakes and look completely immobile in others. Koscielny has been the best of the three, but he has also looked off the pace and tactically suspect at times. And then there's our Belgian who is clearly lacking in confidence and is shadow of a player he was when he joined. If Arsenal are going to spend big then this is the place that needs some serious surgery. Mats Humell would be an ideal buy - even though Borussia Dortmund wouldn't let him go except for a large fee. If Arsenal are on more of a budget then Fernando Amorebieta from Athletic Bilbao would add some real steel to the defence and come for just £4-6 million. If Vermaelen's form doesn't improve then I think Wenger should cash in on him come the end of the season. To buy both players is going to come in at £20 million. If we don't make the CL then we might need to think about established Prem CBs. Phil Jagielka could come for £10 million.