Arsenal are under a new era with Unai Emery at the helm and despite Arsene’s fond farewell it’s clear that the current squad just doesn’t cut the mustard. We have been in a slow decline since being guaranteed Champions League football to finishing 5th in the 2016/2017 season, and then finishing 6th in the last campaign.
One of Arsene’s greatest strengths is his unwavering belief in his players, but in a time of over-inflated wages, over-inflated egos and over-inflated social media, this approach is just not in keeping with the modern times.
When you had winners like Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp, Tony Adams, Patrick Vieira, Gilberto Silva, Jens Lehmann, Martin Keown, Lee Dixon and Sol Campbell just to name a few, then this method works. But today, most footballers only care about how many followers they have on Twitter/Instagram/Facebook (delete as appropriate) over winning trophies. I say most footballers because there are still those (pick anyone from the Real Madrid team) who will do whatever it takes to win. Cough cough…. Ramos.
So here are the 5 players Arsenal must sell this summer if they want to make any progress:
He once was a phenomenal goalkeeper. Once.
I saw a compilation of his best saves from the 2004/2005 season when he won the Premier League with Chelsea and honestly, some of the saves he made in that campaign were out of this world. You think David De Get is good now, Cech was better than him in his prime.
From 2005-2012 no-one could touch him and in those years at Chelsea we won 3 Premier League titles, 4 FA Cups, 2 League Cups and a Champions League. He still won titles after 2012 but for me that year was the start of his decline.
He’s 36 now and last season he made a number of big errors which cost us important goals. Don’t get me wrong, he’s a popular man in the dressing room, and by all accounts a very intelligent man from what I’ve heard, but he’s well past his best. We’ve been accused of being too sentimental but now’s the time to let him go. There are various options available to us, including ex-Arsenal goalkeeper Lukas Fabianski who looks like a more mature, convincing goalkeeper these days.
Perhaps he isn’t the answer but I’m sure our new Dream Team of Ivan, Sven and Raul have the expertise to find a good goalkeeper on the market.
This is a man who flatters to deceive, only plays well against the lesser teams and doesn’t put in a shift. That’s okay when you’re Real Madrid and you’re playing inferior teams week in week out (the exception being when you have to face Barcelona) but he’s at Arsenal. Strolling around the pitch isn’t good enough for a Premier League side looking to challenge for the league and can you imagine other players in his position walking in games like he does? Eden Hazard, Kevin de Bruyne, David Silva, Christian Eriksen and Riyad Mahrez are all creative players but they also all run their socks off for the team – and they don’t have a strop or moan to their teammates.
And the thing is we already have a much better replacement for him at the club – Henrikh Mkhitaryan. He tracks back, dribbles and has that final pass.
Mesut Özil has tripled his wages after holding the club over a barrel and yet he still doesn’t work hard. It’s one thing having talent but strolling isn’t an option in the Premier League. It’s fine when you’re playing international football where the game is a low slower (and that’s why he’s so revered by Joachim Low) but he’s not for us. Tell me how many Top Six teams he would get into? Exactly.
See what we can get for him and offload him as soon as possible.
This is player who has been on the fringes but time and time again doesn’t perform to a high enough standard. He has some nice touches but hasn’t improved and doesn’t look like doing so – I was going to compare him to Theo Walcott but that would be unfair on Theo. Theo scored a lot of goals and for 2/3 seasons contributed a lot to Arsenal from the wing and up front. Alex Iwobi however hasn’t put in a series of consistently good games for Arsenal.
I’m not sure what he is, is he a winger, is he a forward? He doesn’t score goals and doesn’t make any assists so I’m not sure what he actually does?
Perhaps it was Arsene Wenger not being able to find his best position but from what I’ve seen it’s time to cut him loose while we can still get a half decent transfer fee for him (especially if he does well with Nigeria at the World Cup).
But far and away the worse defender at the club. He constantly makes mistakes, has no idea where to position himself on the pitch, doesn’t know how to defend against offsides and worst of all blames everyone else for his errors.
He was close to leaving for Inter Milan a couple of summers ago but that fell through and we’ve been stuck with him ever since. He is just a terrible defender who shouldn’t be at the club. It’s like a football fan won a competition to be a professional footballer for the day but then people forgot and he’s just ended up staying around pretending to be a professional footballer.
Arsenal look much more solid with Koscielny, Holding, Chambers, Monreal and even the inexperienced Mavropanos at the back which says a lot.
And if we sell him this summer we could still get a few million quid.
Make no mistake, this guy has been a flop this season.
The first half of the season was good but then after that he was awful. He still scored some goals but if you actually watched him he let us down when we needed him most.
He missed about 5 sitters against Atletico Madrid in the first leg of the Europa League semi-final at The Emirates and is a limited player. Why do you think Didier Deschamps left him out of the France squad? Don’t forget this is a French squad who are light upfront with the absence of Karim Benzema.
He is a one-dimensional player who can only finish. Aubameyang is the far superior forward who is far more intelligent with his movement but is also good at linking play and involving others, whereas Lacazette can’t do any of that.
He is a selfish player which doesn’t fit with the Arsenal away and I get the sense he’s over-confident even though he doesn’t score important goals. He had a decent first season but if he stays, trust me, he will be a flop.
Still young enough to command a decent transfer fee, so we should sell to the highest bidder.