It looks like we will have to endure another whole season of transition in 2013-2014. If we have to believe the rumours – some stronger than others – Arsenal will be going through another summer of change and disruption: Vermaelen, Gervinho, Sagna, Podolski, Diaby ‘out’ – Jovetic, a new DM (Capoue, Wanyama) and GK in? On top of that a number of fringe players will be let go, or put on long-term loan deals with other clubs.
The last few summers have seen a large number of players leave as well as join Arsenal. Sometimes this is necessary, but too much change is not good for the club.
I have been hoping Arsenal would finally enter a period of stability; having signed up the Brit-pack just before Christmas and having almost all our players on long-term contracts now, this should form a fine basis for continuity on which we can build further. There are funds to add a couple of quality players – say a DM and another striker, and a back-up experienced goalkeeper – to the squad, and there are also some promising youngsters coming through who can be added to the elite-corps (especially if we manage to off-load some of the players who are regarded as surplus to requirement).
But strong rumours re Vermaelen being made available for transfer this summer, and the club potentially not offering a new, longer-term contract to Sagna; are likely to lead to more and unnecessary change. On top of that, there have been, fortunately vague, rumours that Pod might be leaving us for an Italian club this summer.
Diaby will not play till at least early 2014 and we all sense now that he will never play more than the odd game for us, which means that he also needs replacing this summer, which I totally concur with.
And now Gervinho is being linked with a move away to Turkey as well; as he is our only dedicated winger, it will surely mean Arsene will be looking for a replacement from outside the club if he were to leave (Miyaichi could become part of the squad next season but is unlikely to become a regular starter as yet).
I know many fellow Gooners get excited by the idea of Arsenal signing a large number of new players, but I really believe it will set us back again, as we run a serious risk of being in perpetual transition. I reckon we only need two, maximum three, quality players.
Key is to keep our first team players together for at least another season. Vermaelen and Gervinho should be made to stay, and Sagna offered a new contract; and we should add a couple of quality players as soon as possible in the summer, and promote a few youth players to the first team (NextGen games have shown us some real promise with regards to our youngsters). This should give the team a chance to properly prepare for next season, and to hit the ground running from the start.
Let’s break this cycle of perpetual transition and build something up again. Enough with the revolution; it’s time for stability and incremental growth.
Written by: TotalArsenal.