Steve, one of Bergkampesque’s favourite regulars and a recent Ozil-convert lol, posted a number of key questions late last night. I like to invite you all to respond to his questions, and in order to get the discussion going, I have added my responses.
Do we start the next season having retained both our loanees on the wing (Campbell and Silva) and let them fight it out for the chance to become a first choice sub, or do we grab the money and run choosing instead to replace them for one of the supposed transfer targets (Dybala, Draxler, Reus etc)?
I reckon Arsene will sign one to two super quality players every summer, as he started to do so two summers ago. This is what we always wanted: hold on to our key players and add quality gradually. This will also allow us to have a bit of space for new talent and youngsters into the team.
Campbell did not get many opportunities to show us how good he is, but when he was on the pitch he was underwhelming. I have a feeling this will be another Carlos Vela situation and he will get sold eventually. Wellington is harder to predict.
Not sure whether we will buy a (super) quality winger this summer. It depends on where Wenger wants our width and wing play to come from. A super quality left back with a great assists ratio could also be an option… I would love Reus, who can also play centrally I reckon, but the young Dutchman Memphis Depay is the one to go for I reckon.
Do we buy one more CB to partner Gabriel and provide complete top choice cover in every position within the team (Kos and BFG could both be injured at the same time, crazier things have happened just look at this season) or do we leave the position vacant for one of the youngsters to fill after all Chambers didn’t do himself any harm there this season?
I reckon Wenger will have a good look at his internal options in the next few months. With Bellerin developing so strongly and Chambers having had such a strong start as well, he might look at Debuchy as cover for the CB positions. The Frenchman reads the game well and could be a good organiser and leader of our defence. I also feel that Chambers could become a solid CB but this will take time as he is still so young.
Do we make every effort to grab the one that got away this transfer window and sign Schneiderlin to replace our captain as the first choice DM and in doing so probably resign Arteta to a fringe role?
Arsenal have, apparently, been in the market for a DM for a few years now. Yet we never sign one. I don’t know what to think about the Schneiderlin rumours but would love to see him in red and white this summer. You would say he is exactly what Wenger would want in a modern DM and he would combine well with Coquelin as well, if and when we need steel and ingenuity in front of our back four. Arteta will keep playing a role in our team and the captaincy seems to mean little to Wenger. Only time will tell how it will work out exactly, but if Coquelin does indeed sign a new contract we might not see a new DM at the Groove for quite a while.
And who will be left in the fringe player group come the start of next season, will it be the mass culling that a few think it may be or will Wenger continue his unwavering faith in the surplus resources he has, Coquelin has surely shown the benefits of this approach to player management evolving from surplus to requirements into absolutely vital?
The core group, which will be about 18 players, will stay the same other than the addition of a super quality player. Some will be let go off, both old and young, and Wenger might sell one of his creative midfielders to make a bit of room for up and coming talent. But this will not be dramatic at all and just business as usual. The formula of: 1 to 2 SQ players (like Ozil, Alexis) + 1 to 3 young players breaking through + 1 to 2 solid quality additions (like Debuchy, Monreal) and letting three to six players go from the squad, is likely to continue imo.
Do we selfishly hoard the young stars we have at our disposal providing excellent cup match options and injury crisis cover or will most of that team be loaned out for proper game time gaining the experience they need to continue up the Arsenal conveyor belt of talent to the first team?
A mixture of both. Loaning out players is a brilliant way of fast-tracking a player’s development or testing them properly, so we will see more of this. Some players need Arsene’s and the coaching staff’s direct attention and will be ‘nurtured’ at home. Just look at Jenkinson and Bellerin: one is developing fast at West Ham and the other one is doing so at home…. Another example is Sanogo and Akpom: one is getting a chance under a manager who believes in him, Pardew; the other is now given a proper chance at home. It is all about making the right developmental decisions and at the moment we seem to be getting it right.
Strengthening the team bottom upwards and with quality buys, whilst holding on to our top players, is a great strategy of building the best team in the country, and hopefully, Europe.
The Future is Bright, The Future is
Red and White.
Written by: Steve and TotalArsenal.