Arsenal Transfer News: Players Gunners Must Target to Replace Van Persie

John Rozum@Rozum27Correspondent IJuly 6, 2012

LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 16:  Robin van Persie of Arsenal in action during the Barclays Premier League match between Arsenal and Wigan Athletic at Emirates Stadium on April 16, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

At least Robin van Persie left Arsenal in a classy fashion.

From his website, van Persie left a message for the fans:

I’ve thought long and hard about it, but I have decided not to extend my contract. You guys, the fans, have of course the right to disagree with my view and decision and I will always respect your opinions.

To that end, a new chapter for Arsenal must begin, and finding van Persie's replacement won't be easy. With an abundance of talent to consider, let's look at the best players the Gunners have to target.


Klaas-Jan Huntelaar

Arguably the best player to fill the van Persie void, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar possesses just as much talent and potential, if not more than the famous striker.

And according to Alex Shaw of Talk Sport:

While United have a long-standing interest, the likes of Tottenham and Arsenal have also been keen on the 28-year-old in the past.

And Heldt says if a club triggers the €20m release clause - around £17m by today's exchange rate - then Huntelaar could leave.

In 39 appearances during the 2011-12 season, Huntelaar netted 38 goals and accounted for eight assists. Talk about having the ability to score and score at will. Huntelaar suits the Gunners' offensive forte.

Also, Arsenal does need to improve at reducing individual errors, and Huntelaar's skill set to utilize his surroundings will enhance everyone's level of play.

Keisuke Honda

One player going a little bit under the radar is Keisuke Honda.

In an article by Mark Doyle of, Honda expressed interest toward Europe back in February.

Although the Gunners were not mentioned, Honda's seven goals in 17 games last season in the Russian Premier League were impressive. Just like his 2010 World Cup, where he scored two goals and one assist in four games en route to leading Japan to the Round of 16.

A reliable and consistent passer to keep the offense moving, Honda can also connect from long range when needed. Although his scoring attribute isn't nearly as appealing as other players, Honda would make everyone else around him much better.


Demba Ba

Demba Ba is easily one of the better scorers that Arsenal could target. A rather versatile offensive player, Demba is obviously better used near the net as he can out-jump anyone to score from a header.

And since mid-May he's been linked to Arsenal, according to the Daily Mail.

With 16 goals and two assists in 32 games during 2011-12, Demba remained consistently productive from his 2010-11 campaign. Having scored 16 goals that season, Demba is the reliable attacker the Gunners need so the offense can continue pushing the pace.

Demba also is a better passer than given credit for. Therefore, even when opponents try to isolate him, Demba can still have an impact on the game.


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