Arsenal Transfer Talk: 5 Signings Who Could Revive the Gunners Next Season
Arsenal and Arsene Wenger's transfer policy since 2004 has blighted the club like an ugly scar. To return to where they were in the halcyon days of the Invincibles and Double-Double's, the Gunners need to sign a number of top-class players to revive their ills.
Whichever way you look at, it the Gunners need to spend and spend fast to improve the team.
Here, Bleacher Report looks at five linked players who could revive the Gunners next season.
Stevan Jovetic (Fiorentina): £20 Million
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The biggest move Arsenal are linked with this summer is for Fiorentina's Stevan Jovetic.
The Daily Mail are reporting that the Gunners are prepared to break their transfer record to sign the £20 million-rated Montenegro striker.
The Fiorentina striker is believed to be the top summer target for Arsene Wenger and Arsenal after scoring 12 goals in 24 league games for the Champions League-chasing Viola side. The 23-year-old Montenegrin has impressed in Vincenzo Montella's 3-5-2 formation this term and is Serie A's standout striker behind Napoli's Edinson Cavani.
The Independent had previously linked the Gunners with Cavani, who has scored 20 goals in 26 league games. However, the Uruguayan hitman is now reportedly priced at £60 million (via ESPN), which may put Arsenal off. Arsene Wenger has previously stated he is not interested in a huge marquee signing to placate irate fans (via The Telegraph).
So if Arsenal are going to dip into the Serie A pool, it may be for Jovetic.
The Fiorentina striker is well aware of the interest he is generating in North London and Manchester. Recently he issued a "come and get me" plea to both Wenger and Roberto Mancini via (The Daily Star):
“It sure is nice when you are interesting big clubs like Arsenal and Manchester City.
“I’m very comfortable in Italy but the Premier League is at the top of the football world – and perhaps the best.
“We will see what happens in the future."
Arsenal playing in the Champions League may be the deal-breaker here.
Alexis Sanchez (Barcelona): £22 Million
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Arsenal and Barcelona have long been bed-follows when it comes to transfers between teams. Usually the players travel away from the Emirates, but this time it could be the other way around.
The 24-year-old left-sided forward and attacking midfielder would instantly change the entire complexion of Arsenal's attack. Sanchez is another in a growing list of world stars who learned their trade in Serie A, having started with Udinese. He would bring another level of creativity and penetration to an already creative Arsenal side.
That might not prove all that difficult considering his agent's recent words on the matter:
"Sanchez needs to play the ball on the ground, just like Arsenal. That would be his ideal game."
Ashley Williams (Swansea City): £10 Million
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Arsenal have conceded 32 goals from 29 games this term, so it is little wonder that they are linked with good defenders, especially defenders of the central variety.
Per Mertesacker, Laurent Koscielny and Thomas Vermaelen have all performed far below expectations this term. The Gunners' captain, Vermaelen, has particularly enjoyed a decidedly poor season.
The Premier League player Arsene Wenger is being linked with by the South Wales Evening Post to shore up the Gunners' porous back line is Swansea City's Ashley Williams. The Welsh international has been nothing but impressive for the Swans over their last two seasons in the EPL.
He is a commanding ball-playing centre-back and would slot straight into any Wenger team from any era.
Adil Rami (Valencia): £12 Million
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Adil Rami is one of the best centre-backs in Europe at this very moment in time. He is the type of player any ambitious club should be linked to.
Metro has Arsenal and Arsene Wenger tracking the Moroccan-born French international for some time now. With his contract due to end in 2015 the time to strike is now.
The 27-year-old is a calm presence at the back for Valencia, and if Wenger can capture him for a modest fee it could signal that Thomas Vermaelen is about to move on. There can be little doubt that Rami would be an immediate improvement on the Belgian this term. However, Vermaelen has far more potential which could be the deciding factor in his sale.
Rami has been quoted recently as saying he feels good at Valencia and is contemplating their contract offer. However, he also stated his desire for first-team football. This, in negotiation-speak, means he will join whoever plays him and plays in the Champions League regularly.
James McCarthy (Wigan Athletic): £8 Million
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Wigan Athletic's James McCarthy may just be the best midfielder in the Premier League not currently playing for one of the traditional big-guns.
The Irish international, at the tender age of just 22, has already played over 220 professional games. He made his debut in the rough and tumble of the Scottish First Division at just 15 with Hamilton Academicals.
Arsenal have long been linked with the jewel in Wigan's crown. His intelligence and versatility mean he would be the ideal partner for Jack Wilshere or Mikel Arteta in midfield. Comfortable anywhere along the spine in a support or defensive role, McCarthy has shown maturity beyond his years for Wigan and Ireland, and he could bring a bite and drive sadly lacking in this modern Gunners' team.