Arsenal have already been linked with a number of players regarding potential moves over the summer transfer window—such is the nature of the rumor mill and speculation.
Some of it might be more far-fetched than others, but there are some rumors that are both intriguing and questionable at the same time. And the latest link between Arsenal and a move for Borussia Dortmund star Mario Gotze is definitely in the second category.
Arsene Wenger is embarking on a twin strategy to revive Arsenal this summer by making a club record £30 million bid for Borussia Dortmund's Mario Gotze.
Wenger is ready to spend the £70 million transfer fund at his disposal but that figure also has to cover the wages of new players, with Dortmund's 20-year-old attacking midfielder the prime target. Gotze has a £30 million buyout clause which would allow him to leave if a club make a bid to that value—and Arsenal are ready to do so.
At just 20 years old, Gotze has already proven himself to be a genuine star for Dortmund, and has been instrumental to their strong Champions League run in 2013.
The playmaker has netted 12 goals and 13 assists for Dortmund this season, and whilst has shown some weaknesses in front of goal throughout this year, the reality is that Gotze has emerged as a very strong and talented footballer—one that has a very bright future ahead of him in world football.
Yet as good as Gotze is, the Gunners need to steer clear of any summer interest in him—instead focusing their attention on other areas that need improving.
Gotze likes to play through the middle as an attacking playmaker, which is the exact role that Arsenal currently play Santi Cazorla in. And whilst there could be ways to accommodate the arrival of the German, the reality is that Cazorla has been superb through the middle this year, and the North London club are finally starting to figure out their attacking system.
The Gunners have won eight of their past 10 league matches to claw their way back inside the top four and into Champions League qualification. They've done that through a number of things, but one of the biggest keys has been their attacking direction, with Cazorla and Olivier Giroud finally developing the relationship that Arsene Wenger was looking for all season.
To bring in Gotze now would simply undo all of that hard work—forcing Arsenal to change their system—and potentially even losing quality players as a result.
Guys like Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Francis Coquelin, Aaron Ramsey—these are all talented players whose development just isn't happening as much as it should because they can't get a game ahead of the likes of Cazorla, Giroud, Theo Walcott and Jack Wilshere.
And whilst that's understandable, to bring in a £30 million-rated 20-year-old would be a complete contradiction of all that the Gunners did in the last 12 months..
Bringing in Cazorla, bringing in Podolski, bringing in Giroud, keeping Walcott—it all only makes sense if that is the starting formation Wenger wants going forward, which, it clearly wouldn't be if they were to try and squeeze Gotze into their formation as well.
And that's assuming he wants to leave Dortmund this summer, and will choose Arsenal over the plethora of other clubs believed to be tracking the 20-year-old.
Arsenal would be much better served putting the £30 million they'd offer Dortmund for Gotze into signing a defensive midfielder. If they really want to go German, they'd be better off making a move for Ilkay Gundogan than they are Gotze—simply for the need that the Londoners have this summer and the potential impact that Gundogan could have at the Emirates.
Spending £30 million on Gotze—who may not even come—isn't the smart, tactical move that we've become accustomed to from Wenger over the years.
Especially not given the needs they have and the myriad of talent that's out there.
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