Gonzalo Higuain: Implications for Current Arsenal Players If He Joins Gunners

James McNicholasFeatured ColumnistJune 24, 2013

Gonzalo Higuain: Implications for Current Arsenal Players If He Joins Gunners

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    Arsenal fans are famous for their fervent following of transfer speculation. This summer, Arsenal players will also be keeping a firm eye on the rumour mill.

    Any new signing inevitably impacts upon those already present at the club. 

    David Hytner of The Guardian reports that Real Madrid striker Gonzalo Higuain is edging closer to a move to Arsenal. Go on to the next slide to see how his arrival would affect Arsenal's current crop of forwards.

Olivier Giroud

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    Olivier Giroud will be anxiously watching Arsenal's transfer activity. Any attacking signing would severely impact upon his ambitions of cementing himself as an Arsenal hero.

    As reported by David Hytner of The Guardian at the end of last season, Arsene Wenger thinks very highly of his French forward:

    He has a fantastic attitude. He is a little bit different to the strikers we used to have but he gives us another dimension with the physical challenge in the air. He has scored 17 goals in all competitions, 11 in the championship and for a first season, that is quite good.

    He wants to play every single game. He has good physical potential and basic stamina and he can absorb the games, and the body-to-body because he's a strong guy. I think you will see more from him next season. There's a lot more to come from him.

    If Higuain does arrive, Giroud may find opportunities to demonstrate his progress hard to come by.

    In recent seasons, Arsene Wenger has favoured a 4-3-3 formation with room for just one central striker. If Higuain signs for Arsenal, he will justifiably expect to be first-choice in that role.

    Giroud, meanwhile, will revert from leading striker to impact substitute.

Nicklas Bendtner

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    Remarkably, Nicklas Bendtner is still an Arsenal player.

    The Danish forward has spent the last two seasons out on loan. He followed a mixed spell at Sunderland with a disastrous tenure at Juventus. A combination of injuries and poor form saw him start just two Serie A games last season.

    Kent Hedlundh of Sky Sports says the target man has been linked with a permanent move to Eintracht Frankfurt. The arrival of Gonzalo Higuain would be the nail in the coffin of Bendtner's Arsenal career.

Marouane Chamakh

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    You could be forgiven for forgetting that Marouane Chamakh still plays for Arsenal. In fact, you could be forgiven for forgetting that Marouane Chamakh is still a footballer. A once promising career his faded into obscurity.

    Like Nicklas Bendtner, his fate would be sealed by the signing of Gonzalo Higuain.

    According to Declan Warrington of the Daily Mail he is eyeing a return to his former stomping ground, Bordeaux:

    Everyone knows that Bordeaux is a club that is in my heart. If I find an agreement with Bordeaux, why not?

    A move back to France could be best for all parties.

Theo Walcott

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    Theo Walcott has made no secret of his desire to play as a centre-forward. In 2012/13, for the first time in his Arsenal career, Arsene Wenger handed him a sustained run of games in that position.

    If Gonzalo Higuain joins Arsenal, Walcott will be bumped back in the queue for a central berth. The Englishman will most likely be confined to the right wing.

    That's not necessarily a bad thing. Although Walcott would rather play through the centre, he is very productive on the flank.

    Walcott could be the man to provide the ammunition for Higuain to blast the Gunners to success.

Lukas Podolski

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    After beginning the 2012/13 season as a regular starter on the left wing, Lukas Podolski found himself out of form and favour by February.

    He was handed a reprieve late on in the campaign: After the suspension of Olivier Giroud for a two-footed lunge against Fulham, Podolski started the last four Premier League games as a centre-forward. He scored twice in the crucial game against Wigan, demonstrating his lethal finishing.

    However, the arrival of Higuain would limit Podolski's opportunities to play through the middle.

    Arsene Wenger seems reluctant to play Podolski on the wing in Arsenal's new conservative system, so the German forward may find his opportunities to start matches increasingly limited.

Gervinho

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    Last season, Arsenal winger Gervinho had some of his best Arsenal performances in the "False Nine" role. If Arsenal sign Gonzalo Higuain, they will have a true No. 9.

    With the likes of Theo Walcott and Santi Cazorla flourishing on the flanks, Gervinho may find himself cast in to the reserves.

    An erratic Arsenal career may be approaching a close.