Arsenal Transfer Rumours: Gunners Must Strike and Sign Marouane Fellaini
The summer transfer window thus far has been a bit difficult for Gooners.
While big deals have been happening around Europe and several Premier League contenders have continued to improve, the biggest move Arsenal has made—in a summer when the club is supposed to spend big—is adding Yaya Sanogo on a free transfer.
While improving at striker is obviously a huge need, so is adding a midfielder who can play the holding role. And that's why the club needs to turn its attention to signing Everton's Marouane Fellaini.
From Matt Law of the Mirror:
The £23.5 million buy-out clause in Fellaini’s Everton contract expires on August 14.
Fellaini still has three years remaining on his Everton deal and the Goodison Park club will demand more than £30m for the 25-year-old once his clause has expired.
The report adds:
Arsenal have made an enquiry over Fellaini, but have so far concentrated most of their efforts on trying to sign a striker after making approaches for Real Madrid’s Gonzalo Higuain, United’s Wayne Rooney and Liverpool’s Luis Suarez.
The clock is now ticking for Arsenal and United over Fellaini, particularly as both clubs are away on long-haul pre-season tours.
Fellaini would be the perfect fit for the Gunners. While he can play as an attacking midfielder, he's actually much better playing as a box-to-box or holding player. His driving runs forward and presence in the box make him a unique weapon, and he's the sort of dynamic force in the midfield Arsene Wenger probably hoped an injury-riddled Abou Diaby would become.
Fellaini had his best statistical season for Everton last year, finishing with 12 goals and seven assists in all competitions. WhoScored.com gave him a match rating of 7.57 in Premier League play, seventh-best in the league last season.
He would give Arsenal a much more physical presence in the midfield and would be free to push forward up the pitch given how well Mikel Arteta and Aaron Ramsey adapted to playing more defensive roles last season.
With Fellaini, the Gunners would add versatility to the attack. The Belgium international truly is a dangerous finisher inside the box, especially on set pieces. When he drives forward, Arteta or Ramsey can sink deeper, and vice versa.
While Fellaini won't come cheap, £23.5 million for a 25-year-old hitting his prime—and one who will bring goals—is a reasonable price to pay. You have to think most Arsenal fans would be satisfied if the team added Fellaini and finally brought aboard an elite striker.
With those two moves, Arsenal would be a serious title contender this upcoming season. The defense finally came together by the end of last season, Santi Cazorla was a revelation, Theo Walcott became one of the EPL's most dynamic attackers and, oh yeah, Jack Wilshere will be returning at full strength.
There's reason for optimism. Well, at least there will be once Arsenal actually makes a big signing.
Fellaini would be the perfect start.
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