Arsenal Transfer News: Gokhan Inler Would Fix Gunners' Midfield Woes

Ross Dunbar@@rossdunbar93Contributor IIJuly 20, 2013

NAPLES, ITALY - MAY 12:  Gokhan Inler of Napoli and Salvador Agra of Siena in action during the Serie A match between SSC Napoli and AC Siena at Stadio San Paolo on May 12, 2013 in Naples, Italy.  (Photo by Giuseppe Bellini/Getty Images)
Giuseppe Bellini/Getty Images

There’s still over a month left in the summer transfer window, but the need for players to join up with their prospective clubs is vital.

The looming season is a chance to experiment with ideas on the training field, make moves in the transfer market and prepare for the forthcoming campaign.

For Arsenal, it seems Arsene Wenger has lost out on another potential transfer target in Napoli midfielder Gokhan Inler. 

The 29-year-old is contracted to Napoli until 2016, but the player’s agent, Dino Lamberti, confirmed to Daily Express' Ben Jefferson that Inler is looking forward to working with former Liverpool and Chelsea boss Rafael Benitez in Naples.

There was an offer from a very prestigious English club but we have not taken it into consideration.

He's very happy and he told me that he's feeling good at the starting of the training camp.

Benitez has told Gokhan his plans and he feels that he will be important for both Napoli and the coach.

Napoli are undergoing a rebuilding process for next season, having seen Edinson Cavani leave for PSG in recent weeks. Last summer, the Naples club also lost Ezequiel Lavezzi, who had been influential for Walter Mazzarri’s side that qualified for the Champions League.

Wenger has good midfield options in Jack Wilshere and Santi Cazorla, mainly, but there is still a glaring absence of a defensive-minded presence in the middle of the pitch.

Finding the balance for Arsenal is important, allowing Wilshere’s box-to-box desire and Cazorla’s creativity to shine through.

Inler is a Switzerland international, coached by the great Ottmar Hitzfeld, helping the national side improve on so many levels. The midfielder was impressive at Euro 2008, whilst at Udinese, but joined Napoli in 2011 for £15 million.

Since Alex Song’s departure, Arsenal have lacked a gritty, determined midfielder with the tactical nous to hold the shape of the side.

Wenger and his policy of not making such a move in the transfer market have been heavily criticized, but it is no cliché.

Of course, Arsenal did beat Bayern Munich in Germany, but the relative ease with which the European champions picked the Gunners off in London was a real eye-opener. Granted, a fine all-round player, Mikel Arteta was caught out at that level of the Champions League as a defensive midfielder.

Over the years, Arsenal fans have seen Patrick Vieira and Gilberto, among others, provide that balance to the midfield.

But since then, Wenger has continually failed to strengthen the squad in that department, leaving Arsenal ailing against better opposition. For the club’s development in the Premier League and Europe, it’s imperative that Wenger adds a key midfielder with experience at the highest level.

29-year-old Inler has the attributes to improve Arsenal’s side by quite some distance.