Why Romania Striker Ciprian Marica Is Not an Ideal Signing for Arsenal
Arsenal need a striker.
Having allowed Marouane Chamakh to leave for Crystal Palace and subsequently losing Lukas Podolski to a thigh injury, Arsenal are very light in the attacking department. The only obvious backup for Olivier Giroud is inexperienced Frenchman Yaya Sanogo, who has spent much of his nascent career on the treatment table.
Arsene Wenger tried to bring a forward in on transfer deadline day. Arsenal were embroiled in an attempt to secure Chelsea’s Senegalese striker Demba Ba on a temporary loan deal. Unsurprisingly, this attempt failed. Chelsea and Jose Mourinho were in no mood to do Arsenal any favours, especially once the Gunners added to their considerable threat by signing German playmaker Mesut Ozil—a man once described by Mourinho as "the best No. 10 in the world."
Arsenal’s failure to recruit a new forward forced them to cancel Nicklas Bendtner’s deadline day exit. In the event of an injury to Giroud, Arsene Wenger is facing up to the fact that he may have to call upon the Dane for the first time in two years.
However, all is not yet lost. The transfer window may have slammed shut, but a chink of light shines through for Arsenal: Unattached players are not subject to the transfer deadline. The club are still permitted to sign free agents.
West Ham have already shown how this loophole can prove advantageous. Having lost Andy Carroll to injury, they moved quickly to secure former Fulham forward Mladen Petric. According to The Daily Mail, the Hammers are also reportedly considering a move for Carlton Cole—a player they released earlier this summer.
If reports are to be believed, Arsenal are looking at recruiting a free-agent forward of their own.
The agent of Romania striker Ciprian Marica claims he is close to a move to the Gunners. Ioan Becali told Romanian outlet Ziarul Ring (via Inside Futbol) that a move to West Ham had fallen apart due to the player’s financial demands, and subsequently informed The Mirror that Marica is “close” to finalising a deal with Arsenal.
Marica is not a name that will excite the Arsenal fans. The 27-year-old is something of a journeyman. He has had spells with Dinamo Bucharest, Shakhtar Donetsk, Stuttgart and Schalke without ever really establishing himself.
His greatest success has come at international level. Marica has an impressive 22 goals in 63 games. However, he has never managed to replicate that scoring ratio on the domestic scene.
His unconventional style would certainly provide a contrast to Olivier Giroud’s traditional target-man approach. Marica is a versatile forward who is as comfortable on the flanks as through the middle. His game is based on intelligent movement and moments of audacious skill. However, worryingly for Arsenal fans, those moments have been few and far between in the Bundesliga.
After spending the summer pursuing stellar names like Gonzalo Higuain and Luis Suarez, the arrival of Marica would represent something of an anti-climax.
Marica would not be an ideal signing for Arsenal. However, given their lack of depth, he may still be a necessary one.
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