Alex Song Reportedly Open to Arsenal as Yohan Cabaye Reflects on Failed Transfer

Matt Cheetham@@Matt_CheethamCorrespondent IOctober 8, 2013

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA - AUGUST 10:  Alex Song of Barcelona FC controls the ball during the friendly match between FC Barcelona and Malaysia at Shah Alam Stadium on August 10, 2013 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.  (Photo by How Foo Yeen/Getty Images)
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Alex Song could be in line for a return to the Premier League with Arsenal, according to Gary Jones in the Daily Star.

Jones refers to reports emanating from Spain, which claim the former Gunners star would be open to a return to his previous employers—although Manchester United are also said to be keen:

The former Premier League star has grown frustrated at the lack of opportunity at the Nou Camp.

Manchester United are also said to be keen to snap up the defender during the winter transfer window but are having to wait to see if Barca are willing to risk letting him leave.

Since his £15 million departure just over a year ago, Song has struggled to establish himself among Barcelona's heavily clustered midfield. He's started three of eight games in La Liga this season—having featured in 20 last year—and remains firmly behind Sergio Busquets in the pecking order.

BARCELONA, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 02:  Alex Song of FC Barcelona (C) duels for the ball with Tino Costa of Valencia CF during the La Liga match between FC Barcelona and Valencia CF at Camp Nou on September 2, 2012 in Barcelona, Spain.  (Photo by David Ramos/Ge
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While Arsenal have recently added Mathieu Flamini, their squad has very little in the way of orthodox defensive midfielders.

Jack Wilshere, Mikel Arteta and Aaron Ramsey are all far better with the ball than without it and have flourished alongside Flamini's industry and positional nous.

After his fine return, few fans would see the logic in bringing in another defensive midfielder to startbut there is certainly sense in keeping tabs on Song's availability.

Flamini has only started 29 league games in the past three seasons, missing most of the 2011/12 season with a cruciate injury. Given the impact his arrival has already had, Arsenal would be wise to provide him support.

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 22:  Erik Pieters (C) of Stoke City holds off the challenge of Mathieu Flamini (L) and Bacary Sagna (R) of Arsenal during the Barclays Premier League match between Arsenal and Stoke City at Emirates Stadium on September 22, 201
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Another previous Arsenal target, Yohan Cabaye, has opened up on the reasons behind his failed summer move to the Gunners, as Sky Sports' Patrick Haond reports:

Was my failed transfer to Arsenal difficult to swallow? At first, yes. 

But you have to quickly get focused again, because if you go on thinking about it you have a grudge against a lot of people and that is useless. 

I quickly forget about it and go back to work. [...]

The only person who can explain what happened is Joe Kinnear. If he is honest, he will tell it. Otherwise it will not get out of my mouth.

This link to Arsenal was always a strange one, particularly as Arsene Wenger has no shortage of similar players to Cabaye. There were several deficiencies to fill, none of which the Frenchman resolved.

Ramsey, Wilshere and Arteta are all excellent with the ball at their feet but were desperate for a more defence-minded presence alongside them, as Flamini has brought. 

Song is the more likely target to be considered in January, although given Flamini's instant impact, Arsenal still have more pressing concerns in attack and defence.