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Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger will target Getafe centre forward Ciprian Marica, a 28-year-old Romanian international, as a cheap squad player, according to Rob Shepherd at The Daily Mail.
The awkward moment when Wenger goes out and contradicts Shepherd's prognostication:
"I think we can win the title without signing a striker," Wenger said, via ESPN FC.
The key phrase Shepherd will point to is "I think," because Wenger then said, "If we lose (Olivier) Giroud today we have nobody with body weight up front. Look, I am not against (a January signing)."
You will read two things from Wenger's statement:
- Nicklas Bendtner is on his way out, because at 6'4" and with a penchant for headed goals (five of his last six goals were headers), he does add body weight up front.
- Should Wenger decide to flip-flop (something he has done in the past), he will aim to sign strikers who can lead the line, preferably 6'1" or taller.
When 6'1" Marica is on song, he can be a physical presence for his team, finish chances and create goals like Giroud.
At worst, Marica is a Liga-standard footballer. He went from being the 190th-ranked Bundesliga player in the 2007-08 season for Stuttgart, behind Mario Gomez and Cacau, to scoring 10 league goals two seasons later.
Marica did not push on to become a better striker. A combined five goals from 34 league games for Stuttgart and Schalke during his last two Bundesliga seasons will tell you his career has nose-dived.
Marica has netted once in seven league games this season for Getafe.
Arsenal do not need the Sebastien Squillaci of strikers.