Arsenal Transfer News: Calls Grow for Julian Draxler Arrival from Schalke

Ravin SampatCorrespondent IIJanuary 17, 2014

Per Mertesacker wants Draxler at Arsenal.
Per Mertesacker wants Draxler at Arsenal.Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images

Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker has said that Schalke playmaker Julian Draxler would be welcome at the Emirates should the Gunners make a bid for the young German international, reports Stephan Uersfeld of ESPN via

MailOnline Sport added:

The German defender says that the whole of the Gunners squad would be happy to see the Schalke star arrive in the transfer window, after he was linked with a move to North London, per Uersfeld:

We already have a small German academy here. It’s a lot of fun that the German discipline and the special talent is valued here.

Players like him are welcomed here. Julian Draxler has a great influence on Schalke and the Germany team, despite his young age. But let’s wait and see what happens. A lot of players have been talked about in the past.

Draxler has been linked with a move to Arsenal earlier this week, with Arsene Wenger hoping to turn the young German talent into the next Robin Van Persie, reported John Cross of the Daily Mirror:

Whilst Draxler would be a welcome addition to any team, he may not be the player to set Arsenal's strike-force on fire. Playing as a winger or an attacking midfielder, it would take time to nurture the German as the next RVP.

Despite being top of the league, what Arsenal have lacked this season is goals, with title rivals Manchester City, Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool all boasting of alternative striking options.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - JANUARY 15:  Sergio Aguero of Manchester City celebrates scoring his team's fourth goal with team-mate Edin Dzeko (L) during the Budweiser FA Cup Third Round Replay match between Manchester City and Blackburn Rovers at the Etihad Sta
Chris Brunskill/Getty Images

On Wednesday night, Jan. 15, City moved their goal tally to an incredible 99 for the season after the Blues turned on the second-half style against Blackburn in the FA Cup. In contrast, Arsenal have only managed 52 goals in all competitions, per Squawka stats.

Arsenal haven't had the option of rotating and ideally need another striker, not another attacking midfielder in the mould of Draxler. If Draxler were to come in, the question for manager Arsene Wenger would be whom he would replace.

GELSENKIRCHEN, GERMANY - MARCH 12:  Julian Draxler of Schalke looks dejected during the UEFA Champions League round of 16 second leg match between FC Schalke 04 and Galatasaray AS at Veltins-Arena on March 12, 2013 in Gelsenkirchen, Germany.  (Photo by La
Lars Baron/Getty Images

With Aaron Ramsey set to come back from injury and playmakers Mesut Ozil and Santi Cazorla taking up the attacking midfield positions in the team, Draxler would be another alternative, not the goalscorer Arsenal are looking for.

Recent injuries to Theo Walcott and Nicklas Bendtner have left the Gunners light in attack, but with Olivier Giroud back from injury, Wenger warned that Arsenal do not need to buy, reported the Metro.

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 04:  The injured Theo Walcott of Arsenal makes a 2-0 gesture to the Tottenham fans as he is stretchered off the pitch during the Budweiser FA Cup third round match between Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur at Emirates Stadium on Janu
Clive Rose/Getty Images

Bendtner is out until next month with an ankle injury, and winger Theo Walcott—who can play as a centre-forward—will miss the season after suffering a cruciate ligament injury against Tottenham.

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 01:  An injured Nicklas Bendtner of Arsenal is congratulated by team mate Theo Walcott (R) as he scores their first goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Arsenal and Cardiff City at Emirates Stadium on January 1,
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

However, Wenger doesn't seem sure of his position on whether to buy another forward or not. In the new year he admitted that Arsenal may need to buy, reported ESPN:

If it is a question of up to three weeks, okay, but if it is a question of months (then) the situation is quite (different), so that is what we have to determine. We don't rule anything out. If Bendtner is out for a long time, that is the obvious position. We (would) have to (buy). Honestly, you want to keep your chances in the season at the best possible level. Is it for short term or a stop-gap? Ideally, you want a longer solution, but a longer solution looks much more difficult to find in January than a short gap.

You can find a solution somewhere - a club that has financial trouble and wants to get rid of a big contract for five or six months, but to find in January exactly the player who will be tomorrow's star on the longer term is much more difficult.

With only Olivier Giroud as their main striker, boss Arsene Wenger may be tempted to splash the clash in January, but according to Dominic Fifield of The Guardian, Wenger has instructed Arsenal's scouting department to explore short-term signings.

ST ALBANS, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 30:  Manager Arsene Wenger of Arsenal looks on during an Arsenal training session ahead of their Champions League Group F match against Napoli at London Colney on September 30, 2013 in St Albans, England.  (Photo by Paul Gil
Paul Gilham/Getty Images

Wenger may be put off on buying the German now and waiting until the summer after it was reported that Draxler was injured and wasn’t expected back until February, tweeted footballer turned pundit Jan Aage Fjortoft:

Meanwhile, respected German journalist Raphael Honigstein doesn’t believe Arsene Wenger will go for Draxler because of his price tag:

Schalke will want to keep their star asset with a Champions League Round 16 tie against Real Madrid coming up, in addition to their chase for fourth place, where they currently lie seventh, just four points off the Champions League places.

On Thursday, Jan. 16, Schalke sporting director Horst Heldt reiterated to Bild that currently “there is no offer” for Draxler, as reported by ESPN, while adding that he has “not heard that Julian wants to leave.”

This season Draxler has been in fine form in the Champions League but has struggled in the Bundesliga, Squawka stats show. Last season, the playmaker scored 10 goals in 30 league appearances, per Squawka.

GELSENKIRCHEN, GERMANY - MARCH 12: Semih Kaya of Galatasaray challenges Julian Draxler of Schalke during the UEFA Champions League round of 16 second leg match between FC Schalke 04 and Galatasaray AS at Veltins-Arena on March 12, 2013 in Gelsenkirchen, G
Lars Baron/Getty Images

Meanwhile, Mertesacker has rejoined Twitter since leaving in 2011. He wrote:

The German international has formed a formidable partnership with Frenchman Laurent Koscielny, which has helped Arsenal top the league.

The pair hasn't lost a game together when both players have completed 90 minutes together, a run stretching to 27 games.