Toni Kroos is coming to a bit of a crossroads in his Bayern Munich career it would seem.
It’s no secret, the Premier League is a possibility for me.
The situation is that I don’t have any agreement at the moment at Bayern. On the other side there is no agreement in place anywhere.
He can't have failed to have been impressed at what he saw.
The Gunners, renowned for their own passing game, were simply torn apart, with Kroos the major architect of their downfall.
Kroos' 172 passes on the night, per WhoScored.com, was better than the entire Arsenal midfield, and only 20 touches less than all of Arsenal's front six players combined. A goal to open the scoring was the icing on the cake.
Arguably United's most creative player is Juan Mata, but the Spaniard has disappointed since his arrival at Old Trafford.
If we compare his stats from United's recent 4-1 win over Aston Villa to that of Kroos against Arsenal, there's simply no contest.
Mata's 63 touches in a game that United dominated, per WhoScored, is less than half of that of the German's and against a Villa side that have been disappointing this season.
If Kroos were to sign for United then he could hypothetically also line up alongside Ashley Young and Marouane Fellaini. Young had just 54 touches against Villa with a frankly awful 63 percent pass completion; Fellaini a slightly better 84 touches with 84 percent pass completion per WhoScored.
Toni Kroos is simply too good for that sort of midfield.
Interestingly, Pep Guardiola has insisted that Kroos won't join United even if he doesn't stay at Bayern, according to Rob Dawson of the Manchester Evening News:
Given the continued excellence of his Bayern side, you would have to question the modus operandi of the player. Jan Aage Fjortoft notes it could be a financial decision:
It's fairly clear that Bayern Munich still want to keep Kroos with Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge suggesting that he will still be wearing a Bayern shirt next year, per Charles Perrin of the Daily Express.
However, Marcus Christenson of The Guardian noted honorary president Franz Beckenbauer's words of caution, possibly hinting that the club won't be held to ransom:
You have to make a decision as a club when someone's demands are going through the roof.
There is not a single player who's worth changing your entire wage structure for. Nobody's indispensable.
If the player wants to stay at Bayern, I can only advise him not to overplay his hand.
Perhaps it is Guardiola's preference for utilising his whole squad that doesn't sit well with the player:
In any event, Kroos can surely meet all of his needs from a professional perspective in Bavaria.
Unbeaten all season in the Bundesliga, and looking odds-on to claim back-to-back Champions League success, why would Kroos, a vital component in that success, feel the need to turn his back on the same?
In a team where passing is king, he wears the crown.
And no amount of money can replace that.