Arsenal Transfer News: Iker Casillas Signing Vital for Gunners' Depth

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistJuly 20, 2014

CURITIBA, BRAZIL - JUNE 21:  Iker Casillas of Spain in action during a Spain training session at Centro de Entrenamiento do Caju on June 21, 2014 in Curitiba, Brazil.  (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)
David Ramos/Getty Images

Arsenal have thus far had a successful transfer window, with the signing of Alexis Sanchez a particularly good piece of business.

However, for the Gunners to properly compete once again for the Premier League title, they need to add strength and depth across their entire squad.

One key area where they are currently a little short is in the goalkeeping department, where Wojciech Szczesny has been unchallenged for the No. 1 spot for some time, and back-up Lukasz Fabianski recently departed for Swansea.

LONDON, ENGLAND - MARCH 22:  A dejected Wojciech Szczesny of Arsenal sits on the pitch after conceding a fourth goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Chelsea and Arsenal at Stamford Bridge on March 22, 2014 in London, England.  (Photo by R
Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

It is now being reported that Real Madrid veteran Iker Casillas is eager to terminate his contract with the La Liga giants and make the move to Arsenal, as per Spanish outlet El Confidencial (via Jamie Bowman of The Mirror):

Casillas, who suffered a nightmare World Cup as the Spanish exited at the group stage, is so desperate for a move away from Real that he wants club officials to terminate his contract and allow him to move for free. [...]

Spanish paper El Confidencial report Casillas is keen on a move to Arsenal who could move quickly to bring the Spaniard to the Premier League despite also being linked with Nice's David Ospina.

Indeed, Gunners boss Arsene Wenger has admitted that his transfer business is not done for the summer, and Casillas would be a terrific addition for the north London outfit, as per Sky Sports: "I can't give you any names because you're never sure if you can do what you want, but we're still out there to strengthen our squad."

BOREHAMWOOD, ENGLAND - JULY 19:  Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger looks on during the pre season friendly match between Borehamwood and Arsenal at Meadow Park on July 19, 2014 in Borehamwood, England.  (Photo by Jordan Mansfield/Getty Images)
Jordan Mansfield/Getty Images

Casillas was at fault on several occasions at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil as Spain crashed out early, and he lost his La Liga starting berth at Real to Diego Lopez last season.

However, he has proven over the years that he is a fantastic goalkeeper, and at 33 years old, he still has time remaining in his career. If he is eager to move to Arsenal, Wenger should grant his wish, especially on a free transfer.

He is a commanding presence at the back, a proven winner and would provide 24-year-old Szczesny with vital competition for his spot which he has never truly felt before, a necessity, as per John Cross of ESPN FC: "Arsenal have an excellent keeper now in Szczesny, who is young enough to be first choice for a decade but needs good backup and proper competition." 

Although demoted to second choice for La Liga games last season, Casillas was Real's No. 1 for the Champions League and started every game as they went on to claim their 10th European Cup.

Proof, therefore, as if it were needed, that Casillas still has what it takes to perform at the top level, and he would certainly be a splendid addition to Arsenal's squad. 

Not only would he potentially improve Szczesny's game by providing competition, his vast experience of winning everything from La Liga to the World Cup cannot be underestimated. Arsenal's defensive players would also certainly benefit from Casillas' expertise.

LISBON, PORTUGAL - MAY 24:  Iker Casillas of Real Madrid lifts the Champions League trophy during the UEFA Champions League Final between Real Madrid and Atletico de Madrid at Estadio da Luz on May 24, 2014 in Lisbon, Portugal.  (Photo by Michael Regan/Ge
Michael Regan/Getty Images

He would no doubt be revitalised by a new challenge in the Premier League, and his signing would signal that Arsenal are serious about genuinely competing on all fronts, domestically and in Europe.

If his reported interest is true, Wenger would be a fool to let the opportunity pass to sign him up, as his arrival could be key to their prospects next season.

The best teams have top players vying for every spot on the pitch, and if Arsenal want to be considered as a premier club, they must strengthen in all areas, including between the posts.