The Solution For Arsenal's Unbalanced Squad: Stephen Appiah

Ben CampbellCorrespondent IJuly 27, 2009

ACCRA - GHANA - NOVEMBER 19: Ghana's Stephen Appiah takes a free kick during the International Friendly Match between Ghana and Tunisia  at the Ohene Djan Sports Stadium on November 19, 2008 in Accra, Ghana. (Photo by Haydn West/Getty Images)

Ever since Patrick Viera left Arsenal, the club has not won a trophy.

I am not saying that Arsenal's failure to win a trophy for four years is solely connected to Viera's departure. However, it is one of the major factors in the clubs' inability to win a trophy along with Dein's departure, the lack of investment, and the selling of key players.

Arsenal seemed to have replaced the tenacity and the drive of Viera in the form of Mathieu Flamini, however Arsenal's wage structure would not be broken and Flamini left on a Bosman.

This has left the squad unbalanced, ultimately making it even harder for Arsenal to challenge for the Premier League or the Champions League.

Song is naturally a centreback, Denilson does not have the discipline to stay in position and Diaby is played out of position too many times to vacate this role to his full potential.

If Arsenal does not acquire a defensive midfielder before the beginning of the season it is likely that it will be five years without a trophy.

Arsenal has missed out on Felipe Melo and Lorik Cana.  It seems there are no powerful defensive midfielders in the market in Arsenal's budget, right?

Wrong.  Stephen Appiah, 28, is strong, athletic, positionally disciplined, technically gifted, a strong leader, and vastly experienced in both the Champions League and as a Ghanaian International. The most unbelievable thing is that a player of Appiah's quality is available on a free transfer.

Appiah could easily fill the void left by Patrick Viera and Mathieu Flamini, and bring much-needed balance and experience to the squad. The only negative aspect is that Appiah will be competing in the African Cup of Nations in January.

However, there is no reason why Arsenal should not sign the Ghanaian powerhouse. 

Arsene Wenger has already gone against some of his policies by signing the woeful Mikael Silvestre, who was over 30-years-old at the time of signing for Arsenal, and breaking the pay structure to secure the "long-term" future of Adebayor—although I do not foresee a problem with Appiah's wage demands which would roughly be about £70,000 a week.

The most positive aspect of this proposal is that Arsenal will be able to use the funds from the Adebayor deal to sign a striker such as Huntelaar or Negredo. 

Some people believe that Michael Owen's transfer to Manchester United will be one of the deals of the season, but if Arsenal signs Ghana's captain on a free transfer, then Arsenal will have done one of the deals of the decade.  


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