William Gallas, the Frenchman and the solid Arsenal central back, has become a free agent which has marked the end of his days in Arsenal.
While Arsene Wenger's squad has enjoyed the benefits of the experienced centre back for nearly four years (since his transfer from Chelsea), it is time that Wenger looks for an absolute replacement to fill the hole in his defense.
Gallas is reported to be chased by the Athenian giants Panathinaikos who have offered Gallas a €2.5 contract plus bonus, with a minimum two-year long contract.
The short term replacement Sol Campbell and the "still-play-like-amateur" Mikel Silvestre are also out this season from the defense list.
Arsenal has signed the French centre back Laurent Koscielny from Lorient, who has been spotted as one of the rising defenders with great fighting spirit and strong physical and mental attitude in front of the goal.
It is clear that Wenger looks forward to his 24-year-old new signing as the long term back for years to come, but Arsenal must not depend on just two central backs for the purpose. Injuries are bound to come in EPL, and so are bad and good forms, which makes it a reason for the Gunners to go for another solid rock at the back.
Wenger has been reported to make a £ 14m bid for the Everton man, which has been rejected. So, comes again a new fresh £ 16m bid to land Jagielka for the Gunners.
Phil has been impressive in his performances in Everton with solid tackling ability and even scoring at times, and has a recovered from a serious knee injury and Wenger sees him as a good solution to steady his defense.
Aged at 27, the homegrown 2008-09 player of the season for Everton, has been known to play even at midfield early in his career and his versatility can be a boon to the Gunners. It is time that will say what works out between David Moyes and Arsene Wenger.
The Bolton centre back has already drawn attention in Wenger's list since last year, but the price tag demanded by Bolton is pretty heavy around a £ 20m which resulted in a halt in negotiations.
However, Gary Cahill is a young and growing defender with good physical ability, superb tackling skills, good in air with 6'2" height and also able to score the odd goal when needed. That makes the subject again to be discussed and brought on the table.
Bolton's poster boy has been regarded as the future England international and it is clear that Arsenal manager has to place a bid of the range of £ 15m to land the defender. Plus, he is of the homegrown criteria and has the experience of a tough premier league season, which makes him a good fit in defense of Arsenal.
The young German international has impressed eyes with his strong tackling ability and positioning sense, and also displays a great control over the ball in his feet. He is a rising star and so is regarded by the German coach Joachim Low who has repeatedly singled him out as an outstanding youngster.
Aged at 23, he will be a perfect choice for Wenger to develop and will also come in the range of £ 15m. He is regarded as the prototype modern central defender and can open up the play from the tightest situations with pinpoint passing and clearing ability.
Currently playing for Stuttgart, he seems to have been gifted with winning glory when on his first year he lifted the Bundesliga trophy with Stuttgart, so can he bring the same fortune and blessings to Arsenal? It will be worth watching.
Often called as the new Vidic from Serbia, this young man has caught eyes of elite bosses all over the world. He is a prized asset for his club Borussia Dortmund, and it will take a sum of around £ 15m to £ 20m to land him for the Gunners.
Compared with Fernando Hierro and lauded as one of the finest defenders of the German Bundesliga, he is known for his safe and cultured defending that adds strength to the team's centre back. He is only at 20, and thus has a plenty of time to grow and establish as the finest in the game.
He also knows where the goal is, which is indeed a rare and cherished trait for a defender, thus scoring 13 goals in three seasons for his club. So Serbia is full of talents, ain't it?
Aged at 30, he may not be of the criteria that fills up Wenger's list of young talents, but he was an integral part of the team Holland that conceded only two goals in road to the World Cup.
The Hamburg defender has showed his excellence to end up the defensive problems of Hamburg, and moreover he is not exactly the attacking defender type which makes him an interesting choice. Arsene Wenger's squad surely needs a defender who can stay back and guard the fort.
He may come up with a price tag nearing £ 15m after his world cup performance, and is in a contract with Hamburg until 2012.
PS: There is in-house ammunition for the Gunners, like Djorou and Eastmond whom we wish to grow into future talents and stars, and wish it to be a brighter glowing season for Arsene Wenger and his men.