Arsenal Transfer Rumours: Mikel Arteta and Riccardo Montolivo Are Targets

James Dudko@@JamesDudkoFeatured ColumnistAugust 21, 2011

Everton star Mike Arteta and Italian international Riccardo Montolivo are the latest creative midfielders linked with Arsenal in the aftermath of yesterday's sobering defeat to Liverpool.

Caughtoffside.com suggests that Arsene Wenger is contemplating a bid for Mikel Arteta as the ideal replacement for Cesc Fabregas.

Arteta is a technically gifted play maker who would boost an Arsenal midfield lacking enough craft and guile to consistently expose defenses.

The 29-year-old Spaniard is a smart player who moves the ball quickly and can orchestrate the play through midfield.

Arteta is also an expert in dead ball situations.  He would offer plenty of valuable Premier League experience to Arsenal and would not require a settling in period.

The only question mark surrounding Arteta is his dubious track record with injuries.  Adding another susceptible player to an Arsenal squad already containing plenty of injury-prone players would be a huge risk.

But Arteta is an established performer with the quality Arsenal desperately need.  The Gunners could take advantage of the precarious state of Everton's finances and should tempt the Merseyside club with a respectable bid.

Elsewhere, Football Italia links Arsenal with a move for Fiorentina schemer Riccardo Montolivo.  The report suggests that Arsenal would face strong competition from Bayern Munich.

Montolivo would be an excellent purchase.  An experienced international, the Italian is a highly creative presence in the midfield.

Blessed with a varied passing range and outstanding instincts, Montolivo would help the current Arsenal midfield to unlock resolute defenses.

Montolivo has only one year left on his existing deal with Fiorentina and the Serie A side are loathed to lose him for nothing next summer.

Yesterday's match proved that for all their hard work and determination, Arsenal are lacking the technical invention to create enough goalscoring opportunities to finish teams off.

Arsene Wenger must act quickly to rectify what is fast becoming his team's biggest failing.

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