Arsenal FC: How Mikel Arteta and 4 Other New Signings Will Turn Gunners Around
Many people have been very critical of Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger over the transfer window for good reason. Arsenal lost some of their best players to other clubs, and during the transfer window, Wenger didn't seem to go after some of the best players—even though he had the money to do it.
After an embarrassing 8-2 loss to Manchester United, Arsenal is going to have to find a way to turn their club around and score goals if they want to be on top at the end of the season.
Mikel Arteta is going to have to replace Cesc Fabregas if Arsenal want a chance at doing well this season. Arteta is one of the top prospects Arsenal got this season, but many feel there were younger and just as skilled players as Arteta.
Arteta should add some much-needed spark to Arsenal's midfield. Wenger saved his job with this transfer, and Arteta has been moving up the Premier League over the years. He is known for his ball skills and his role on set pieces.
Arteta is no Fabregas, but he should be a key player for Arsenal, a team that has been struggling this season.
Wenger really looked to bolster his defense this season. With the addition of Per Mertesacker and Andre Santos, Arsenal's backfield will be very tough. The Brazilian Santos adds some youth to Arsenal and should be a key player in the future for the Gunners.
Santos is likely to replace Gael Clichy after his departure to Man City. Santos has the ability to defend and has no problem moving up in an attack, either. He is fast and strong with a lot of stamina, which makes him a modern-day defender who should help Arsenal this season.
Manager Arsene Wenger had this to say about Santos: "He has experience in the Champions League and for Brazil and has proved he can deliver at the highest level. We welcome Santos to the Club and look forward to him having a big impact for us."
Standing at 6'6", Per Mertesacker will be a towering defender for Arsenal. Wenger has been a long-time admirer of Mertesacker. The 26-year-old has top-level experience and enormous potential. Mertesacker could be the key to stabilizing the Gunners' shaky defense.
Mertesacker will be key in set pieces such as corners and free kicks, where Arsenal has previously been weak.
Mertesacker's weakness comes in the form of keeping pace. This is one of the only problems Gunner fans will find. The Premier League could expose this weakness, as the improved players on most teams will bring up the tempo.
Look for Mertesacker to have a solid year with the Gunners, which should improve the Arsenal backs.
Gervinho is Arsenal's solution to their attacking problem. He will answer the problem Arsenal faced last year when they were struggling to find goals toward the end of the season. Looking at Gervinho's stats from last season, they show he takes around 2.2 shots per game, which is more then any other player on Arsenal with the exception of Robin van Persie.
Gervinho has played well in Arsenal's few games where it looked like they were struggling as a team. He is a very direct player and is not scared to attack defenders. He is a very skilled dribbler, and he is hard to push off a ball, which will be crucial against aggressive defenders within the Premier League.
Gervinho's weakness is that he does not play well away, and he is not a very physical player. If he can become more consistent away, the physical aspect will not be as worrisome.
Park Chu Young
Park Chu Young has made a good impression within the soccer community. Now, he looks to play in one of the most revered leagues in the world on a top club.
Park is coming in as a midfielder. He led Monaco to be runners-up in the 2009 Coupe de France and hit 25 goals in his 91 games for the club.
Park is very quick and possesses the ability to outrun the speediest defenders, which makes him dangerous in long-ball situations. He also is very good at determining what to do in dead-ball situations.
His weakness are consistency. If Park can find some consistency, he will be a solid midfielder. He also needs to improve himself in one-on-one situations, which will only make his speed more dangerous.
Former Monaco coach Guy Lacombe had this to say about Park: "He knows that he must always be available. He is also remarkably strong in the air, despite his average size. He has very good timing."
Park has proved he can lead in strong leagues, but his ultimate test will come in the form of the Premier League this season with Arsenal.