Arsenal Transfer Prospects: Bendtner or Benzema, Who Should Wenger Choose?

Callum D'SouzaSenior Writer IMay 25, 2011

LONDON, ENGLAND - MARCH 05:  Nicklas Bendtner of Arsenal shows his disappointment at the final whistle during the Barclays Premier League match between Arsenal and Sunderland at Emirates Stadium on March 5, 2011 in London, England.  (Photo by Paul Gilham/Getty Images)
Paul Gilham/Getty Images

The 2010/2011 English Premier League season officially concluded on Sunday with Sir Alex Ferguson's Sir Alex Ferguson's Manchester United securing their 19th triumph.

Although there is still a much anticipated UEFA Champions League Final to be performed in the coming days, World Football has largely turned their attention to the up coming Summer Transfer Window.

One side always in the thick of the action, although little actually materializes, is North London giants Arsenal.

After a horrific demise in which the Carling Cup Final defeat to Birmingham City at the end of February was the catalyst, Arsene Wenger's men endured a horror period in which their promising season capitulated.

For the first half of the campaign, it appeared that the Gunner's were capable of eroding their notorious five year trophy drought; however, the last two and a half months exposed the significant lack of depth and psychological inability.

As Arsenal ended the season in fourth, ensuring UEFA Champions League Group Stage qualification is not certain, after enjoying most of the season beside Manchester United atop the table, the need for success and dominance has intensified resulting in Arsene Wenger vowing to implement changes into his youthful squad.

Already numerous rumours have materialized linking quality, high calibre players to the Gunners but this is a given every transfer window. However, one player who appears heavily linked with a move to the Emirates is Real Madrid sharp shooter Karim Benzema.

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The Frenchman desires a move away from the Bernebeau despite a strong season in which the 23 year old amassed 26 goals in 48 appearances for the Spanish giants.

However it appears the deal, which could cost as little as £7 million to as much as £15 million for Wenger, will only emerge should disgruntled striker Nicklas Bendtner depart. The Danish forward has endured a frustrating season in 2010/2011 with injuries and the stunning form of Robin van Persie, who has 18 goals in 17 games since the start of the New Year, restricting the 23 year old to a mere 14 starts this season. Though Bendtner has still manage to secure 12 goals.

The Denmark international has expressed his desire to leave London if opportunities continue to diminish. Wenger is rumoured to be only willing to let Bendtner depart should sides offer more than £12 million.

A number of sides in both the English Premier League, Germany and Italy are all eager to secure the imposing strikers services.

There is no denying Bendtner's talent, prior to the season the former FC Copenhagen youth had 15 goals in 2008/2009 and 12 goals last season in which Bendtner was arguably one of the stand out players of the season. Although Benzema's introduction would more than mitigate the loss, who should Wenger choose.

If Bendtner is desiring a move then Wenger should and will not keep the tall Dane. However, at 6'3", the 23 year old is one of the few imposing targets and with the Arsenal attack frequently utilizing crosses from the full backs, the Dane's departure restricts Arsenal aerially.

Furthermore Wenger to often chose to impact Bendtner from the wing during substitution appearances which does not suit the tall striker. If the French tactician begins to utilize the 4-4-2 formation, which was evident in Arsenal's final game against Fulham, it suits Bendtner to a more beneficial degree allowing the talented Denmark international to become more of a threat.

However Benzema is also a high calibre prospect. The signature of the former Lyon striker would give Arsenal a strong increase in speed and power to the front line.

The 23 year old can play all across the forward ranks and is an efficient goal scorer is still young.

Benzema has not looked completely settled since joining Madrid in 2009 and Wenger is a keen admirer of the French international who evokes the ability to thrive under the Arsenal style of play.

The striker is also close with a number of the French players on the Arsenal roster including Bacary Sagna, Samir Nasri and Abou Diaby, ensuring a smooth transition to England.

Both Bendtner and Benzema are prolific, powerful strikers but who should Wenger choose?