Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Would Serge Aurier, Cesc Fabregas and Loic Remy win us the Barclays Premier League?

The Cesc rumours hotted up on the 31st. Sky Sports, the only source I trust, reported that Fabregas has been made available, and that he'd prefer a return to the Premier League. Even though he's not who we really need right now, only a fool would turn their back on a player like Fabregas.

Also, what went under the radar was an agreement with QPR for Remy, which was apparently done in March. Now, I've already said that the notion of satisfying ourselves with a decent striker, rather than a world-class one is false. But hey, I'm not complaining much. Having Giroud and Remy is tons better than Giroud and Bendtner. I always expected Wenger to buy a crap striker anyway, it's good to see that's not happening.

It also seems like the Serge Aurier deal is done. Some guy took a selfie with Aurier, which he retweeted. Aurier told him he'll be joining us for the next season. And even though his stats are mighty impressive, I'm firmly reserving judgement on this one. It really looks like we've found our right back, though.
Look, don't get me wrong. I think we'll sign Aurier and Remy, but I also think Fabregas will stay at Barcelona this summer. I don't fancy Wenger throwing £30m for sentimental purposes, nor do I think Fabregas would betray millions of Gooners and wreck his PR Image for Liverpool or Manchester United. Of course I'd want him, but mainly because I don't want him to be tempted by Liverpool and United. But if Wenger won't go for it, as seems increasingly likely, it ain't gonna happen.

Even so, let's assume that Arsenal manage to snare Fabregas, Aurier and Remy in this window as their high-profile signings, not to mention add depth in a backup keeper and/or a fourth-choice centre back. Would that win us the Premier League title?

It would get us a lot closer, no question. Our team would be well-equipped to finish above Liverpool and United. With some luck, we may also overhaul Chelsea.

But Manchester City? Nah, it's not happening.

To overhaul City as the best team in England, what we need is an explosive left winger. Santi Cazorla and Podolski are not natural wingers. They become average and inconsistent when pushed to the flanks.

We need pace. Assuming that we buy Fabregas, him and Ozil would want an outlet to spring their passes to. We can't be too reliant on Walcott. Remy, assuming we buy him too, would be a great start. But I feel we'd need one more fast player to get us over the line.

If this were FIFA 14, I'd hope for Di Maria. Realistically, though, Carlos Vela would be a clever buy. He's quick, he's cheap, he'd come if promised a bigger role, and he'd meet some of his old friends here.

Imagine a team with Ozil and Fabregas having Remy, Vela, Walcott and Ramsey to satisfy their creative hunger. If we have two prolific wingers on either side, the striker needn't be world-class. It's a philosophy that I rate higher than possession football.

Real Madrid, with Ronaldo and Bale on the flanks, made Benzema look good. Bayern Munich under Heynecks did the same with Mandzukic. They'll be a terrifying team with Lewandowski next season, come to think of it.

Walcott and Oxlade would be superb options on the right. Vela and Podolski would cause trouble on the left. Remy can match their speed and finish chances convincingly, while Giroud would have more chances to pivot the ball to.

With Rosicky's ageing legs, Ozil and Cazorla would be terrific options to play 'in the hole' for the future. Ramsey and Wilshere would play in central midfield, while Fabregas could play in both positions.

With Wenger committing for another three seasons, I know we're going to see the same failure when it matters. But every title contending team have their baggage, and I'm hoping that purchases of Fabregas, Aurier, Remy and a left winger will cover Arsenal's baggage, that is Arsene Wenger. It is possible to win the league under Wenger, but it depends on our rivals' slip-ups.

Wenger's certain to buy a goalkeeper, a striker and a right back, simply to fill up the numbers. I don't fancy him buying anything more than that, unless he's under severe pressure on deadline day. Calls for a DM could go completely unnoticed this summer, which is why the opinion that spending £30m on Fabregas would hinder our chances of buying a Javi Martinez is nonsense.

Better buy Fabregas than no midfielder at all, right?

-Santi (Follow me on Twitter @ArsenalBlogz)