Emirates boss ready to splash the cash for Stamford Bridge contract rebel, Goodison Park defender, Craven Cottage veteran and unknown Ligue 1 defender.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger, criticised by fans after his young side failed to win a trophy since 2005, is to splash out £30million on building a squad to end the drought.
Wenger will make the club’s biggest impact on the summer transfer market for more than a decade, with Everton defender Phil Jagielka the latest target, along with Chelsea’s England midfielder Joe Cole, Fulham goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer and Lorient defender Laurent Koscielny.
Wenger is finally ready to make major signings after almost 10 years of being constrained by the club’s move to the Emirates Stadium.
And Everton centre-half Jagielka, controversially left out of Fabio Capello’s 30-man preparation squad for the World Cup finals, is the latest player to be targeted by the Frenchman, although Everton manager David Moyes will fight to keep the 27-year-old defender at Goodison Park.
But Arsenal now appear to be confident of adding Cole and Schwarzer to the squad after the World Cup finals, even though negotiations with Cole’s representatives have yet to reach a conclusion.
Fulham have rejected an initial inquiry for Schwarzer, but the Australian goalkeeper has only one year left on his contract at Craven Cottage and, at the age of 37, he will want to seize his last chance to play Champions League football.
Arsenal remain in talks for centre-half Koscielny but, with William Gallas out of contract and leaving the club, they are committed to signing another experienced Premier League defender.
Jagielka is their first choice and Wenger has been cleared to spend, with around £30m at his disposal plus any more he receives if Cesc Fabregas leaves for Barcelona. (Daily Mail)
So there you have it. The Daily Mail draws up a list of players that Arsene Wenger may indeed make a move for, but are they all worthy of an Emirates move?
Joe Cole is a player of real talent who perhaps should have played against the United States last night and will surely figure in Fabio Capello’s next starting eleven. Injuries set back his Chelsea career and Ancelotti’s arrival was the attacking midfielder’s Stamford Bridge death knell. There is no doubt though that the former West Ham man could do a good job at the north London club and given that he would cost nothing its a deal Wenger would love to do. Manchester United may well beat the Gunners to the punch though.
Mark Schwarzer has had a great season but he is 37 and even in goalkeeper years that is very nearly over the hill. Perhaps Arsenal only need a solution for one season with the likes of Vito Mannone and Wojciech Szcz?sny coming along nicely. Fulham don’t want to sell but if the Australian forces a move I don’t see Roy Hodgson being the type of manager to waste his time trying to keep an unhappy player at the club.
Phil Jagielka could be a harder player to snare though. David Moyes has had enough of seeing his top talent leave and will dig his heels in if the north London side does indeed attempt to lure the solid centre back away from Goodison Park. The 27 year old is however in many ways an ideal Gunners signing as Wenger looks to fresh defensive options as Gallas heads for the exit.
This leaves us with the relative unknown Lorient man Laurent Koscielny who represents the kind of player Wenger is known for buying and then making into household names, however such is the urgency of the recovery needed after five long years without a trophy, that Arsene may feel that he is better off spending that bit more to land an established name or two.