Transfer Talk: Central Defenders, Coutinho, Ozil to Join Kos in Exit?

For some, it was one step too far. Having gone on strike to force a move out of the club for free, Laurent Koscielny binned off his Arsenal shirt. The poor advice he was given in the first instance continued; he copped both barrels from Ian Wright, with Lee Dixon also chiming in:

There are ways to leave the club and this is a prime example of how not to do it. Alanis Morrisette may have had Kos in mind when she penned Ironic. It was certainly her type of ironic when some of the centre-backs staunchest defenders proved to be from the USA!USA!USA!; the very fans he screwed up and tossed in the bin by refusing to tour.

He did what he did; he bears the burden of his actions. That’s life, we move on. He’s yesterday’s man and for me joins a cast of thousands in being an ex-Arsenal player. I don’t forget the goals on the final day or at Wembley. However, he chose to pour a large bottle of Tippex over them by striking. I don’t respect his decision nor him for that action; it was greed, pure and simple. Modern football, eh?

Replacing him is the top priority. All the while this farce unfolded, Raul surely had a plan of whom they wanted to sign. Now’s the time to deliver. In the media, it’s a toss-up between Dayot Upamecano or Daniele Rugani; both are young and as with older players, have their faults. Both, depending on who you talk to, are potentially better than the world’s most expensive defender, Harry Maguire – how did that happen – or just an expensive Mustafi.

Rugani, we’re told, agreed on personal terms with Arsenal. Just Juventus agreeing to a two-year loan and then a £40m fee.

The Last Mecano Set I Had…

Upamecano is a different matter. Arsenal were quoted €70m, bid €60m so the negotiating lines weren’t that far apart. RB Leipzig then dropped the E-bomb; they want Emil Smith Rowe on a permanent deal. That is a game-changer.

A value of €30m is attached to the player but the money isn’t the point in this instance. Every player has their value at which at club will sell, even Lionel Messi. Smith Rowe is different; he’s ‘one of us’, an academy graduate upon whose shoulders great hopes are heaped.

The question then becomes a balancing act between the short and long-terms; the perennial battle in football. In this instance, the centre of our defence or a midfielder who is seen as a huge prospect.

Reality bites. We aren’t flush with funds and must sell to buy. Quickly. So, exchange deals suit our needs. In midfield, we are well-stocked, even if there is a queue of drivers waiting to take Xhaka and Elneny at the airport while Dani Ceballos is on loan.

The midfield stock isn’t as high as we think; Torreira, Guendouzi, Willock, Ozil, Mkhitaryan and Maitland-Niles. Two of those top the sales list so the question of selling Smith Rowe isn’t as straightforward as it looks Nonetheless, the question must be addressed. Are we to keep him?

That’s a big issue; the academy exists for this very reason: whether or not to keep one or all prodigious talents? He offers the potential for a buy-back clause – effectively a long loan period – as well as a percentage of future sales. In short, it’s our chance to put a club in our place over the barrel. It’s a tough decision but if we’re to become a modern club, these are the decisions to make.

Taxi for Mr Ozil…

According to previously unheard of sources on these shores, DC United is lining up Mesut Ozil to replace Wayne Rooney. As I mentioned on social media, there’s a strong chance it will happen if the MSL club feels the need to appease supporters. Is Rooney’s sale part of a ‘grand plan’? Buying Ozil would suggest it is.

For Arsenal, it is something of a blessing if true. A large chunk of the wage bill is freed up for starters. True, we lose a talented if largely inconsistent player but there is a bigger picture to see. Ivan put us over a barrel with disastrous contract management and Ozil didn’t release us. Hindsight is a wonderful thing but losing the German and Sanchez at the same time wasn’t such a bad idea after all.

His place in the squad is likely to go to Philippe Coutinho. Or not, depending upon whom you talk to. He’s been touted around the Premier League also-rans like a cheap perfume. United said no; if he goes to Tottenham, Erikssen is leaving, which leaves us.

Our priority is a centre-back. Financially, I won’t argue with that but if we’re prioritising deals on a time basis, why has a centre-back been left this late? Coutinho only works as a signing if Ozil is leaving, that’s for certain. So, watch this space, as they say.

Kieran Tierney is still on the radar, apparently, although short of daubing his face in blue paint, he’s not getting any freedom from Parkhead this summer in my view.

Finally, good luck to Carl Jenkinson who sped up the M1 to Nottingham Forest this morning. He lived the dream but ultimately, it didn’t work out. Now, Monsieur Koscielny, if you want to know about leaving a club with your dignity intact…

’til Tomorrow.

45 thoughts on “Transfer Talk: Central Defenders, Coutinho, Ozil to Join Kos in Exit?

  1. All the best to Mr Carl as he goes to Forest.
    Monsieur Koscielny, what were you thinking?
    In my neck of the woods in Nigeria, we say, you heaped up 200 ridges and scattered them all with your feet!

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  2. JG I see a time lag between Boom and a post comment, hmmmm.

    Be nice to get shot of Özil’s wages, but not sure we can get that lucky in this window.

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  3. YW:
    Morning my little rays of light.

    Michael

    Don’t forget, we’ve got until the end of this month to sell Ozil.

    Also Michael-you sound like Andy did yesterday!😂

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  4. Apparently we’ve told Everton £40m for Iwobi and Rugani’deal could be sorted if we loan for 1 year(not 2)with a compulsory purchase of about £27m at the end of the loan spell.

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  5. jonnygunner,

    On Rugani, I get that’s a good way to structure the deal for us, but if were in their shoes, why put the loan on the first year? If he’s getting sold compulsory to the deal today, why not just sell him now?

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  6. Afternoon,

    Got to respect Jenks, wasn’t really good enough but a Gooner through and through.

    We rejected £30m for Iwobi? Wow, hope they come back.

    I’m still a bit confused at why we would have been begging Kos to stay, but not considered a deal for Cahill – he is experienced and would’ve been cheap. By all means, buy another CB as well but at least get some cover in. With Saliba arriving next summer, a short term deal for Cahill would’ve made some sense.

    The clock is ticking, so we’ve got to hope the TWAT is on the case.

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  7. Wavey,

    My only problem with Cahill is that if we are going to play a high line, pairing him and Sokaritis would have worried me. I get Sokaritis once he actually turns and gets going, has plenty of pace but not the quickest.

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  8. Great stuff yogi.

    Amazing the things that can happen now that we have a better team running the football operations. Ozil to DC United and bring in coutinho would be brilliant.trading Smith-Rowe and some money for a potentially talented CB would be brilliant. Selling Iwobe for $30M would be brilliant. Go Josh Go Raul Go edu

    Good luck to Kos and Jenks.

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  9. C,

    I get that, but Kos staying would have been a potential liability even without the dispute given his ongoing injury problems. I would’ve avoided playing Sokratis and Cahill together if possible. An experienced CB as cover would have been a useful addition for the new season and wouldn’t have stopped us bringing in another player at the back.

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  10. Wavey,

    I agree, I though Kos was done 2 seasons ago but at the same time, Cahillas an experienced CB option for me was last resort. Sokaritis and Cahill together wouldn’t have worked. I do think though that a CB needs to be brought in and maybe we grab somebody on loan at this point with the thought of that Holding will be back fit this season and develop more for next, Saliba will have hopefully developed and we can bring in another CB next summer.

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  11. C,

    Good Luck to Welbeck, wasn’t our greatest player but never gave less than 100%. Rumour is we’re linked to David Luiz which would be an odd one (and unlikely as Chelsea wouldn’t be able to sign a replacement).

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  12. If Rugani comes, and reports say he has agreed terms with Arsenal, the only other CB move required would be Mustafi to someone. It doesn’t mean everything is fixed but there’s surely a limit to how much new blood you can integrate in one season.
    Iwobi for 30M vicinity also sounds good as I don’t see him getting much time for Arsenal now.

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  13. Tempting to take the money on Iwobi and buy Rugani outright. We have plenty of firepower and other youngsters coming through with enough promise.

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  14. I do wonder if money is being spent with the understanding that their are players such as Elneny, Mustafi, potentially even Xhaka and one of Sead or Nacho could still be sold given the rest of Europe is still open for business post PL window closing.

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  15. Good luck to Welbeck. He had a lot of power, pace and technical skill but he was never was able to turn his physical talents into end product. We have seen the same thing in dozens and dozens and dozens of our academy players. Either you are good at providing end product or you’re not. I don’t think you can teach end product and managers don’t have a magic wand that can develop players into stars. I hope Danny does well.

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  16. Lennon speaks about Tierney’s injury:

    “He’ll be fit in a week or two. I know there’s talk of him being out for another eight weeks, but that’s nonsense.”

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