The box to box center midfielder has had some serious links to an Arsenal transfer the last few weeks. Khedira, a German International who tore his ACL this past November, recovered just in time for the World Cup. He lead a star studded German midfield to their first World Cup final win since 1990. But during the warm-up, Khedira suffered a calf injury that sidelined him from the final, otherwise having a very good tournament for the German National Team.
Arsenal has a number of center midfielders that fit in with their formation very well, yet it seems every season a few of them fall to injury and it leaves the Gunners midfield very vulnerable. Mikel Arteta, the acting captain of the team and also their midfield is getting up in age, and has shown that he struggles against stronger teams. The likes of Jack Wilshere and Aaron Ramsey provide youthful promise but still lack in experience, on top of being very injury prone. Wenger has a number of other players that he can rotate into that center defensive midfield role such as Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, and Kim Kallstrom. But, bringing in a player like Khedira could do wonders for this Arsenal team that has struggled to finish anywhere but the worst of the best teams.
Their consistent fourth place finishes have been enough to earn a spot in the Champions League, but their loyal fans are beginning to get a little fed up with Wenger’s hesitation on bringing in impact players. The likeliness that this transfer goes through is really up in the air at the moment, a fee has been agreed upon amongst the two teams in the £20 million range, but personal terms seem to be stalling the deal.
Angel Di Maria
The Argentinian International has been in the spotlight lately for a big money move to French powerhouse Paris Saint-Germain. PSG was recently hit with a large fine of €60 million for their actions in the transfer market last season. UEFA stated that the club had agreed to limit their spending for this transfer market but have already made moves to make Brazilian David Luiz the highest paid defender in the world, beating his Brazilian teammate and now club mate Thiago Silva for that title.
Now the club is on the hunt to sign Real Madrid star Angel Di Maria, reports state that Real Madrid would accept a bid in the area of €60 million for Di Maria. PSG is trying not to spend too much money this summer; they were already pushing it by signing Luiz for so much.
Madrid is looking to sell a few players in hopes of evening out their big money signing in the form of James Rodriguez (covered below). Selling Di Maria would make the most sense as the two play the same position and Di Maria would bring in the most money. With the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Edinson Cavani, Ezequiel Lavezzi, and Lucas already lined up as front men, Di Maria would most likely slide into the midfield and add an amazing on ball presence and creativity that can free up room for PSG’s strike force. I’d say the likeliness of Di Maria leaving this summer is very strong, yet whether PSG is going to be the team to sign him is still an ongoing scene.
This Colombian superstar has now joined the illustrious Real Madrid team for a fee of $108 million. Real Madrid is coming off a Champions League trophy and are wasting no time on improving their team. James was the standout player of this year’s World Cup leading his Colombian team to their first semi-final appearance, winning the golden boot for most goals scored and best goal for his volley against Uruguay
It was just last summer the Monaco signed Rodriguez from Porto for £35million, and the French team was very reluctant to let their star midfielder go to Real. They slapped an insane price tag on James’s contract but it wasn’t enough to keep him away from his dream in Madrid. The £226 million spent on Ronaldo, Bale, and Rodriguez is more money spent just on those three players, than Ajax’s £183 million of transfer fees all time.
James will come into the team wearing the important number 10, and will hope to be the center of all play buildup, feeding Ronaldo and Bale on the wings and Benzema just in front of him. Real spent a lot of money on James, but if they deliver yet again this season, no one will be complaining.
The first Chilean soccer player to play at Barcelona has now moved his talents to North London, also becoming Arsenal’s first Chilean representative. There was a £35 million agreement that brought over the 25-year-old, Arsenal’s second big money signing in two years.
Sanchez was one of the standout players this past World Cup, leading his Chilean team to the Round of 16 before falling to hosts Brazil; Sanchez had two goals and an assist. Pep Guardiola signed Sanchez to Barcelona in the summer of 2011. In 2012-13 Barcelona went on to become La Liga Champions, and Guardiola was quoted saying this about Sanchez, “Alexis has stolen my heart, he’s a joy… he’s a very humble guy.” It’s not often that Pep speaks so highly of a player; but what can he bring to Arsenal?
Sanchez prefers being on the wing but doesn’t mind a more central role. Arsenal have recently lacked a true goal scorer and depth on the wing position, by bringing in Sanchez they now have both. Although Theo Walcott is their man for the outside right position, he is very injury prone and will be entering this campaign coming off of a grueling ACL injury. In the meantime Sanchez will play out wide but once the season is in full swing, expect Sanchez to play a more central role. If Wenger continues to use his 4-2-3-1 formation it would not come to me as a surprise if Sanchez took over as the main striker, but there’s also a possibility of adapting to a new formation that could see both Giroud and Sanchez up front. Sanchez is a very fast player and has plenty of flair, and creativity. He is only 5’6″ but is strong on the ball and will work hard on and off the ball. Arsenal are a pass first team, and Sanchez will adapt very quicly coming from a three year stint with one of the best passing teams in history.