Friday, December 24, 2010

Arsenal Transfer Prospects: Should Arsene Wenger target Ajax Duo Luis Suarez and Jan Vertonghen?

Arsene Wenger admitted recently that he would not spend outrageous money to acquire big name signings like some clubs which make huge losses. But he did give an indication that he will buy players if it is the right opportunity and can add to the quality of the team. The French tactician is desperate to end Arsenal's trophy drought and might spend in the January transfer window in order to strengthen his squad.

Arsenal have been linked with a number of players and they have been linked to a number of defenders and strikers while they have been hardly linked with midfielders, full backs or wingers. It does give an indication that these might be two areas which Wenger might address in January or in the summer. Ajax duo Luis Suarez and Jan Vertonghen have been linked with Arsenal in recent weeks but should Wenger target these two talented players?

1. Jan Vertonghen

Jan Vertonghen is an experienced defender at the age of 23 and is an integral member of the Ajax team. The Belgian defender has immense potential and has been excellent for the Dutch based club for the last few seasons. He is also the partner of Thomas Vermaelen for Belgium which could help them establish a formidable partnership in central defence.

Laurent Koscielny and Sebastien Squillaci have both made crucial errors and Vertonghen with his good aerial ability could be an important addition to the team. The Belgian defender is currently a leader in the defence of Ajax and at the age of 23, he could be a great defender for Arsenal in the years to come.

His versatility could also be a very important factor considering that Arsenal are likely to have a number of injuries over the course of the season. He can play as a Left Back or as a defensive midfielder if needed which is important considering Kieran Gibbs has been affected by a number of injuries and Alex Song does not have a proper back-up.

Vertonghen will be ineligible to play in the Champions League due to his involvement in the competition with Ajax but Arsenal should sign him for strengthening their squad for the rest of the competitions. He is valued to be around £10-12 million and Arsene Wenger should sign the youngster. In the summer, he could allow Sebastien Squillaci or Laurent Koscielny to depart and he would recoup around £8 million of the amount he spent on the Belgian.

2. Luis Suarez

Arsenal have also been linked with Ajax striker Luis Suarez who had a good World Cup and has also established himself as one of the best strikers in the world. He has scored over a 100 goals for the Dutch club and is considered to be an interesting prospect by many clubs in the world including top European clubs.

The prolific striker is said to be disappointed with the departure of former Ajax manager Martin Jol and could be interested in a move away. Ajax are also in financial crisis and if the right offer comes in for their captain, they might sanction the transfer. Arsenal will find it hard to beat the competition to sign Suarez but he might choose the club because of the chances he will get at the Emirates and also because it is a club which gives opportunities for youngsters to shine.

Nicklas Bendtner is said to be unhappy with the amount of time he gets for Arsenal and at the age of 22, he needs to be playing regularly. He is valued around £12 million and could be involved in a swap move with Suarez which could interest the Dutch club. Bendtner has not been prolific for the Gunners and could move away to maintain his place in the Denmark National team.

Arsenal would do well to invest the money they can obtain from the sale of Bendtner to sign a quality striker like Luis Suarez who is reported to be valued around £20 million. Ever since the departure of Thierry Henry, Arsenal have lacked a quality finisher who could score around 30 goals in a season consistently. Luis Suarez could be the striker who could score goals and lead them to many titles in the future.

However, it is a tough decision for Wenger considering he signed Chamakh only this year and the Moroccan International has done well while Robin van Persie is one of the senior members of the team and is an excellent striker. Also, Suarez is ineligible for the Champions League and should Van Persie or Chamakh be injured, there will be hardly any cover for the other striker.

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