Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Arsenal Transfer News: Gunners Sign Carl Jenkinson; Gael Clichy Set to Depart Gunners?

Though it has not been officially confirmed on the Arsenal website, it is almost a certainty that youngster Carl Jenkinson has been signed by Arsenal. The Finnish FA has confirmed the news and it is speculated that the Gunners paid a compensation of £1million to Charlton since the player is less than 24. He had rejected the offer of a new contract at Charlton and has been snapped up by Arsene Wenger as his first signing of what is expected to be a busy summer at the Emirates.

The predominantly right footed player has featured mostly as a left back for Charlton though according to the esteemed Young Guns blog, he can play anywhere along the backline or even in midfield. Jenkinson is a signing for the future and though he has played as a left back for Charlton, Wenger could use him as a back-up for Bacary Sagna as well.

The 19-year-old is said to have good potential and if not loaned out, he will be used by Arsene Wenger in the league cup. However, it is likely that the Frenchman would loan the youngster to provide him with more opportunities to develop into a quality player. The successful loan spells of some Arsenal players like Ryo Miyaichi, Kyle Bartley and Jack Wilshere could persuade the Arsenal manager to loan the young defender, who is eligible to represent England and Switzerland.

Jenkinson is the first signing for Arsenal in the summer who had been linked with the young defender for the last couple of months but he is expected to be followed by some other youngsters as well as experienced players. Arsenal have been linked with some other youngsters including the likes of Jon Toral and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and also some experienced players like Scott Parker and Christopher Samba.

Arsene Wenger has already confirmed that he will be active in the transfer market and it is expected that there will be some departures this season. Wenger has made it clear that he will not let any player to run down his contract like Mathieu Flamini and that he will sell any player who does not wish to sign a new contract. While Samir Nasri is still expected to pen a new deal to stay at the Emirates, it is increasingly looking likely that Clichy will depart Arsenal to sign for a new club in the summer.

After a long association with the Gunners, Gael Clichy is reportedly not happy with the lack of trophies this season and with him being inconsistent this season, Wenger could sell the French International to generate money for new signings. Kieran Gibbs is a youngster who has immense potential but he does not look ready to be a part of the first team on a regular basis and also, his injuries are a worry for the Gunners.

Clichy had been linked with Barcelona and Real Madrid in the past but Inter Milan and Bayern Munich are the front-runners according to various websites. Though Clichy has been prone to errors this season, he is still regarded as one of the better left backs in the world and Inter Milan are apparently the favourites to sign the left back.

With Arsenal enduring a six year trophy drought, Arsene Wenger will look to sign a left back and cannot depend on youngsters Kieran Gibbs and Carl Jenkinson to provide solidity in defence. Fabio Coentrao has been impressive for Benefica and for the Portugal National team and is reportedly a target for Real Madrid and Bayern Munich.

If Real Madrid do sign Coentrao, Wenger could make an approach for one of Real's left backs, Alvaro Arbeloa and Marcelo. Arsenal have been linked with a move to sign Everton's Leighton Baines who has had a great season this year. The England International has a lot of Premiership experience and has great crossing ability which is one of the main reasons why he has 11 assists in the league.

Wenger has some big decisions to make in the summer regarding the players whom he can sign for the Gunners and also on the future of several Arsenal players including the likes of Andrei Arshavin and Nicklas Bendtner. The Arsenal supporters have been frustrated with the lack of trophies and the cheap signings in the last few years and if Clichy does go, Wenger will have to replace the defender with an established player because mistakes by youngsters could prove to be costly in the context of a title race.

Carl Jenkinson is another of Wenger's investment in quality young players and though Wenger could sign more youngsters in the transfer window, Arsenal supporters will hope that the Frenchman will sign more experienced players to cope with the expected departures of Clichy and a few others and also provide quality depth, which can help the Gunners end their trophy drought.

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