The Arsenal fans in the Transfer Tavern are feeling apprehensive about the post-Wenger era which looms on the horizon and they are hoping the imminent change will instigate an improvement in the club’s fortunes.
Arsenal Football Club are set to wave goodbye to a true legend of the Premier League this summer and begin a new chapter without the iconic Frenchman. That change will clearly represent the major upheaval for the North-London side this summer, but they will also need to improve their level of talent within the squad in order to challenge for the top-four once again next season.
Arsene Wenger was busy in the January window altering his attacking options during a hectic month for the club. The Gunners have plenty of options in forward positions right now, so whoever takes over from Wenger in the summer would be wise to focus on improving the club’s central-midfield and defensive options.
Laurent Koscielny has been a stalwart player for the club since he joined from Ligue 1 outfit Lorient in 2010, and he will forever be held in high-regard by the supporters who value his contribution above that of almost any other player within their ranks. However, the French international is set to turn 33 in September this year, so time is running out for him to continue his form at the highest reaches of the game.
With that to consider, Arsenal should be in the market for a long-term replacement this summer, and recent reports from The Sun suggest Manchester City’s John Stones will be available to sign during the transfer window. The report claims that Guardiola has not seen enough of an improvement within his performances to justify keeping him at the club beyond the end of the season, and that his career would best be served away from the Etihad Stadium.
If that proves to be the case then Arsenal would be foolish not to bring him to the Emirates Stadium this summer as he represents an ideal long-term replacement for Koscielny. Stones’ natural instinct to play out from the back perfectly matches Arsenal’s footballing philosophy, and the fact he has spent two seasons learning from one of the pioneers of modern possession-based football in Pep Guardiola will certainly aid him throughout his future career.
Stones – who recently won his first Premier League medal with the Citizens – may not be the quickest on the ground, but his intelligent positional play and ability to anticipate the game make him an excellent candidate to succeed Koscielny at Arsenal, so the club should do everything they can to sign him from Man City this summer should he become available for a transfer.
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