With the signing of Nuri Sahin expected to go through this week, the only position that may require strengthening is defensive midfield. It seems that Arsene’s preferred target Yann M’Vila is far from a deal, so maybe he should look closer to home.
Look no further than TuttomercatoWeb and Newcastle’s Cheick Tiote. The Ivorian has become a fan’s favourite at St. James Park since his £3.5 million move from FC Twente, establishing himself as a first-team regular. His combative style has won many plaudits as has his willingness to always try the spectacular. Tiote is as tough as they come and his short stature makes his difficult to shrug off the ball. Though sometimes rash with his challenges, he may be the perfect foil for the attacking flair the rest of the Arsenal midfield boast. A natural ball winner, Tiote will happily sit back, allowing the likes of Arteta and Cazorla play their natural game.
Even Newcastle manager Alan Pardew knows that some of his best stars may be the subject of interest from other clubs. Pardew has said that the club will have to be on their guard if a significant offer comes in, knowing that if anyone leaves they will need replacing.
But this is all speculation at the moment. There has been no indication from the play himself that he wishes to move on. After a successful season last year, Tiote may be relishing the prospect of another season alongside the likes of Cabaye and Ben Arfa. Another important factor would be the price. Given the current market conditions, Newcastle will only consider a significant offer, perhaps £20 million plus, for someone as integral as Tiote.
Only time will tell whether the move is likely, but Arsenal fans are certainly getting excited about the prospect of having such a talented player applying his trade at the Emirates.