Should Vermaelen Stay Or Go?

With the summer transfer window set to swing open in a couple of weeks, Arsenal are expected to be active with regards to new recruits but as they leave the front door open to new signings, they must keep an eye on the back door as some key players may just be eyeing the exit door. Fabianski, Sagna and Vermaelen. The former duo are out of contract at the end of the season and with them yet to agree an extension with the Gunners, they may just be walking away from the Emirates for free.

In Vermaelen’s case, he is still under contract but not for long. His current deal runs out next summer, though Wenger has shown the willingness to keep him longer than that, reports have it that Vermaelen might be eyeing the exit door no thanks to irregular run of first team football. The Belgian may be Arsenal’s captain but he has been forced to play back-up no thanks to the impregnably thriving partnership of Mertesacker and Koscielny.  He may be thinking why should he continue to languish on the bench at Arsenal when he can walk into the first team of another top club. Should this be the case, he may stall on a new deal with the hope that Arsenal will opt to cash on in the summer rather than lose him for nothing next summer.

This will certainly leave Wenger with a huge dilemma. Losing two key experienced members of his defence in the summer will be a big blow but what can he do? Here is my take.

It will be nice to keep Vermaelen but that is if he renews his contract but failure to do so before the end of the summer window will be a big risk. I don’t see him breaking the partnership of Mertesacker and Koscielny. Both are better than him on current form and look less error prone. Should he fail to do that, he will jump ship at the nearest opportunity. Next winter window, without an extended contract, his value will have hugely pummeled no thanks to short duration of his contract and next summer, he will be as free as a bird.

This is the time for Arsenal to cash in. He was bought for 8million Pounds, Wenger can recoup that money especially with Napoli, Barca and Bayern looking at strengthening their backline. With Napoli interested, we can always get good money no thanks to profligate Benitez.

The money realized from his sale can be used to land a young promising centre back who will be willing to bid his time on the bench. Arsenal shouldn’t be dipping hands into their purse to land a replacement, Vermaelen’s sale should be able to generate enough for that but the only way that can be ensured is if he is sold in the summer.