Arsenal are expected to be in the transfer market this summer looking for strikers and defensive midfielders but they might just have to add a right back to their shopping list no thanks to the imminent departure of incumbent right back Bacary Sagna who is out of contract in the summer and till now, he is yet to agree the new deal Arsenal offered him.
According to reports, he held talks with domestic rivals Manchester City though Sagna himself hasn’t ruled out the probability of staying at Arsenal. Hoping Sagna would stay and not shop for potential replacements would be akin to putting all one’s eggs in a basket and that is tomfoolery.
To this end, Arsenal are already shopping for replacements and according to reports, high on the list of potential replacements is Toulouse’s right back Serge Aurier. The youngster is visibly talented and highly rated, most importantly, he could be available for a fee within Arsenal’s financial purview. Certainly ticks all of Wenger’s boxes.
Guess talent isn’t all there is to consider, one thing that is important is the fact that he is an Ivorian and that means he would away for the AFCON tournament and that means missing as much 6 weeks of club football which would include Premier League and FA Cup. That could cost Arsenal dear in the new season. But at the same time, a 6 weeks absence isn’t good enough reason to throw away the chance of signing one of the brightest young full backs in Europe.
How then can Wenger balance things. Sign Aurier and also not be hugely affected when he goes for the 2015 Nations Cup? I believe the way out is for Wenger to sign two players capable of filling that role; Aurier and Richards. In the absence of Aurier, Richards can fill in whether it is at right back or centre back. Also, Arsenal could turn to French midfieder Mathieu Flamini. The former AC Milan man is one of the most versatile players in the current Arsenal team as he could play defensive midfield which is his natural position, left back, right back and even central defence.
Getting Aurier now is a no brainer but Wenger should have contingency plan for his absence during AFCON. If well planned, we won’t miss him during his international sojourn.