According to reports in talkSPORT, Arsenal are set to rival Everton in the race to sign England midfielder Gareth Barry. The Gunner are looking to add steel to their brittle midfield. A move for Barry might surprise a section of the fans after the Gunners decided against bringing back former midfielder and captain Cesc Fabregas.
I would say not re-signing Fabregas doesn’t mean Arsenal shouldn’t sign another midfielder. Barry and Fabregas aren’t the same kind of midfielder. Fabregas cannot do what Barry can but the Englishman can try his hands on what the Spaniard is famous for and even much more. Fabregas is an attacking midfielder while Barry is primarily a defensive midfielder but his versatility means he can also fill in at left-back, center back, attacking midfield and left wing. That amazing versatility can’t be ignored.
For those arguing that Arsenal should look for a younger player to replace Arteta and not an older player? I concur with them that Arsenal need a younger defensive midfielder like Morgan Schnerderlin but we can also make do with an experienced pair of legs Barry offers.
We have been complaining that Monreal isn’t a good enough back up for Gibbs but no decent left back would be willing to play back up to Gibbs. An experienced but old player like Barry would be more than willing to play back up for Gibbs besides filling in other areas.
Arteta is a box to box midfielder that has been forced to play the defensive midfield role but unfortunately, he isn’t hard enough and the Gunners end up been bullied against top and overtly physical side. Barry proved with his performances for Everton last season that he isn’t scared of getting involved in tackles. He wasn’t bullied against Chelsea, Manchester United and Liverpool. He might be older than Arteta but he is certainly an upgrade to him when tackling and adding steel to midfield is concerned.
Getting Barry would be akin to an exchange of some sort with City. Man City got Sagna from Arsenal for free and should we win the race for Barry, we will also be getting him for free. His personal terms is obviously cheaper than Sagna’s.
Which club does he choose between Arsenal and Everton? Guess he would settle for the team with Champions League football. That is one competition he never really played in and was one of the reasons why he wanted to leave Villa for Liverpool but ended up at City. Everton cannot offer him that but Arsenal can.