As the transfer window opens and the conveyor belt of new signings starts to pick up the pace, let’s look at five Arsenal could make to excite fans this summer.
The appointment of former PSG manager Unai Emery signals a new era at the Emirates following Arsene Wenger’s 22 year reign which brought about three Premier League titles and seven FA Cup successes, after months, even years, of speculation regarding his future.
Arsenal’s new boss faces a tough challenge rebuilding the club into genuine top-flight contenders again, and recruitment over the summer will not be easy following the Gunner’s back-to-back failure to secure Champions League football – an incredible statistic given Wenger guided his troops into Europe’s premier tournament for 20 straight campaigns prior.
These derisory finishes of fifth and sixth in the last two seasons intimate that a major overhaul is required if Arsenal are to revisit their glory days under Wenger, culminating in the stunning ‘invincible’ season of 2003/04.
Emery is renowned for his discipline, desire, implementing a high-pressing scheme and vigorous intensity. With this anticipated change in approach, Arsenal could once again be a force to be reckoned with.
Aside from this, positive activity during the transfer window will also be pivotal. If the former Sevilla boss can entice these five players to his future plans, then Arsenal fans have good reason to be riding a new wave of optimism.
On Tuesday, Arsenal announced the signing of 34-year-old Stephan Lichtsteiner. Lichtsteiner is a serial winner, and became a free agent when his seven-year spell with the Old Lady came to an end this summer.
Dynamic, versatile and blessed with incredible stamina, the Swiss international is capable of playing anywhere along the right flank. Since joining Juventus in 2011, Lichtsteiner has won fourteen honours, and his winning-mentality will make him a fantastic addition to both Arsenal and the Premier League.
Petr Cech’s heyday has been and gone. Last season, the 36-year-old made more errors leading to goals than any other goalkeeper in Europe. Leno has been first-choice between the sticks at Bayer Leverkusen for seven years and has established himself as one of the best goalkeepers in Germany.
He would bring calm and stability to a shaky backline – furthermore, the German contingent at the Emirates would make him feel at home instantly.
The Napoli star is reportedly also attracting interest from Liverpool and Chelsea after another impressive campaign in Serie A in which his side nearly toppled Juventus to win the Italian title.
The Senegalese centre-back possesses excellent physical attributes and his rock-like presence would make him an ideal candidate for Emery to structure his new-look defence around.
Despite only turning 22 last month, Freiberg defender Soyuncu has already made over 50 Bundesliga appearances and is a natural leader. Arsenal have had a knack of developing youngsters over the years and his humble background means Arsenal would be signing a consummate professional with outstanding potential.
The in-demand Monaco winger pulled the plug on a move to the Emirates in the dying stages of last summer’s transfer window, but Arsenal would be foolish not to give Lemar a second chance at a switch to England’s top division.
The 22-year-old registered seven assists in Ligue 1 last term and would add real pace, skill, and dynamism to either flank. Lemar would give Emery options and bring genuine quality.