Arsene’s preparing to replace half the team this summer

Let the exodus begin! A season without trophies can be a blessing in disguise if it shakes the Club out of its doldrums. And lets be honest, Arsenal needs some significant changes and added depth. The expected announcement of Merida’s move to Atletico Madrid launched the transfer ship, but it’s just the first of many that will see a new team arise out of this season’s failed expectations. This is great opportunity to infuse the team with new talent and balance. Forget who’s coming in, lets talk about who’s leaving.

I know who I want to leave (more on that in another post), but this post is about who will leave for sure. Some good, some bad, but all necessary. We’re talking about 6 players for sure out the door, but up to 11 could see the boot! Lets start from the top, er, back.

Our goalkeepers, not the greatest year, who can have faith when our goalkeepers terrified and punched our own defenders? Arsene held the line to keep his confidence, but Almunia is gone this summer. And although Arsene proclaims continued faith in Fabianksi, even that seems tenuous with two young talents in the pipeline. Should Arsene bring in a youngish keeper (like Neuer), don’t be surprised if Almunia is sold and Fabianski loaned out. Loss of one for sure, maybe two.

Moving up the field, Arsenal’s defense fell apart this season for lack of depth. So a revamp of the defensive line is a necessity. First, Gallas is gone. I think we all accept that. Second, Silvestre is out for obvious reasons as is Senderos. This means the central defense must be rebuilt from the ground up, even if Sol stays, Johann returns and Song is rotated back. Loss of three, maybe four.

Looking outside to our corners, the left side is covered by Clichy and the gang. But the right side is a little soft. Sagna has been making some odd sounds, which I understand given the apparent interest by Arsene in the Dutch kid Van Der Wiel. But the truth is, Van Der Wiel might be very necessary given the changes to the midfield. Loss of zero, but maybe one.

Prepare for a slightly new look midfield. This is more interesting when we look at who might be coming in, but keeping to today’s focus, lets talk about who’s out for sure.

First off, Merida is gone to Atletico Madrid. Second, don’t be surprised if Eastmond goes on loan. He needs more playing time. Going back to the defense a bit, Eboue has made some interesting sounds as of late, but he isn’t a starter in Arsene’s eyes. I think he’ll stay, but he might leave.  Loss of one, maybe three.

Finally, the forwards, sigh, have not done the business this year. Our dependence on RVP means we need another striker for depth. The rumblings are growing louder that Vela is out, maybe Eduardo as well. Arshavin seems to be agitating for change too. Walcott and Bendtner are safe, if only because who else would pay for them? Loss of one, maybe three.

So there you have it, 6 players out the door for sure, but worst case scenario kicks out 11 players! Forget purchasing depth, we have to replace players first. Some of these will be filled by players we already have in the youth system. But at least three new players will be imported -more on this in a later post. But one can see why Chamakh’s free transfer was so important to Arsene: he’s going to need all the cash he can get his hand on.

-the student

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