Arsenal transfer news – The hope of Bacary Sagna remaining at the Emirates next season is fading rapidly with rumours circling of the talismanic right back rejecting multiple contract offers from Arsenal and set for Manchester City.
Recent reports claim that newly crowned Premier League champions Man City have entered the race for the Frenchman’s signature, with speculations of a £100,000+ a week contract being put on the table.
Arsenal fans were in jovial spirits after the club won its first trophy in 9 years on Saturday, defeating Hull in the F.A. Cup final. Celebrations could be soured by the prospect of losing Sagna, who played a big part in that win and was instrumental in securing Champion’s League football for the North London club next season.
We have compiled a list of potential replacements Wenger could sign to soften the blow of losing the longest serving player in the current Arsenal squad.
Serge Aurier (Toulouse)
The 21 year old Ivorian is quick, strong and versatile and judging by his activity on social media, is an avid Arsenal supporter. Sagna is extremely solid defensively, he is often criticised for the lack of options he provides going forward. Aurier is more technically proficient and poses a greater attacking threat. He has scored six goals and made six assists in Ligue 1 this season in comparison to Sagna’s goal and two assists in the Premier League this season.
Another benefit of having Sagna is his ability to play at centre back, a position where Arsenal lacks depth. Aurier has played in central defence for Toulouse before, albeit in a 3-5-2 formation. The dynamic defender would be able to provide cover for Mertesacker and Koscielny should Arsenal sign him.
Seamus Coleman (Everton)
The Irish international has had a remarkable season at Everton. The Donegal native’s outstanding performances in the league earned him a place on the PFA Team of the Year. Coleman is gifted both defensively and going forward having scored six goals and making two assists in the league this season. Everton’s Player of the Season’s talents are well known though which means that Arsene Wenger will have to splash the cash if he is to acquire his services next season.
Lukasz Piszczek (Borussia Dortmund)
Dortmund is a club that continues to produce world class players but they lack the financial backing to keep their superstars. Robert Lewandowski will be joining Mario Gotze, Nuri Sahin and Shinji Kagawa in the list of marquee players to leave the Bundesliga side for greener pastures when he makes the switch to Bayern Munich this year. Lukasz Piszczek could be the next star to exit the club should Arsenal make a substantial bid.
The Polish right back is vastly experienced and has Champion’s League Runners-up medal under his belt. He is among the best defensive right backs in Europe but still has the pace to cause problems in attack. His playing style is similar to Sagna’s but he is two years the Frenchman’s junior. However, Piszczek’s contract doesn’t expire until 2017 which means Dortmund are likely to set a high asking price.
Micah Richards (Man City)
The English right back has spent the entirety of his senior career at Man City. His career has stalled at the Etihad arena thanks to the consistency of Pablo Zabaleta. Richards has found himself out of favour with Manuel Pellegrini and as a result has only togged out for the Citizens twice in the league this season. The two-time PFA Young Player of the Year nominee is a defensive powerhouse and might find a new home in Arsenal, a club he has been linked with in the past.
Calum Chambers (Southampton)
The 19 year old broke through to the Southampton first team this year, making 21 appearances for the Saints. Chambers can play both on both the left and right side of the defence and has the technical ability and pace to pose a threat as a winger. While the youngster is clearly talented, he is also very inexperienced which means he is an unlikely immediate replacement for Sagna. This is especially true considering Carl Jenkinson’s patchy form this season, which suggests that he too is not yet ready to be a regular starter for the Gunners. Arsenal are likely to sign a proven right back although Chambers remains a longshot to join the Londoners this summer.