Arsenal’s summer transfer window has been, by any fan’s standards, an active and exciting one.
We’ve signed players that address our pressing issues. We signed a goalkeeper (only heaven knows how much we needed it), a right-back, a centre-back and a Uruguayan warrior.
Finally, we buy a young and pretty darn decent goalkeeper in Bernd Leno. I’ve watched a few of his games and you can colour me impressed. Calm and composed with agility and sharp reflexes to match, the German is quite the steal for £19m and a major upgrade from our current two “shot stoppers”.
Let’s face it. Petr Cech is way past his prime. Now, he is just a fumbling goalie, who is unable to save 80% of the shots he faces and spends his free time uploading drum covers on YouTube, trying to realise his boyband dream from years back.
No disrespect to Cech but Arsenal have been dawdling on signing a proper keeper for too long and it is refreshing to see Unai Emery come in and immediately address the issue between the sticks.
Don’t even try and mention that Ospina was signed a couple of years ago. He epitomises rubbish goalkeeping if you are into that kind of thing.
Leno is only 26-years-young but has over 400 senior appearances under his belt. Our Colombian friend Ospina, on the other hand, might not even make that many appearances in his entire career. Last I heard, he is on his way to Boca Juniors.
Again, I mean no disrespect, just wholesome banter for the soul.
Leno will certainly be fighting for his place as Arsenal’s No. 1, and I am hoping he lives up to his immense talent because as I see it, this baby-faced German is the bedrock of this team for many years to come.
He might even become as legendary as Seaman or Lehmann. You heard it here first.
The signing I am least excited about, especially considering the fact that Harry Kane absolutely mugged this big Greek off during Spurs’ Champions League game against Borussia Dortmund last season.
Also, I’m not particularly thrilled with Arsenal signing Sokratis because his inclusion means the club now has SIX senior centre-backs, including Laurent Koscielny, Shkodran Mustafi, Calum Chambers, Konstantinos Mavropanos and Rob Holding.
It’s not as if Sokratis is a young, talented chap. The man is 30 years old, for crying out loud.
Chambers, having just signed a new four-year deal, should be a starter. He has improved tremendously, is a lot less prone to mistakes like Mustafi, and has a handsome mug to boot.
Sokratis could be Koscielny’s replacement but I’d still choose the Frenchman over this bumbling Greek any day. Unfortunately, our captain attracts injury like women to Olivier Giroud and is entering the twilight of his career.
At least Emery is showing he’s not afraid to pump in cash where it really is needed, unlike his predecessor Wenger. I promise this piece isn’t to throw shade at Arsene.
But, then again, was another Greek centre-back with an unpronounceable family name really necessary?
Another oldie but this one is a goldie for sure.
At 34 years old, Lichtsteiner could be considered for retirement yet here he is in North London, and I couldn’t be happier.
He has proven time and time again why he is one of the world’s best right-backs, never mind his age. An uncompromising, powerful and aggressive defender, I am willing to bet Lichtsteiner’s performances could keep Hector Bellerin out of the starting eleven for at least the next two seasons.
It doesn’t hurt that the Swiss also makes some very decent marauding surges down the right-hand side to stretch the opposition and add a different offensive dimension.
Now that Arsenal has lost a capable leader in Per Mertesacker, Lichtsteiner would help fill that void, thanks to his vast experience.
Lichtsteiner is a pretty well-rounded player with statistics to back him up. As of the 2017/2018 season, his statistics, from both phases of the game over 90 minutes, are as follows: 3.24 headers won, 4.11 interceptions, 1.55 successful sliding tackles, 1.25 clearances, 2.72 accurate crosses, 2.01 dribbles, 2.08 progressive runs and completed 51.88 passes.
Can you believe he was free? I can’t. This is what I would call a steal of a deal.
I’ll admit I didn’t know too much about Torreira before the World Cup began. I had heard about him on a couple of occasions and read one article. That was it, though.
But, whatever I’d heard and read, all pointed to one thing: Torreira is bloody good.
What he lacks in height, he makes up for in the form of garra charrua. According to the man himself, garra charrua is a Uruguayan concept where, “We give all we have inside. We give all we have to our football, our jersey and our country. We do our best because every time we enter the pitch we represent our family and friends, the most important people for us.”
Torreira has barely begun life with the Gunners yet he’s already spouting some philosophy we sure could use. Garra charrua aside, the 22 year-old has bested Ronaldo in Russia, scored some serious blinders and completed a ridiculous 2188 passes in the whole of last season.
I can only imagine our midfield with Torreira in it and to say it is beautiful is a massive understatement.
The Uruguayan is like the love child of Sergio Busquets and Luis Suarez and maybe, Edinson Cavani. His intrinsic understanding of the tactical side of the game is akin to Busquets while his passion and tenacity is similar to that of Suarez and Cavani.
Pretty sure that Torreira doesn’t bite people, though.
Thank you, Emery, for actually signing some really decent people. I already love you more than I thought I could.
Would be nice if you could also bring Champions League football back to the Emirates!