Real Madrid’s Loss Is Arsenal’s Gain

After several months of inactivity on the transfer front, with the exception of the free transfer signings of Sanogo and Flamini, Arsenal fans finally had a marquee signing to cheer about, and it did come quite out of the blue.

It wasn’t until reports surfaced that Mesut Ozil was negotiating personal terms with the Gunners that anyone really suspected that the Real Madrid man was actually on the verge of leaving La Liga to join the Premier League. A few hours later and the news was made official that a £42m bid had been accepted, both parties and player were happy with the terms and the move was complete. 

Arsenal have smashed their transfer record quite considerably with this buy, which was previously held by Andrey Arshavin after his £15m move from Zenit. However, for a 24-year-old German international with his best years ahead of him, this seems like a fair price considering some of the figures that have been spent by other rival clubs this summer. As one newspaper ironically put it; ‘Arsenal signing only worth half a Bale.’ In reality, the figures do suggest that Ozil is regarded by the men at Real as only half the player of the new world transfer record Welshman, but he is certainly not a poor equivalent.

Real Madrid fans were understandably excited by the news that Bale was on the verge of completing his move to the club on the 1 September, but strong concern was building that Ozil might be the player sacrificed in order to generate some much needed funds for the move. Many fans bombarded online polls and websites declaring the need to keep the playmaker, as he is held in such high regard by them after three relatively successful years in the capital.

In his debut season he scored six goals and managed 17 assists in the league. The 2011/2012 campaign saw 4 league goals and another 17 assists, whilst last year he found the back of the net 9 times and achieved 13 assists. A return of 19 goals and 47 assists in three years is an impressive return and Cristiano Ronaldo was one of the first players to speak about his unhappiness at the transfer; no-one has provided more assists for the Portuguese star than Ozil and he is surely concerned that his main provider has now left the club. However, Olivier Giroud and the rest of the Arsenal attackers must be delighted that they can look forward to finishing off chances created by the playmaker.

If Arsenal continue to use a 4-2-3-1 formation then it would seem likely that they will use the following line up:

                          Giroud

               Ozil     Cazorla     Walcott

                  Arteta     Wilshere

Gibbs     Koscielny     Mertesacker     Sagna

                         Szczesny

Certainly the attacking part of the side looks strong, although I still believe that further reinforcement is necessary in the defence if Wenger harbours serious title aspirations. After the derby win over Tottenham, and the signing of Ozil, fans certainly have reason to be optimistic about the future.

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