“How can you spend €150million and only bring in young players”
How do you say “I do not understand Arsenal’s transfer policy” without saying “I do not understand Arsenal’s transfer policy”. well Bacary Sagna has done just that with his recent comments.
Arsenal’s transfer policy has been clear and obvious to anyone with half a brain.
We are targetting younger players with experience.
I am really baffled as to how Sagna either does not understand that, or has decided to be criticial of it. It is almost TalkSport-esque. Making an outlandish statement just for attention.
Sagna needs to realise that there is a huge difference between buying YOUNG players and buying YOUTH players.
Back in the mid 00s, Arsenal bought alot of youth players – the likes of Cesc Fabregas, Abou Diaby, Phillipe Senderos, Gael Clichy, Denilson and Niklas Bendtner.
These were all bought in as teenagers with very little, if any, senior experience to their name. The majority began their time with the club in the youth set up before quickly progressing to the senior team.
They needed experienced players around them to help them develop and progress.
What we have done this summer is not buy youth players but younger players.
For me, a young football is someone between 20 and 24.
They have experince of a few years of senior football but have not yet reached their peak and still have room for progession.
Ben White is 23. As is Aaron Ramsdale. Martin Ødegaard is 22 and Albert Sambi Lokonga is 21. Nuno Taveras is also 21.
These are not youth players but young players. And young players with plenty of experience.
White has played 164 games. Of that 36 were in the Premier League and 46 in the Championship. He was part of the England squad that made the Euro 2020 final.
Ramsdale has played in the Premier League fot the last two seasons, playing 75 out of 76 games. In total he has played 125 senior games and was with White in Southgate’s England squad.
Both are still young, but have plenty of experience in England.
Ødegaard has played over 200 senior games (if you take into account that Real Madrid’s B team play senior football). Those games span 4 different countries – Norway, Spain, Holland and England. He is also Norway’s captain.
Last season when regular captain Hendrik Van Crombrugge was out of the team, Vincent Kompany passed the captaincy to Lokonga – despite him being just 21 years old.
The Belgium midfielder has now played 80 league games at a senior level.
Finally Taveras is the only signing that comes to us without a great deal of experience under his belt.
Sagna talks about needing senior players, but take the midfield.
We have added Lokonga to a group which contains Thomas Partey, Granit Xhaka and Mohamed Elneny. Experience is clearly not the issue.
When you look at the teams transfer policy in recent years, we have spent a lot of money on experienced players that can make an impact in the present. But these players have cost us a lot of money which we have not got much return on.
Finally, Sagna says “when I was playing, anyone would be excited to join Arsenal”.
But this is what I think is great about our transer policy this summer.
We have signed players who are excited to join the club. We are not signing older players who see us as one last pay cheque, or because we were their only options, or offered them the most money.
When you consider that Sagna rejected a contract offer from Arsenal to jon Manchester City – getting one last big pay day – then perhaps he should not talk about “Arsenal DNA”.
If he continues down this route he can go into the box with Emmanuel Petit. Being critical of Arsenal in an attempt to build a media career.