Yesterday on Twitter there was a lot of chatter over who you would prefer. Jarrod Bowen or Bukayo Saka?
My answer is simple.
Bowen would be a fantastic option for Arsenal as back up for Saka.
Still just 25-years-old, Bowen has been in fine form this season with 10 goals and 10 assists. His form has surely got him knocking on the door for England where he would provide cover for Saka. Something which he would also do if he moved from East to North London.
Bowen ticks a lot of boxes – he is in the age range of recent Arsenal signings, is home grown and has Premier League and European experience.
Naturally left footed, he would be perfect cover for Saka without Arsenal needing to sacrifice playing style.
Bowen is also more than capable on his right foot which is why he is such a danger at times – he can go either way when taking on an opponent.
Bowen has shown clearly progression during his career.
52 goals in the Championship before moving to West Ham for just shy of £20million.
8 goals and 5 assists last season has turned into 10 and 10 this. Comfortably West Ham’s best player, he will surely be itching to take the next step and play at a higher level next season.
The only sticking point would be price tag.
Transfermarkt currently value him at £31.5million. This feels cheap.
I would imagine it would take an offer in excess of £40million to secure a man of Bowen’s profile; which might be too much for what would essentially be a back-up player. An understudy to someone 5 years his junior.
So Saka or Bowen? How about we have both in North London next season.
Talk is intensifying over a new contract for Mohamed Elneny. And I am in the “keep” camp.
I have always liked our curly haired Egyptian king. He is the exact sort of player you need in a 23 man squad.
Not everyone can be a superstar – unless you have Manchester City’s billions. You need players like Elneny who can come in, do a job, rarely let you down, and then went complain hen back on the bench.
Elneny knows his game. He knows he is not a world beater and does not try to be. He keeps things simple. This is why he sometimes get criticised by Arsenal fans who seem to think every player should be a game changer.
In recent weeks, he has shown he is decent enough cover for the injured Thomas Partey.
We need reinforcements in midfield. But I would like to see us go big on someone like Youri Tielemans who would provide a new attacking dimension to our midfield.
If keeping Elneny as cover freed up the cash to splash on Tielemans I would be more than happy.
Tielemans would then come in as the competition for Granit Xhaka on the left hand side of the midfield three.
Partey and Odergaard would be the first name on the teamsheet. A decision would then be made between Tielemans and Xhaka depending on the opponent.
At home to Bournemouth where we want to set up more attacking, Tielemans starts. Away to Liverpool where we want a bit more defensive cover, Xhaka is given the nod.
The bench would also massively be strengthened.
If Tielemans is on the bench, he becomes a creative outlet if we are chasing a game. If Elneny and/or Xhaka is on the bench, they can come on and provide defensive cover if we are trying to close out the game.
In the past, Elneny being cover for Partey has worried me due to being African.
To lose both for up to 6 weeks in January could have spelt disaster. But from next season the African Cup of Nations becomes a summer tournament. So no longer will teams have to take into account losing players in the winter when recruiting.
Elneny might not be an inspiring contract renewal, but it is the right decision.
If we let him go, we probably then need to sign two new central midfielders.
Taking into account we need to invest heavily further up the field this season, a new Elneny deal makes sense.
Enjoy your Tuesday.