Tag Archives: Mohamed Elneny

Arsenal clear out set to begin

Following a very good transfer window in terms of who came in to Arsenal, the bit Arsenal clear out has still not really taken place.

Before the English transfer window shut, Arsenal moved on the likes of Krystian Bielik, Carl Jenkinson and Alex Iwobi. They also sold David Ospina and Laurent Koscielny to clubs abroad.

Whilst the English transfer window might have closed, the windows in France, German and Spain do not slam shut until 2nd September, whilst the Serie A window shuts on the 23rd August. This means there is still plenty of time for Arsenal to move a few more players on.

Unai Emery dropped a huge hint that Shkodran Mustafi is off by not even selecting him to sit on the bench in the clubs opening game against Newcastle.

The Spaniard picked Calum Chambers and Sokratis to start the match. Mustafi did not even make the bench even though Arsenal only had one other fit defender (David Luiz).

Mohamed Elneny will surely not be too far behind Mustafi out of the door.

The Egyptian midfielder barely played last season and now finds himself behind Granit Xhaka, Lucas Torreira, ,Matteo Guendouzi, Ainsley Maitland Niles and Joe Willock. Chambers would likely also get in ahead of him.

With the arrival of Kieran Tierney, Arsenal currently have 3 left backs – the Manxman joining Nacho Monreal and Sead Kolasinac.

The feeling is if a big enough offer comes in for Kolasinac, Arsenal will consider it.

Monreal recently signed a new 1 year deal and would be unlikely to raise much in transfer funds. The experienced Spaniard was named as part of Emery’s leadership team and will surely stay about for another year.

If Arsenal do cash in on all 3 players, they can expect to recoup around £50million. This would take it to over £100m received from sold players, topping the bank account back up to go again next summer.

All is bright, all is beautiful, all is red and white.

Keenos

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Calum Chambers – Should he stay or should he go?

Watching the Fulham v Tottenham game at the weekend, the stand out performer dominating the middle of the park was Calum Chambers.

The on loan Arsenal man was one of the few outstanding players in a very poor Fulham team. It had many calling for his return to the club in the summer.

Chambers turned 24 a couple of days ago and signed a new 4-year-deal back in July last year.

After a good start to his Arsenal career, he has struggled to nail down a place in the squad. Fulham is his second loan deal after a year spent in Middlesbrough during their 2016/17 relegation season.

What should Arsenal do with the not-so-young-central defender?

Keep, replace Laurent Koscielny

Club captain Laurent Koscielny rolled back the years against Chelsea, but team is clearly running out for the old dog.

Most Arsenal fans want a strong, first choice centre back to partner Sokratis in the long term. We can all agree that Calum Chambers is not that man. Neither is Shkodran Mustafi. Rob Holding has arguably moved ahead of Koscielny, Mustafi and Chambers.

In 2019/20 Koscielny will be, at best, 4th choice centre back being Sokratis, Mustafi/replacement and Rob Holding. Could Calum Chambers return and be 4th choice central defender? Certainly.

Keep, replace Mohamed Elneny

At Fulham, Calum Chambers joined as a centre back but was soon moved to central midfield. It was in the middle of the park he ran the game for Fulham against Tottenham.

He was composed on the ball, short and long passing, as well as stopping Tottenham attacks at will. He was Man of the Match.

Arsenal’s current midfield options are Lucas Torreira, Granit Xhaka, Matteo Guendouzi, Mohamed Elneny and Ainsley Maitland-Niles. Could Calum Chamber take Elneny’s place in the squad? Certainly.

Cover Hector Bellerin

Roll back to 2014 when Arsenal signed Chambers for £16million, he was a right back – having made 22 Premier League appearances for Southampton in 2013/14.

With Stephan Lichsteiner set to leave in the summer, and Hector Bellerin’s injury, we clearly need to address the right back situation next season.

Maitland-Niles is an option at right back, and will surely get his chance in the coming weeks and months. Could Calum Chambers provide cover to Hector Bellerin? Certainly.

All of the above

So he could be 4th choice centre back, 4th choice central midfielder and 2/3rd choice right back. Is this a role that he could play in one go, covering depending who is injured? Certainly.

Sell

The final option is sell.

After his string of performances, Arsenal could easily get £20million or more for a home grown, 24-year-old player.

At Premier League level who would be a regular starter for a mid-to-lower league team, or a newly promoted one.

You could see him fitting in at Derby County. He was heavily linked with a £16million move to Crystal Palace last season.

The likes of Bournemouth have spent big in January for players who are inferior to Chambers (£19milion for Dominic Solanke!). He would certainly get into their team, as well as Brighton and West Ham.

If we sold him, there would be no shortage of takers.

Arsenal have been awful at selling players in recent years. We have let over £200m worth of talent exit, getting little in return.

Imagine the scenario. We get £20million for Chambers; we also sell Mustafi. We could get in the region of £35million for a Premier League, international proven central defender. That is £55million bought in selling a central defender not currently in the squad, and one more that we can improve on.

That total could then go towards a new defender.

For £55million+ we could get a quality central defender. There are not too many defenders in the world that would be out of our reach.

You then have the new central defender, Sokratis, Holding, Koscielny and Mavropanos as the options.

Should we learn our lesson with Chambers. Cash in on a player who will never quite be good enough, and reinvest that elsewhere on someone that improves our first team without weakening the squad? Certainly.

I would keep all options on the table.

Keenos

Lucas Torreira, Mo Elneny & Grant Xhaka

Lucas Torreira

Saw a few fans during yesterday’s game between Egypt and Uruguay question how good Lucas Torreira must be if he “can’t even get into his national team”.

As the majority of us at England fans, is this view not a little arrogant? And extremely ignorant.

Uruguay are ranked 14th in the world. That is just one place below England – a side which Jack Wilshere can’t even get into the squad for.

They are ranked above the likes of Holland, Italy, Columbia and Croatia.

Ahead of him in the Starting XI is Rodrigo Bentancur. The 20 year old had a break through season for Juventus last season, who secured first option to sign him when he was just 17.

Also ahead of him is 26 year old Matías Vecino, who Inter Milan paid €24m for last summer.

Let’s not pretend this Uruguay is a poor team. They have an array of talented young midfielders, including Nahitan Nández (22) and Giorgian De Arrascaeta (24).

It is no shame that Torreira did not start.

Uruguay are not exactly Scotland or Republic of Ireland. They are a good outfit.

Mohamed Elneny

One player who did start the game was Egypt’s Mo Elneny.

He put in the solid if unexceptional performance that he has become known for.

If Arsenal do go ahead next year and play 3 in the middle of the park, Elneny has to be in with a shout if being the deepest of those 3.

He covers a lot of ground, is disciplined and defensive aware.

You do not win the league with 11 Lionel Messi’s. You need a Sergio Busquet’s or Fernandinho.

Elneny can do that job (although it would be good to also secure Torreira so that we have competition in the area.

Granit Xhaka

Not everyone’s cup of tea but Granit Xhaka signing a new contract is great news for the club.

With Jack Wilshere looking like he is off and Aaron Ramsey still yet to sign a contract, Xhaka is a man who the modified can be built around.

Still just 25, Unai Emery needs to get the balance of the midfield right to get the best out of the Swiss international.

Signs Lucas Torreira could be just what is needed to allow Xhaka to excel.

A midfield 3 of:

Xhaka Torreira Ramsey

Has a lot of balance to it.

Since joint Arsenal two years ago, he has had to deal with a lot of criticism from fans and the media.

Xhaka gets a lot of blame for the team being set up unbalanced. He has never really played as the deepest central midfielder.

He needs to be allowed to press and be aggressive. Sitting deep never suited him.

By having someone behind him will allow him to get further forward, to be more aggressive in the middle of the park, and know he has a safety net behind him.

I am predicting that Xhaka playing the ball from deep over the top to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will be a route for a lot of goals next season.

Keenos