Arsene Wenger is one of the busiest managers in the current transfer window as, having failed to qualify for the Champions League they are under severe pressure to prove themselves at the highest level next season. The manager will know that they will need some serious additions to the squad this summer and one player they are now shockingly linked to is Chelsea midfielder, Nemanja Matic.
Constantly linked with a move to Manchester United, the Serbian international is one of the most secure CDMs in England at the moment and he has helped Chelsea to two league titles in the last three years. But with Chelsea signing French international Tiemoue Bakayoko, Matic will find it difficult to get a place in the first team next season.
Bakayoko and N Golo Kante is a deadly midfield partnership and with Cesc Fabregas ready to offer any backup needed, Matic’s time at the Bridge is now up. He is wanted by Jose Mourinho at Old Trafford but reports from The Sun suggest Arsenal are ready to make an offer for Matic and are also looking to include Alex Oxlade Chamberlain as a part of the deal to land the midfielder.
Matic and his attributes
The 28-year old was first pushed out of Chelsea in his first stint but he worked hard and won a place back in the first team at the Stamford Bridge, now standing as a first team regular. He is an athletic midfielder with a thunderous right foot that can score long range goals regularly but he is more effective when sitting back and running the game from the deep.
With 1.5 tackles per game and 1.4 interceptions per game recorded in the previous season, Matic is right up there with the best. He is tall and strong in the air and is the perfect player to act as a CDM for an English club. However, Bakayoko is a slightly better and younger version, who fits into Conte’s style of play well, so it does not come as a surprise that Chelsea are ready to off load him.
Arsenal and their need
But is it surprising that Arsenal are looking at Matic as a possible option. The Gunners have used the likes of Granit Xhaka and Aaron Ramsey as first choice late last season. The likes of Mohamed Elneny, Francis Coquelin, Santi Cazorla and even Oxlade Chamberlain can all play in this role and unless Wenger lets at least two players leave, Matic makes no sense.
But Cazorla is out injured for the long term and might not play for Arsenal again while the ‘Ox’ has decided to quit the club this summer. This will leave a vacancy for a CDM in the squad and Wenger is going all out, in trying to procure a title winning one for the next season.
A midfield pairing of Xhaka and Matic is right up there with the best in the business and if Wenger can seal this deal, having already signed Alexandre Lacazette and Sead Kolasinac, it will have made this summer a productive one at the Emirates.