5 Defensive Transfer Targets For Arsenal This Winter

By on November 1, 2014

As the January transfer window draws ever closer and Arsenal’s lack of depth at the back exposed in recent weeks, Gunner333 analyse’s five possible defensive targets Arsene Wenger may want to consider this winter.

Grzegorz Krychowiak – Sevilla – CDM

Although only a recent addition to Unai Emery’s side, Krychowiak may very well be tempted for a switch to North London in January, with Arsenal reported to have been scouting him for many months now.

As well as a run of impressive displays in Spain’s top flight this campaign, the holding midfield player has also been a key component in the Polish national team, his physical presence and aerial ability [a height exceeding 6ft helps this of course] fitting the job description for Arsenal’s required defensive midfielder.

The Pole also possesses exceptional stamina which, given criticism of Arsenal’s holding players ‘lacking legs’, only heightens the need for a player of Grzegorz’ kind further.

Key Attributes: Stamina, Aerial Threat, Positional Sense

Rating: 7/10

Chancel Mbemba- RSC Anderlecht- CB

At age 20, Chancel is the youngest candidate on my list but would be a beneficial signing. A one-club man at present, the boy from Congo has impressed in over 40 appearances for the Belgian outfit, mirroring our own Calum Chambers, both players capable of playing at full-back or through the centre.

In the long term, the Congolese would be a far better option to become a solid part of a shaky Arsenal back-line in recent years, but may perhaps be a more suitable choice for next Summer, with January calling for a more experienced head to sure up the vulnerable Gunners’ defence.

Generally though, Chancel is confident with the ball at his feet and as a make-shift right-back, he has acquired great pace as well as the typical characteristics of your ideal centre-half, as he’s strong and positionally sound.

Key Attributes: Pace, Strength, Versatility, Aerial Ability

Rating: 8/10

Winston Reid- West Ham United- CB

A ready-made Premier League talent, Winston’s vast experience and knowledge of the top flight renders him one of the most attractive candidates on the list. Now a long-time server of the Hammers, clubs have been and will be circling him like sharks.

The New Zealand international has great experience, a bundle of fantastic physical qualities and an instinctive ability to read danger. To pry him away amid a run of good form for Allardyce’s side would be a bit of a coup, but with the defender out-of-contract at the end of the season we could pick him up at a bargain price.

Key Attributes: Decision Making, Aerial Ability, Last-Ditch Challenges

Rating: 9/10

Christoph Kramer – Borussia Mönchengladbach- CDM

Perhaps a slightly complex buy in terms of paperwork, with German international Chrostoph Kramer currently on loan at Bundesliga side Borussia Monchengladbach from Bayer Leverkusen. Once this issue is resolved though, he perfectly suits the kind of player Arsenal have been longing for. Not one of these ‘attacking-minded holding players’, Christoph would rarely delve forwards and exhibits brilliant discipline to lay in front of the defence and solely love his job of breaking up attacks. Just check out his recent display against Bundesliga holders Bayern Munich and you will see what I mean!

The boy from Solingen made the odd showing in Germany’s world cup winning campaign and performs at a top standard on a consistent basis. Thrown into the Bundesliga’s great physical threat from a young age, the Premier League’s fast-paced yet rough-and-tumble theme will do little to shake up this German Giant.

Key Attributes: Long Passing, Discipline, Strength, Aerial Ability

Rating: 8/10

Pepe- Real Madrid- CB

A world-class talent, the Portuguese centre-half Pepe has shown his quality on the biggest stage, most recently adding a Champions League title to his dossier. The former-Porto defender, 31, is one of the best in defending set-pieces [a constant worry for the current Arsenal side] and would perhaps be attracted to a move to the Emirates, with his contribution to the Spanish Giants ever-diminishing, due to the great growth of young Raphael Varane.

It is difficult to label the centre-half with a specific price, his top quality somewhat tainted by the lack of years ahead. Nonetheless, the Portuguese international could do a great amount to rectify our fairly frequent defensive blunders and still couples great physical strength with a touch of pace, despite his age.

Key Attributes: Experience, Strength, Aerial Ability, Pace

Rating: 10/10

Let us hope that come January, we can see a couple of signings, but for now our concentration should lay with the weekend’s action and the hope for another three points against Burnley, COYG!

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