Lauren, part of Arsenal’s ‘Invincibles’ squad, has claimed the Gunners do not need to bring in Leicester City’s winger Riyad Mahrez.
2015/16 PFA Player of the Year Riyad Mahrez has long been linked with a move to Arsenal this summer. Arsene Wenger, who is looking to sign a quality player, is reportedly interested in bringing the Algerian to the Emirates. The Frenchman has also seen a recent bid of £30 million for the 26-year-old turned down as Leicester seem to have made it clear they are not a selling club.
Speaking about Arsenal’s failure to land yet another transfer target, club legend Lauren has stated that it is good that the club will not be signing the Algerian. According to the former Gunners defender, the current crop of Arsenal players are good enough to achieve greatness for the club.
In an interview with the Evening Standard (h/t Sky Sports), Lauren said: “He [Mahrez] is a very good player, but how many similar players in terms of technically proficient, creative midfielders and wide men do Arsenal have already?”
“They have Mesut Ozil, they have Jack Wilshere, they have Aaron Ramsey, they have Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, they have Theo Walcott – Arsenal don’t need Mahrez.
“Arsenal have always had dynamic players – but they need to change that style a little bit, maybe be a little more direct, with more aggressiveness, and determination – which means players with a different style than Mahrez can offer,” he added.
Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud endured a rough 2015/16 campaign as he was often made the scapegoat for his side’s undoings. Having arguably the most creative midfielder in Mesut Ozil playing just off him, the French striker went on a barren run that saw him fail to find the back of the net for 16 games in a row.
Due to his dismal showings, the Arsenal boss has targeted a number of strikers this summer, but to no avail. Giroud still remains the number one attacking option for Wenger, and in the current scenario, it does not look to be changing any sooner. Arsenal looked set to sign Vardy after triggering the forward’s buy-out clause, but were snubbed by the player. Gonzalo Higuain, who was a priority, completed a big-money move to Juventus. Strikers such as Alexandre Lacazette and Mauro Icardi have been linked with the Gunners on numerous occasions, but their capture seems to be highly unlikely.
It looked like Lauren shared the same opinion about Giroud, as he felt the striker lacks that zest needed to make things happen. He said:
“Don’t get me wrong. I respect Olivier Giroud and he has an important part to play next season through the goals he does score,” he said.
“But you need people with charisma. It’s more than about scoring goals, you need a striker with the X-factor. And despite being a fantastic player, Giroud doesn’t have that.”