We take a look at some of the major news stories doing the rounds regarding Premier League side Arsenal FC.
Arsenal To Revive Interest in Isco
According to a report by the Mirror, the Gunners are willing to reignite their interest for the Spaniard. Isco is reportedly unhappy this season under Zinedine Zidane, due to his lack of game time at the club. Arsenal estimate the 24-year-old to be worth around £17 million plus add ons and could try to take him on loan in January, before opting to purchase him permanently in the summer.
The report states that Isco only wants to move to a Champions League club and in that regard, Arsenal would be a ‘desirable’ option. Their sources claim that Real Madrid want to offer Isco a contract extension – not to secure his long term future, but because they wish to ‘protect the value of their midfield asset’. Isco has featured 17 times this season for Los Blancos, largely due to injuries to other players, and he has had to compete with the likes of James, Kroos, Modric, Casemiro and Kovacic for midfield spots.
Theo Walcott Laments Second-Half Display
Arsenal succumbed to a 2-1 defeat at the hands of Manchester City at the Emirates on Sunday. The Gunners went into half-time a goal to the good, via Theo Walcott’s 5th minute strike. However, City managed to come back in the second half with a Leroy Sane goal immediately after the restart and Raheem Sterling scored the winner in the 71st minute. The loss leaves Arsenal at a familiar 4th place, 9 points behind league leaders Chelsea.
Speaking to the Evening Standard, he said: “We haven’t started the second halves very well. In previous games leading up now, we have actually played better in the second half and been on the front foot.”
The 27-year-old lamented his side’s inability to create any chances against Pep Guardiola’s side, that he conceded played some good football.
“But yesterday we were on the back foot and City dominated. We didn’t create any chances in the second half so are disappointed in that sense but you have got to give credit to City because they played some very good football at times and we found that difficult.”
Rob Holding To Be Sent On Loan
According to the Mirror, Arsenal are set to loan out center-back Rob Holding in January. Holding arrived in the summer from Bolton Wanderers in a £2.5 million deal, but has been unable to get a lot of minutes. Arsene Wenger is reportedly keen to let the highly talented youngster get some regular game time, rather than let him sit on the bench for the rest of the season.
A number of Championship clubs are reportedly interested in taking the 21-year-old on loan in January. Since moving to the Emirates in the summer, the Englishman has featured only 7 times in all appearances for Arsene Wenger’s side. Despite putting in convincing performances when given the opportunity, he was never able to break into the starting XI due to the superb partnership of Mustafi and Koscielny in defence.
Manchester City Set To Bid For Chamberlain
Pep Guardiola is reportedly interested in Arsenal’s Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. According to a report by The Sun, the former Barcelona boss is plotting a £25 million January swoop for the England international. His current contract expires in the summer of 2018 and there has been no news of an extension being offered to the young winger, who is likely to assess his options come January.
The report states that Guardiola was a huge fan of the 23-year-old since his Bayern Munich days and ‘tracked’ him last season, prior to his appointment at the Etihad. Now that Ilkay Gundogan’s season is effectively over following his ACL injury, Guardiola is willing to test Wenger’s resolve in the upcoming transfer window. He has made 23 appearances this season for the Gunners in all competitions, scoring 6 goals and registering 6 assists in the process.
Chamberlain is currently in his 6th season with the club, but since making his £12 million move from Southampton, he has failed to nail down a starting spot for himself or live up to his full potential. There have been glimpses of what he’s capable of, but injuries and his inability to maintain a good run of form have restricted his influence and growth at the Emirates.
At 23, he still has the best years of his career ahead of him and his vast potential is undoubted, but should the right offer come along, Arsene Wenger may be forced to consider letting yet another one of his players leave to Manchester.