Arsenal: Arteta says club wants to listen to fans
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News that Spotify founder Daniel Ek is trying to buy Arsenal has excited many Gunners fans. The Swedish billionaire has reportedly joined forces with club legends Thierry Henry, Patrick Vieira and Dennis Bergkamp to try and oust Stan Kroenke from the club.
Club director Josh Kroenke told a fans’ forum last week that the Kroenke family currently has “no intention of selling” Arsenal, but the Daily Telegraph reports that Ek is pushing ahead with his bid to take over the club.
Arsenal fans are one of many groups to voice their unhappiness with their club’s ownership and decision to become a founding member of the European Super League.
Several thousand supporters gathered outside the Emirates Stadium over the weekend to protest against Stan Kroenke, who reportedly wants at least £2billion if he is to consider selling the club he has run since April 2011.
According to Forbes, Ek is worth around £3.4bn and the idea of the 38-year-old Swede taking over the North London club is bound to get fans dreaming of a brighter future.
If the deal was to go through then Arsenal could be set for a summer spending spree as the new owner tries to reinvigorate a side which is currently 10th in the Premier League.
Here we have put together the side that Arsenal could assemble if millions are available in the summer transfer window.
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Goalkeeper: Gianluigi Donnarumma
The AC Milan stopper is out of contract at the end of the season and he has no shortage of suitors.
The 22-year-old has developed a reputation as one of the best and most promising young players in the world and Arsenal will need a new goalkeeper this summer, with Mat Ryan’s loan deal from Brighton expiring.
Bernd Leno has generally performed well in an Arsenal shirt, but the chance to sign a world-class player like Donnarumma on a free transfer can’t be passed up.
Right-back: Achraf Hakimi
Hector Bellerin’s future at Arsenal is up in the air, with the defender reportedly keen on a return to Barcelona, having lost his place in Mikel Arteta’s starting XI to Calum Chambers in recent weeks.
Hakimi has been fantastic for Inter Milan this season, contributing six goals and five assists from right wing-back and would be a great addition for any top side.
Spanish outlet AS have reported that while Inter want to keep the Moroccan international, they would be forced to sell if their valuation of €50million (£42.7m) is met, due to Inter’s financial problems.
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Centre-back: Gabriel Magalhaes
David Luiz’s contract will run out at the end of this season, so Arsenal could be in the market for a new centre-back.
However, the club have already invested in the position, with Gabriel arriving from Lille last summer. While his impact has been limited by injuries, the 23-year-old Brazilian looks a good prospect for the future.
Centre-back: Pablo Mari
Mari is another Gunners defender who hasn’t played regularly since arriving due to off-field problems.
Whether he gets the nod next season is anyone’s guess, but with Mari, Chambers, Rob Holding and potentially William Saliba in the position, Arsenal appear fairly well stocked in defence.
Left-back: Kieran Tierney
Arsenal already have the left-back to serve the club for a long period of time. Tierney has a great engine and is capable of providing a threat down the left flank as well as defending tenaciously going in the opposite direction.
Bukayo Saka and Cedric Soares have shown they can provide decent cover if the Scot’s injury problems persist.
Centre-midfield: Thomas Partey
Partey arrived for £45m last summer and, with a full pre-season behind him in the summer, can hopefully kick on and establish himself as the player Arsenal thought they had bought.
If he can stay fit then the Gunners can begin to phase out the unreliable Granit Xhaka, while the likes of Lucas Torreira, Mohamed Elneny and Matteo Guendouzi could be let go.
Centre-midfield: Yves Bissouma
Like everyone else, Arsenal might be attracted to the idea of signing Rennes star Eduardo Camavinga, who is set to spark a bidding war this summer.
Arsenal might struggle to sell themselves to the box-to-box midfielder, but Brighton’s Bissouma could be a more attainable option. The 24-year-old is a combative, mobile and dynamic midfielder who could offer the Gunners plenty.
Attacking midfield: Martin Odegaard
Arsenal have made no secret of the fact they want to keep Odegaard next season. The Norwegian star is currently on loan from Real Madrid, but has already done enough to warrant a permanent deal from his parent club.
The breakthrough of Emile Smith Rowe is a huge bonus in the search for a creative presence that can replicate Mesut Ozil’s old form.
Odegaard appears to be a good target for Arsenal, but if they can’t get hold of him then Real Betis’ Nabil Fekir or Norwich’s Emi Buendia would be decent back-up options.
Left-wing: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
Aubameyang has not performed as well as the club would have hoped since he signed a bumper contract extension in September, but at 31 and now on a long-term deal, they have no option but to stick with him.
Nine goals in 25 Premier League goals this season is hardly a great return, so improvements will be needed next season.
Right-wing: Bukayo Saka
Saka has provided one of the few bright spots for the Gunners this season. The 19-year-old signed a new long-term contract last summer and is surely a banker for the future.
His potential is such that he can play in just about any position.
Striker: Erling Haaland
Currently Arsenal stand about zero chance of signing Borussia Dortmund star Haaland this summer, with heavyweights Real Madrid, Manchester City and Manchester United all fighting it out for his signature, which could cost over £120m.
However, should Ek’s arrival bring a big pile of cash then obviously a deal for the hottest striker in the world would be ideal.
Should such funds not materialise then a move for Eintracht Frankfurt’s Andre Silva would be a good piece of business. The 25-year-old has scored 25 goals in 29 Bundesliga games this season and could be available for a knock-down price this summer.
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