Monday, February 6, 2023

Arsenal Still In The Race For This French Superstar: But Should Wenger Actually Go All out?

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Subhayan Dutta
Subhayan used to be the Featured Columnist at The 4th Official. Completely immersed in football and almost all other sports on planet.

It is transfer season and Arsenal are one of the most exciting sides to follow during this time of the year. The North London club have been linked with the biggest of European stars every summer and this year is no different. Arsene Wenger has been reportedly very close to landing Kylian Mbappe, the costliest player on earth right now.

The manager decided to go on and sign a two-year contract extension despite extensive criticism from both fan and critics and will have to stand up to the expectations now by all means. While both the owner and the manager has promised some big arrivals this summer, no such things have yet been done.

Arsenal have only completed the signing of former Bundesliga full-back Sead Kolasinac, and while the Bosnian international is top-notch by all means, he is hardly expected to make a huge difference in their campaign next season. Arsenal need potential reinforcements in the midfield and attacking third and Mbappe’s continuous resurfacing is exactly for that.

Wenger has been a known admirer of the player and given his huge reputation in France, Mbappe can make an Arsenal move, which is if he decides to not go to Real Madrid, who are all hands to get him at the first opportunity. Close relatives of Mbappe have also reportedly told that Arsenal would be the only English club if he moves to England.

While it sounds encouraging to a certain extent, it isn’t reality by far. Arsenal cannot beat Real Madrid in Mbappe’s signing and more importantly, a side who has failed to qualify for the Champions League can under no circumstances beat a team that has won the elite tournament twice on the trot.

Mbappe has been an exceptional talent without a doubt, but we have often seen Ligue 1 talents not living up to their expectations. If the Frenchman is at the peak of his career now at 18, then it is very unlikely he would keep this momentum for the next decade or so. And if that happens, a selling club like Arsenal is definitely not the place for him.

Arsenal have reportedly already turned their attention to AS Lyon’s Alexander Lacazette and Mbappe’s teammate Thomas Lemar, which more or less ensures that the Mbappe deal is done. Arsenal face a race against time to keep Alexis Sanchez at the Emirates Stadium and bringing in star players is one way to do it.

Mbappe’s arrival, even if it did happen, would bring enormous pressure upon the player. The astronomical transfer fee will hang like a heavy chain around his neck, which will only weigh him down. And in a season, where instant success is quintessential for Arsene Wenger, such a risk is better untaken.

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