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By Max Burman
So, he's finally gone and for £25 million. Newsnow is flooded with rumours over who we'll sign as a replacement. Chamakh has seemingly given up on us moving for him and " Sky Sources", that strangest of beings, say Huntelaar is joining Stuttgart. The latest rumour is Ligue 1 top scorer and French bad boy Andre-Pierre Gignac but at £18 million surely even Wenger's preference for everything French won't entice him to a record-breaking deal. Thus, the most likely situation we are left with is this; we don't sign a striker and hopefully buy a central midfielder, though even this seems to be getting more doubtful.
There has already been an article on who to play in the hole so I'll try not to spend long on it. Instead, I'll throw something in the ring that appears to be from left-field, Nicklas Bendtner to start upfront next season. Yes, Wenger likes his 4-2-3-1 and Arshavin behind Van Persie seems obvious but, Wenger doesn't always do the obvious thing. In fact, it is possible RVP will play in the hole, Arshavin on the wing and Bendtner up top as the target man. He produced an impressive 15 goals, many from the bench, last season. He scored against Chelsea and despite that god awful display of finishing in one game where he missed three one-on-ones, began to endear himself to the fans. More strikingly though is how the boss has remarked upon him in the past year, stating how much he has improved and so on.
Moving on, with Melo signed for Juve we have to look elsewhere for a central midfielder. 2 weeks ago The Mirror reported we were about to sign Matuidi for £2.5 m but we never did. Miguel Veloso has stated his desire to leave Sporting, he seems to me like a Petit-esque player who is great on the ball while tough in the tackle. Bolton tried to sign him in January but admitted he was too good for them and with little rumour it would seemingly make his signing more likely with how Wenger likes to deal. There are few other realistic options, Alonso would cost £30m plus and Inler is probably too pricey too, lets face it we may have got £25m for Ade but Wenger is unlikely to spend more than £10m or £15m.
So, I think it most likely that we will sign Matuidi for £2.5m, not sign a striker and line up away to Everton like this:
Sagna Gallas Vermaelen Clichy
Walcott Arshavin Nasri
I know I said Bendtner but I want him to play, its not what I think AW will play from the start but look out for him starting as the season goes on and the inevitable injuries come