Tuesday, July 25, 2006

The Cole saga continues

The latest news is that Ashley Cole is heading to cross town rivals Chelsea for 16m pounds. Of course we have been hearing about this for 2 years already.

Mourinho has never made it a secret that he covets the England international left back. Cole was at the center of the "tap up" scandal from a year ago when Chelsea officials were photographed having secret meetings with the Arsenal defender.

So what is Arsene and Aresenal to do? The latest rumor has Wenger asking for the money as well as William Gallas in return...which would be a huge deal for both teams more so for Arsenal. Here is why:

Cole is as good as gone, wether he moves addresses inside London or heads to warmer climates and plays for Real Madrid. Cole, for whatever reason, seems to want to leave the north london club. Wenger has options at left back - Clichy and Flamini. Clichy is a great up and coming talent, always being a good second to Cole and really proving his worth. The main issue with Clichy is an apparent fragility exhibited the past season, this is concerning. Flamini, originally brought on as a midfielder, demonstrated an ability to slot back to left back last season and did more than an admirable job. I believe that Arsenal will be fine leaning on a Clichy-Flamini left back tandem, however much depends on Clichy being able to remain healthy for a season. What I think Wenger needs to do is ensure that Gallas is included in the deal. Gallas is one of the best defenders in the world and can play multiple positions on the back line (he could also slot at left back if need be). Where Gallas would be vital for Arsenal would be to shore up the middle of the defense. A partnership of Toure - Gallas, with Eboue and Clichy on the wings would be rock solid. Senderos would be a good back up for the Toure-Gallas duo once he returns. Additionally I am sure that Gallas would relish a move to north london, to get away from Mourninho's constant insistence that he play left back.

Come on Wenger, lower the money amount but ensure that Gallas comes to Emirates for next season, if we are going to lose Cole to an EPL rival lets get back a player of the caliber of Gallas.

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