Thursday, 1 September 2011

Five deals in five days -What's Wenger brought back from Switzerland?

Morning Gooners.

Well that was a bit different, wasn't it? Five deals completed in five days with two of our most important signings being made within the closing stages of the transfer window. It has shown that Arsene Wenger can do a spot of shopping when he needs to! I wonder if he brought something back from Switzerland in his duty free we're not aware of?

So the highlights of yesterday were:

Mikel Arteta
The 29-year-old midfielder has signed a four year contract with the club. A deal was reached with Everton at £10m. The player has taken a wage cut of £10,000 a week to join the club.

Yossi Benayoun
The Israeli captain arrives at the Grove on a season long loan following a year with Chelsea. The attacker has already played in the Premier League for West Ham United and Liverpool before his move to Stamford Bridge.

Per Mertesacker
The 6ft 6in defender signs from Werder Bremen for a fee in the region of £8m. The German international has 75 caps for his country and has played in two World Cups and a European Championship. He will wear the number four shirt for Arsenal.

Arsene Wenger said:
"We are delighted to welcome Per Mertesacker to the Club. He is a German international with vast experience and strength and is good on the floor and in the air. I believe he will be well-suited to the Premier League and a tremendous asset to the team."
Mertesacker said:
"I had a great time at SV Werder Bremen and I’m grateful to the club. Moving to London enables me to fulfil a dream and a further step in my career. The Premier League has always represented a great challenge for me."
Andre Santos
The Brazilian joins from Fenerbahce for a fee of £6.2m. The left back has scored ten times in 52 league appearances for the Turkish side. The 28-year-old has played for his country 22 times. He will wear the number 11 shirt.

Arsène Wenger said:
"Santos is a quality player, with the ability to both defend well and get forward and help with attacks. He has experience in the Champions League and for Brazil and has proven he can deliver at the highest level. We welcome Santos to the Club and look forward to him having a big impact for us."
Santos said:
"I am delighted to have signed for Arsenal. It was one of my dreams to play for a major European football club and I have accomplished this. I am very happy to be part of this team. All the Brazilians who came to this club spoke wonders about it and I am delighted to be part of the Arsenal family."
Leaving the club on deadline day were:
  • Nicklas Bendtner (Sunderland) season long loan
  • Henri Lansbury (West Ham) season long loan
  • Joel Campbell (FC Lorient) season long loan 
  • Gilles Sunu (FC Lorient)

This Window
We've seen the arrival of the above named players plus Park Chu-Young, Gervinho, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Carl Jenkinson, Joel Campbell, and young Barcelona academy products Héctor Bellerin and Jon Toral.

We've also said goodbye to: Cesc Fàbregas, Samir Nasri, Gaël Clichy, Emmanuel Eboué, Armand Traoré and Jay Emmanuel-Thomas.

With the loss of three first team regulars in Fabregas, Nasri and Clichy, we desperately needed to replace them and I think in the signings we've made we've been able to do so.

It's disappointing we were not able to do our business earlier in the window, but better late than never.

And when you consider what other teams have spent, we have actually had a very successful window (in the end) bringing in players who have international experience and Premier League know-how for less money than Fernando Torres cost Chelsea. We've still got at least £30m which has not been spent.

I'm as obviously as frustrated as every Gooner that we've been slow to get going, but our season really does start against Swansea on September 10. Our new signings don't have much time to gel with the rest of the team because we've got a busy period once this international break is over with the Champions League starting the week after.

But Arsene Wenger has now done what many Arsenal fans had been calling for and spent some money in the transfer window. We now need to get off his back and support him and the team through the next nine months. It's going to be an interesting season.

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