Saturday, 24 December 2011

Wenger to swap Chamakh for Zamora? -Coquelin's new deal -Swedish wonderkid eyed

Morning Gooners.

It was a busy day at the Grove yesterday as the Junior Gunners celebrated Christmas with their Arsenal idols. After getting up close and personal with the Arsenal stars they wouldn't need any more gifts tomorrow, but I'm told that's not the case.

I'm sure Arsene Wenger is in a festive mood. He's all about giving it seems and with the postponement - by 24 hours - of the Wolves game, he's given his whole squad Christmas Day off, meaning no training. Although the players won't be on duty, they will still have to watch what they eat... so they'll have to restrict their intake of roast potatoes and parsnips.

The manager has said he'll take the day off as well, although he said football was bound to play a part in his day. One of the decision he'll be mulling over is whether to resign Theirry Henry on loan.

Wenger said when quizzed about resigning the French striker:
"That’s why I have Christmas Day off – I have to think about that. Short term is ideal for us, but I haven’t made any enquiry yet. 
"Thierry is not here at the moment. It has not come up in conversation yet. 
"The 1st of January is the vital date for us. I will make a decision in the next seven days on players. I promise."
It seems that Henry would only be an emergency option. Our first choice has to be to sign an established goal scoring striker and Cologne’s Lukas Podolski fits the bill. He's in cracking form and also available to play in the Champions League.

Another option it appears the manager is considering is a swap deal with Fulham involving Bobby Zamora and Marouane Chamakh, according to the Daily Star.

But it appears the Zamora deal would only be a back up if we couldn't sign Podolski or Henry. Former Gunner Gilberto has said he'd like to see our all time goal scorer back in a Arsenal shirt. With Henry not due back in London from a holiday in Mexico until later, Wenger is expected to sit down with him within the next week to see whether he'd want to return.

A deal for a left back is also on the cards after the manager revealed that Kieran Gibbs would be out for a further month after undergoing groin surgery. The name of Wayne Bridge was put to him but he said no enquiry had been made with Manchester City, which is good to hear.

Of our right back options, Wenger said that Johan Djourou could have a chance to play against Wolves. Bacary Sagna made an appearance in front of the Junior Gunners training session yesterday and the manager said he was ahead of schedule, so could make a January return.

Elsewhere, The Sun report Francis Coquelin is set to be rewarded for breaking into the first team squad with a new four year deal and a substantial pay rise.

And there is some Christmas Eve transfer tittle-tattle. The Daily Mirror report we're keeping tabs on Manchester City's 19-year-old Swedish wonderkid John Guidetti who is on loan at Feyenoord.



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