Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Cazorla to join within a week -Wilshere's August return? -Chamakh's staying!

Morning Gooners.

In a few short hours, Arsenal will take to the field for the first of their three game tour of Asia. I've got no idea of the teams Arsene Wenger will put out. I can only imagine at this stage of pre-season that it will be a mixture of experience and youth. The manager will want to hand game time to all of this players in order to get them match sharp ahead of the new season.

One player who is almost certain to get some time up front it Marouane Chamakh, who is the only senior striker on the tour. He's been speaking about his future - possibly at Arsenal, possibly elsewhere - depending on the future of a certain Dutchman.

If he stays at the club, this season is make or break. He's got to rediscover the form which saw him score ten goals in 21 games. And he'll get a chance to impress the manager without the pressure of any other senior striker around him.

Of his future, Chamakh said:

"Last season was difficult. We were playing with just one striker and that striker was the best player in Europe. There was not a lot I could do.  
"I was upset because thought I could have played more but football is like that. Sometimes you do not have a chance.  
"I hope this season I will play more than last. I have not spoken with the manager but I will soon.  
"In the first six months after signing I had lots of games but after that I only played a few. Now I hope this season will be good for me and the club.  
"Yes, I need more confidence. But to be confident I need to play more. I am determined to stay."

With Robin van P€r$i€ almost certain to leave, Chamakh will still face competition for a place in the starting line up from Olivier Giroud and Lukas Podolski. This really is the time for the Moroccan to impress Wenger, otherwise he could be the next to leave.

The latest on van P€r$i€ is that he continues to train at London Colney ready to move. The Daily Mirror report that Roberto Mancini is becoming frustrated that his Manchester City bosses have failed to do a deal with Arsenal for last season's Premier League top scorer.

And it appears all three clubs in the race for the Dutchman's signature will certainly move towards Arsenal's minimum asking price of £20m.

Elsewhere, The Independent report that Jack Wilshere hopes to be fit by the end of August. It's good that Jack has set himself a target. I just hope that it is a realistic one.

Meanwhile, our chase for the Spain midfielder Santi Cazorla could be concluded by this time next week. The player has indicated he is keen to move to London to get away from the financial mess at the La Liga club.

Malaga have seven days to pay up their debts before being relegated, stripped of their Uefa licence and their Champions League place.

Their financial situation could allow Wenger to get Cazorla for less than his  €45m buy-out clause, according to The Guardian.

The Spain international has already told Arsenal that he is prepared to move to London and a year after missing out on his man, Wenger looks set to sign the 27-year-old.

We certainly need some added creativity in the midfield, as Tomas Rosicky is to miss the start of the season after undergoing an Achilles operation.

Elsewhere, it's reported Andrey Arshavin will have talks this week with two Middle East clubs about a move away from north London, while Nicklas Bendtner is considering a deal with Galatasaray. And Ju Young Park is attracting interest of the Saudi club Al Halil, according to the Daily Mail.

That's it for today. More tomorrow.


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