Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Arsenal Agree Terms with Lorient for Central Defender Koscielny

Numerous UK papers are confirming that Arsene Wenger has come to terms with Lorient to bring in 25-year-old central-defender Laurent Koscielny. He will replace William Gallas in the Arsenal line-up, adding much needed stability alongside Wenger's best signing from last year, Thomas Vermaelen. Koscielny is Arsenal's  second big signing of the off-season after striker Maroune Chamakh, who is set to compete with Nikolas Bendtner to partner Robin van Persie up front. Next on Wenger's shopping list is a goal-keeper, as Almunia and Fabianski have both fallen out of favor. Word is that Wenger is targeting current Fulham keeper Mark Schwarzer.

Wenger may yet sign another central-defender, as a back-up, should Sol Campbell decide to move north to Scotland. There have also been rumors that Wenger is interested in the services of German World Cup stand-out Mesut Ozil, who currently plays for Werder Bremen. That interest would likely intensify should Barcelona make a sufficient bid for current Gunner talisman Cesc Fabregas. Barca have also signified an interest in Ozil, but that may be just as an alternative, should Fabregas not join the Blau i Grana.

So far, at least, Arsenal's activity in the transfer market gives me hope of  a stronger squad for the upcoming season. But the Gunners still have work to do to add depth to their strength. And, of course, the potential loss of Fabregas still hangs like a guillotin over the club.

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