Arsene Wenger promised us that this is going to be a busy summer. Judging by the high amount of transfer related news that has Arsenal in its content, the manager’s promise might be coming true. But from the outside, we have to be slightly cautious with regards to those news. We do not know for sure whether the story that has been spun by the media is true or not. If Twitter can cause Titus Bramble to be linked with Arsenal, anything can happen in today’s world of advanced social network.
In the spirit of that, I thought it’s best to look at each and every player involve and see how the story pan out. First up, Samir Nasri.
Let’s put some context surrounding this French attacker. Nasri has a contract which runs out by the middle of 2012. That puts him into the last year of his contract when the new season begins. This puts Arsenal in a quite some pickle when considering the ruling named Bosman. Any player can move freely under the Bosman ruling which states that “any player in the European Union (EU) to move freely to another club at the end of their term of contract with their present team“.
Should that be allowed to happen, it would represent a bad piece of business from Arsenal. Especially since we paid £15.8m to acquire Nasri’s service from Marseille back in July of 2008. If Nasri goes via the Bosman route, he goes for free. That is £15.8m down the drain. In today’s market, his actual value would be somewhere from £20m – £25m. If you take into account the recent transfers of Andy Carroll, Jordan Henderson and Fernando Torres; the value actually shoots up another £10m – £15m. The Bosman ruling is certainly something which might happen, if this news is true.
On the other hand, also from a business standpoint, it also makes no sense to sell him in this transfer window. All the clubs waiting to pounce are away that Nasri will be available for free in a year’s time. The bargaining power are right in their hands. Even if Arsenal were to ask for £20m, no club would match that valuation. We will definitely be looking at figures around that of £10m or lower. Compared this to the Bosman transfer and we could term this as the lesser of two evils.
The last plausible event is that Nasri signs on the dotted line and extends his contract. Although, in the event of this happening, 2 scenarios could turn up. Continuing on the negative theme, a contract extension might also be a mere point of extending the inevitable but in a process that allow the club to recoup as much as possible for playing a part in Nasri’s growth as a footballer. All that would point to move in the January transfer window.
The second of those scenario means that Nasri is actually persuaded by Wenger to remain at the club. However, that must not be at the cost of meeting this demand. Because that would simply break the wage structure we have at Arsenal. His performances in the second half of the season also do not justify that demand. Giving in to the high wage demand will crush the club. While it will please Nasri, the harmony of the club will be in tatters as Robin Van Persie and Cesc Fabregas are bound to be questioning their own contracts.
Up to this point, whatever that has been said in the stories are just stories. Nasri has not even spoken to Wenger about this. I have no doubt that this is all agent talk to get more out of any deal. Nothing quite like the quit threat to go to a rival club to get some leverage on any negotiation talk. Here, Nasri also talks about the wish to see Wenger play his part and bring in good players. And to me, therein lies the most important factor.
The player has seen what the team is capable of achieving and knows where we have fallen short. If the player feels that his lofty ambition is better served elsewhere, can we blame him. I hate Ashley Cole but he has medals in his house to shut me up about his treachery. Consider him in the context of a normal job and one can easily understand his point of argument.
The club’s ambition will have to be shown in the summer to keep Nasri on board with the project. I would hate to see the back of him. What last season has shown is the potential that he has. It would hurt to see that being hone somewhere else.