Image Attrribution – December 16, 2018 – Source – Footbol/Flickr
As football remains postponed during this time of uncertainty, the transfer gossip columns continue to produce names linked with Arsenal.
The effects that the coronavirus and the subsequent lockdown will have on the summer transfer window are still unclear. It is still unknown if there will be a summer transfer window at all as the domestic European leagues and UEFA will be hoping to complete the current season at some point in June or July. The financial implications are also a problem. Will clubs have the money to go out and spend big on players in the wake of this difficult economic time for businesses?
Regardless, the lack of football has ramped up transfer speculation in recent days. One of the names that has been linked with Arsenal in several publications is French midfielder Corentin Tolisso. The French international is a box-to box midfielder and was part of the France squad that won the 2018 World Cup.
Growing up in the town of Tarare in eastern France , Tolisso signed with Lyon at the age of 12 and progressed through the club’s academy. After turning professional at 18, Tolisso proved himself to be a prolific goal scoring threat from midfield, notching 29 goals in 160 games. In his final season he scored 14 goals in 47 appearances and attracted the attention of several top European clubs, eventually moving to Bayern in the summer of 2017.
From there, his success continued as he scored 10 goals in 40 games for Bayern in his first season, winning his first Bundesliga title with the club. That summer he was selected as one of the 23 players in Didier Deschamps’s World Cup squad and played a crucial role in France’s campaign as they went on to beat Croatia in the final and lift the World Cup.
A World Cup winner and Bundesliga champion, Tolisso’s career should have really taken off at this point but for whatever reason he has struggled to replicate his past form in the last two seasons. This has led to speculation of a change of scenery for the 25-year-old midfielder, who might be looking to move on this summer.
Many of the rumours suggest that Tolisso could be available for as little as £22 million, which is difficult to believe in this market. But with the coronavirus lockdown leaving many clubs in financial trouble, perhaps an offer like this could tempt Bayern to sell one of their fringe players to get them off their books.
Arsenal fan and season ticket holder, Gary Jones, likes the idea of bringing in a new midfielder, stating “I think it’s vital that we bring in a new midfielder this summer. Having not really replaced Ramsey last summer, we really need a creative force in the midfield who can also pop up with a goal and this guy seems to fit the bill. The absence of a creative force in midfield has been glaring this year and it has certainly been one our biggest weaknesses.
It is true that the Arsenal midfield has struggled this year. The likes of Torreira, Guendouzi, Xhaka and Ceballos have all flattered to deceive in a season where we needed players to step up and take on the mantle left by Ramsey. Torreira and Guendouzi are young and have shown glimpses of quality this season. Ceballos is only here on loan and is likely to go back to Madrid in the summer. And who knows what will happen with Xhaka!
The addition of a player like Tolisso would certainly be welcome and I would imagine at the top of Arteta’s wish list. Whether we will be able to attract a player of this quality in our current state remains to be seen.