If you believe the rumors circulating, Arsenal look poised to complete the signing of Jamie Vardy. It’s no doubt that Arsenal have been in the market for a proven goal scorer for some time now and while there is no better place to look than the very top of the scorers charts, we’re still a little skeptical on the transfer.
Even at the age of 29, Vardy’s £20 million release clause does represent good value for the man who hit in 24 goals last season at the same time in beating the record for most consecutive goals set by Ruud van Nistelrooy back in 2003, not to mention there is no better time to buy than on the eve of the European Championships where any good form would see interest in him skyrocket.
With that being said, the question of whether or not he is a good fit and the type of striker Arsenal need is another question. For all his recent exploits were with Leicester City, a team that would tend to absorb pressure before hitting the opponent on a fast break characterized by the pace of Jamie Vardy and Riyad Mahrez. Would he suit the Arsenal way?
In the early stages of the season and with the Foxes style of play, space behind the opponents defence line was abundant, and was the scene where he would so cunningly pounce. In the latter part of the season, it was clear that the opposition had learned not to take Leicester so lightly and pay them the respects of being a little more cautious in their approach. While he still performed admirably, relative to his early season form, as space behind the defence became more restricted the goals dried up. This is the type of opposition he will be up against with Arsenal and the slow-tempo, possession based game.
It’s no secret that the perfect player for Arsenal is Gonzalo Higuain. As oft maligned as he is; there is no doubt he is a born goal scorer. Quick, strong, aggressive, he uses all his guile to turn and finish (available on display in the link below). The issue however is that Napoli president, Aurelio De Laurentiis, has made it abundantly clear that the only way El Pipita is leaving is if a club matches the £72 million release clause set out in his contract – most likely playing the media in order to net a better price. But with Wenger being Wenger, he would much rather spend that figure over 4-5 squad players rather than someone who will guarantee you +30 goals against the likes of Stoke, Watford, West Brom and co. For those who snicker at the team mentioned, make no mistake; that is where Arsenal lost the league – dropping points to mid to low-level sides.
From the other side of the suspected transfer, Leicester City’s fans are obviously not to keen on the thought of losing their top scorer. However, it must be looked at from a different perspective; he is 29 now, and his market value will never be higher and even if it were possible, his release clause is set at £20 million. Furthermore if next season he fails to replicate his current form, don’t forget this past season was the product of every player playing out of their skin, and if he doesn’t fire Leicester would have missed out on a great opportunity to cash in and get their highest paid player off their books which is never easy.
For Arsenal though, the prospect of this transfer has everyone in a buzz. However we fear it is going to prove to be another costly mistake and another year without silverware of Arsene’s men.