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Arsenal’s rising academy stars that could replace Aubameyang next season

Arsenal’s Hale End academy has witnessed the promotion of many youngsters to the first team. Players like Alex Iwobi, Joe Willock, Eddie Nketiah, Smith Rowe all graduated from the youth squad to the main team before some of them left for greener pastures.

Bukayo is currently the latest successful player produced by the famous academy, and certainly won’t be the last as there are some top teenagers who are close to gaining a spot in Mikel Arteta’s squad.

In this post, we shall be discussing on the top three youngsters who will likely make their first-team debut during next season. Who are the players?

1. Folarin Balogun

Folarin Balogun is a deadly striker who has a very bright future ahead of him. The 18-year-old is highly rated by the club’s hierarchies due to his goalscoring ability which saw him converted 25 chances in 19 Premier League (U18) matches last season. The England U19 international is a powerful striker who is comfortable using both legs. His dribbling skills and confidence in front of goal are other qualities that distinguish him from most of his peers.

In fact, some media outlets are tipping him to replace Pierre-Emerick Aubameyamg next season should the Gabonese striker decide to leave North London this summer. What’s the player’s chance of making his first-team debut next season? 70% I would say.

2. Miguel Azeez

Azeez, 17-year-old centre midfielder, was included in the Gunners Europa League squad prior to the start of the season, which further signifies how he’s highly rated by the North London club. He needs no introduction to many Arsenal fans because his beautiful goal against Aston Villa in one of U18 fixtures was well celebrated by the fans on social media.

The goal was enough to bring him to limelight and he has since been in Arteta’s list of youngsters to be promoted. Apart from his eye for goal and attacking potentials, Azeez’s defensive qualities are equally topnotch as he possesses the energy to make tireless runs during matches. Having featured for the U23 team, Azeez is really close to breaking into Arteta’s team and we believe he has 65% of doing so next season.

3. Sam Greenwood

Scoring 12 goals in 14 games is not an easy task to accomplish, but that was achieved by Greenwood while playing for England’s U17 team. His versatility remains his strongest potential as he can feature as a right winger, left winger or centre forward.

Greenwood has become one of the highly-rated youngsters in the Hale End academy despite joining the youth team last season. He is tipped to make it through to the senior team next season as we give him 70%.

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Emmanuel Adebayor ranked amongst Arsenal’s best former players from Africa

The Gunners are known for the opportunity given to African players to feature in their team. African stars including Emmanuel Frimpong, Yaya Sanogo, Kolo Toure, Emmanuel Eboue, Nwankwo Kanu, Alex Iwobi, Gilles Sun, Jehad Muntasser, and Carlin Itonga have all featured for the North London club in the time past. Many of the listed players had a very successful spell with the team while others failed to live up to expectations before leaving the Emirates Stadium outfits.

However, we shall be unveiling the top five players who had a memorable experience at the Emirates Stadium. So, Who are the best players to have featured for the Gunners in history?

5. Emmanuel Adebayor

The Togolese striker is fifth on the list following his relative success during the three years he’s spent at the Emirates Stadium. The highly controversial star joined the Gunners in 2006 from Monaco and he went on to feature in 143 matches scoring 62 goals in all competitions.

The 2007-08 season was arguably his most productive campaign in the Gunners’ red and white jersey as he found the back of the net on 30 occasions from just 40 starts. Unfortunately, Adebayor didn’t win any trophy with the team before he was captured by Arsenal rival Manchester City in 2009.

4. Alex Song

The Cameroon legend rightly occupies the fourth position due to his breathtaking performances he put up throughout his days with Arsene Wenger’s men. Unlucky not to be part of the invisible Gunners, Song joined the team in 2005 from Bastia (first on loan before the deal was made permanent) and he stayed at North London for seven years. Though the defensive midfielder wasn’t consistent in his early days with the team, he can prevent best players from going past him whenever he’s in fine form.

He would be remembered for his wonderful display in his last few seasons with the club when he finally showcased his potentials and quality. Unfortunately, that wasn’t good enough to prevent the French manager from sanctioning his move to Barcelona in 2012. Did he won any trophy with the Gunners? Sadly No

3. Kolo Toure

The inspirational and sturdy Ivorian deserves the third spot, thanks to the defensive prowess he showcased throughout his days with the team. Despite coming from a lowly-rated Ivorian side ASEC academy in 2002, the former Liverpool man stood his ground against amidst intense competition for spots in starting lineup. He established a formidable partnership with Sol Campbell at the heart of the defence, and he played a massive role in the team’s record-breaking run to 2003-04 EPL title without a single defeat.

2. Lauren

This is another Cameroonian on the list and he justifiably stays in the second position. He was part of the ‘invincible’ squad having joined the Gunners in 2000 through to 2007 in which he played 241 games scoring nine goals in the process. He helped Arsene Wenger’s men to two EPL titles, and he did these same with his country as he led them to two back-to-back AFCON trophies.

1. Nwankwo Kanu

44 goals in 198 games, Nwankwo Kanu tops our list of best five African legends that have featured for the North London club. Despite spending just five seasons under Wenger, the versatile player won two EPL titles, two CAF player of the year awards and two BBC African player awards. It will interest you to know that he was part of the highly-rated invisible Gunners team.

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Ozil makes list as one of top three PL star who could leave this summer

Today on gooner news

Having inherited his current squad from his predecessor, Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta is expected to make wholesome changes to his team in the summer before the start of next season. The Spanish tactician will surely sanction the departure of some players who didn’t suit his playing style an d players who have failed to live up to their billings since he took over from Lljunberg in January.

In the meantime, we take a look at the players in the team and how they’ve performed so far this season before unveiling the list of three players who are likely to be shown the exit door in the summer. See the names below:

1. Mesut Ozil

The German has struggled to make a meaningful impact in the team since the start of the campaign. Though he had a very turbulent time under Unai Emery who often omitted him from the squad list, the former Real Madrid man wasn’t in great form before the League was stopped. The 31-year-old hasn’t done enough to remain untouchable at the Emirates Stadium and he could be told to leave in the summer. He has just a goal so far this season despite featuring in 23 matches in all competitions. The fact that he is close to the end of his contract with the north London club will further force the Gunners into parting ways with him as they would want to cash-in on his signature.

2. Henrikh Mkhitaryan

The former Manchester United player is yet to make his debut under Arteta as he is currently on a season-long loan at Roma. Unfortunately, the Armenian international might fail to feature for the North London side as he could be told leave this summer as part of the manager’s overhauling process. As much as Mkhitaryan can be deadly on his day, his inconsistency might likely be the main reason why his contract won’t be renewed by the club’s hierarchy.

3. Mohammed Elneny

Just like Mkhitaryan, the Egyptian midfielder is currently on loan after failing to break into Unai Emery’s team before the start of the season. The midfielder, who has been a regular starter for Turkish side Besiktas, might equally find it very hard to claim a spot in Arteta’s squad in the coming season despite his fine display in turkey before the league was halted by the coronavirus pandemic. It is believed that Besiktas hierarchies are looking at the prospect of signing him on a permanent deal in the summer which means the Egyptian international may not return to the Emirate Stadium in the nearest future.

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Report: Arsenal and Spurs pushing for Ligue 1 centre back

RMC Sport via the HITC are reporting Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur are still in the race to sign Axel Disasi from Ligue 1 outfit Stade de Reims.

According to the report, the North London clubs target has yet to decide his future with his current employees. This has birthed report linking him with a move to England.

Arsenal, alongside Tottenham, as well as Southampton are thought to be the three leading Premier League clubs vying for his signature this summer, with Reims demanding for a fee in the region of €15 million (£13 million) to part way with their star.

The reported £13 million, according to the report is more than reasonable price, but it’s stated that the only offers received for 22-year-old Frenchman so far have been some way short of £13 million. Still, one cannot ruled out a chance for big move happening this summer, even if his suitors may be trying to hold off and tempt Reims into a cheaper deal.

Both Arsenal and Spurs needs a new centre back this summer, and there’s no way on earth they must be planning on getting a player at below £13 million in these tough times.

Despite Disasi in his early 20’s, he has a strong potential, and he has impressed for a strong and challenging Reims side so far this season. Standing at 5ft 3in, the centre back could develop into a starting defender if brought to England this summer for whichever side he ends up with.

He’s a name in the market to watch for both his suitors at the moment, but the threat of Southampton and other suitors in Spain and Germany swooping in will serve a blow for the North Londoners.

In other gooner news, check out 4 reasons why £23m-rated Victor Osimhen could be Arsenal’s new Thierry Henry

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4 reasons why £23m-rated Victor Osimhen could be Arsenal’s new Thierry Henry

Arsenal and Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang remains yet uncertain to remain at the Emirates Stadium beyond this season as he’s close to the end of his contract with the Gunners. The 30-year-old France-born was the north London club’s most in-form player before the football season was halted by the coronavirus pandemic.

Though it is believed that Arteta and his employers are doing everything possible to see him extend his current at the Emirates, but it remains to be seen if they will be successful in their mission. With doubts over his future with the Emirates, there are reports linking the likes of Barcelona, Real Madrid, Manchester United and Chelsea all vying for his signature this summer, and it won’t be out of place to suggest that the Gunners ought to begin by now their search for a replacement.

Speaking of an ideal replacement to Aubameyang, no other player comes to mind other than former VfL Wolfsburg youngster Victor Osimhen – who currently plies his trade for France Ligue 1 outfit Lille OSC – who should be Arsenal’s top candidate to replace the Gabonese forward should he eventually face the exit door at Emirates this summer.

However, many will doubt what makes Nigerian international the right choice for Arsenal and why Arteta should enter into transfer lock horns with Chelsea and Manchester United for his signature? Answering both questions, below are four candid answers to these questions on why Arsenal should go all out and invest on the 21-year-old forward as they aim for Premier League glory next season.

1. Goal-scoring potentials

Osimhen, 21, was one of the deadliest strikers in French Ligue 1 this season so far with 13 goals and five assists to his name from 27 league appearances. Osimhen also has to his name two goals in the UEFA Champions League for Lille in five matches despite his side’s unimpressive performance in the group stage of the competition. He went on from this to scoring three goals for his side in their domestic League Cups, racking up his goal tally this season to 18 goals from 38 matches in all outings. To lose Aubameyang this summer and replace him with a below-par forward would be a serious blow for the Gunners judging by how star-studded the Premier League now is.

2. Age is on his side

Osimhen is in the prime of his career as he is just 21 years of age. Unlike Aubameyang who is 30, the Nigerian star still more years ahead of him meaning the Gunners will enjoy more of his services should everything go on as expected.

3. Impressive adaptability

If Arsenal must replace Aubameyang without any difficulty, they must go for a player who will quickly get used to the ways things are done in the country’s top-flight league. Despite spending a few months at Stade Pierre-Mauroy, the Nigerian forward was able to adapt to his new environment as he developed a great understanding with his striking partners Jonathan Ikoné, Loïc Rémy and the whole team. He will likely do the same at the Emirates Stadium judging by his obvious hunger and desire for more successes and playing alongside Nicolas Pepe, Alexandre Lacazette, Mesut Ozil and the rest of the team.

4. He is relatively easy to get

Though Chelsea and Manchester United are leading the park for his services, Osimhen won’t be too difficult to get, unlike other European youngsters. His price tag, which is believed to be at £23 million (€27m Transfermarkt), shouldn’t scare the Gunners off which is relatively cheap and affordable. It should be recalled that former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger tried capturing the youngster in 2015 following his record-breaking display during the U17 World Cup but the Frenchman was beaten by German side Wolfsburg. It remains unknown if Arteta will develop an interest in the player when the summer transfer window begins. Hence, we keep our fingers crossed as we monitor how things unfold.

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Why Arsenal should really consider the departure of Mesut Ozil in the summer

Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil is in the final stages of contract with the Emirates Stadium outfit and reporters continue to propose a possible departure from the North London club before the start of next season.

Specifically, the 31-year-old has a year and two months to the end of his agreement with Mikel Arteta’s side, and it is believed that the coach might convince his ex-teammate to remain under his tutelage.

As much as Ozil’s experience might be very important to the team in the 2020-21 season, now is the best time the Gunners let go of their ageing midfielder.

The former Germany international joined the Gunners in 2013 from Real Madrid as one of the best midfielders in the world following his obvious creativity at the middle of pitch.

Unfortunately, Ozil is obviously struggling to reach the standard he’s known for. He has managed just one goal and two assists in 18 Premier League games so far this season.

Judging by the player’s weekly wages, being involved in just three goals is definitely unacceptable for a player of his calibre.

It will be unnecessary to pay a huge £350k for a player who hasn’t really justify his inclusion in the club’s starting lineup since Arteta took over from Unai Emery (on permanent basis) .

So What Next?

It’s time the Gunners release Mesut Ozil and bring in Aston Villa attacking midfielder Jack Grealish in the next summer window. Grealish, 24, is arguably the most in-form playmaker in the Premier League so far.

Despite Aston Villa’s unimpressive performances throughout the campaign, the Englishman has managed to score eight goals and six assists.

He is shouldering Villa’s hope of staying in the top-flight League beyond this season, although the burden seems too heavy for his young shoulders.

Bringing Grealish to the Emirates Stadium as Ozil’s replacement will surely be good a good decision as he will surely deliver more goals and assists than the former world cup winner.

In terms of financial profit, the club have a higher chance to making huge profits from Grealish deal because the young England international will likely receive less wages compared to Ozil’s expensive income.

Intense Competition For The Youngster

However, Arteta and his employers must be on top of their game if they must sign the English international because many clubs are interested in his services.

Manchester United are reportedly leading the park for Grealish’so signature. According to The Mirror, the Red Devils are set to offer a huge sum of £70m to the Villa Park outfits, while they are willing to offer him a £150-a-week contract.

Chelsea are also said to be keeping close tabs on the in-form playmaker. Italian media outlet Calcio Mercato revealed that Frank Lampard is ready to challenge Solskjaer for the Aston Villa man.

Tottenham’s José Mourinho is also a great admirer of the player, and he is likely to launch a surprise bid for him as part of his plans to rebuild the falling North London club.

The Sun revealed that Real Madrid and Barcelona complete the list of clubs targeting the Grealish’s service. This means that Arteta might need to sell Ozil as soon as possible in order to launch a move for Grealish.

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Liverpool could make move to sign Arsenal’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

The English Premier League is currently on break as a result of the Coronavirus outbreak which has prevented many football matches from taking place in Europe and other part of the world since February.

However, the pandemic is unable to stop the media from coming up with latest transfer news regarding players who are likely to change their current club during the next summer transfer window.

The most shocking but interesting news coming out of the Emirate Stadium this morning revealed that Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp is interested in luring Arsenal’s want-away striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to Anfield Stadium in the summer.

According to the Mirror, the former Borussia Dortmund manager is highly impressed with the Gabonese international , and he is ready to explore the player’s contract situation to his advantage.

The 30-year-old centre-forward is in the final year of his contract with the Gunners and pundits can’t stop linking him with a move out of the Emirate Stadium.

Though it is believed that the Gunners hierarchies are in talks with the player’s agent over a new contract but it remains unknown if that will be enough to prevent other clubs from snatching him out of Mikel Arteta’s watch before the start of next season.

Meanwhile, Liverpool are not the only European giants keeping close tabs on the player’s current situation. Manchester United are said to be monitoring the gunners top striker as Ole Gunnar Solskjear is very keen on bringing a goal-poacher to Old Trafford on a long-term deal.

Despite signing in-form Odion Ighalo on a loan deal from Shanghai Shenua In January, Solskjear is still keen on bolstering his side by signing a very reliable goalscorer who can convert most of his clear-cut chances.

Arsenal’s north London rivals Tottenham are also in the race for the player’s services as Mourinho aims to provide a strong competition for Harry Kane.

Jose Mourinho’s men have struggled to win matches since Kane picked up an injury, and they are far from qualifying for next year’s Champions league competition.

The Portuguese tactician will hope to see his employers beat other suitors to Aubameyang’s services in the summer as that will surely boost his team’s attacking prowess during his second season as the Spurs manager.

Barcelona are also linked with a move for the former Borussia Dortmund star as the Catalans begin intense search for Luis Suarez’s replacement.

The Uruguayan has been a huge success at Camp Nou, but the La Liga Champions could release him in the next transfer market due to his late injury concerns.

Aubameyang is reportedly their major target and Barcelona president Josep Bartomeu is doing everything within his power to ensure that the player ends up being the club’s top striker in the 2020-21 season.

Conclusively, Arsenal will definitely want to do everything possible to make Abameyang stay at the Emirate Stadium beyond this campaign due to his goalscoring abilities and Lacazette’s uncertain future.

As for Liverpool, it is yet to be seen how Klopp will feature Salah, Mane, Firmino, and Aubameyang in his starting lineup, should he eventually capture the Gabonese star.

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Top 5 greatest moments in Arsenal’s history – gooner news

The English Premier League 2019/2020 is currently on break due to the Coronavirus pandemic which has halt almost all sporting events. As the world continues to fight the global threat to human life, we advised everyone to maintain a highly hygienic style of life as the Premier League will probably resume in two weeks time.

As we await the return of the world’s most-watched football league, let’s take a quick glance at our club’s history wherein we have found some captivating five moments we would love to share with you.

The club, as we all know, have been in existence well over 100 years. Hence, they have so many great moments and memories as a club. However, we shall be limiting our list to just five special moments that many Arsenal fans won’t forget in a hurry. The top five greatest moments are:

1. The 2004-05 Invincible Season

It all happened during the 2004-05 season when Arsene Wenger’s men played 38 Premier League matches without a single defeat. They recorded 90 points from 12 draws and 26 victories to win the Premier League Title in style.

This is arguably the greatest moment in Arsenal’s history as it remains one of the football records that no team has equal nor broken. In fact, it remains unknown if there is any team that can achieve the same feat in many years to come.Manchester City (30 unbeaten league matches in 2017-18 season) and Liverpool ( 26 unbeaten league matches this season) came close to doing the unthinkable, but they both failed in their mission to match the record.

2. Winning 1988/89 Premier League Title In a Tension-soaked Game Against Liverpool

This is another memorable day Arsenal fans won’t forget in many years to come. The 1988-89 season was so competitive and intense that the winner would be decided after the last game of the season between Arsenal and Liverpool.

The Reds were at the summit of the League table with 76 points, while Arsenal were closely behind them with 73 points. Obviously, the Gunners needed a 2-0 victory over their arch-rival to beat the Merseyside club to the trophy.

The tension-soaked match began on a bright note for both sides, but it ended goalless after first half, but the Gunners opened the scoreline in the second half via Alan Smith’s wonderful goal.

With some minutes left to play, Arsenal who were in desperate need of the second goal put-in more pressure, which eventually paid off in the stoppage time as Michael Thomas found the back of Bruce Grobbelaar’s net.

George Graham’s men won the Title against all odds, including the hostile Liverpool fans. It was a day to remember in the club’s history.

3. Arsene Wenger’s Departure

There is an emotional feeling attached to leaving a place for the first time in 22 years, especially when you have no hope of returning to that place anytime soon. Leaving the Emirates stadium after 22 years at the helm of affairs is one event that ex-Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger won’t forget in his entire life

Just as it is with the Frenchman, Arsenal fans will equally remember the last day of the 2017-2018 season when they gave the Frenchman a resounding farewell party. A hero certainly left the Emirates Stadium, and the club are still searching for his perfect replacement

4. 1997-98 Premier League And FA Cup Triumph

What made this feat a memorable one was the fact that it took Arsene Wenger less than a year to lead the club to another level of greatness. The Frenchman was signed into the club in 1996, and he lifted the League trophy and the FA Cup during the 1997-98 season in a remarkable fashion.

5. The Move To Emirates Stadium

If there is another moment Arsenal fans will cherish for long, that will be the day they left Highbury for the Emirates Stadium in 2006.The Gunners, who had earlier faced tough financial crises, managed to build a 60, 361-seater Stadium which was more deserving of a club that had won the League on many occasions.

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Gooner News: Arsenal defender explains the severity of his injury

Arsenal and Scotland international full-back Kieran Tierney had admitted dislocating his shoulder “three times in 10 minutes” during the Gunners’ win at the London Stadium against West Ham United in December.

The former Celtic defender, who has capped 12 times for the Scotland senior national team, endured an injury-hit start to his career in English football having joined the Gunners from Celtic in the summer, and the left-back finally made his debut in a Carabao Cup win over Nottingham Forest in September.

Tierney’s debut against Nottingham Forest in September was the first of his 11 appearances for the North London club this season so far, with 11 of these appearances coming against West Ham United at the London Stadium, when the 22-year-old was forced off the pitch after dislocating his shoulder 29th minute into the game.

Speaking to SportBible’s Facebook channel via the Daily Mirror, the Arsenal left-back, who’s currently rated at €23m, has now opened up on the severity of his injury.

Tierney said:

“Mentally it was probably the toughest time of my life. In my head I was thinking, ‘I need an operation now.’ I knew,”

“I knew that devastation straight away and I think you can see it on my face.”

The Scott is now returning to full fitness ahead of schedule and hopes his first game would be in the Premier League under Arsenal’s new boss Mikel Arteta when football action returns to normal.

He added:

“I know the way the team play, how they want to play and how the manager wants to do his things.

“It’s never ideal sitting on the sideline watching but I just want the team to win and be successful.

“Everybody loves going out and playing football but to be mentally tough and to deal with all these obstacles and hurdles that people throw at you, it’s the hardest part but when you get to the other side it’s the most rewarding part.”

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Dani Ceballos deserves a lengthy spell at Arsenal

Arsenal’s display against West Ham United on Saturday wasn’t the best performance we’ve seen from Mikel Arteta’s men this season but they would be happy with the 1-0 victory.

The Gunners took the lead at the latter stages of the game as second-half substitute Alexandre Lacazette found the back of the net in the 78th minute.

Though the French striker deservedly made the headline for his inspiring cameo, one player was arguably the major reason why the Gunners maintained a clean sheet against the Hammers.

Real Madrid loanee Dani Ceballos continued his scintillating performance for the team on Saturday. Fresh from his man-of-the-match display against Portsmouth during the week, Ceballos was included in Arteta’s starting XI against struggling David Moyes’ side.

The Spaniard was brilliant at the middle of the park as he showed the defensive aspect of his game. He snatched the ball from West Ham players on 14 occasions ( The Sun)

Apart from acting as an unstoppable ball-winner during the weekend, the 23-year-old was equally important at the final half of the pitch.

He initiated many of the Gunners attacking moves which almost led to goal if not for their wastefulness in front of goal.

Considering the fact that he made 86 successful passes, he had 100 touches on the ball, and impressive numbers of interceptions against the Hammers, Dani Ceballos was obviously one of the best players on the pitch.

The Spanish star is currently in his best form since he returned from his two-month injury, and Arsenal fans are getting used to the player’s consistent performances on the pitch.

Unfortunately, Ceballos is just on a season-long loan from Real Madrid and he is expected to return to the Spanish side at the end of season.

His recent displays for the Emirates Stadium outfits must have caught Zinedine Zidane’s attention and the Frenchman will love to improve his midfield by integrating Ceballos into his plans for next season

However, It remains unknown if the North London Club can reach an agreement with Los Blancos to make him stay permanently ahead of the next season.

Since he joined the Gunners last summer , Ceballos has featured in 24 games and has been involved in three goals (two assists and one goal) in all competitions (Transfermarkt)

Arsenal fans will hope to see another great performance from their newly found unsung hero when they tackle Manchester City at the Etihad on Wednesday.

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“…king of assists is back” – Some Arsenal fans react to Mesut Ozil and Saka’s performance against Hammers

It was a tough London derby at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday afternoon as the Gunners battled West Ham United to the very end of the match. Mikel Arteta’s men weren’t very lively in the opening minutes of the encounter as they almost concede a quick goal in the opening two minutes of the game.

West Ham’s Jarrod Bowen struck the woodwork in the early stages before Michail Antonio also wasted a glorious opportunity to break the deadlock.

However, the home side grew into the game and they piled much pressure on their visitors but it remained goalless throughout the first 45 minutes of the game.

The second half saw a better display from Arsenal who needed maximum points to boost their Champions League’s qualifying hopes for the next season.

Nketiah, Sokratis and Granit Xhaka all have their chances to put the Gunners ahead but the ball couldn’t find its way into Fabianski’s net.

The Hammers also have some chances of their own at the other end of the pitch and one of them was Antonio’s well-struck header that was saved by Bernd Leno’s mighty hands.

After 78 minutes of actions and some controversies, the host eventually broke the deadlock via second-half substitute Alexandre Lacazette who replaced Eddie Nketiah.

The Frenchman converted from close range after a lovely pass from Mesut Ozil. The goal was initially ruled out for offside by the match officials, but the decision was turned down by VAR after a lengthy check.

With the result, Arsenal now occupy the 9th position on the League table with 40 points. They are five points behind fourth-place Chelsea who play host to Everton at the Stamford Bridge on Sunday afternoon, and they have a game at hand.

At full-time, some Arsenal fans took to social media networking site Twitter to express delight with Ozil and Saka’s performance against Hammers. While there are some who believed Saka is very good, others cannot stop admitting the Premier League’s “king of assists” is back.

Below are some of the best selected tweets:

https://twitter.com/LacaSweat/status/1236323335115624450?s=20

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Arsenal’s probable line-up against West Ham at the Emirates Stadium

The Premier League’s match-day 29 fixtures is set to kickoff on Saturday’s launch-time as the Gunners welcome West Ham United to the Emirates Stadium.

Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal side were involved in the mid-week FA Cup competition and comfortably secured a 2-0 victory over Portsmouth at the Fratton Park Stadium and a win against the Hammers on Saturday afternoon will make it two wins in two games for the Gunners

Ahead of the London derby, let’s take a look players that could make the match-day squad:

Goalkeeper

German goalkeeper Bernd Leno is expected to return to the starting XI after being rested against the League One side on Monday.

Though Martinez kept a clean sheet against the promotion-chasing side, I’m afraid he hasn’t done enough to displace Leno from Arteta’s first eleven.

Defence

Hector Bellerin, who wasn’t included in the club’s traveling squad on Monday, is expected to regain his spot in the team.

The Spaniard has been a mainstay in the team since he returned from injury, and he will hope to help the Gunners record a famous victory over West Ham. This means that Sokratis Papastathopoulos will return to the bench for this one.

David Luiz will surely keep his spot at the heart of defense alongside Shkodran Mustafi who was left out of the team that defeated Portsmouth.

Though Pablo Mari was immense for the North London club on Tuesday, it is arguably too early to see him leapfrog rejuvenated Mustafi in the pecking order.

18-year-old Bukayo Saka is definitely set for another starting role as long as there are no unforeseen circumstances.

Midfield

Real Madrid loanee Dani Ceballos and Granit Xhaka will feature at the base of the midfield as they will be charged with the responsibility of providing a strong shield for the back four.

Mesut Ozil will feature as the link between the midfield and attack. The German has somewhat returned to form and his teammates will rely on his creativity to provide some goal-scoring opportunities.

Attack

In-form Aubameyang will return to the line-up following his inactive role on Monday. The Gabonese is currently the Gunners top goalscorer and they will rely solely on his goal-scoring abilities during the upcoming encounter.

Nicholas Pepe is tipped to start despite his unimpressive stats in front of goal this season. The Ivorian has struggled to hit the ground running at the Emirates Stadium but Arteta will likely give him a starting berth against West Ham.

Hale End Academy product Eddie Nketiah is expected to be the club’s centre-forward ahead of Alexandre Lacazette due to his present form.

Summary: Arsenal XI (4-2-3-1): Leno; Bellerin, Luiz, Mustafi, Saka; Ceballos, Xhaka; Pepe, Ozil, Aubameyang; Nketiah.

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Three headlining transfers the Gunners should prioritize in the summer

It’s obvious that Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta needs to make wholesome changes to his current squad in the summer transfer window if he must keep Arsenal be in contention for next season’s Premier League title.

Having inherited the team from Freddie Ljunburg midway through to the campaign, Arteta had to do with the current players at his disposal until the January transfer window.

However, the North London club managed to make some additions to the team with two new players in Cédric Soares (loan from Southampton) and Pablo Mari (loan from Flamenco) during the January winter transfer window, which leaves the Spanish gaffer with few quality players.

That said, there have been speculations in the past couple of weeks linking the Emirates outfits with top-rated players across Europe ahead of the next summer transfer window.

In light of that, amongst players linked move to Arsenal, gooner news have highlighted three players believed will be a shrewd piece of business if the club can prioritize their signing in the summer:

*Note: The names on the list are in no particular order as they are some of the hottest transfer speculations making headlines in Europe and beyond

1. Thomas Partey (Atletico Madrid)

Thomas Partey is arguably the best player currently linked with a move to Arsenal owing to his incredible performance in midfielder for Diego Simeone’s Atletico Madrid side.

The Ghanaian international, who despite being a defensive midfielder, can also be used in the central midfield and attacking midfield has been in red-hot form for the Rojiblance so far this season registering 34 appearances with three goals and one assist to his name.

However, his days with the Madrid club seems numbered with reports that the Gunners are considering to trigger the release cause in his contract with Atletico.

According to FourFourTwo, Arsenal are keen to meet Atletico’s asking price of £42m in the summer amid Liverpool’s interest.

2. Domenico Berardi (Sassuolo)

Domenico Berardi is another player who is being linked with a move to the Emirates Stadium as Offside-football claimed on Tuesday that the Italian star has attracted Arteta’s attention.

The Gunners could be in the market for new strikers following the uncertainties surrounding Aubameyang and Lacazette’s future. Hence, the manager is keeping close tabs on the 25-year-old striker who has scored 83 goals in 245 appearances for Sassuolo.

3. Maitland-Niles (Tipped To Leave Arsenal Next Summer)

As much as getting new players will improve the team next season, it is also good to note that Arteta will have to create space for the incoming ones by letting go of underused players.

Arsenal’s Hale End Academy product Aisely Maitland-Niles is one of the players who could be shown the exit door in the summer. The 22-year-old has fallen out of favor under Arteta who prefers Hector Bellerin and Sokratis ahead of him.

Luckily, the player won’t wait for too long before joining a new team as Serie A sides AC Milan and Inter Milan are reportedly keeping a close tab on his situation at North London.

Report via The Sun revealed that the young man could finally part ways with his childhood club if he fails to regain his spot in the club’s starting line-up before the close the season.

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Good news for gooners has seven-goal striker keen on Arsenal move

There have been speculations that Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta could be forced to look for new strikers in the next transfer window as some of his best strikers are being linked out of the Emirates Stadium.

It is believed that the club’s highest goalscorer Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang could be on his way out of North London in the summer if they fail to qualify for next season’s European competitions.

Another section of the media also have it that French centre-forward Alexandre Lacazette is uncertain to remain at the North London club beyond this season as he could be forced to find a greener pasture next campaign.

However, Arteta’s search for a new striker might not be a long one because there’s one player who’s ready to feature for the team if given the opportunity. Nigerian international striker Josh Maja has revealed his desire to play for the Gunners before the end of his career.

The former Sunderland striker — who was born and raised up in London — has been an Arsenal fan since he was a child and it will be a great accomplishment to put on the club’s jersey.

According to him, playing for the North London club is one of his dream and he will be glad if he achieve it. The 21-year-old is enjoying his best season since he joined Ligue 1 side Bordeaux from Sunderland two years ago.

He has featured in 23 matches for the Girondes in all competitions so far this season, scoring seven goals and three assists in the process.

His goalscoring form caught Chelsea and Everton’s attention during the winter transfer period as reports claimed that both clubs were ready to compete for his services, although, it turned out to be a mere rumor.

Internationally, Maja has one cap for the Super Eagles of Nigeria and he will hope to be involved in Gernot Rohr’s plans during and after the ongoing AFCON 2021 qualifying series.

It is yet to be seen if Arteta and the board member will look towards Maja’s direction, if the need to replace Aubameyang and Lacazette eventually arises before the start of next season.

In other Arsenal news, the Gunners have developed a keen interest in AC Milan central midfielder Franck Kessel who has featured in 120 games for the Serie A giants since 2017.

With Dani Ceballos tipped to return to his parent club Real Madrid in the summer and Torreira’s injury woes, The Express revealed that Arteta hopes to lure the Ivorian to the Emirates Stadium as soon as the transfer market reopens.

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Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta taking a step closer to emulating his former boss

Arsenal manager Mikel and his players endured a tough time towards the end of February as they surprisingly bowed out of the Europa League competition last week.

Though the North London club managed a 2-2 aggregate draw with Olympiakos in one of Europa League’s round-32 fixtures, Arsenal couldn’t progress to the next round due to away goal rule which favored the Greeks side.

However, the team started this month (March) on a brilliant note as they defeated League One side Portsmouth 2-0 in Monday’s FA Cup tie. The Gunners traveled to the Fratton Park as favorites judging by both club’s current status and quality players.

Though Kenny Jackett’s men curtailed Arsenal’s pressure during the first 40 minutes of the encounter, they couldn’t prevent the visitors from taking the lead as Sokratis Papastathopoulos found the back of the net before half-time.

Hale End Academy product Eddie Nketiah added the second goal of the game in the 51st minute to give the Gunners a morale-boosting victory. Arsenal are now through to the quarter-final round of the competition.

Having watched his former boss Pep Guardiola won the Carabao Cup for the third consecutive season on Sunday, Arteta would be glad that he is a step closer to emulating his compatriot by laying hold on the FA Cup glory with the Gunners this season.

However, he still has a long way to go because his team will need to overcome Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City, Leicester City and Tottenham Hotspur’s challenge to win the trophy.

Knowing this, Arteta told reporters that the team won’t dwell too much on the victory against Jackett’s side because they know the quality of teams they will face in the next round.

He told BBC Sports after the encounter:

“There is a long way to go [in the FA Cup] But we’re on the right path. We’ll see what happens in the draw. We’ll keep going because we love this competition.”

The FA Cup competition is the Gunners only hope of claiming a silverware this season, and the players will do everything possible to end the season on a positive note.

Meanwhile, Arsenal left wing-back Bukayo Saka is set to pen a new deal with the club. According to reports emanating from the Emirates Stadium, the youngster has been offered a new bumper deal while will see him remain at the club until 2025.

This will come as a huge relieve to Arsenal manager who is keen on having the youngster in his team for a longer period of time amid speculations surrounding his future.

Saka was in action on Monday and he’s expected regain his spot in the starting XI when the team play host to West Ham United this weekend.

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