Something that people often sleep on in football is the importance of pre-season friendlies, and what they can do not only for a team’s confidence – but for their overall effectiveness as the real campaign begins. If you don’t schedule enough of them then you probably won’t get the necessary amount of experience or match fitness to deal with the physicality of the Premier League or most other top leagues for that matter, and if you organise too many, then you run the risk of wearing your players out.
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The 2018/19 Premier League season will be getting underway in a matter of weeks, and the final preparations are being made by all twenty teams who will be involved in the top tier of English football this season. Some have more realistic ambitions than others, but whatever the case may be, it’s nice to see that most clubs are heading into the campaign with an aura of confidence as they embark on what will likely be an arduous and very interesting season in the wake of the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
According to the Express and reports from France, Arsenal are once again showing an interest in Barcelona midfielder Andre Gomes. According to a French media outlet, the Gunners are trying to negotiate a deal for the central midfielder.
Does Arsenal need Gomes?
However, with a limited transfer budget, a move for Gomes would not make sense. The Gunners have already strengthened in the centre of midfield with the signing of Uruguayan midfielder Lucas Torreira.
For me, Torreira far better represents the type of midfielder Arsenal need. They needed a talented ball-winner, who has excellent passing ability. If given a choice between Torreira and Gomes, I would prefer the South American star.
According to the Times, Italian club Internazionale are in pole position to sign Bordeaux’s Brazilian starlet Malcom. Inter have reportedly offered an initial fee of around £8.8million to sign the youngster on loan before the deal becomes permanent next summer for a fee of £26.5million.
Malcom had reportedly previously been a transfer target for Arsenal. However, that was during Arsene Wenger’s reign as Gunners boss.
Malcom a talented youngster
Last summer and in January, there were persistent rumours that Arsenal were on the verge of signing the youngster. One of the biggest reasons for the reports was the potential of the youngster.
England’s World Cup journey came to an unfortunate end the other night when they lost 2-1 after extra time to Croatia in their semi-final. It was a heartbreaking way for things to end for a team who had given it everything they had over the course of their time at the tournament, but in all honesty, we feel more pride than we’ve ever felt for an England team before.
As we all now know Arsenal have confirmed the signing of Matteo Guendouzi, and aside from looking like a younger version of David Luiz, you may not know all too much about the guy. He’s 19 years of age which should be an instant sign of his potential from the word go, and he seems to be gearing up for a long and hopefully successful career in world football. While you often can’t judge a book by its cover, his demeanour alone is enough to suggest to us that he could do some big things with the Gunners.
Reportedly, Arsenal target Ivorian midfielder Jean Michael Seri has completed a shock move to Premier League new boys Fulham from Nice for a fee reported to be in the region of £18million.
Seri had been continually linked with a move to both Arsenal and Chelsea. Both London giants were linked with £35million bids for the midfielder last summer. However, the midfielder has now joined Fulham for a much smaller fee than mooted in the past.
Arsenal must be happy with their midfield options
It seems that Arsenal are satisfied with their midfield options. The Gunners already had the likes of Granit Xhaka, Aaron Ramsey and Mohamed Elneny available to new boss Unai Emery before the summer transfer window opened.
According to Football.London, Arsenal have completed the signing of young French midfielder Matteo Guendouzi from Lorient for a fee of around £7million. The youngster is reported to have signed a five-year deal with the North London club.
A video of the youngster signing a deal alongside Head of Recruitment Sven Mislintat and contract negotiator Huss Fahmy has emerged that has confirmed the deal.
Mislintat spotted Guendouzi
Sven Mislintat built a reputation as a top talent spotter at previous club Dortmund. He would spot undiscovered stars and then they would become major stars at the German club.
According to the Daily Mirror, Arsenal’s Spanish international defender Nacho Monreal could be set for a move to Real Sociedad this summer.
The Basque club have sold another Spanish international Alvaro Odriozola to Real Madrid for a reported fee of £30million, so they need a replacement for the youngster. Spanish football journalist Kike Marin is the person responsible for reporting of Real Sociedad’s interest in signing Monreal.
Not in Unai Emery’s plans
The Mirror claims that Monreal is not looking to leave the north London club this summer. In fact, that it could be a battle to persuade the defender to leave North London in the near future.
According to the Daily Star, Sampdoria and Uruguay midfielder Lucas Torreira is expected to have a medical with the club next week ahead of a move reportedly worth £26.5million.
Torreira has long been linked with a move to North London. In fact, it has recently been revealed that he could have had a medical with Arsenal before the World Cup or even during the tournament.
However, understandably the midfielder wanted to concentrate on the World Cup, which his national side exited at the quarter-finals stage on Friday.