On Gustavo, Wenger, and The Ever-Changing Market

Arsenal could sure use a nice, physical, big, strong central defensive midfielder.

However, that's not what I'm here to talk about. That topic is only a small part in this fan post. I'm not here to discuss stats such as interceptions, tackles, aerial duels won or anything like that; I'm here to talk about one very important thing: money.

That's right, the ever sought-after, fluctuating in demand, get-your-hands-off-of-my-stack money. At Arsenal, it's what we are promised to have. Reports say that we could be ready to spend anywhere from 60 to 100 million pounds this summer on players and wages. Ivan Gazidas has promised new, big names, but we haven't had any of that just yet, as I'm sure you are all aware. Gonzalo Higuain, Luis Suarez, Wayne Rooney, and Marouane Fellaini may or may not be joining Arsenal Football Club before September 1st.

Another possible name that has been mentioned here at The Short Fuse but not so much by agents itk is Luiz Gustavo, the Brazilian and Bayern Munich defensive midfielder. He, in my opinion, is the best option for Arsenal on the market because he would likely be cheaper than Fellaini and would perform just as much (although we wouldn't have the wigs, which makes me sad)

Coincidentally enough, we have just been linked with Gustavo this afternoon, by Metro. The price is 8 million pounds, according to that bloke (in all honesty it doesn't really matter if the report is true). I think that is a little low for Gustavo. In my opinion, he is worth 10-12 million, maybe even 15.

Earlier today I saw Bavarian Football Works, the SBN Bayern Munich blog, tweet something along the lines of "Arsenal interested in Gustavo, too bad he's not moving." (I wasn't aware that BFW worked in Bayern Munich's front office.) I decided to check out their website and see what the good folks over there though of this situation. There were only a few comments about Arsenal being interested in Gustavo on their thread, and one in particular caught my eye "8-10 might get you his left leg." Now, when I first read that, I got pretty angry, because first of all he just insulted my club, and secondly he just said that 8-10m is worth his "left leg." Now, If I can estimate correctly, I guess that the whole of Gustavo would cost roughly 30 million pounds.

Obviously that's not his true worth, as I said earlier his true worth is about half that. But, then I realized something that is causing Arsenal so much trouble this window: nobody goes for what they're worth anymore. Why? well because clubs with generous sponsors and therefore a large cash flow just offer 5-10 million pounds or Euros more than what they estimate the player to be in order to confirm that they get that player. Those big clubs with huge cash incomes have come about relatively recently, in the past 5 or so years.

Here are some of the biggest deals so far this window:

Fernandinho to Manchester City for 30m punds

Alvaro Negredo to Manchester City for 20m pounds

Edinson Cavani to PSG for 64 million euros (56,760,000 pounds)

Marquinhos to PSG for 30 million pounds.

Thiago Alcantara to Bayern Munich for 17.6 million pounds

Mario Goetze to Bayern Munich for 32.56 million pounds

Neymar to Barcelona for 57 million euros

Asier Illarramendi to Real Madrid for 26.4 million pounds

Isco to Real Madrid for 26.4 million pounds

Are those players all worth that much money? No, some are worth close to that, some are based off potential, and some are just ridiculous.

*cough* Negredo *cough* Illarramendi *cough*

Arsene Wenger is a great manager for many reasons. He's a great motivator, a great tactician, and most of all, a great bargain hunter. Thierry Henry, Freddy Ljungberg, and Robert Pires (to name a few) were all fantastic players who's transfer fees were even better. But it's a different age now. Bayern Munich's 3rd choice CDM might not be worth 20 million pounds, but he sure as hell might cost that much. Wenger and Arsenal are going to have to realize this if they want him. Wenger has done great things for the club, but now he must do something that can be the most difficult to do: change.

He hasn't yet, but the market certainly has.

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