Arsenal’s recruitment has had a distinctly German flavour since the arrival of Sven Mislintat, with a particular influence from Borussia Dortmund as they seek to assemble a squad to take them out of the post-Arsene Wenger era.
Greek international Sokratis Papastathopoulos is widely expected to be the next man to form Unai Emery’s Gunners revolution, joining from Dortmund on July 1 in a deal worth a reported £16m to bolster the backline.
Arsenal have needed a commanding central defender for many a year but Wenger’s attempts to rectify the issue were largely unsuccessful so Emery will hope to have better luck in the opening stages of his reign.
However, with every transfer, there are major consequences for the buying club, in terms of their existing squad and elsewhere and Football FanCast have taken a closer look at some of them if the deal does get over the line…
Koscielny has been the glue holding Arsenal’s backline together for many a year but the arrival of Sokratis may well change that.
The French international suffered a serious injury against Atletico Madrid in the closing weeks of the season and he will be 33 by the time he recovers.
Not many players of that age get back to their best and by the time he returns, Emery will hope that his Greek recruit will be fully settled into Premier League life and flourishing. Koscielny may be forced to leave North London.
In the enforced absence of Koscielny, Emery may have little option but to partner Sokratis with German international Shkodran Mustafi in the early weeks of the season.
As poor as the former Valencia man has been at times, there is a suspicion that he just needs a solid partner alongside him and his confidence should return.
Also, Emery prefers a 4-2-3-1 and greater defensive protection in front of him from two holding midfielders could also bolster the Gunners defence and provide the foundation for almost instant improvement.
Konstantinos Mavropanos showed glimpses of what he could do towards the end of last season, most notably in an impressive debut performance against Manchester United.
Perhaps the arrival of his countryman Sokratis could see him jump ahead of Rob Holding and Calum Chambers in the central defensive pecking order to establish himself as a solid backup.
If Mustafi doesn’t make the necessary improvements and Koscielny struggles slightly with his injury, Emery may even end up with an all-Greek central defensive duo by the end of his first Emirates season.
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