By Ollie Irish
Germany’s Per Mertesacker climbs higher than Tim Cahill at the 2010 World Cup
I wonder why many Gooners seem to be getting wet in the pants area over the rumour that their club will sign German centre-back Per Mertesacker from Werder Bremen.
Mertesacker is capable of having very good games, but he’s slow and inconsistent – think of him as a superior Pascal Cygan, with more hair. I thought he was one of Germany’s weak links in the World Cup.
To put myself in a Gooner’s Birkenstocks for a second (shudder), I understand the excitement comes more from the symbolic meaning of such a transfer:
1) Mertesacker is big and ugly, and therefore hardly a typical Wenger signing. The last time Arsenal were really successful, they had the biggest and ugliest centre-backs around – Steve Bould, Martin Keown, Tony Adams.
2) Mertesacker is an experienced international, and therefore hardly a typical Wenger signing. Many Arsenal fans have had enough of waiting for tomorrow, especially when tomorrow never comes – they would like to see a more prosaic, realistic Wenger, I suppose. Mertesacker is 25 and at the beginning of his prime years.
There’s no doubt that Arsenal need to find a centre-back or two before the season starts, especially now that Big Shorts Sol has signed for Newcastle Utd.
I’d be very interested to hear what Arsenal fans make of this rumour…