Ever since Leicester lifted the title last year there has been speculation as to if they could hang on the key players that inspired them to win the Premier League.
Jamie Vardy has elected to stay with the Champions despite the lure of the Emirates and N’Golo Kante has headed to London, alas to the blue side of the city. But the player that arguably lit up the most stadia from Newcastle to Southampton was Algerian winger Riyad Mahrez.
Mahrez (25) was a revelation last season contributing 17 goals and 14 assists in 37 games and forming a devastating partnership with Vardy. This return earned him the PFA Players’ Player of the Year and PFA Fans’ Player of the Year for 2015/16. Links with a top club were inevitable and Arsene Wenger has long been an admirer.
As the start of the new season looms it looks like Arsenal may well get their man with a £37million move featuring heavily in the press and Mahrez would fit in well as a Gunner. Wenger needs to improve on the 2nd place that he has become so familiar with and its goals he needs to help propel Arsenal just that little bit further up the table.
Olivier Giroud is a good striker but his conversion rate is a source of frustration to most Arsenal fans, Danny Wellbeck and Theo Walcott have both suffered with injuries as has Alexis Sanchez and Joel Campbell is seemingly out of favour. Not since Robert Pires have Arsenal had a truly world-class winger who can bring flair, pace and goals to the side. The assists Mahrez brings could also well help Giroud find the back of the net with a greater frequency as his ability to unlock Premiership defences is known and feared.
This has to be the season for Arsenal, Wenger’s current contract is in his final year and he has a truly talented team that just needs a few key positions strengthened to mount a major challenge. On that note another centre back would also be a priority to help stiffen the back line in the temporary absence of the injured Mertesacker.
Bet on Brazil have Arsenal at 6/1 to lift the title next year, odds that will surely drop if Mahrez is brought on board. There are also some great prices on top goal-scorer so head on over to www.betonbrazil.com and back the Gunners to glory.