Arsenal Agree First Signing of the Summer Transfer Window

Sven Mislintat’s parting gift to the club is currently playing in Belgium

Arsenal Agree First Signing of the Summer Transfer Window

Leandro Trossard: 23-year-old winger at Genk

The Gooner understands that agreement has been reached with Belgian club Genk to buy winger Leandro Trossard for €25 million at the end of the current season.

There were reports in the media back in November that the club were keeping a close eye on him, with a view that they might strike a deal during the January transfer window that recently closed. However, with the club restricted to making loan signings, the move will have to wait. Trossard would have been secured to add an attacking option to address the loss of Danny Welbeck for the remainder of the season (added to the likelihood he will be released when his contract expires in June). Instead, a loan deal was struck for Denis Suarez. Will this decision enhance Arsenal’s chances of a top four finish? Time will tell, but you can check our experience and read up on Suarez’s career so far here.

Trossard has taken time to develop, spending four seasons out on loan at various second tier Belgian clubs up until 2016, where he scored consistently. In the two and a half seasons since his return to Genk, he has scored 33 goals in 93 appearances. However, 16 of those have come in 22 matches this season, which suggests significant improvement as he has become more of a fixture in Genk’s starting eleven.

Certainly, goals are probably easier to come by in the Belgian league, but given Trossard’s relative youth, there is belief at Arsenal that he can develop further as he adapts to the stiffer challenge of the Premier League. Genk has previously been a platform for Belgian players that have achieved great success in England, such as Thibaut Cortois and Kevin De Bruyne.

Trossard has been called up for the Belgian national team by Roberto Martinez twice this season, although he has yet to make his debut. One thing Martinez is not short of are attacking options in his pool of players.

The 23-year-old offers versatility, as he can also play in central midfield or as a second striker. Given Unai Emery’s flexible approach to tactics, this would make Trossard a useful addition to his squad.

Arsenal will not know how much they have to spend next summer until their attempt to return to the Champions League either succeeds or fails. Financially, they would be better off qualifying via a top four finish than by winning the Europa League, due to the way the TV pot between English clubs is divided. However, even if they fall short for a third season in succession, they will have some funds to strengthen due to the new Adidas kit deal. There is no question that the money to secure Trossard is in place.

Let’s just hope he is joined by some quality defenders…

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  1. Exiled in Pt

    Feb 08, 2019, 14:21 #113152

    Have to agree Ron , the moment they gave up on Highbury and went with the concrete bowl it has been a downward spiral with lots of spin from the powers that be making promises that would never be kept! From the empty seats on display at most games now it would appear that another 5,000 to 10,000 seats in Highbury would of been far more sensible and my understanding which may be wrong , was that was achievable ! With the syrup in overall charge i do not see it ever improving and do not see the fan base we have now ever chasing him away like the scousers did with there dodgy Yanks.........

  2. itsRonagain2

    Feb 08, 2019, 10:59 #113151

    GR - Hi. AFC always seem to get pilloried for contracts running down yet nobody ever considers that it may be deliberate and measured and justified by the fact that the club thinks losing such players is appropriate and that theyre prepared to shoulder the net cost effect of it which is the clubs prerogative to do if they wish. The word was that Sanchez stats and performance levels had dropped and that his body was at risk of losing its performance capacity permanently. His dismal showing at Utd proves this view had merit. I think AFC were right to allow him to go. I believe theyre right to let Ramsey leave too. i think the Ozil contract was political and was agreed hastily to stave off the media and fan pressure about running down contracts. They ought to have allowed him to go too and took a bit of short term flak. Arsenals management seems to be scared to death of the slightest criticism despite the fan base in the main being historically over tolerant and in truth mind passive and rather dormant on most issues that many other clubs fans would be up in arms about. Whats happened with Ozil is symptomatic of AFCs management this last 12 years. The club is where it deserves to be and in my view, the litany of errors started the day they decided to leave Highbury. Other clubs have learned from Arsenal folly.

  3. GoonerRon

    Feb 07, 2019, 22:39 #113150

    The club made a rod for their own back by letting Ozil and Alexis run down their contracts to 6 months at the same time. When Alexis agitated to leave it strengthened Ozil’s position significantly. That said, the situation was exacerbated in my eyes by today’s modern-day hype. If Ozil hadn’t have signed and left on a free instead it would have been reported as the end of the world as we’d lost our only world class player. As it was, his signing of the new contract was probably over-hyped the other way. Truth is we signed a huge football brand name, who is occasionally exceptional but mostly not, on an over-inflated contract that has acted as a financial straight jacket for the club in the year that followed.


    Feb 07, 2019, 15:23 #113148

    Where did all he pre-season optimism go? It seems there is still some strong support for Dick, myself included, but the overwhelming evidence is that our once loved Club is now on a road to nowhere. The elephant in the room is, of course, the Trump supporting Stanley. On second thoughts I should have deleted "elephant" as it may give him a big idea for the next episode on his "Sports" channel. Anyone for a Mike Ashley takeover?

  5. itsRonagain2

    Feb 07, 2019, 15:06 #113147

    I hear you John and yr absolutely right. The damage to the club in the bigger picture by persisting with him though is maybe greater than not taking the hit on him. Its a good point you make about him playing the long game with that objective. AFC ought to chew on its and get him round the table and go for such a solution. Hes one very ineffective little squirt who on his own is holding the clubs progress to ransom to a degree by no fault of his own isnt he. AFC must know they f-----d up big time when they gave him that contract. They just need to acknowledge it to themselves and deal with it. Im not sure SK is that type of man though. In fairness to AW, im not sure he either asked to buy him or agree his wages.

  6. TonyEvans

    Feb 07, 2019, 15:03 #113146

    I agree Ron. The Ozil farce is surely at the very top of the dreadful business decisions made by Arsenal PLC over the last few years, going right back to Project Youth. We have witnessed bang average players being paid way over the odds; contracts allowed to run down to the wire and, as for transfer policy, did we actually have one! Remember the trolley dashes at the fag ends of the transfer windows - one of which resulted in Ozil himself paraded as some sort of Messiah that was going to lead us to the promised land. I used to be so proud of Arsenal - from the tough, no nonsense defending, right through to the old Etonian connection with the Hill-Woods. That the club has been allowed to fall so far from the standards we used to set is nothing short of a disgrace.

  7. John F

    Feb 07, 2019, 13:40 #113145

    The problem is Ron even if he was for sale at a nominal fee i really cannot see anyone taking on his wages and unless Arsenal subsidize them.Unbelievable decision to pay a then 29year old that much especially when there appeared to be little interest in him from other teams.I wouldn't be surprised if he is waiting for Arsenal to get fed up and negotiate a pay off so he can retire and concentrate on his business venture.

  8. itsRonagain2

    Feb 07, 2019, 11:30 #113144

    For all the negative thoughts about no money etc, the getting shot of Ozil is the key to arresting many of the problems i think. The club just needs to bite the bullet and move him on, take the hit. What a putrid buy he s been. Same Ramsey, the club gets hammered for not paying him the same. Hes not worth it. The clubs is right in my view. Hes s decent lad but very average performer and never pulled up any trees. Good luck to him. He ll be paid well in Italy but be very much a bit part player there. UE has to correct all the bad management decisions of wenger and gazadis re past recruitment before any owner will start to invest again. In many respects i can see where SK s coming from even though im of the view hes not the best owner for Arsenal.

  9. mad max

    Feb 07, 2019, 8:59 #113143

    not sure about this guy he looks good in front of goal, but we're still shopping in the small window, i'm much more excited about the Adrien Rabiot rumours he's absolute class a more skilful version of nemanja matic, very hard to knock off the ball what a signing he would be. get rid of ozil the whole situation of his 350k wages shows how much wenger is to blame for our current predicament, mikhitaryan is on 200k as well.gross mismanagement from wenger and gazidis thank god they've both gone, there is hope emery needs time but his lack of defensive nous is a bit worrying, apart from sitting on his hands for 90 minutes what does steve bould do?. anyway we live in hope C.O.Y.G

  10. John F

    Feb 06, 2019, 23:07 #113142

    Haven't got a clue about this fellow but it looks like problem areas are being looked at.The lack of width has cost us defensively due to the full backs taking on that role and getting caught on the break.Mark is probably right i can see Guendouzi ending up at City for a large fee sometime in the future.

  11. markymark

    Feb 06, 2019, 20:34 #113141

    I like to to make the odd prediction , some of which come off i.e Wenger sacking. My latest one is that I reckon we will lose a fan favourite like Lacazette or Torreira in 2020. Arsenal screwed up badly in terms of asset appreciation and contract negotiations - see Tottenham for role model. Unless Stan decides to get generous and under FFP he may be hindered we need to make a £50m sale. The real sign of mismanagement is that Arsenal have never sold over 35m. An appalling stat for a major club. Wenger turned approx 1m into 14m with Amelka. He then went bloated corporate and lost his bottle neither buying to speculate or selling Ramsey and Sanchez for the right price. Ivan of course was his lickspittle and thank god he’s gone. At least for good or bad our purchases post Wenger are quick and at the right price. The 60/40 good buy / bad buy is I reckon about right overall compared to other clubs

  12. mbg

    Feb 06, 2019, 19:15 #113140

    It does sound like a wenger signing, but remember it's not TOF making it or TOF who'll be coaching him.

  13. mbg

    Feb 06, 2019, 18:54 #113139

    He sounds like another exciting player, that's the type we'll have to get used to now, sounds like, at least that'll be two (players) of the six that Emery wants/says he needs.

  14. The Man From UNCLE

    Feb 06, 2019, 18:10 #113138

    Interesting comment about the MLS Cornish. I feel too that some of the US-Mexican players would also fit quite seamlessly into the game here, not 100% sure if they bring the required quality to lift us up but why not take a punt.

  15. RobG

    Feb 06, 2019, 17:10 #113137

    Well done - if true. That's a real 'exclusive'. Sounds an interesting addition.

  16. Bard

    Feb 06, 2019, 16:18 #113136

    You old cynic Ron. Cornish that post made me really laugh mate. In all seriousness the difference now as opposed to back in the Wenger day is that I dont think Dick has much input into transfers. Sure he might have a view but who comes in depends on others. Dick has to make the best of what he is given. Defensively the future might be Holding/the Greek lad and Sokratis, Mustafi and Kos as back up, so why bother to sign others. Im not as doubtful as some on here. Ive seen more effort and grit from this Arsenal side, albeit it with a few shockers thrown, than any of the Wenger sides of the last 10 years. Guendouzi's first half against City was fantastic and the kid is just 19.


    Feb 06, 2019, 15:59 #113135

    This is the last Sven signing. I have it on good authority that "Young Josh" will be taking over recruitment & will focus on the MLS scene as he feels there is real value to be had there as many of the old sweats currently plying their trade in the US of A will have had good past experience at Premier League or Championship levels. There will also be considerable cost savings due to a massive reduction in the number of laptops & expensive video analyses required as this will be a very slimmed down (but dynamic) operation. Cynical? Moi?

  18. Exiled in Pt

    Feb 06, 2019, 15:19 #113134

    I know it's a bit early to critisice potential new signings but it does have the feel of a le fraud signing. Forget the important areas that need fixing let's get another attacking type player.... GoonerRon your right but can't help feeling it is all still the same old same old!! Let's hope he is more Marwood / Limpar than another Iwobi...

  19. GoonerRon

    Feb 06, 2019, 13:24 #113133

    If true this is a necessary signing, assuming Welbeck is released and Nketiah goes on a season loan at Championship level (which IMO he needs). Given we’re in early Feb it’s probably a bit early to get bent out of shape about what we haven’t yet done in the summer transfer window - with the income from Emirates / Adidas and the wage bill easing with likely departures, I’d be amazed if we don’t strengthen the back line.

  20. peter wain

    Feb 06, 2019, 12:36 #113132

    but we need four new defenders?

  21. Ian M

    Feb 06, 2019, 11:13 #113131

    Sounds like a classic Wenger signing, lol. Impossible to predict if these kind of kids will prosper or not in the EPL, it is a much more unforgiving environment. I also like your description of Emery's 'flexible' tactics. Well, that's one way of putting it. Or a euphemism.

  22. itsRonagain2

    Feb 06, 2019, 11:08 #113130

    Perhaps he can be 'converted' to a centre back!! Wheres AW when you need him? He have a go at converting him.

  23. Exiled in Pt

    Feb 06, 2019, 10:51 #113128

    A young Belgium winger, proven in the Belgium league that looks like less chance for our home grown lads coming through! Have to agree with you Bard would be far more comforting to know defensive issues were being addressed with new players! In theory does that mean only 20 million to spend in summer now depending on what we can sell...

  24. Bard

    Feb 06, 2019, 10:37 #113127

    Thanks for that Kev. I have never heard of him but I guess these are the sort of signings we will have to get used to. Some of them will be good ones but I suspect there will also be some turkeys as well. As others have commented I would feel a lot happier if there was news that we were in for a quality defender.