Deadline Day is upon us. Today is the day that managers who have had months to makre sure that their teams are ready for the new season fight furiously to complete that last-minute deal before the midnight deadline. The first two games of the Premier League season give a clearer indication of whether the squads are ready and, despite Arsenal’s lack of goals against Sunderland and Stoke, we are not being linked with any strikers. If any deal is to be done today, expect Wenger to bring in a defender and/or defensive midfielder.
One story that is gaining momentum is that Arsene Wenger is looking to bring Michael Essien to the Emirates on a season-long loan. This story probably comes out of the fact that we brought in Yossi Benayoun on loan at the same time last season. Essien has spent a long time on the sidelines and is unlikely to walk straight back into the Chelsea first-team this season. The Ghanian midfielder has been linked with a move to Fenerbache for £8 million, but Wenger is apparently going to intervene and offer him the opportunity to stay in London. Arsenal do need a new defensive mid to replace Alex Song, so this move would seem to make sense. However, I have two big problems with this deal: 1) I cannot see Arsenal paying his wages of £100,000 per week and 2) Chelsea probably won’t want to send somebody like Essien on loan to one of their major rivals.
One player who would seem to be on his way out of the Emirates is Park Chu Young. Our talented South Korean (who we have seen very little of…) seems to be on his way to La Liga on a season-long loan at Celta Vigo. The Spanish media is reporting that he he will travel to the club to undergo medical later this afternoon. Celta Vigo were promoted to La Liga after finishing runners up in Spanish second division last season. The club apparently have a very strict transfer budget and are not willing to shell out the reported £2 million it would cost to take him permanently, but there is the suggestion that they could be looking for a loan with the option to buy at the end of the season. I am sure that more will be revealed later.
Another player rumoured to be leaving the club is Nicklas Bendtner, who could join Juventus. We have more on that transfer, Theo Walcott’s contract situation and the Champions League/Capital One Cup draws here.