A lot of discussion abounds when a player leaves any close to major Premier League club and especially when they are signed by a top European side outside of England.
The first area of discussion is the price.
The deal looks set to cost Juve around EU40–50m for a five year deal. This figure would normally be seen – in the current market – as a far from staggering figure for a transfer fee alone when considering a proven PL and international talent still very much within the peak years of his career. Juve will not pay a transfer fee, which had Ramsey been in contract for longer, would have been at least 40m. Which would have sent the cost of the deal spiralling to almost double…precluding Juve’s interest.
In short, investing 40m in Ramsey seems potentially a superb piece of business for the player and the club. In fact for everyone but Arsenal…
Why is he leaving Arsenal?
It seems that Arsenal were unable to afford to keep him, after over spending on Ozil and given that Emery has used the player sparingly, the expenditure couldn’t be justified. They had offered an extension perhaps at a similar level he currently earns, but subsequently withdrew, refusing to increase the deal for a player in his prime understandably eager to make the best of likely the final big contract of his career.
“Ramsey has conducted himself with great dignity this season but it is astonishing that Arsenal, a powerhouse in the English game, could not put together a package to keep him.
“The team are still formidable going forward. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette are good enough to grace any team in the Premier League’s top six.
“But the £100 million spent to sign those players last season and hefty wages given to other star players has led to this situation.”
“It’s stupidity from Arsenal to allow someone of Ramsey’s quality to let their contract run down,”
“Arsenal can replace him but it’s going to cost £40m-£50m. That’s where the stupidity comes into it.”
Ramsey was the Player of the Season for Arsenal last campaign.
He was also ear-marked by Emery before officially joining the club as a player he wanted to build the team around.
What appears to be the case is a mixture of Ramsey’s eagerness to play as a number 8 and the manager’s decision to play him deeper or behind the front-men AND the reluctance of the player to agree terms without any wage increase. His natural role is as a central midfielder creating and supporting and getting on the end of moves as well as helping to build them.
What can Juve expect?
As mentioned, Ramsey was player of the season for Arsenal last term. His total silverware haul for his time with the Gunners is>
- FA Cup: , ,
- : ,
- Welsh Young Player of the Year: 2009, 2010
- Player of the Season: ,
- London Player of the Year: 2014
He has a wealth of experience in Europe and at international level and was one of the stars of Wales impressive showing at EURO 2016.
14 goals in 58 games for Wales
38 goals and 51 assists from 252 games in the Premier League
16 goals and 8 assists from 59 in CL and EL.
His injury record has been mentioned by a few Arsenal supporters in response to his departure and it is fair to say he has been troubled in some seasons more than others, but the player is far from made of glass>
17/18 season – missed 11, played 32.
16/17 – missed 22, played 32.
15/16 – missed 11.played 40.
14/15 – missed 15, played 41.
Neither deeply concerning or indicating a physical machine. Somewhere in between like many players.
Will he add anything to this Juve side?
I covered the midfield at some length in a recent piece on here>
The central area of the side has been a problem since the star studded Conte line-up of Marchisio – Pogba – Pirlo – Vidal was disassembled. We lack balance, and dynamic connection between the midfield and attack, with the vast majority of our attacking play flowing down the flanks.
Pjanic often sits very deep. Khedira has been a sloth for at least 2 seasons now. Matuidi is a great engine but not great on the ball and Bentancur has serious potential but is not yet the finished product. The Uruguayan is probably the only one capable of driving forward with the ball at his feet but the reality is that his end product needs refinement presently. Which will come.
What we lack are ball carriers. Those who can not only pick a pass – where Pjanic excels – but who can carry the ball forward, pass players, and continue into the box to get on the end of moves. Ramsey is perfect for this exact role.
The welshman has brilliant feet, an eye for goal from distance or close range and enjoys nothing more than attacking from deep and getting involved in the final third whilst also offering a presence in the middle of the park.
He will add drive and quality on the ball to the side and at 40m (ish) with his huge experience, top drawer mentality and flair, Juve are making a decent signing which will improve the squad.