According to the Daily Star, Arsenal has surprisingly entered the race for Liverpool star and Denmark captain, 29-year old Daniel Agger. The Danish center back has in previous years been linked to a move away from Anfield, with Barcelona mooted as a possible destination in the past. It looks now that Agger has drawn the attention of Arsene Wenger with the departure of Thomas Vermaelen seemingly imminent.
Although it remains to be seen if Liverpool would be willing to strike a deal with a rival to the Premier League title, Arsenal could lodge a bid of around £12 million to pry away the center back from Liverpool. Agger had been linked to his former club Brøndby earlier in the summer, with Brøndby’s chairman making their interest in bringing back Agger clear.
“We will work really, really hard to secure Daniel but as he has also said, when he was here with Liverpool, the timing has to be right,” claimed Brøndby chairman, Jan Bech Anderson.
Agger himself has done nothing to quash rumors about a possible departure from Anfield, especially considering Brendan Rodgers recently brought in Dejan Lovren from Southampton for £20 Million, and the emergence of young French center back Mamadou Sakho last season.
“It is no secret that I had problems last season and I am considering things,” Agger reportedly told Danish newspapers in July.
This would follow a new summer pattern of the Gunners splashing out the cash in an efficient way that adds to the depth and quality in areas of the squad that are lacking. A signing such as Agger would absolutely fill a need in the squad and would certainly not be a downgrade.
When, as expected, Vermaelen leaves, Ignacio Miquel would be the only center back in the squad backing up Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny. Miquel did not enjoy the most successful loan at Leicester City last season and has had a shaky preseason so far. Newly signed Calum Chambers can provide cover as well, as he did admirably at the Emirates Cup this past weekend. However, Wenger seems to see him as a future defensive midfielder.
A signing such has Agger would neither improve nor hurt Arsenal. This does not mean it would be a bad signing as Agger is an established international center back with almost a decade of Premier League experience, which is exactly the type of defender Wenger is most likely to look at. He would directly replace Vermaelen and provide adequate cover to both Mertesacker and Koscielny, but it’s unlikely he would push either of them for a starting spot.
A signing such as Mats Hummels would improve the team, as he would provide direct competition to Koscielny and Mertesacker and push both of them for their starting births in the first eleven. Depending on the amount needed, the money might be better spent elsewhere, such as on a defensive midfielder, rather than on a player about to hit his thirties and would most likely not be a first team choice.
It is true that Arsenal are in need of an additional center back, and it could be argued that they need two more when Vermaelen does leave. However, the lack of evidence proving Arsenal’s genuine interest in Agger does not strengthen the credibility of this rumor. It also seems that if any center back were to leave Anfield, it would be former Gunner, Kolo Toure, who made a number of high profile mistakes last season.
Liverpool are unlikely to want to help a rival contender for the Premier League, especially one such as Arsenal who have arguably added a great amount of depth and quality this summer. Therefore it is highly unlikely that this transfer would go through.
I think that the Daily Star is grasping at straws with this one and I would be surprised if this transfer went through. I am giving this a 20 percent chance of actually happening.