The former Liverpool man has been quoted as saying a move back to the Premier League may be a possibility. While Chelsea are immediately being linked with a move for the Real Madrid man would Arsenal be able to prevent a Rafa-Xavi reunion and should they?
Arsenal’s season has been full of ups and downs. From League Cup defeat to Bradford and chanting of ‘We want our Arsenal back’ to the magnificent 7-3 victory over Newcastle and a mini-renaissance with Theo Walcott as main striker Southampton gave them something of a minor reality check on New Years Day. The relegation threatened side were Gunner-fodder earlier in the season but The Saints were more there equal in a fortuitous 1-1 draw after Guly Do Prado gifted Arsenal an equaliser.
While it certainly was not a stop the press, abandon ship, don’t panic Mr Mainwaring moment Mark Lawrenson of Match of the Day still felt the need to make it clear the club needed to buy in January. At the moment Arsene Wenger’s men are certainly in the hunt for a European spot but find themselves well off the pace in the title hunt; 18 points adrift of Manchester United.
For once Lawro actually has a point. The team is of course extremely young and does seem to lack genuine leaders on the field. The Emirates sometimes receives quite unfair criticism about its reaches in the decibel counter and the same could be said about on the pitch. Thomas Vermaelen, Mikel Arteta and Jack Wilshere are perhaps the players that are most vociferous on the field but none of them carry that level of leadership that some of the teams above have in the likes of Vincent Kompany, Frank Lampard, Robin Van Persie etc.
So could a perfect option have just come up in the transfer market?
"I've no idea what will happen. I have not decided on my future. I will only stay at Real Madrid if I can offer the same level on the pitch as I can now and we will see what happens in the next few months. There is always a chance I could go back to the Premier League as I always enjoyed good times there."
Those were the words of Xabi Alonso earlier this week.
While understandable links with Chelsea and Liverpool would always materialise due to obvious reasons the former Anfield hero could also look at a move to Arsenal favourably. Arguably Wenger has not had a midfield leader in his club since Gilberto Silva moved on in 2008 and the 31-year-old Real Madrid midfielder could slot in to the heart of the midfield with ease.
Wenger rarely moves for players over the age of 30 but with Alonso the talent that he would be bringing along with his other qualities would make him a superb buy. Considering his deal at Madrid runs out in 2014 Los Merengues would not have the luxury of being particulary stingy on the price-tag either.
The two would be going into almost direct competition but he is also boyhood friends with fellow Spaniard Arteta which could also act as a bargaining tool for any deal.
Needless to say if Alonso’s availability continues to be flaunted in such a way Arsenal would be completely mad not to, at least, ask the question.
Would you like to see Xabi Alonso at The Emirates?
image: © Jan S0l0