According to reports, Arsenal are considering selling Gervinho to Galatasaray this summer.
The Daily Express reported this week that the Turkish outfit are considering a summer move for the Ivorian forward with a bid of £12 million to ‘test Arsenal’s resolve’.
Now, whether or not these claims are in any way substantiated, how much resolve do the Gunners actually have over the Ivorian?
Gervinho only arrived at the Emirates in 2011 and has since made only 57 first-team appearances for the Gunners in all competitions.
He arrived as a winger but was this season, likely for want of better forward options, converted by Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger into a centre-forward, playing through the middle.
His stint as a striker was short lived however – he has scored 6 goals this season and managed 2 assists but there are still serious doubts over whether he possesses enough quality to fight for his place in the first team.
He is currently in competition with Lukas Podolski, Theo Walcott, Olivier Giroud, and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain who, between them, have racked up 48 goals.
Whilst goals are not solely what winger or attackers in general should be judged on, assists are and, frankly, his contribution to the creation of penetrative attacking phases of play is inconsistent at best, and ineffectual at worst.
He does possess technical ability but it’s more often his decision-making that is called into question – he comes inside off the flank when he should hug the touchline or cross from the byline, he oftentimes dribbles head first into defenders, losing possession, passing when he should shoot and shooting when he should pass.
As a striker he missed some great chances this season – one against Bradford springs to mind along with another against Bayern Munich – those kinds of chances are what can make or break a career.
Had he scored both, Arsenal may very well have still been in the Champions League and could have progressed further in the League Cup - the margins are fine. Such is life.
Arsene Wenger obviously saw potential in the player he bought for £10.8 million from Lille just two years ago. For such a miserly manager to spend such a large amount on a relatively unknown quantity is rare and, in this instance, it hasn’t really worked out.
I imagine that Gervinho will probably not be sold this summer – I imagine Wenger will keep his faith that the player will come good in the end but a bid of £12 million, should it materialize, would be a very good offer and a chance to recoup some of the money speculated on bringing him to Arsenal.
It’s only speculation but, in my humble opinion, if Arsenal can offload Gervinho, they should.
image: © ronnie macdonald