Arsenal are on the brink of tying up two signings just over one week in to the summer transfer window.
The Gunners are not well-known for their fast-paced transfer activity and often leave their fans hanging on until deadline day to make their business complete but this summer looks to be going quite to the contrary.
Arsenal are reportedly close to completing deals for Newcastle fullback Mathieu Debuchy and Barcelona forward Alexis Sanchez for a combined £40 million with just over a week gone in the transfer window. What do these deals reveal about manager Arsene Wenger’s potential plans this summer?
The swiftness with which these deals seem to be progressing shows that the club have been working behind the scenes probably for some weeks now.
Presumably they will have identified their targets, such as a right back to replace Bacary Sagna and a forward to compete with Olivier Giroud but that is not something the club have always done.
There was the summer window in which the Gunners sold Cesc Fabregas, Gael Clichy and Samir Nasri late on in the window and signed Per Mertesacker, Mikel Arteta, Park Chu-Young and Andre Santos on deadline day.
That was 2011 and in 2012 they seemed to learn from that cumbersome scramble and gambles, signing Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud relatively early in the window as well as Santi Cazorla the same summer they sold Robin van Persie and Alex Song.
Last summer was yet another late scramble with club record signing Mesut Ozil coming in for £42.5 million on deadline day from Real Madrid as the club found the manager under intensifying pressure from the fans to spend money on reinvesting in the squad.
This summer it looks as though the manager and his scouting team are intent on replicating the strident and quick movements they made in 2012, bringing in quality players in positions of influence to the team – top players, full internationals with proven quality and experience.
These deals will likely not be the end either – there will likely still be a goalkeeper yet to come in and perhaps even a defensive midfielder but it is clear from the outset in this transfer window that Arsenal mean business.
Last summer they ended up signing Ozil after a set of circumstances that saw their original target Gonzalo Higuain sign for Napoli, their secondary target Luis Suarez stay at Liverpool and with the arrival of Gareth Bale at the Camp Nou they rather rode their luck to sign such an immensely talented player like Ozil at the last minute.
This summer the Gunners appear to be putting their best foot forward, trying to seal deals as early as possible, which helps the new arrivals settle in and get their heads down to pre-season training.