Joe Cole has been quoted by the Daily Mirror as saying that Arsenal should have signed Gary Cahill on a free transfer in the summer, but instead The Gunners opted to move for David Luiz from Chelsea.
Cahill, 33, was a free agent in the summer after being released by Chelsea – almost eight years after first joining the club from Bolton in January 2012. Instead, Cahill signed for Crystal Palace and appeared against Arsenal on Sunday.
The 61-time England international has huge experience in the Premier League, clocking up 357 appearances in England’s top flight with Chelsea, Bolton, Aston Villa and indeed, Palace. Cahill has been crucial to Palace’s excellent start in the league.
He has helped the Eagles win four of his eight league games played, as well as losing just twice. Speaking over the weekend, former Chelsea star Cole has claimed he believes Arsenal should have signed Cahill when they had the chance.
“What have we said for years? We said it a couple of weeks ago on here, years ago they said it. Arsenal need a strong centre-half, they need quality,” Cole said. “Gary Cahill, for instance, has gone to Crystal Palace and has been very good. A good solid Premier League player who we know would be able to understand the game.”
TBR’s view – Would Cole have been a good Arsenal signing?
Yes. David Luiz is a top centre-back but there are question marks over his defending and distribution. Arsenal needed to bring in a defender that is solid, no-nonsense, wins headers and puts his body on the line.
That is not Luiz. A player like Cahill would have been perfect, given that he is willing to throw himself where it hurts. With Arsenal needing to sort out their defence, landing the experienced Cahill on a free would have been excellent business.