Jamie Vardy is the wrong man for Arsenal

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What a twelve months it has been for Jamie Vardy. A record for most consecutive goals scored, a title winner and a place in the England squad for Euro 2016.

All of this must be more than he dared to dream of last June, and to add to it all, there could be a big money move to Arsenal in the offing.

But is this really the right move for the player or the club?


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Arsenal fans have long been hoping for Arsene Wenger to splash the cash in the transfer window, and a new striker has been top of the list of priorities for most of them.

Olivier Giroud has never really convinced as the man to lead the side to the title. Despite being a solid performer, for club and country, the 16 league goals last season represents his joint best season haul, and that simply isn't good enough for a title challenging side.

That 20-goal striker has been the missing link for too long at the Emirates Stadium - since the days of Thierry Henry - and has been a problem Wenger has struggled to rectify. 

However, Arsenal fans would be forgiven for feeling a sense of Deja Vu over the Vardy transfer.

Fifteen years ago, Wenger splashed out on a one season wonder English striker, proclaiming him to be the answer to Arsenal's attacking issues.

Francis Jeffers came from Everton to be the 'Fox in the Box' striker after showing promise for the Toffees. Admittedly, Jeffers had not scored 20+ goals in a season like Vardy had (in fact his best return had been six), and Jeffers was signed for future potential, whereas Vardy is now at his peak, but it never looked a good fit for the team and Vardy does not either.  

Vardy's success this season has been based on two factors - regular football alongside regular partners and Leicester's counter-attacking style.

Arsenal do not play the same eleven every week as Leicester had done last season. Wenger chops and changes his midfield and strike options on a regular basis, so it will take time for Vardy to build up relationships with his new team as he has currently with players like Riyad Mahrez and Shiniji Okazaki.

At Arsenal, he will find he is supported by slightly different midfield players from week to week, and will also find himself rotated for Giroud and Danny Welbeck, making it increasingly difficult to build any rhythm.

In addition, Arsenal play a much different way to Leicester. Last season the Foxes had a lot of success playing a counter-attacking brand of football, soaking up pressure and then breaking with pace.

At Arsenal, the team will be the side piling on the pressure and playing a more possession based game. Teams also defend a lot deeper against the Gunners, leaving less space behind the defence for Vardy to attack.

His pace on the break is one of his greatest assets and this will be nullified at Arsenal. Arguably this is a reason another Premier League speed merchant - Theo Walcott - has not developed as many were expecting.

With the new Premier League TV deal in place for next season, it is not even as though Arsenal will be able to blow Leicester out of the water financially, with the wages on offer under his new Foxes contract comparable to what Arsenal pay many top earners.

As such, maybe Vardy will be better served staying put at the champions rather than making the move.

Would Jamie Vardy be a success at Arsenal? Let us know YOUR thoughts in the comment section below!

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Thierry Henry
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