Three reasons Arsenal should sign Lewandowski over Benzema
Ned Bristow looks at three reasons Arsenal should sign Robert Lewandowski over Karim Benzema
1) Out and out striker
If there’s one thing Arsenal have, it’s an abundance of fluid attacking players who can interchange between central midfield roles, spells out wide and passages of play as the spearhead of an attack. In Karim Benzema, the Gunners would sign a great player, but one that they have carbon copies of readily available. In Robert Lewandowski, however, Arsene Wenger would gain a more natural striker; a clinical fox-in-the-box who excels as the central focus of an attack and still has the versatility to occasionally drift out, pulling bewildered defenders with him and exposing gaps. His hold up play and finishing is superior to Benzema’s, and his willingness to plug away at the heart of defences, testing centre halves is something they are lacking despite the best efforts of Olivier Giroud. Coupled with Lewandowski’s lethal finishing, Arsenal would find in the Pole someone to push them towards the Premier League summit.
The former Borussia Dortmund man, who turns 27 today, has a notably better attitude than that of Benzema, which is something that would appeal to Wenger’s management style. This attitude contributes to a phenomenal consistency, which in turn sees the Poland captain seldom endure prolonged goal droughts. Benzema has been known to have his goals dry up at various over the years, and the excuse that Real Madrid have other focal points to their attack does not stand up in the argument between his abilities and Lewandowski’s. To say that Bayern do not have as many phenomenal attacking outlets as Real would be naïve, and Lewandowski has shown he can adapt his game to continue to be a consistent threat, which is something he would have to do should a move to the Emirates materialise. The Gunners have a wealth of attacking players all eager to participate in moves going forward, and Lewandowski’s first season at Bayern shows that he is capable of finding his place and then some among the goalscorers.
3) Intra-club relationships
Pep Guardiola’s style, it is fair to say, does not suit some of the big stars at Bayern Munich. Unfortunately, it appears Lewandowski is one with whom it does not sit well, and relations between the player and coach are said to have soured. This would make Lewandowski open to new challenge, with the Premier League surely one of the striker’s ideal locations. While Benzema’s agent has spoken on his client’s happiness at Real Madrid, Guardiola and Lewandowski’s apparently strained relationship could mean Arsenal are able to negotiate a slightly reduced price for the man who netted 17 league goals last season.