With Declan Rice almost confirmed, out of him, Maddison and Mount, who has got the best deal?
I really like Declan Rice. West Ham have held out for the higher fee and I totally agree with what they’ve done because he’s a quality player and they need to replace him well. I’ve been really impressed with Declan. He’s a step higher and will continue playing regularly for England - you wouldn’t say that about Maddison or Mount though.
Spurs have got themselves a good deal by signing James Maddison for £40million. He’ll be a great player for them if he can stay fit.
Mason Mount could also go on to do really well at Man United.
Caicedo has been heavily linked to Arsenal in the past, but now looks like he’s going to Chelsea - who would you have preferred: Caicedo or Rice?
I’m absolutely happy with Declan Rice signing. I know Mark Noble and he says he’s a great lad. I’m certain he’ll fit in perfectly at Arsenal. They have a young squad and he’ll bring a lot of experience to the team.
I’m pleased Declan has won his first trophy already and I hope he can win a few more with Arsenal.
I like Moses Caicedo. I think he’ll be the perfect fit for Chelsea. He’s really strong, always wants the ball and when I watched him play for Brighton against Chelsea, he was one of the best players on the pitch.
I can see Enzo Fernandez and Moses Caicedo forming a great partnership.
Do you think it’ll be a mistake if Arsenal let Partey leave this summer?
I can see Thomas Partey still playing a part for Arsenal. He was one of our best players in the first half of the season. He dropped off a little bit but when playing Champions League football you need strength in depth and Partey would give Arsenal that.
On the flip side, it’s all about balancing the books. We don’t know what money he will want so it’ll be a big commitment for Arsenal to hand him a new four-year deal that he could also get somewhere else.
Where is Arsenal’s next priority? Who specifically should they target?
It all depends how much money Arsenal have left. They still have to get a striker in and I think they should give Florian Balogun a go because he did really well in France last season. I’m lucky that I get to watch pre-season games, as well as training and I can see it being an interesting watch.
Is there more pressure on Mikel Arteta next season?
Of course there is more pressure on Mikel this time around because he’s been backed in the transfer window but he’ll know that. Every single manager in the Premier League is under pressure. Mikel will want to go one further and win the league next season. The Champions League performances will be interesting and I’d still like Arsenal to try and win the FA Cup because it’s still a top trophy.
On Man United
Were you surprised that United were able to land Mason Mount?
It’s an interesting move. You never know what players are thinking and I don’t know what Chelsea were thinking. His message was a nice one to the Chelsea fans, although I don’t think they are that bothered about it.
Mason wasn’t going to end up a Frank Lamoard or John Terry at Chelsea. He has to move forward and not worry about Chelsea anymore. Mount has to focus on doing his best and try to become a legend at Old Trafford.
How do you think the takeover will impact Erik Ten-Hag’s pre-season? How do rumors of a takeover impact players in the dressing room?
The players won’t care less about the noise surrounding Man United’s takeover. Nothing will be changing in their contracts and they’ll be focused on taking care of the on the pitch matters. Whenever there was talk of who had the most shares when I was at Arsenal, we just got on with things. The only way it will impact Erik ten Hag is when it comes to what money is available to sign players.
Could you see Klopp’s team returning back to the top 4 this season?
Liverpool came good at the end of last season and I think they can probably do that again next season. Alexis Mac Allister is a very good signing.
It’ll be interesting to see how they get on because the top four and top six are so strong now. We’ll have to see if Newcastle overachieved last season or if they can replicate what they achieved again. They deserved to claim a top four place but it’s now a question of where they go now.
Liverpool have to finish in the top four for a successful season but it won’t be easy because the league is so competitive.
If Liverpool miss out on the top four, could you see Jurgen Klopp leaving?
Jurgen Klopp has done a fantastic job with Liverpool. You can’t just sack a manager like that. There would have to be a plan in place and a suitable replacement ready. Liverpool could already have a shortlist of potential candidates because most managers don’t stay at clubs that long. There are no more Sir Alex Ferguson’s or Arsene Wenger’s about - they were one offs.
Jurgen isn’t a stupid man. He’ll know that if he doesn’t do the business this year, he’ll be under even more pressure.
Who should Chelsea try to replace Mount with?
Chelsea’s biggest priority should be a striker. They need to try and sign Harry Kane but I don’t see him wanting that move given his connections at Tottenham. He has a good relationship with Mauricio Pochettino but that’s not enough. You have to think about the fans. I think the Spurs fans would accept Kane going to Manchester United but they definitely wouldn’t like it if he ended up at their London rivals.
Daniel Levy has quite a big dilemma because either he takes the reported £90million fee now or he takes a risk and Kane goes on a free next season. Harry will definitely have his eye still on Alan Shearer’s Premier League record. In an ideal world, Harry Kane will sign for Bayern Munich.
How do you see Ange Postecoglou doing at Tottenham?
Spurs and Ange Postecoglou should be targeting a top six finish. We don’t know how Ange will do in the Premier League. He’s a very good manager and did a great job with Celtic but Scottish football is easier than England. I’m sure Steven Gerrard would tell you that as well.
The league is so competitive and whilst they’ll want to push for the top four, it won’t be easy so they should focus on a top six finish.
One thing is for sure, Maddison is a good signing and I’m sure Harry Kane will be getting a lot more opportunities to score if he stays at Tottenham.
Are chances of Steven Gerrard returning to the Premier League fading after his move to Saudi Arabia?
I hope Steven Gerrard returns to the Premier League. He is still a young manager and he did a good job with Rangers. It’s a strange move but he’s done well for himself financially. Is it a step up in his career? Who knows. Given a couple of years, Saudi Arabia could be home to all of the world’s best players. They’ve got the money to do it and we’ve already seen Ruben Neves make the move.
Saudi Arabia is a move you make when you’re 33 but they’re already attracting players who are only 25 and 26. It could be a league we’re all watching regularly in a couple of years.
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