Goalkeeper, Vito Mannone, has gone on loan for the remainder of the season to Championship side, Hull City. This is not a surprise really as the Italian as fallen down the pecking order behind Wojciech Szczesny, Lukasz Fabianski and even Manuel Almunia recently.
Mannone spent a stint last year at Hull City where he appeared 10 times in the Championship. Mannone’s loan is the first Gunner to leave during the Winter transfer window but soon may be followed by young Japanese winger Ryo Miyaichi. Ryo is supposedly a loan target for Martin Jol’s Fulham. Ryo lit up the Eredivisie on loan at Feyenoord last year and his lack of opportunities so far this year has been disappointing to me but perhaps that just shows a shift in focus from Wenger moving away from potential based sides to more experience based sides as the pressure mounts to end the trophy drought. Either way, a loan where Ryo gets action wouldn’t be a bad thing.
In actual transfer news, the Lukas Podolski to Arsenal rumor seems to be laid to rest for now. The German striker looks to be staying at Köln as the player seems to think that a move now may hinder his chance in Germany’s starting lineup with the emergence of Mario Götze and Marco Reus in Germany’s pecking order as Euro 2012 approaches. Not to mention, the old Wenger valuation argument rears its head as Wenger’s assessment apparently doesn’t meet Köln’s.
Finally, as far possible fullback targets, Milan’s Taye Taiwo and Sunderland’s Kieran Richardson are allegedly transfer targets but I have doubts. I doubt seriously that Milan would loan Taiwo to us as we face them in the Champions’ League next month. Even though he wouldn’t play for us against them it highly unlikely to me that they would loan him.
Richardson on the other hand, I’m not sure what to make of. He has played fullback, wing, midfield, etc. in his time at Manchester United and Sunderland, so he’s very versatile. He’s been capped by England before so he has a bit of quality, however, as anybody who knows me knows, I’m not to high on the overall quality of the majority of England internationals, generally. He could be a useful player but I think if he were signed it would likely mean the end of Tomas Rosicky (he’s supposedly a target for Germany’s Wolfsburg) and would definitely mean not re-signing Yossi Benayoun (on loan form Chelsea). Time will tell, I guess.