Steven Gerrard is the man to replace Cesc Fabregas according to Arsenal legend Paul Merson

19 May 2010 05:44
Paul Merson believes Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard is the man to replace Barcelona-bound Cesc Fabregas in the heart of Arsenal's midfield. [LNB]The Gunners rate Fabregas at £50million but Merson believes they should hold out for as much as they can to lure Gerrard, 29, down from Anfield.[LNB]He said: 'I worry about the future of Arsenal. They don't win trophies anymore and they're selling their best players. Where are they going?[LNB] Over to you: With Cesc Fabregas heading for the exit, Paul Mersonbelieves Steven Gerrard is the man to take the Spaniard's place at the Emirates[LNB]'What they need to do is sell Fabregas and take the money up to Liverpool to buy Gerrard.[LNB]'He's the man who could come in and immediately command respect and help the team win those crucial games they have been losing. Who else is there?'[LNB]With rivals Chelsea, Tottenham and Manchester City planning to spend again this summer Arsenal are in danger of losing their foothold as one of England's top three sides.[LNB]And the former Gunners winger wants Arsene Wenger to change his philosophy of buying young, untried players which he believes has left the squad lightweight and unable to compete.[LNB]  He said: 'They need to buy established players who can come in, hit the ground running and win things, players like Gerrard.[LNB]'If Chelsea sold Frank Lampard they'd still challenge for the title but Arsenal won't stand a chance if they sell Fabregas.[LNB]'Five years ago they were this big, strong side. The best team to have played in the Premier League.[LNB]'And in he blink of an eye it has changed and there's all these little blokes running around saying 'ooh, please don't kick me.'[LNB]Merson played under Wenger for eight months in the 1996-97 season, just as the Frenchman was beginning the revolution which would bring three league titles and four FA Cups to the red half of north London.[LNB]But all of the success came in a seven-year spell after he arrived from Japanese side Grampus Eight. [LNB] Enlarge Remember this? Paul Merson (right) and Alan Smith cuddle silverware - something Arsenal haven't seen in five years[LNB]The success has dried up in the last five years and Merson, who made 425 appearances in an 11-year career with the Gunners thinks his former club are slipping from their perch.[LNB]He said: 'I'm tired of hearing about Arsenal buying young and promising players - they need to win something now, not in three or five years.[LNB]I love my club but they've become also-rans. There really isn't much to differentiate between them, Spurs and City. The club has lost that edge.[LNB]'You can toss a coin between those three to decide who's the better side.'[LNB] Future team-mates? Cesc Fabregas may line up alongside Seydou Keita next season[LNB]The Carling Cup has been a breeding ground for Wenger's young guns - a showcasecompetition where the reserves and youth players have traditionallybeen blooded.[LNB]But Merson believes they should use the competition as a launchpad for picking up silverware and developing a winning mentality. [LNB]He said: 'I saw Alex Ferguson jumping up and down on the pitch, celebrating with the fans when they won it in 2005 after a season when they didn't win anything - he was over the moon.[LNB]'United started to win stuff again, going on to pick up three titles in a row. This Arsenal team hasn't won anything, they don't know how to.[LNB]'Hardly any of them has a winners medal and it shows. They get to a certain point be it in the league or in cups and they don't know what to do.'[LNB]Paul Merson is promoting lastminute.com's summer kick off campaign. Visit www.lastminute.com/worldcup for more information.[LNB] Cesc is going home to Barcelona: all that's left is for Arsenal to agree a fee Villa joins Barcelona in £34m deal with Fabregas in line to follow him Why Cesc Fabregas should avoid Barcelona and stay at Arsenal for one more season ARSENAL FC

Source: Daily_Mail