The transfer rumours have begun anew with Toure's departure. Brede Hangeland and Sebastien Bassong are being mentioned as possible replacements, although the Newcastle man maybe heading to Spurs. Wenger might have brought in Thomas Vermaelen from Ajax as cover for a possible Toure transfer which had been afloat for a long time after his spat with Gallas.
Having said that, it still begs the question whether we can do with the center backs that we have at our disposal. Thomas Vermaelen is ready to start. So who will his partner be?
William Gallas: The ex-Chelsea player did not entirely convince last season and he now has knee injury concerns. He is getting on in age, and at 32 years, naturally lost a step in his vertical spring and speed on tackles. For all his experience he does not inspire with his abrasive attitude.
Johann Djorou: The tall Swiss center back has been in and out of the first squad for five years and saw the most action in 2006-2007 before being loaned out to Birmingham. Since his return he has been mostly used as a cover for Toure. Has never played an entire season.
Mikael Silvestre: The most inexplicable Wenger signing. A Man Utd reject. Slow and less than sure footed with his tackles. He was embarrassed by Didier Drogba in last season's FA semi-finals. Fans barely endured his presence when Gallas got injured in April.
Phillipe Senderos: Substantial in the air. Questionable speed and decision making. He has provided cover for both Toure and Gallas. Had a very good 2007-2008 season in both EPL and CL matches which led to a Milan loan. He is on Wenger's list of probable sales.
Alex Song: An uneasy makeshift holding midfielder last season. Did not come close to providing the sort of wall that Gilberto was famous for but picked up the rougher aspects of the game quite well. Not entirely convinced of his defensive skills.
So yes, there are options but if you look closely only the Vermaelen - Gallas pairing have both experience as well as the necessary skills to provide defensive depth. If one of them is injured, one has to consider the variable experience and competence of the rest of the center backs. We need one more tough tackling center back with experience.