There is a transfer story today claiming that Arsenal are ready to make a swoop for Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa from the French champions Montpellier in January. The Gunners were linked with the French international in the summer, but the club resisted and the 23-year old, who is the club captain, decided to stay and help them defend the Ligue 1 title and compete in the Champions league for the first time.
Metro reports that the failure to qualify for the next round of Europe’s top competition, or even drop into the Europa league, has led to a rethink. The versatile defender could be a great acquisition for Arsenal and the report claims that Mbiwa has refused to commit his future to Montpellier, so will be sold for a reduced price.
The strange thing is that Montpellier announced, earlier this month, that their captain had signed a contract extension, taking his deal past 2013 until 2015. That doesn’t sound like refusing to commit to me. Metro does report that his contract runs until 2015, so there is some confusion here. Perhaps he signed the deal to ensure that the club could get a decent amount of money should they sell.
Wenger is an admirer of the player and could still probably get him for less than £10 million, so we will have to wait and see. Hopefully January will see the departures of Djourou and Squillachi, freeing up wages for someone who will actually play.