There has been lots of talk and speculation about Arsenal and the goalkeeping situation, with stories linking the Gunners to many keepers, both in the Premier League and abroad. The latest player to be rumoured to be on Arsene Wenger’s list of targets is the Chelsea and Czech Republic keeper Petr Cech who is still brilliant for the Blues but is getting on in years.
We have heard that David Villa wanted to join Arsenal in January and that the Gunners tried two or three times to sign him, but Barcelona would not sanction the move. They have insisted that they need the striker for the rest of the season, which suggests that they will be open to offers in the summer.
If Arsenal are still keen on signing the 31-year old at the end of the season, however, they may have to fight it out with Athletico Madrid for his signature. Spanish newspaper AS reports today that Villa has gone to the top of the list of targets for Athletico if they have to replace the Colombian goal machine Radamel Falcao. The club have done well to hold on to Falcao so far, but not many expect them to be able to do so this summer.
Now that it seems as if Arsenal will not be able to persuade Barcelona to part with David Villa, even though he wants to leave and Arsenal are willing to pay for him, Wenger may concentrate on another Spanish forward Adrian Lopez. Arsenal are rumoured to have put in an offer for the 25-year old already, but it was a fair bot lower than his release clause of £15 million.
There are signs that the player has had his head turned by the interest from the Gunners. His manager at Athletico Madrid, Diego Simeone, has told the Spanish media that he was unhappy with the striker’s attitude on Sunday, and that is why he was substituted after about an hour.
There have been rumours and reports that Arsenal have spoken to Barcelona about the transfer of their 31-year old striker. Apparently Arsenal have offered around £14 million for the Spanish international, which should be enough to persuade the Catalan giants to sell, as they are bringing through the young players Pedro, Tello and Alexis. They also have a certain Lionel Messi who seems to have hit a bit of form.
There were reports last week that an agreement had been reached between Arsenal and the Turkish international Arda Turan for his transfer to the Emirates from Athletico Madrid. The 25-year old left winger had said some things to the Turkish media that now seem to have been a bit premature.
Chelsea and Liverpool are also keen on Turan, so even if Athletico do agree to sell him, he will not necessarily be heading to North London as a Gunner. The reports that Chelsea had activated his release clause of around €24 million also seem to be wrong, because the manager of the Spanish club, Diego Simeone, has stated that he has heard nothing.
Spain has been a happy hunting ground for the Arsenal boss recently, or at least Spanish players have. His best bys in the last two seasons have been Santi Cazorla from Malaga and Mikel Arteta from Everton. It looks like Arsene Wenger is going to try to keep the run going in January with a bid to bring Adrian Lopez from Athletico Madrid.
Wenger praised the astute scouting of the new Swansea City manager, Michael Laudrup, this week for his signing of the Spanish duo Michu and Pablo Hernandez, and the Spanish Primera Liga is definitely becoming a place that English Premier league clubs are looking at for new talent.
Any team in the world, including Arsenal, would love to have the Colombian hit man Radamel Falcao in the team. He single handedly kept Athletico Madrid level on points with Barcelona at the top of the Spanish La Liga table last night.
Madrid were away at Real Sociedad and had hardly a sniff at goal until they won a free kick right at the end of the game. Up stepped Falcao and struck a sublime shot into the top corner. Let’s get real though, even if we have the money, Arsenal are not going to spend £50 million on one player.
Arsene Wenger is to be handed a substantial amount of money to spend on players, if you believe what you read in the newspapers, and rumours are circulating about what position and players it will be used for. Top of the list seems to be a striker, with Arsenal being linked with a large number of players such as Fernando Llorente, Robert Lewandowski and even Radamel Falcao.
One player who will not be joining the Gunners, apparently, is Falcao’s team mate at Athletico Madrid. Adrian Lopez is not talked about too much as all the media focus on his Colombian strike partner. Adrian is no slouch, however, he scored 11 goals in the Europa league alone last season.