Iy is still around six weeks away, but a lot of the talk about Arsenal Football Club is increasingly turning to the January transfer window. Even if Olivier Giroud had continued hitting the back of the net as he was a little earlier in the season, the need for a back-up striker would still have been clear, but the Frenchman has started to look like the workload is taking it’s toll.
The Juventus striker Fernando Llorente has today acknowledged his frustration at a lack of first team football at the Turin side, as he continues to be heavily linked with a move to Arsenal. The Gunners boss Arsene Wenger is said to be keeping a keen eye on the situation and could make a move in January.
The Spanish international, who was a revelation at Athletic Bilbao, has struggled for game time since joining the Italian champions on a free transfer. The lanky forward has acknowledged that with the club having so many strikers, first team football will be limited and seems to have issued a ‘come and get me call’ to any potential suitors.
With the imminent departure of the Danish international Nicklas Bendtner, Arsenal continue to be linked with potential bids for world-class strikers all over Europe. If recent reports in the English media are to be believed, the North London side are already in talks to acquire the services of lanky forward Fernando Llorente from Italian side Juventus on loan.
According to The Independent, the Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is keen to bring in top quality back up for Frenchman Olivier Giroud as his team continue their push for the title and might well have his sights set on capturing the Spanish international. The former Atletico front man has had his first-team opportunities cut short this season due to the presence of Mirko Vucinic, Fabio Quagliarella and the summer arrival of Carlos Tevez.
There is still time for things to change, but at the minute it is looking like Arsenal could get the Spanish international striker Fernando Llorente in January. The move would probably only be a loan deal, but it could be perfect for both sides, or all three if you include his current club Juventus.
The Italian champions won the race to sign the 28-year old on a free transfer from Athletic Bilbao in the summer, but when he arrived he was desperately short of match fitness and has hardly been used by Juventus so far. Arsenal were thought to be one of the clubs vying with Juventus last season and, according to a report in the Express, are still keen to bring him to the Emirates to provide competition and cover for Olivier Giroud.
Something has got to give at Arsenal. Arsene Wenger really does not like the January transfer window, but Olivier Giroud cannot play every minute of every game this season. So the smart thinking is that the boss is going to have to sign someone in January, but we have heard many times from the Frenchman that he only wants to sign top class players.
The strikers he is probably most interested in, such as Luis Suarez from Liverpool, will be extremely difficult to prise away from their clubs at the best of times, never mind halfway through a season, but The Mirror reports that the Gunners may have found the perfect answer to the problem, and his name is Fernandi Llorente.
There were rumours linking Arsenal with a wide variety of strikers this summer, while there was public confirmation from Liverpool that Arsene Wenger had launched an audacious £40 million bid for the Uruguayan international forward Luis Suarez. Buy when the window slammed shut on September 2nd, the only striker the Gunners had signed was the 20-year old Yaya Sanogo from Auxerre in the French 2nd division.
So another striker would seem to be the main priority for Wenger in January. The boss has spoken before about not really liking the January window, but he may have to put that aside and do some business this time. Olivier Giroud is scoring goals for fun, and Lukas Podolski had smashed two before pulling his hamstring, but Arsenal could certainly do with another.
The terrible run of luck continued for Arsenal today, after Arsene Wenger announced the bad news that Lukas Podolski has been sidelined for around two months. Medical tests have revealed that his hamstring injury is much worse than first thought, which could be seen as a disaster on top of us already having a depleted and threadbare squad of players to use in four competitions.
The injury blow may have been the spur that the club needed to stop fannying about in the transfer market, though. According to the London Evening Standard, Wenger is interested in taking the Italian national striker Fabio Quagliarella from the Serie A champions.
Just as Arsenal fans are hoping that Santi Cazorla and Nacho Monreal will be encouraging their team mates in the Spanish national side to consider a move to North London and telling them how good it is at Arsenal and London, the Juventus and Montenegro striker Mirko Vucinic will probably be chewing the ear off his international team mate Stevan Jovetic.
23-year old Jovetic looks set to leave Fiorentina this summer after five seasons with the Serie A club. He has indicated his admiration for the English Premier League, which has given great encouragement to Arsenal in their bid to sign him. Vucinic, however, believes he can persuade him to stay in Italy and move to his club, Juventus.
It was only a few wekks ago when the name of Fernando Amorebieta was relatively unknown in England. That was before the Athletic Bilbao defender was linked with a transfer to Arsenal. Now the Venezuelan international is being tracked by a host of clubs, including Everton, Liverpool and Stoke City. The latest club to show concrete interest in the 27-year old is the Russian outfit Anzhi Makachkala, according to the Russian newspaper Izvestia.
Arsenal are not the only club interested in Fernando Amorebieta, but the Gunners should have a head start because they already tried to sign him in January, according to rumours. The 27-year old central defender will certainly be leaving Athletic Bilbao at the end of the season, after the Spanish club lost patience and withdrew the offer of a new contract from him.
That seems a bit like sour grapes, because the Venezuelan had already rejected the new contract, but Bilbao do operate in an unusual way sometimes. Arsenal were hoping to persuade them to sell Amorebieta last month, apparently, but they will make him see out his contract, as they will with Fernando Llorente. Their principles could have cost them a lot of money this year.
There may be some news after all for Arsenal fans, although nothing is official yet. Arsene Wenger may be finalising a deal to bring the centre back Fernando Amorebieta from Athletic Bilbao. The 27-year old is a Venezuelan international but has lived in Spain’s Basque country for most of his life. He has played for Bilbao since the start of his professional career, but has rejected the offer of a new contract.
Yesterday, the president of Bilbao, Jose Urrutia, withdrew the contract offer and said that Amorebieta would be leaving in the summer. Arsene Wenger has decided not to wait, according to the Daily Mail, and has got less than five hours to complete the deal before the window shuts.
Arsene Wenger is expected to bring some significant new players in to the Arsenal side during the transfer window this month. There are some key positions that need improving and covering in case of injury, and Ivan Gazidis has indicated that the Arsenal board will back Wenger to spend some decent money, although the amount is debatable.
It is no surprise, then, that some Gooners have reacted angrily to the Gunners missing out on four players who have been linked with a move to the Emirates. First, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar decided to sign a new contract with his club, Schalke. Then, Chelsea activated the £7 million release clause and signed Demba Ba, while Juventus have almost wrapped up the transfer of the Spanish international striker Fernando Llorente.