Arsenal Transfer Rumours: Will Andrei Arshavin Remain a Gunner This February?

Robert Pace@Robert_PaceContributor IIIJanuary 18, 2012

Andrey Arshavin has disappointed after a good inaugural season with the Gunners. What will be his fate amid the current transfer window?
Andrey Arshavin has disappointed after a good inaugural season with the Gunners. What will be his fate amid the current transfer window?Scott Heavey/Getty Images

After Andrey Arshavin deflated the hype over his 2009 transfer to London, many fans have been wondering as to his long-term fate with Arsenal

According to The Daily Mirror, Arshavin's stint with the Gunners won't last too much longer, as it has been revealed that Italian club Lazio is planning to make a £6 million bid for the Russian. 

The 30-year-old has 18 months left on his contract, and Arsenal will now be faced with the task of determining whether or not they want to keep Arshavin until his contract runs out. 

The Gunners signed the Russian midfielder for a total £16.9 million three years ago, which means that Arsenal would be burdening a huge monetary loss if they sell him. 

However, Arshavin's value will only continue to degrade unless his form greatly improves, as his age doesn't make him a good investment for most teams. 

Manager Arsene Wenger has previously hinted that the club won't resign the declining midfielder, which increases the likelihood that the Gunners will send Arshavin on his way in an attempt to sell him before his value decreases even further. 

Arshavin has made appearances in 24 matches this season for Arsenal and has accumulated a measly two goals and three assists. 

After scoring 11 goals in 37 appearances during his first season with Arsenal, Arshavin showed immediate decline the following season by scoring only 10 goals in 54 appearance for the Gunners.

Despite last year's decline, Wenger expressed content in Arshavin's efficiency.

"If you look at his numbers you are always surprised at how good he is," Wenger assessed. "Sometimes the visual impression you get from a game has been frustrating, but he is very efficient. We can all have a big responsibility but we need confidence for what we do." 

Wenger was most likely referring to Arshavin's team-leading 18 assists last year when he discussed his surprise at Arshavin's numbers. 

Regardless of his 2010-11 performance, Ashavin has exhibited sub-par form this year. This has resulted in limited appearances in the starting lineup. 

Soccer News suggests that Arsenal may be eying a replacement for Arshavin—a 19-year-old Brazilian named Lucas. 

Lucas currently plays for São Paulo in Brazil and has been closely watched by other major clubs like Manchester United and Bayern Munich in the past year. 

The highly-scouted Brazilian is estimated to be worth £20 million, which would be a serious investment for the Gunners, but an excellent one if Lucas is able to perform at Emirates.