While Arsenal is sure to be busy this summer and has been linked to half of the top players in Europe already, things have quieted down a bit on the transfer rumour front. The calm before the storm, perhaps?
It would appear the Gunners are very close to signing a forward, while another big name may be on the way out. In a summer in which Arsenal supposedly is flush with cash to spend, it wouldn't be surprising to see a few big names making the move to North London in early July.
Let's break down the latest Gunners buzz.
Few players have been as heavily linked to Arsenal as Real Madrid striker Gonzalo Higuain. But with Carlo Ancelotti seemingly set to be announced as the next manager of Los Blancos, a deal may finally go through, according to David Hytner of the Guardian:
[Arsene] Wenger wants fresh impetus up front and talks have already taken place with Higuain's representatives. Juventus also covet the Argentina international, who Florentino Perez, the Madrid president, values at £25 million. Arsenal's record outlay is the £15 million that they spent on Andrey Arshavin in 2009; he will leave the club as a free agent when his contract expires on 30 June.
Arsenal would love to make a high-profile addition before they depart for their pre-season tour of Asia on 11 July, which will take in Indonesia, Vietnam and Japan.
Higuain had 19 goals and eight goals in 48 appearances for Real Madrid this past season, starting 30 games. He's a natural poacher in the box and would be an upgrade in that department to Olivier Giroud, who was solid if inconsistent for the Gunners in his first season with the club.
While the Gunners didn't struggle to score goals, especially later in the year—they finished with 72 goals, third in the Premier League—adding a consistent scorer at center forward is a definite need for the club.
Higuain, who has scored at least 18 goals for Real Madrid in five of the last six seasons, would certainly fill that need.
There's no question that Gervinho fell out of favor at Arsenal this year, despite plenty of early-season opportunities to prove his worth. And now, he could be on his way back to France, according to Ben Curtis of the Mirror:
Marseille have revealed their interest in Arsenal striker Gervinho, admitting he would fit the profile of player they are after.
French news provider 10 Sport claims Marseille have already contacted the 26-year-old over a potential move, suggesting his exit from the Emirates is drawing nearer.
The Ivorian featured in only seven games after returning from the Africa Cup of Nations in February and scored only three goals for the Gunners post-October.
Gervinho has underwhelmed in his two seasons at the Emirates, scoring just 11 goals and adding 12 assists. His talent is unquestionable, as he combines excellent pace with the ability to break defenders down off the dribble.
But he's also wildly inconsistent, often struggles to finish his chances and has a poor first touch that has caused more than a few scoring chances to end in lament.
It would not be a surprise if his days at Arsenal were indeed numbered.
Alongside adding a striker and holding midfielder, Arsenal have long been tipped to upgrade at keeper as well. But it looks as though one potential target, Barcelona's Victor Valdes, is now off the board.
Victor Valdes has quashed reports linking him with a move to Arsenal this summer, revealing that he intends to see out his contract at Barcelona which expires next year.
The Spanish goalkeeper has been with the Catalan club his entire career but put clubs around Europe on alert when he revealed he wanted to experience something new in club football.
Arsenal are on the lookout for a new keeper and were considering a move for the 31-year-old, but will now pursue other targets such as Sunderland’s Simon Mignolet.
Adding Mignolet may not be realistic either, as the Belgian keeper is being heavily linked to Liverpool.
While Wojciech Szczesny played well down the stretch once he was re-inserted into the starting 11, he was inconsistent this season, and Wenger saw fit to relegate him to the bench. If nothing else, adding another strong keeper could motivate Szczesny to get the most out of his potential.
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