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Arsenal Transfer News: 3 Alternatives to Stevan Jovetic

Matthew CelentanoSenior Analyst IIDecember 15, 2016

Arsenal Transfer News: 3 Alternatives to Stevan Jovetic

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    While Stevan Jovetic joining Arsenal once seemed like a done deal, it's now looking like the Fiorentina forward won't be moving to North London after all. According to Metro, the player himself has said he would prefer a transfer to Juventus.

    For Arsenal supporters, though, there shouldn't be any worries about the Jovetic deal seemingly falling through. The Gunners are in need of a clinical striker—one who can take the team's chances and score crucial goals the way Robin Van Persie used to do.

    While talented, Joventic isn't that type of striker. The Montenegrin, who scored 13 goals in 34 Serie A games this season, is more of a creative forward. He is someone who can play as an attacking midfielder or a "trequartista."

    That being said, it's still absolutely vital for the Gunners to bring in a forward this summer, and they seem to have solved that problem with the impending signing of Gonzalo Higuain, as reported in The Sun.

    So with the striker issue seemingly solved, why write this article?

    Rather than compose a list of three strikers, I've decided to go for players who, like Jovetic, are versatile and can play as attacking midfielders.

    Without further ado, here are three alternatives to Stevan Jovetic.  

Wayne Rooney

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    Arsenal supporters are usually teased during transfer windows by reading countless stories linking the club to unrealistic signings. However, the recent Wayne Rooney transfer rumour is extravagant even by Arsenal's standards. 

    Reported by several sources, including the Daily Mail, the rumour doesn't just seem to be mere speculation. In fact, there actually seems to be some truth behind it.

    Earlier this month, Arsenal CEO Ivan Gazidis stated that the North London outfit can in fact afford the astronomical price tag and wages of a player like Wayne Rooney, according to ESPNFC. Therefore, it's just up to Arsene Wenger to make the decision.

    After the up-and-down season he's had at Old Trafford, it's difficult to see Rooney in a Manchester Untied shirt come next season. The 27-year-old simply isn't the talisman of the club like he used to be, and it seems as if it's become clear to him that seeking a move away could revive his career.

    However, this signing might not make much sense for Arsenal. If Higuain will in fact sign for the Gunners, the club will have both him and Olivier Giroud to contend for the sole striker position in Arsene Wenger's 4-2-3-1 formation.

    Rooney played quite a few games in attacking midfield for Manchester United this season. However, even in that position, Arsenal seem to be covered with Jack Wilshere, Santi Cazorla and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who could be featuring in a more central role this season.

    While it may not be the most practical signing, the acquisition of Wayne Rooney would certainly be a statement of intent. 

Stephan El Shaarawy

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    While it is another far-fetched rumour, this time reported by IBNLive.in.com, there's no denying the fact that an Arsenal move for Stephan El Shaarawy would be sensational.

    Like the Wayne Rooney rumour, this may not be as outrageous as it seems. In fact, AC Milan vice president Adriano Galliani recently told Sky Italia that El Shaarawy is "not unsellable," according to Goal.com.

    The Italian international had a superb breakout season in 2012-13, netting 19 goals in all competitions and carrying the Rossoneri throughout their slump in the first half of the season. 

    The 20-year-old would likely play on the left wing for Arsenal—the same position he predominantly played in for Milan this season—rather than as a striker. Even more so than Jovetic, El Shaarawy's versatility means he can play in just about every attacking position.

    While a move to Arsenal seems quite improbable, Arsene Wenger should seize the opportunity should it arise.  

Dimitri Payet

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    Like El Shaarawy, Dimitri Payet would be used on the left wing for Arsenal, rather than playing as a striker.

    Unlike El Shaarawy, Payet is a realistic option. Except for his age, the 26-year-old ticks all the boxes of a classic Arsene Wenger signing. He is French and plays in Ligue 1.

    The former Saint-Etienne man had an excellent season for Lille, notching 13 goals and 20 assists in all competitions to step up following the departure of Eden Hazard. 

    While he might not be as glamorous as Stephan El Shaarawy or Stevan Jovetic, Payet is a player in top form who could provide the current Arsenal team with depth in wide positions, especially if Gervinho goes back to Ligue 1.  

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