Arsenal Transfer News: Latest on Gonzalo Higuain and Francis Coquelin
One of the most intriguing clubs during every summer transfer window is always Arsenal.
The Gunners' most recent success (or lack therof) depends on your expectations. They've qualified for the Champions League in each of the past eight seasons yet have failed to bring a trophy back to the Emirates.
For a squad that is pretty much the epitome of "on the brink," the transfer window is incredibly key.
But Arsene Wenger is often characterized as frugal, opting rather to run a successful business and develop talent than overpaying for it.
Will that once again hold true this July? Let's take a look at the most recent talk surrounding Arsenal's summer.
It's Official: Francis Coquelin to SC Freiburg on Loan
After a successful spell with French club FC Lorient, the tantalizing Francis Coquelin returned to the Emirates last season in hopes to make a significant first-team impact.
Instead, he started just three matches, made 11 total EPL appearances with the Gunners and is once again on his way out of the country.
According to Arsenal's official website, the 22-year-old defensive midfielder will join Bundesliga side FC Freiburg on loan.
When it comes down to it, Coquelin is the victim of a deep and talented Gunners midfield. He's a versatile player capable of playing different positions on the pitch, but with established talents such as Mikel Arteta, Jack Wilshere and Aaron Ramsey, it's difficult for him to find many first-team opportunities.
A move to the Bundesliga, which produced both Champions League final participants this season, will undoubtedly be beneficial, giving the pace-filled youngster an entire year to gain valuable experience and hone his talent.
This is a terrific opportunity for Coquelin, and his future with Arsenal is far from being completely written.
Gonzalo Higuain Negotiating With Arsenal
The Gonzalo Higuain-to-Arsenal rumors have been swirling around for quite some time now, but it appears a significant step is now being taken toward completing the crucial deal.
Real Madrid reportedly wanted €25m (£21m) for the 25-year-old, with Arsenal's opening offer believed to be €20m but it appears a compromise has now been reached, although it would still represent a club-record deal for the English club.
Higuain senior was quoted as telling Fox Sports Argentina: "We have been given permission by Real Madrid to negotiate with Arsenal.
"I will luckily be able to see my son in the Premier League soon."
Now, this entire story has been full of back-and-forth developments and endless rumors, so it's important to take everything with a grain of salt, but considering everything, it would still be slightly shocking if Higuain didn't end up in an Arsenal shirt next season.
He's slightly expensive for Wenger's standards, but he is unequivocally worth it.
One of the most deadly finishers in all of Europe, Higuain tallied 16 goals in 19 La Liga starts (28 total appearances) for Real Madrid last season. According to WhoScored.com, his conversation rate was among the best on the continent:
Gonzalo Higuaín: Of 122 players w/ 10+ goals in Europe's top 5 leagues in 2012/13, only 6 had a better conversion rate than Higuaín (27.8%)— WhoScored.com (@WhoScored) June 20, 2013
Higuain establishes his position well, holds onto the ball in tight quarters and is clinical inside the box.
Although he may not have blazing speed or be a true threat in the aerial game, the 25-year-old is the type of consistent, reliable goal-scoring threat that Arsenal needs in the final third.
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