The Gunners have just over a month remaining to work out a deal for Suarez before the summer transfer period is complete, but to this point, the situation has been a jumble of rumours and hearsay predicated on the belief that the Uruguayan star wants out at Anfield and prefers to play for a Champions League contender, per Tom Hopkinson and Dean Jones of the Daily Mirror.
Arsenal have the spending power to make a serious attempt at the 26-year-old after securing a fourth-place finish in the Premier League last term. With £70 million to spend this summer, manager Arsene Wenger hasn’t been shy about pursuing the top targets on the transfer market.
The Gunners have already made two bids for Suarez, the first of which was swiftly rejected as Wenger went back to the drawing board. Arsenal followed that attempt with a bid of £40,000,001—designed to trigger a clause in Suarez’s contract that would require the Reds to inform the striker of Arsenal’s interest, per Steve Stammers of the Daily Mirror.
Again, Liverpool rejected the offer, but it appears Arsenal aren’t done playing the game. According to Stammers, the Gunners will table an offer of £42.5 million to obtain the embattled star who is potentially intent on leaving Anfield following comments he made regarding vicious supporters and the British media.
The Uruguayan international also wants to play for a Champions League contender, and Arsenal can certainly offer him that opportunity. As quoted by Hopkinson and Jones, Uruguayan teammate Edinson Cavani believes Suarez’s main focus is locked on playing Champions League football:
We have been speaking a lot and, while I can’t tell you everything, I can tell you that he is desperate to start playing Champions League football. Liverpool already know that, though, because he has told them. I think if he thought Liverpool would qualify for Champions League football next season he would stay but, with the other top teams in England adding players, he doesn’t think Liverpool have the resources to break into the Champions League spots.
According to David Hytner and Andy Hunter of The Guardian, Liverpool recently held talks with Suarez regarding his future, but the outlook may not be good for the Reds and their hopes of keeping the striker at Anfield:
Suárez held talks over his future with the Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers and the chief executive Ian Ayre on Thursday. The club's refusal to discuss how the meeting went has been interpreted by Arsenal as a positive sign for them. If Suárez had indicated any willingness to stay at Anfield, then Liverpool would have been expected to publicise it.
Arsenal have never paid more than £15 million for a transfer, but times are changing at the Emirates. With a large purse in hand, Wenger is capable of targeting a world-class player like Suarez who can take the Gunners over the top in a crowded EPL top four.
Wenger is known for his thriftiness on the transfer market, but he’s at least attempting to change public opinion about his unwillingness to spend. Still, if Arsenal come up short after failing to acquire Gonzalo Higuain when all signs were pointing to a big move, supporters won’t be pleased.
As it stands, Arsenal appear to be preparing at least one more solid offer for Suarez, though it remains to be seen if the small increase will be enough to persuade Liverpool to sell. Given their firm stance to this point, that seems unlikely.