Arsenal Transfer Rumours: Arsene Wenger Forced into £65 Million Gamble

Ben Blackmore@@Blackmore_BRFeatured ColumnistAugust 20, 2013

Arsene Wenger will respond to the inescapable annoyance of the Arsenal faithful by launching a £65 million raid for four new signings, writes Paul Brown of the Daily Star.

Boos at full-time of Arsenal’s opening day defeat to Aston Villa were compounded by an official show of no-confidence from the Arsenal Supporters’ Trust, and Brown claims Wenger is finally ready to react by spending big.

Starsport understands the crisis club are targeting at least three other players (in addition to Yohan Cabaye) in deals which could end up costing a combined £65m. They are Swansea pair Michu and Ashley Williams - as well as Manchester City's Micah Richards, who wants to join the Gunners.

Arsenal have developed a reputation for doing their business late in the summer transfer window, landing Mikel Arteta, Per Mertesacker and Andre Santos all on deadline day in 2011.

Now they plan to pull off another simultaneous swoop, sparked by Monday’s rejected £12 million offer for Newcastle midfielder Cabaye, per The Telegraph, which drew the wrath of Magpies boss Alan Pardew.

Newcastle are “bracing themselves for an improved offer,” according to Brown, who also claims the Arsenal defence will be bolstered by two £10 million deals for Swansea’s Williams and Manchester City’s Richards.

The anticipated capture of Williams is more or less a done deal, according to John Cross of the Daily Mirror, who says Wenger “just [needs] to give it the green light.”

A deal for Richards could be more complex due to the fact City already have injury concerns over defenders Matija Nastasic and Vincent Kompany, highlighting Richards’ value to the squad when fit. 

Wenger also faces a fight for Swansea forward Michu, who has emerged as a favoured option as deals for Wayne Rooney and Luis Suarez faded during the course of the window. It is believed Swansea want £25 million for the Spaniard, according to the Daily Star article, a figure way above what Arsenal are reportedly willing to pay.

Unfortunately for Wenger, high-profile dissatisfaction on the stands—the Emirates was half empty by full-time against Villa and many that stayed voiced their disapproval—will only allow negotiating clubs to drive up the price. Brown claims Newcastle plan to hold out for £20 million for Cabaye, knowing Arsenal will have to pay it if they plan to bolster their squad in the remaining days of the window.

Even striker Olivier Giroud, who scored on the opening day, acknowledges in the Daily Mirror the need for more forward options, despite the fact it would create competition for his own place.

In my opinion, it's necessary for the club to recruit another striker. Obviously, I think about it a little bit. It may change the play one day, especially if it's a high profile signing. It's useless lamenting this though.

Arsenal have a series of important fixtures on the horizon already at this early stage of the season, with a tricky away trip to Fulham followed by a Champions League qualifier against Fenerbahce three days later. They then host Tottenham on September 1, leaving Wenger 10 days to find new signings before the first North London derby of the campaign.