In their bid to overcome the shortcomings of a slightly disappointing 2013-14 Premier League season, Arsenal's summer remodelling is fast underway, with Sami Khedira said to be next in the club's sights.
The Real Madrid midfielder would follow Alexis Sanchez to the Emirates Stadium, the Chilean international having been announced as Arsene Wenger's first major acquisition of 2014, as confirmed by Arsenal's official Twitter account:
According to John Cross and Darren Lewis of the Mirror, Khedira would require wages of £150,000 a week and court a transfer fee in the region of £20 million.
Sanchez's £35 million purchase shows that the club are certainly more open to the idea of spending on a level with their elite English peers, something that was hinted at with the £42.5 million signing of Mesut Ozil last summer.
However, that buy could have all too easily been a once-in-a-blue-moon occurrence, a show of power to appease fans and plug one minor flaw in the squad.
And in a way, Sanchez represents the same, but to sign Khedira in quick succession would be a more genuine statement, a message to the likes of Chelsea—also in the hunt for Khedira—announcing Arsenal's presence as a very real threat once again.
Following Sanchez's arrival, Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis has been quoted by Arsenal Fan TV (h/t the Independent's Charles Reynolds) as saying there is more of the same to come:
"We’ve pulled off a good one with Alexis Sanchez, but there’s more work to be done. I’m not going to talk about it until it’s done. I’ve got to get back, we’ve got more work to do."
That being said, Bleacher Report's Guillem Balague suggests that there could be a long wait until the German international's future is decided:
Khedira: RM want to renew his contract (1 year left). If he doesn't they will sell him. So far his agent is not in a rush 2 meet club— Guillem Balague (@GuillemBalague) July 12, 2014
Adding Ozil to his roster last year was something of a luxury for Wenger. The injuries of Aaron Ramsey and Jack Wilshere showed that depth issues in midfield were perhaps more pressing, and while the former Real Madrid player did have an impact, he was never going to single-handedly win them the league.
Would Khedira's signing be worth Arsenal breaking their wage record?
As things panned out, the north London club just about managed a top-four finish, but with Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool and the Blues all spending in excess, Arsenal need to splurge now more than ever in order to keep up.
It's not a perpetual cycle, but merely the bitter state of how things are. One highly active window in which Arsenal address all their major squad flaws could save the team for some years to come before another wave of big spending is needed.
Khedira would certainly do that, providing a longer-term solution to the figures of Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Flamini as a more defensively minded presence in the midfield pivot, allowing Ramsey and Wilshere to develop in their more natural roles.
His contract at the Bernabeu may fast be winding down, but Khedira remains a sought-after talent in Europe, and he's showed in glimpses precisely why that is whilst on German World Cup duty this summer.
To see the anchorman return to Spain with a World Cup winners' medal around his neck may complicate matters slightly for Arsenal, but then his signing would be yet more of a vindication in the club's push for more silverware this coming season.
As the saying goes, "money doesn't buy you happiness," but when spent in the right circumstances, some players most certainly point to the contrary.