Arsenal Transfer News: Mateo Musacchio Bid Considered, Medhi Benatia Rumours

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistMay 24, 2016

VILLARREAL, SPAIN - JANUARY 13:  Mateo Pablo Musacchio of Villarreal reacts during the Copa del Rey Round of 16 second leg match between Villarreal CF and Athletic Club de Bilbao at El Madrigal on January 13, 2016 in Villarreal, Spain.  (Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images)
Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is reportedly "weighing up an £11.5 [million] bid" for Villarreal centre-back Mateo Musacchio.

According to Spanish outlet Fichajes (via the Daily Star's Alex Wood), Arsenal and Roma are both "likely" to move for the Argentinian, although "Villarreal are desperate to keep hold of [him]," and will demand more than the reported £11.5 million the Gunners are prepared to offer.

Arsenal yet again fell short in their bid to win the Premier League in 2015-16 and need to make effective additions in the summer if they are to be title challengers next season.

The centre-back region at the Emirates is short on depth and quality, with Laurent Koscielny the only consistently reliable performer Wenger has to call upon.

The Frenchman's "top target to strengthen Arsenal's defence" this summer is reportedly Bayern Munich's Medhi Benatia, with Chelsea and Manchester United also interested in the Moroccan, per RMC Sport (via Lorenzo Semino of TransferMarketWeb).

Benatia only moved to Bayern last summer—from Roma for €30 million (£23.9 million) on a five-year deal—but made just 11 Bundesliga starts in their title-winning 2015-16 season, per WhoScored.com.

Mats Hummels' arrival at the Allianz Arena has now been confirmed, meaning Benatia will have to fight even harder next season for a starting spot, and he could be tempted by a move to a club where he would be afforded more opportunities.

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MUNICH, GERMANY - APRIL 30: Medhi Benatia of Muenchen controls the ball during the Bundesliga match between FC Bayern Muenchen and Borussia Moenchengladbach at Allianz Arena on April 30, 2016 in Munich, Germany. (Photo by Daniel Kopatsch/Getty Images For
Daniel Kopatsch/Getty Images

However, considering his quality and the fact he has four years still remaining on his Bayern contract, the German giants are unlikely to sell him on cheaply, and Musacchio may be a more realistic target for the Gunners.

The 25-year-old made 13 La Liga appearances in 2015-16 for the Yellow Submarine as they finished fourth in the Spanish top flight with the fourth-best defensive record in the division, per WhoScored.

Musacchio is good with the ball at his feet—undoubtedly a bonus in Wenger's intricate setup—while his defensive capabilities are impressive.

He has far from reached his peak and could improve hugely under Wenger's tutelage, and while Benatia may be the more reliable signing, adding Musacchio to the squad would be a good long-term move from Arsenal.