Arsenal are preparing an £8million offer to take Manchester United flop Nani away from Old Trafford this summer, and could move for him in the coming weeks, though they don't want to go above that figure.
According to the Daily Express Arsene Wenger has retained a strong interest in the Portuguese winger, despite the fact that he endured an abysmal time of things last term, and will look to take advantage of the fact that the 27-year-old has slipped even further down the pecking order at his current club following Louis van Gaal’s introduction. This follows reports from last week which suggested Wenger was considering proposing a swap-deal which would see Gunners captain Thomas Vermaelen go the other way, though that idea was given the thumbs down by Vermaelen himself.
In truth Nani has never really reached the level which was initially expected of him when Sir Alex Ferguson purchased him from Sporting Lisbon, and there’s been plenty of occasions in the past when he’s been said to have been nearing the Old Trafford exit door. In fact under David Moyes he was virtually sold in January, before an injury meant that he couldn’t complete a medical with any suitors and so was forced to remain on the United sidelines.
Though capable of incredible feats when on top of his game Nani doesn’t produce the goods nearly enough on the biggest stages, and the fact he was offered a new deal only last September is seen by many as a ploy for United to maximise his sell on value.
WENGER’S TRANSFER PLANS
It’s understandable that the Frenchman is keen to acquire attacking talent, particularly given the fact that his squad lacked firepower against the biggest sides last campaign. In Nani he could land himself an experienced, if albeit widely criticised, talent, and there’s every chance Wenger could succeed where others have failed and eventually get the best out of him.
If £8million is the required sum then it won’t eat into Arsenal’s transfer budget - said to be close to around £100million - too much, but will bolster the Gunners’ squad depth at a time when they’re vying to compete with their financially superior rivals. Wenger will be forced to fight with the likes of Inter Milan and Juventus for Nani’s signature, but staying in the Premier League would surely be a priority for someone of his repute.
VERMAELEN SWAP DEAL
Talks over a potential swap deal concerning Nani and Vermaelen were at one stage said to be underway, but this speculation has since been quashed by the latter. Though it would appear that the Belgian centre-back may yet end up playing his football for Van Gaal as of this summer there’s been nothing to suggest there’s any formal agreement in place, and a cash only offer is believed to be what Wenger would favour.