Arsene Wenger is set to concentrate his efforts on landing Brazilian Douglas Costa, having baulked at paying the £32million Porto wanted for Juan Quintero.
The Daily Express today claims that Costa is after a move to either Arsenal or north London rivals Tottenham, and will accept any offer the Gunners present him with if it means he can get away from current club Shakhtar Donetsk. Wenger has been credited with an interest in the playmaker for some time now, but his intentions have been somewhat forced given the inflated price on preferred target Quintero’s head.
It’s said that Arsenal were to make a move for the Colombian midfielder but, as is so often the case, Porto are keen to ensure they receive as much as possible for his signature. Having already consented to considerable financial outlays in the form of almost £32million for Alexis Sanchez, around £11million for Calum Chambers and £12million for Mathieu Debuchy, Wenger is naturally cautious about paying over the odds for anyone.
This would infer that the season-long loan deal for Costa, which is obviously the Frenchman’s alternative option, would be ideal, particularly given the fact that it means Arsenal won’t be lumbered with him should he fail to make the grade in the Premier League.
Though the 23-year-old has garnered quite the reputation for being a promising attacking player his experience at the highest level is limited, and the fact that he has only played in the Brazilian and Ukrainian divisions provides more fuel for the pessimists who doubt his credentials.
Need for more forwards
That being said it’s been made no secret that Wenger is looking to add another attacking talent to his books, and Costa’s ability in the final third of the pitch has caught his attention. Certain factions within the stands may be concerned that the Brazilian is yet another advanced midfielder rather than a striker, but Wenger seems confident that he can implement a system wherein he gets the best out of all the assets at his disposal.
Other names, perhaps more associated with out and out goal scoring, such as Loic Remy, Mario Balotelli and Jackson Martinez, have been mentioned in connection with a move to the Emirates Stadium, but as of yet it would appear the club are no closer to clinching any of them.
Remy seems to be set to complete a U-turn on his previously aired ambitions by pledging his future to QPR, Balotelli isn’t quite the Arsenal boss’ cup of tea and Martinez is yet another extremely expensive option.