Arsenal are waiting for Champions League qualification before upping their bid for Chelsea target William Carvalho, after having an initial bid rejected.
According to Goal.com, Arsene Wenger is very keen on the young Portugal international and is prepared to improve the £20milllion bid the Emirates Stadium club had knocked back this week.
However, Arsenal’s manager is waiting until Wednesday evening before he makes a decision to raise the bid because his side will play the second leg of the Champions League qualifier against Besiktas.
Reports last week claimed that Chelsea had made a £35million bid for the 22-year-old as Jose Mourinho looked to bolster his defensive midfield options.
Nemanja Matic is currently nailed on for that place in the starting XI, but the future of John Obi Mikel at Stamford Bridge has been questioned all summer. However, a Sporting Lisbon spokesperson this week denied any bid had come from the Blues.
Another fourth place finish in the Premier League last season meant the Gunners faced another playoff to reach Europe’s premier competition and gain the significant funds that come with qualification.
Doubts over progression
A below par performance against the Turkish side in the first leg saw Arsenal leave Istanbul with a 0-0 draw; the return leg in north London next week is by no means a formality, such was the difficult of their opponents.
Carvalho may be needed after one incident from the first leg too, with captain Mikel Arteta going off with an ankle injury. Wenger admitted he would be left short in defensive midfield if the Spaniard is sidelined for any significant length of time.
Gunners are rich, but not that rich
Sporting Lisbon are reluctant to let one of their most promising players leave, but are realistic about their ability to hold on to their best players and so are holding out for an improvement on the £20million first offered.
Alexis Sanchez was the most prominent name in four signings made by Wenger this summer and even though he could splash £30million on the Barcelona forward, it appears as though the Gunners’ new found spending power still relies on Champions League finding to a certain extent.
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