Arsenal are still in the market for a big-name striker and have earmarked €65m worth of transfer funds to make a deal happen.
The Gunners know it will be extremely difficult to lure any of their top transfer targets this summer, with Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema their number one priority.
Spanish newspaper AS reports that Arsenal have set aside €65m to bid for the French international forward before the close of the transfer window.
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There’s several hurdles to this deal, including the question as to why Benzema would want to leave a team that includes Cristiano Ronaldo, but there is a few reasons for optimism if you are an Arsenal fan.
Firstly, there’s a large French-speaking group at Arsenal already so Benzema would swiftly settle in alongside international teammates like Laurent Koscielny and Olivier Giroud. Similarly, Arsene Wenger has been a long-time admirer of the former-Lyon forward and he’s friends with Mesut Ozil from their time together at Real Madrid.
The Spanish champions, under new boss Rafael Benitez, are reportedly planning to experiment with one of Ronaldo or Gareth Bale through the middle, which could initially squeeze out Benzema.
A world class striker in his own right, he is slightly overshadowed by the £180m duo at the Bernabeu.
A move to Arsenal would cap a fantastic offseason for the north London club. The addition of Petr Cech means that striker is now the club’s only real transfer priority as the squad looks extremely strong and two-deep at several important positions.
Whether they can convince Real Madrid to sell is a difficult one though, as it will depend on the availability of other targets. AS claim that Fernando Llorente, Alvaro Morata and Sergio Aguero would be candidates to replace Benzema, but each would involve a lot of moving parts making a deal complicated to pull off.
What do you think Arsenal fans - will the club sign a striker this summer?