Arsene Wenger fears Jamie Vardy will turn down the chance to join Arsenal and remain at Leicester City, reports The Mirror.
The Gunners appeared to be closing in on the 24-goal striker after they met his £20m release clause on Friday night. They offered him a three-year deal worth £120,000-a-week with the option for a further year, which, it is reported, has been verbally agreed.
That represents a significant increase on his current wages at the King Power Stadium, believed to be around £80,000-a-week. To add to that, joining Arsenal would give Vardy a consistent flow of Champions League football as well as a bigger chance to win the Premier League.
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However, Leicester are determined to keep hold of their star man and have launched a counter-offer worth in excess of £100,000-a-week. That does not compete with Arsenal on a financial playing field but has obviously given Vardy plenty to think about.
Indeed, Arsenal had asked Vardy to inform them of his final decision before he flew with the England squad to France ahead of Euro 2016, but he boarded the plane with Wenger still in the dark. There is a feeling that the longer they go without an answer, the greater the chance that it will collapse.
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Understandably, Wenger believes that the deal would already be done if Vardy was keen on moving to the Emirates and has taken Vardy's silence as a clear sign that he is reconsidering his options.
It is an unwelcome situation for England manager Roy Hodgson, who is busy preparing his squad for the opening Euro 2016 group game against Russia, scheduled for this Saturday.
He has urged Vardy to make a decision quickly so he can refocus on the Three Lions, but said he would not stop him from undergoing a medical in France if required.
“We are not trying to block players’ futures or transfers,” Hodgson said. “But as far as we are concerned, our ongoing theme is that England is England, your club is your club.
“One thing this group of players knows and have accepted is that when you are on England duty, you are on England duty. It is not a question of you sorting out your future, or diving off for medicals.
“We control all of that and you have to accept there is a good chance that, if you say you want to go for a medical, that we will say ‘we are not allowing that and you better bring your people here."