Since the capture of Petr Cech from Chelsea, there has been some amount of silence on the Arsenal front in the transfer window but, Arsenal fans could breathe a huge sigh of relief soon as the Gunners have emerged to be in the running to sign Monaco midfielder, Joao Moutinho, according to various French reports.
Several clubs are keeping tabs on Moutinho, who has been told he can leave Monaco this summer. The French club is reportedly going through a period of cost-cutting, with Geoffrey Kondogbia leaving for Inter Milan earlier this summer, and Radamel Falcao moving out on loan again to Chelsea.
The Gunners have reportedly agreed personal terms will the former Porto star, but they will have to meet Monaco’s £25 million asking price for the midfield maestro before they can bring him to the Emirates.
The Portugal international joined Monaco in 2013 for a fee around £18 million, and has since made a lasting impression in Ligue 1, prompting Premier League clubs including Arsenal and Manchester United to vie for his signature (via Metro).
The Gunners, as per the same report, will face stiff competition from Porto and Zenit for the player. However, they have an edge over the Portuguese and Russian clubs as Moutinho fancies the English Premier League.
Moutinho helped Monaco mete out a excruciatingly and humiliating beating to Arsenal in a Champions League round of 16 encounter at the Emirates last season, as the French outfit ran out 3-0 first leg winners.
Boss Arsene Wenger stated a couple of days ago that he will be willing to splash the cash if a world-class player is available, after he was quizzed about the north London club’s £45 million offer to sign Karim Benzema.
Arsenal sure need to bring in a player similar to Arteta in the holding midfield role, and Moutinho is a suitable option. The 28-year old Portuguese will be an improve on the Spaniard whose legs are becoming tired, with recurrent injuries to his knees evidential support to this.
At 33, it is quite understandable that Arteta’s legs are a tad weak. However, Moutinho is five years younger and still has energy in him.
Unlike Arteta, the Monaco midfielder’s creativity and ability to still run will therefore serve Arsenal well and will help them in their bid to challenge for major honours next term.