Arturo Vidal has been a transfer target for several top European clubs this summer. The Chilean midfielder , who has developed into one of the top players in the world since joining Juventus from Bayer Leverkusen in 2011, is widely tipped to depart the Old Lady this summer after four hugely successful seasons where he has won four consecutive Scudetti with the club.
Reports have now emerged from several Chilean outlets that contrary to popular perception that the player is destined to move to Manchester United this summer, Vidal is actually on his way to Arsenal after the Gunners have allegedly agreed a £21 million fee with Juventus for his services. Already touted as one of the best midfielders in the world, Vidal’s stock has only risen further by his blockbuster performances for Chile at the Copa America.
The Gunners have also reportedly agreed a five-year contract with the 28-year-old and a formal announcement on the deal is expected after the conclusion of Copa America next week. Juventus, for their part, have already signed Sami Khedira as a free agent for replacing Vidal. Juventus are reportedly planning to use the funds acquired by Vidal’s sale for signing Bayern Munich central defender Mehdi Benatia.
Benatia joined Munich for €40 million a couple of seasons ago and is therefore expected to command a sizeable transfer fee. Juventus are planning to offset the financial cost of bringing the ex-Roma center back to Turin by freeing up funds from Vidal’s sale.
Reports that the midfielder has agreed a five year contract with Gunners are doing the rounds in Chilean press. Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has also reportedly held personal talks with the player which has been instrumental in the player’s decision to choose Emirates over Old Trafford. Another major factor in luring the player successfully has been the advice by his compatriot Alexis Sanchez who himself joined Arsenal last season and went on to have a truly remarkable campaign.
If the reports are indeed true, Arsenal may have landed themselves a coup. Vidal’s tenacity, strength , pace and ability in midfield means Arsenal may have finally found that coveted driving force in midfield which has been conspicuously missing since Patrick Viera’s departure.