A very quick Monday round-up as we’re recording the Arsecast Extra pretty early today. This post is likely to be mostly transfer speculation because perusing NewsNow this morning – even with my many and varied filters on there – that’s all I can see.
From Argentina, there’s a report that Mikel Arteta has Lisandro Martinez as a ‘priority’, suggesting that we’ll go back to Ajax with a bid of £30m after an initial £25m was rejected by the Dutch club. I was sure I saw talk of £30m for that first bid, but perhaps that was Euros. I can’t say much about the source of the story (TNT Sports), but according to Wikipedia:
TNT Sports Argentina is a subscription television channel dedicated to the broadcast of the sport of that country, along with ESPN Premium, which began broadcasting on Friday, August 25, 2017, from 6:00 pm, after the alliance of Turner and Fox by the television rights of the Argentine First Division of Argentine soccer, being replacement of the governmental program Fútbol para Todos.
So, there you go!
I do think this is an interesting link, a versatile left footed defender who can cover center-half and left-back, and it follows something of a pattern with recent recruitment under Arteta. Ben White can play center-half and full-back; Takehiro Tomiyasu plays right-back for us, but center-half for Japan; And as we await the announcement of Fabio Vieira, he’s someone who can play in a number of attacking/forward positions too. Depth via versatility? We obviously also need numbers, and maybe it’s just coincidence, but it’s something to note all the same.
It’s also being reported Man Utd are interested too, which would make life complicated given the connection between the player and his former manager.
After his message last week, the pre-arranged deal with Fiorentina is well and truly dead in the water, and that leaves the player and Arsenal with some work to do. It’s clear he doesn’t want to be in England, and with a year left on his deal it’s time to sell. But to who?
Well, there are Lazio and Roma blogs popping up on NewsNow who say that Torreira has been offered to both clubs this summer, and you’d imagine that’s probably true of other sides in Serie A and La Liga.
The Lazio site says: Lazio is thinking about making a move for Torreira this summer as Maurizio Sarri is a big fan of the 26-year-old. The Arsenal could be brought in to play as a regista, moving inbound Marcos Antonio to a different role in the midfield three.
Roma, of course, are managed by Jose Mourinho, and they are a club we’ve done business with in the recent past. Ainsley Maitland-Niles went there on loan last season, and we sold Henrikh Mkhitaryan to them for £1m, a packet of custard cremes, and a packet of magic beans.
In a summer when we need to spend, what we bring in is going to be quite important, but when the market for a player is so small and everyone sees you as a club that will facilitate the departure of players like this, it’s going to Be a real challenge for Edu and his team to generate a significant fee here.
Good luck to them.
So far this weekend I’ve seen a story which says the deal will be done in the next 48 hours; a story about how he remains our top midfield target; And a story which says we’ve cooled our interest in him as we’re waiting to see how much money we have left at the end of the window (which doesn’t make a lot of sense to me).
Which one is true, or the truest? Pick a box. You might be right.
The US international goalkeeper will arrive in London this week, determined to give Aaron Ramsdale a run for his money. He says:
I’m coming in to push him and become the best goalkeeper I can become, while also making him the best goalkeeper he can become. That’s really my goal for it all.
The consensus is that he’ll be the ‘cup keeper’ but I thought James made an interesting point on the podcast the other week about Ramsdale wanting to play in European games having never done so before. My guess is that we’ll see Turner in the Europa League group stages, but once the knock-out stuff begins (assuming we get there), we’ll probably see the profile of the line-ups change a little bit, and if you get far then you play your best team in important games.
I really have no time for the argument that sentimentality should dictate the team selection, especially if there’s a gap in quality between your two options. Of course we’ll have to wait and see how Matt Turner does when he arrives, and hopefully he can, as he says, push himself and Ramsdale to be better. A competitive environment is a good thing for everyone, not just nets.
Right, that’s it for now. The podcast will be out mid-morning, so stand by for that, and we’ll have any breaking news over on Arseblog News.