Dries Mertens remains out of contract at the end of the season and the Napoli superstar is unlikely to sign a new deal before the end of his contract – and Arsenal should consider the Dutchman. If they did, they would find they boast a trump card.
Mertens turns 33 before the end of the season but he has continued to prove that he still has the fitness, proven Champions League-standard quality and invention to go on until his late thirties. His contract, though, expires in June.
Arsenal are in desperate need of a spark and Mikel Arteta will surely be keen to bring in some big-name players to get the fanbase back on side in January. Mertens could be an excellent signing, especially with Mesut Ozil struggling.
Though Arsenal could land Mertens on a pre-contract agreement under the Bosman ruling in January, they would surely want to sign the 90-time Belgium international right there and then – meaning they would have to spend some money.
However, Napoli are interested in an Arsenal player. Italian outlet Il Mattino claim Napoli are willing to spend £21million to sign Uruguay international Lucas Torreira in the January window, with Torreira struggling at Arsenal.
Torreira is not happy at Arsenal – as admitted by his agent recently – and a move back to Serie A with a Champions League side in Napoli would be a move that the ex-Sampdoria star would surely want. So, a swap deal should be engineered.
Mertens has been worth more than £21million in the past but given his age, and that his contract has expired, he is probably worth a similar figure right now to the one Napoli are willing to pay for Torreira.
Suggesting a swap deal between the two sides would be a move that benefits all four parties. Mertens would be happy at Arsenal, Torreira happy at Napoli – and both clubs would get a decent player without having to spend.