Juventus want to replace Alvaro Morata with Alexis Sanchez, according to reports in the Sunday Express.
After recently selling the Spanish international back to Real Madrid – after the Bernabéu outfit activated his £23million buy-back clause last Tuesday – the Serie A club are chasing the 23-year-old’s successor, with Sanchez the man who appears to fit the bill.
Reports claim that Juve will use that money to launch a bid for the Chilean international, who scored 17 goals in 41 appearances for Arsene Wenger’s side as they achieved a second-place finish in the Premier League last season.
There are, as always, holes to be picked in this rumour. Sanchez remains the star man at the Emirates, despite Mesut Ozil’s excellent performances throughout the previous campaign, and the club are likely to do everything in their power to convince him to remain.
Furthermore, with the onset of the new Premier League television deal, the Gunners are hardly going to be strapped for cash, and in a financial shoot-out they would undoubtedly trump the Serie A side.
The only possible factor behind a move to Juventus for Sanchez would be the Italian outfit’s dominance domestically, although a player of his calibre should crave the level of competitiveness that the Premier League is able to offer.
Fortunately for the Emirates faithful, first impressions would suggest that this reported rumour is a non-goer.
Meanwhile, according to the Mirror, Arsene Wenger’s side have now involved themselves in a three-way battle for French and Lyon striker Alexandre Lacazette – a player who is continues to impress in front of goal in his home nation.
Reports suggest that Wenger is to meet with a representative of the player this week in France, after missing out on Leicester City’s Jamie Vardy, who recently signed a new four-year contract with the Premier League champions.
The hype surrounding Lacazette has undeniably died down in the last 12 months or so. This time last term he was seen as one of the hottest prospects on the continent, and yet, this summer his stock among Europe’s elite appears to have fallen.
Nonetheless, after a lightening 2014/15 campaign, during which he scored 27 goals in 33 Ligue 1 appearances – a tally that saw him finish the campaign as the French top flight’s more prolific front-man – he followed up with 21 successful strikes in 34 league matches this time round.
His ability in front of goal has clearly not waned and is there is plenty of reason to suggest that he has what it takes to thrive in England, especially when sourced by the likes of Sanchez and Ozil. He would undoubtedly lighten the goal scoring burden that falls so heavily on Olivier Giroud’s shoulders.
The one factor that is likely to deter the Gunners is the 25-year-old’s reported price tag – believed to be around £45million. Considering Lacazette is unproven outside of the French top flight, or even at international level, it remains to be seen whether Wenger is willing to take such a costly risk.
In other news, Arsenal could turn their attention to Sporting Lisbon striker Islam Slimani, after Vardy’s widely-reported snub, according to speculation in Portugal. The Algerian international scored 27 league goals in 33 Primeira Liga appearances last term.
These reports scream ‘panic buy’ from an Arsenal perspective. While Slimani’s record from the most recent campaign is undoubtedly impressive, he should be a long way down on the list of potential targets for the Premier League runners-up.
It is claimed Slimani had a release clause of €30million, but that has now expired. This means that Sporting Lisbon could now push for a fee of well over £25 million for the 28-year-old’s signature – a concerning notion for Arsenal fans, should reports be deemed true.
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