Arsenal Transfer News: Cavani, Zuniga, Gourcuff And Walcott Involved In Latest Speculation
By Jason Le Miere | January 19, 2013 3:05 AM EST
While Theo Walcott has finally signed a new contract at Arsenal, attention is already turning to the players that Arsene Wenger can add to his squad in this month’s transfer window.
It is widely believed that Arsenal need and would like to recruit a new striker. Wenger sparked speculation on Thursday that he was interested in prolific Napoli front man Edinson Cavani, however, more comments that have come to light appear to rule out a move.
“Napoli are playing for the championship and the Champions League in Italy,” Wenger explained, according to the Daily Mirror. “So what is the interest of Napoli to sell Cavani? None. Unless you say, ‘Okay, we pay twice the price of what the player is worth.’
"He is also cup-tied for the Champions League on top of that - all the players who can strengthen us are cup-tied in the Champions League.
"We can spend the money that we have decided to spend, if it is for a player we think gives us a plus. I do not want to speak about Cavani because we have not made an enquiry for him.”
Certainly Cavani is unlikely to leave in January, as the recent comments of Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis demonstrate.
“I need Cavani, not the money,” he said, according to Metro.
However, Wenger’s comments are a little surprising. It is widely known that the Uruguayan has a buyout clause of €63 million (£52.5m) in his contract and with Napoli having rejected an offer of €55 million (£45.9m)in the summer, any buying club can perhaps expect to have to pay up the clause regardless of when they make their move, unless Cavani demands a transfer.
There is also the fact that Cavani is not cup-tied for the Champions League, as Wenger asserted, having just played in the Europa League group phase this season.
As the chances of a bumper deal for Cavani fade away, Arsenal have been linked with another Napoli player in Juan Zuniga. The Daily Express reports that the Gunners are monitoring the Colombian who has primarily been deployed as a wingback for the Serie A outfit.
The 27-year-old’s agent said that the player has received interest from a number of clubs.
“Arsenal interested? We know very well that English and Spanish teams at the highest level are interested and are looking at Zuniga,” said Riccardo Calleri, according to the Express.
“But I think it is normal, as is the case with Cavani, it also happens to my client.
“The Colombian is attractive to many teams because he is versatile, can play more advanced, more defensive and could be of great use to a lot of clubs.”
It doesn't appear that Arsenal are seriously interested in Lyon attacking midfielder Yoann Gourcuff. Earlier this week it had been claimed that the Gunners had been offered a cut-price deal for the 26-year-old.
“Arsenal and Gourcuff? I don't know about any offers, Lyon chairman Jean-Michel Aulas told beIN Sport.
"I have never spoken with Arsenal."
As for Walcott, no details of his new contract have been made public by Arsenal, although it has been widely reported that the deal will keep him at the club until the summer of 2016 and be worth a staggering £100,000 a week.
Walcott said he was delighted to finally put pen to paper.
“I am very happy to have signed a new contract here at Arsenal,” he said, according to Arsenal’s official website. “Thanks to everyone for their continued support, especially the manager, everyone at the club and most importantly the fans.
“I have made it clear from the start that I wanted to stay at Arsenal so I am pleased we have agreed a deal that everyone is happy with. What’s important now is for the team to realize its potential and win trophies.”
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