Reported Arsenal target Demba Ba has hinted that he may favor a move to Paris Saint-Germain in next month’s transfer window. The Newcastle striker is widely expected to be on the move given his much-publicized buyout clause of £7 million. Having scored 27 Premier-League goals in his season and a half on Tyneside, the Senegal international has been linked with several clubs, none more so than Arsenal.
Ba recently talked up the possibility of a move to the Emirates, however he has now spoken even more effusively about the nouveau-riche Ligue 1 leaders Paris Saint-Germain.
“I watch PSG as a fan, a supporter,” he said, according to the Daily Telegraph. “I have never hidden my attraction to the club and have been a supporter since I was little.
"Now, they are doing important things, big projects for the future, and of course it would please me to play in the colors of a team I support.
"But as I said about Arsenal, it's something which is a long way off. For the moment, I am concentrating on what I have to do with my team—getting Newcastle out of the mess we are in.
"But it is true that PSG is a special club for me."
It is widely believed that Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has made signing a forward a priority in January. With the club recently having agreed to a new big-money sponsorship deal, there have been reports that the Gunners may finally spend heavily and a bid for Napoli star Edinson Cavani has even been mooted.
However, it would take a massive departure from the club’s frugal transfer policy to lure the Uruguayan striker to the Emirates. Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis has revealed to Italian publication La Gazzetta dello Sport that he turned down a bid of €55 million (£45m) from an unnamed club in the summer. Chelsea and Manchester City have also been linked to the 25-year-old.
De Laurentiis went onto say that having got Cavani to sign a new contract following the speculation, he will now cost any club a massive €63 million (£51.7m).
It now looks unlikely that Arsenal will get a short-term boost to their forward options with a loan return of Thierry Henry. It had previously been seen as virtually a done deal that the club’s record goal scorer would return for a second-straight year from the New York Red Bulls during the Major League Soccer offseason. Wenger, though, has now quashed that idea.
“I do not think it would be good for him [Henry] to play with us again,” Wenger said, according to Metro.
“He should relax and prepare for the next MLS season.”
There have also been reports in recent days about long-time Arsenal target Yann M’Vila. The Rennes defensive midfielder was thought to be close to a move to the Emirates in the summer before reports emerged that Wenger ultimately decided against a move over concerns about the France international’s attitude.
Subsequent events would seem to have vindicated Wenger’s decision. The 22-year-old, who had already been banned for one France game for not shaking the hand of then-coach Laurent Blanc when substituted at Euro 2012, has been suspended from all national teams until after the 2014 World Cup after an unauthorized night out when on duty with the France Under-21 team.
According to Metro, M’Vila is now a £7.5 million target for Queens Park Rangers.