Alberto Aquilani has revealed that he expects his Fiorentina teammate Stevan Jovetic to leave the club this summer, with the Montenegrin continuing to be linked with moves to Arsenal and Juventus. While the two clubs have been long-term suitors, interest is also thought to come from Manchester City and Chelsea.
According to Italian publication Tuttosport, the growing list of competitors has led Juventus to intensify their pursuit of Jovetic. Fiorentina’s €30 million (£25.7m) valuation is thought to be deterring Arsenal, while Juventus are also trying to work around the figure. It is said that the Italian champions are trying to come up with an acceptable players-plus-cash deal potentially involving Fabio Quagliarella and Luca Marrone. While his destination is still uncertain, it does appear that Jovetic will be plying his trade elsewhere next season.
“I think at this point Jovetic is going to leave,” Aquilani said at a news conference ahead of Italy’s friendly with San Marino. “I know that a year ago he was made a promise that if he stayed another season he could decide his future. Aside from being a team-mate, he is also a great person who would do well at any club.”
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has revealed his interest in Clement Grenier in recent days, but another attacking midfielder currently turning out in Ligue 1 could also be on his radar. Montpellier’s Younes Belhanda has been strongly linked to the Gunners for the past year and the 23-year-old has now revealed that he is looking to leave France.
“I want to go to England or Germany," he told French Sports daily L'Equipe. "I think I'm done with this football, physically and technically and the risk-taking. “I have contacts, but it has to happen. My wish is to play in the Champions League next season, but I can also sign for a club that offers a beautiful experience. But not in France, I shall learn no more here.”
The Morocco international helped Montpellier to their first ever championship in 2012 and helped himself to 10 league goals this past season. He has also been linked with Arsenal’s north London rivals Tottenham.
Wenger’s ears may also have been alerted to comments from Manchester City’s Abdisalam Ibrahim. The 22-year-old is thought to be interesting a host of Premier League clubs, including Arsenal, having made just three senior appearances for City. Currently on loan at Norwegian side Stromsgodest, the defensive midfielder has said that he will decide his future after talking with the new Manchester City manager --expected to be Manuel Pellegrini -- this summer. However, the Norwegian has left little doubt about his interest in moving to the Emirates.
"I'm very flattered to be linked with Arsenal, I grew up as an Arsenal fan and my hero was Patrick Vieira when he was playing there," Ibrahim told Sky Sports. "I would be very honored to play for Arsenal and it would be all my dreams come true to work with Arsene Wenger.He has developed so many young players over the years and gave them chances in the first team but at the moment my focus now is doing very well in the Under 21 European Championship next month in Israel with my national team and hopefully try and win the tournament.”
Finally, with Arsenal thought to be looking to strengthen the center of their defense this summer, the Sun claims that Wenger is considering a £12 million move for Liverpool’s Martin Skrtel. The 28-year-old Slovakian recently admitted to having endured “one of the worst seasons in my career” in the past campaign and said that he was open to a transfer.