Arsenal have landed a new No. 1 goalkeeper, as the club have all but confirmed Petr Cech will be joining the club in an £11 million transfer from Chelsea following his medical exam on Friday. The 33-year-old Czech is set to become the highest paid goalkeeper in Arsenal history, and reportedly will officially by announced as Arsenal's newest addition on Monday.
Cech received a weekly salary of £120,000 in 2014-2015, and had a year remaining on his contract. In comparison, Wojciech Szczensy received roughly £65,000 a week last season, and David Ospina, who performed brilliantly for Colombia in Copa America, received £40,000 a week. Both Arsenal goalkeepers were signed through at least 2018. Ospina is considered the odd man out, and could be on his way to Fenerbahce.
Perhaps surprisingly, that may not be the only move between the two London rivals. According to The Express, Arsenal are also interested in Charly Musonda Jr., an 18-year-old attacking midfielder from Belgium who joined the Blues in 2012. Valued at about £6 million, Musonda may also be a loan target with the option to buy, according to Daily Mirror. Manchester City are also reportedly interested in Musonda. It's somewhat curious why Chelsea and Arsenal are engaged in negotiations, considering both clubs are expected to be in the thick of the Premier League title chase in 2015-2016.
While Cech is a fine upgrade, and Musonda could potentially be a solid long-term acquisition, the biggest target for Arsenal is still Morgan Schneiderlin. The Southampton holding midfielder will be allowed to leave the Saints this summer, according to Daily Mail. Arsenal were considered the frontrunners, but Arsene Wenger will have to contend against the deep pockets of Manchester United and Tottenham. Schneiderlin, 25, is expected to command a fee of over £24 million, and Sky Sports have pegged United as the favorites.
Defensive midfielder has been a rather weak position for the Gunners since the departure of Alex Song to Barcelona in 2012, and Arsenal may have to finally pursue a star at the position or simply committ to the serviceable and steady Francis Coquelin. Schneiderlin has presumably been the most sensible of the available options, especially with former Real Madrid star Sami Khedira choosing to play for Juventus.
Wenger may also want to add another forward, but don't expect it to be Gonzalo Higuain. According to the Guardian, Napoli want £67 million (the buyout clause) for the 27-year-old Argentine striker, with Arsenal, Liverpool and AC Milan considered suitors. That is too rich for basically every club in the world, even Higuain's former employer Real Madrid. Higuain has scored an impressive 35 goals in 69 appearances for Napoli since his arrival in 2013. But he has not been the force he once was at Santiago Bernabeu, and has just one goal in Copa America while not even featuring in the knockout-round match against Colombia on Friday. There may be far better options than Higuain, and certainly less costly.
Meanwhile, Arsenal may receive a transfer fee for Lukas Podolski. The German forward was loaned to Inter Milan in January, and has drawn interest from Galatasaray, according to Daily Mirror. The highly experienced Podolski, 30, does not seem to figure into Wenger's plans, and might be a good fit with the Turkish side.