Arsenal’s tough Champions League draw, coupled with an untimely spate of injuries, has sharpened the mind even further in regard to the Gunners’ thin squad. Mathieu Flamini became Arsenal’s second signing of the summer this week when, like Yaya Sanogo before him, he was brought in on a free transfer. Manager Arsene Wenger has claimed that he is still intent on spending money but that, despite the close of the transfer window being just three days away, he will not make rash decisions.
"Yes," he said when asked whether he was still trying to sign players, according to Sky Sports. "[When?] I don't know. I am confident. We will not panic buy, that is for sure. It's not my strength to panic.
"You need good players in every position, and especially you need an attitude and way to play the game. The players here know the way we want to play and that is important. If we can add players who can integrate with that style of play we will do it.
"We work very hard on that, if we cannot we will not do anything stupid just for the sake of saying that we have done something. We do what makes sense or not, that is simple."
The Daily Mirror is among the sources claiming that Arsenal maintain an interest in Real Madrid trio Karim Benzema, Angel di Maria and Mesut Ozil. The imminent arrival of Gareth Bale has raised questions about the futures of all three at the Bernabeu, while the Spanish giants have also been linked with a move for former Arsenal target Luis Suarez. The Daily Mail believes that Wenger is intent in spending their entire £70 million summer war chest on bringing the trio to the Emirates.
Still, a deal for any of the three quality operators, let along all of them, remains unlikely at this stage. Di Maria and Ozil have both stated their desire this week to remain with Madrid, while Benzema’s agent has made similar comments about his client.
Di Maria’s place would be most directly under threat with the arrival of fellow-winger Bale. It has been reported in Spain that Madrid would be keen to move the Argentina international on but that manager Carlo Ancelotti is eager to keep him at his disposal. The 25-year-old was handed a start in Madrid’s match at Granada on Monday evening and set-up the only goal.
The only conceivable way for Benzema to leave, meanwhile, is if Suarez is sold. With so little time now left in the transfer window and Madrid still focused on bring a conclusion to the Bale saga, those deals look unlikely to materialize.
The Mirror believes that Arsenal have given up hope of signing Yohan Cabaye. The Gunners recently had a £10 million bid rejected for the France midfielder and are not prepared to meet Newcastle’s valuation of twice that figure.
Arsenal were linked to St Etienne’s Joshua Guilavogui as an alternative and the Daily Express now claims that that Wenger has decided to make an £8.5 million bid. The 22-year-old midfielder, who made his debut for France earlier this year, has spent his entire career with the Ligue 1 club.