Arsenal should meet Fiorentina's asking price for Stevan Jovetic. The Gunners need to make a major investment in Jovetic, as a show of intent and to improve creativity along their forward line.
Arsenal are unwilling to pay Fiorentina's asking price, according to The Daily Mail. The Florence club want £25 million, but Gunners boss Arsene Wenger is only prepared to offer £20 million.
Losing out on their top target over £5 million, would be a bad way to begin a critical summer. The usually spend-shy Gunners are expected to spend big this summer.
Rumors of a £70 million war chest have increased the expectation that Wenger will be a force in this transfer window. That expectation has only increased following Wenger's comments at the end of the season.
After securing another top-four finish, Wenger promised Arsenal would be "proactive" in the market, according to The Daily Telegraph. This statement supported comments made by Chief Executive Ivan Gazidis.
He stressed that Arsenal are ready and equipped to compete for the top players, according to The Guardian. Haggling over £5 million would hardly appear proactive.
Wenger has often attracted criticism for his financial caution. Some would claim that his frugal approach has prevented Arsenal from capturing the major trophies.
Missing out on Jovetic over £5 million, would look like more of the same sluggishness in the market. That would be compounded if Jovetic signs for Chelsea. Arsenals' London rivals have also shown an interest in the Montenegro international, according to The Daily Express.
Wenger needs to make a statement of intent this summer. He has to prove not only to supporters, but also Arsenal's chief rivals, that the club is serious about competing for the top prizes.
That means securing the top players and that means paying top-level prices. If Arsenal don't meet the expectation to spend they have helped create, their preparations for the new season will be shrouded in negativity.
More than just a PR ploy, Arsenal should also pay the asking price for Jovetic, because he is worth £25 million to the Gunners. Finding the right balance of creativity in his squad is something Wenger has to address this summer.
His best teams each featured an axis of creativity in attacking areas. Once it was Patrick Vieira, Robert Pires and Thierry Henry.
Later it was Cesc Fabregas, Aleksandr Hleb and Tomas Rosicky. That trio soon became Fabregas, Samir Nasri and Robin van Persie.
Wenger's current squad lacks this kind of dynamic. Two of his best attacking trios were defined by intelligent and inventive central strikers.
That is where Jovetic would fit into this team. Deploying him through the middle would give Arsenal a creative presence at the focal point of their forward line.
Jovetic is not a true No.9, or a false 9. He is a mix between a supporting forward and a true striker.
Jovetic is in the mold of Gianfranco Zola and former Gunners great Dennis Bergkamp. He would combine with Santi Cazorla and Jack Wilshere to give this team the axis of creativity and flair it needs.
Paying £25 million for Jovetic would reaffirm Arsenal's status among the top clubs in Europe. Their fans and rivals would know Wenger is serious enough about competing, to break long-standing habits.
More importantly, the Arsenal manager would gain the perfect front man for his brand of expansive, cerebral and attractive football.