A respected BBC pundit has denied Arsenal have an interest in signing star trio Marouane Fellaini, Wayne Rooney and Julio Cesar. David Ornstein poured cold water on recent rumors Arsenal are aggressively pursuing the players, via a message on his twitter account.
According to Ornstein, Arsenal have not met Fellaini's release clause, a development that broke recently. The Gunners are also said to have no interest in sealing a deal for Cesar, something that was recently touted as a certainty, when bookies SkyBet suspended betting on the transfer.
Ornstein also stated that Arsenal will not make a serious attempt to lure Rooney to North London. He did confirm that often-linked target Stevan Jovetic is a signing they could pursue, but the Fiorentina man is not a priority.
For many Arsenal fans this news will be a bitter blow. It seems that every promising transfer rumor is dismissed just as soon as it starts.
That is not a good pattern to begin a summer that is supposed to herald big spending. Chief executive Ivan Gazidis has proudly proclaimed Arsenal's fiscal power in this window, according to The Independent.
With three big-money, marquee names being ruled out and a fourth looking unlikely, who is left for Arsenal to spend their supposedly healthy reserves on?
The more cynical Arsenal fans may agree with the not entirely unreasonable interpretation of Gazidis' comments from talkSPORT.co.uk. The website examined the idea that these statements could have been deliberately timed for the final day of the club's Gold Level Membership renewals.
However, even if those comments are ruthlessly tailored to a renewal deadline, it doesn't mean the club's intention to spend isn't genuine. What could be different is how manager Arsene Wenger feels Arsenal should use their resources.
One of the key statements Gazidis made when he touted Arsenal's ability to spend, concerned Wenger. Gazidis directly stated that the money is there, if Wenger wants to spend it.
Gazidis claimed: "The ideological narrative is we want to have the best possible players, the best possible team and compete for trophies and Arsene will do what he thinks is right to do that."
Of course what Wenger's believes is the right way to build a team has not always been shared by Arsenal fans and pundits. Especially during the eight years since the Gunners last lifted a trophy.
Wenger has been notoriously reticent to part with major sums of cash for a single player. He has certainly never engaged in the kind of £70-100 million spree many are not just hoping for, but expecting this summer.
Rather than pay the reported £22 million for Fellaini, Wenger's pattern has been to look for two players for equivalent value. That is an admirable policy and one that can reap huge rewards, if Wenger's eye for spotting hidden talent does not fail him.
But in the context of the modern game, it is also a policy that helps keep Arsenal away from the top trophies. Remember, Wenger is competing with Chelsea and Manchester City, two clubs with seemingly endless funds to spend on established stars.
Then there is Manchester United, who have coped with escalating debt and stock market deals, just so they can compete with mega-rich owners.
All three of these clubs can outpace Wenger in the market. More importantly, they can also offer double and even triple what Arsenal can pay in average wages.
So even with £70 million to spend, Wenger still has little chance of landing a player Chelsea covet, once the parties sit round a negotiating table.
That is why it is probably more realistic to expect Wenger to continue his pattern of targeting solid, but not top-level stars and identifying youthful potential.
But even with a shrewd judge of talent like Wenger doing the dealings, that still won't be enough to chase down the big boys.960886