With the uncertainty of when the transfer window will open continuing to mount, speculation has started to increase over the potential incomings and outgoings for Premier League clubs. Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta touched on Arsenal’s transfer plans last week, suggesting they were planning for 2 or 3 different scenarios. It seems increasingly unlikely Arsenal will be able to break the bank this summer, with the club’s long-term financial security of pivotal importance. Bearing this in mind, reports are continuing to surface linking Chelsea winger Willian with a move to North London when his contract expires at the end of the season.
According to Mundo Deportivo, Arsenal are one of several clubs looking at the possibility. When asked recently if he would be at Chelsea next season, Willian told Brazilian TV station Esporte Interativo “It’s clear that this is not a certainty, we don’t know what can happen”. He went on to say he won’t speak to other clubs until his contract expires due to his loyalty to the West Londoners, but that shouldn’t discourage Arsenal, who will have to act quickly to secure his services at the end of the season.
This is the last big contract of the Brazilian’s career, with talks breaking down with Chelsea due to the fact he wanted a 3-year deal when they would only offer him 2 years. It seems risky to give him what he wants due to the fact he will be 32 this summer, with doubts persisting over whether he will have the capability to maintain his high level of performance over the coming years.
On the other hand, this is a vastly experienced and proven Premier League player with over 200 appearances in English football. He is a serial winner with 2 Premier League medals to his name, as well as a host of other honours, who is capable of producing world-class moments on his day. He represents a cheap and savvy short-term option who will add depth and experience to our ranks. But is he worth the risk knowing we will have to pay his hefty wages if age/injuries restrict his influence? Arsenal might take their chances.
Header photo: Aleksandr Osipov, 2015