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Arsenal favourites ahead of Chelsea to sign 36-goal hitman
According to the Express, Arsenal are now the bookies favourites to sign Gonzalo Higuain after edging ahead of the likes of PSG and Chelsea in the race for the Napoli hitman’s signature.
Arsene Wenger is in the market for another striker after Jamie Vardy snubbed his proposed move to the Emirates in favour of signing a new deal at champions Leicester City.
Several names have been linked in recent weeks and Higuain has once again been listed among Wenger’s prime targets by various corners of the media having been linked with a move to the Emirates for several years.
We were handed a boost in our pursuit of the Argentinean international after the strikers agent and brother, Nicolas Higuain, confirmed that the 28-year-old wouldn’t be signing a new contract with Napoli as they don’t believe the club can compete with Juventus.
He also went on to suggest that Higuain is looking to move on this summer but says that only four or five clubs, including some in England, could afford his reported £78.5m release clause.
Nicolas Higuain is quoted as saying by the Express:
“The President [Aurelio De Laurentiis] has the right to claim the money [€94m / £78.5m] from the clause, and we have the right not to renew,”
“In 2013 we decided to leave Real Madrid because we wanted a change of scenery. We arrived at Napoli with great enthusiasm, there was an ambitious project with Rafa Benitez at the helm,”
“There was talk of structural improvement and competing with Juve. In my opinion though, the project isn’t up to Gonzalo’s level.
“Napoli have given him a lot, and vice-versa, but the project is below expectations right now. It’s fine getting youngsters, but not to compete with Juve.
“Gonzalo will not renew, we’re confident of that given the situation of the project. We have a contract, and we’ll respect it, but we won’t change our opinion.
“There are signatures on contracts, so the club has the right to ask for the clause, just as we have the right to not renew.
“Who could he play for? Currently four or five teams. The great teams in Spain and England, one club in France [Paris Saint-Germain] and one in Germany [Bayern Munich]. Only they can afford him.”
Many have taken this as a sign that Higuain’s agent is trying to put pressure on Napoli to cash-in this summer as he has just two years remaining on his contract and his value will drop considerably next summer.
And the bookmakers believe that Arsenal are the striker’s most likely destination if he does leave Napoli with Betway slashing their odds to make us the 7/2 favourites ahead of PSG at 9/2 and Chelsea at 5/1.
There’s practically no chance Arsene will pay his release clause but I think we’ll see Napoli accept below the reported £78.5m figure as they’d be crazy to demand that figure for a player who won’t be signing a new deal and will be valued at nearer £30m next summer.
If Napoli would sell for around £50m then I think we should do all we can to bring Higuain to the Emirates as he’d be a sensational signing. He scored 36 goals in just 35 games last season so can you imagine what he’d be capable of with Ozil and Sanchez supplying him?