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Arsenal boss pulls plug on deal for record-breaking striker – report
According to quotes in the Metro, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has pulled the plug on our deal to sign Napoli’s Gonzalo Higuain after details of the proposed transfer leaked to the press.
All the talk over the past week has centered around our interest in Higuain and Italian outlet Calciomercato reported earlier this week that we were ready to table an offer to Napoli that would see us pay £42.6m plus offer Olivier Giroud in exchange for Higuain’s signature.
Italian journalist Emanuele Giulianelli then claimed that a deal was edging closer to completion after we supposedly agreed personal terms with Higuain after offering the striker a five-year deal worth around £7.6m-per-season.
Another Italian journalist, Raffaele Auriemma, then spoke to Giroud’s agent Michael Manuello who confirmed that the French international would be prepared to join Napoli if Arsenal were willing to include him in any deal for Higuain [source: Metro].
Further negotiations with Napoli chiefs were due to take place later this week but it looks like those talks have been cancelled as the Metro are quoting Auriemma as now saying that Wenger has pulled the plug on the deal after the details of the proposed transfer were leaked to the press – seemingly by Napoli’s marketing consultant.
‘Wenger has blocked everything, Arsenal were upset by the leak and amazed that after a few hours everything was out in the open, so have taken a step back.
‘Even [Napoli chairman Aurelio] De Laurentiis seems bitter, even angry, not because he wanted to sell Higuain, but because he feels betrayed by his market consultant, who blabbed about several different rumours.’
Who knows how much truth there is behind these reports but I’d personally be surprised if Wenger has taken such a drastic step as to call off talks just because details have leaked to the newspapers.
I know the boss usually likes to keep transfers under-wraps but leaks happen with practically every deal these days and it’s very rare that a signing happens completely out of the blue. We all knew about Xhaka weeks before it was announced.
Perhaps Arsene is a bit pissed that Giroud has found out in the media that he is being used as bait to land Higuain but he’s a big boy. He’ll get over it.
So let’s hope these latest reports are wide of the mark as Higuain would be an excellent addition to the squad. He’s been one of the most prolific strikers in Europe in recent years and proved it once again after setting a new Serie A record having scored 36 goals in 35 games last season.
Imagine what he could do with Ozil and Sanchez supplying the bullets at Arsenal!