Monday, December 4, 2023

Arsenal dealt blow in £50m transfer hunt as Mikel Arteta forced to study Bukayo Saka alternative

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Arsenal went on the hunt to find a wide forward to support and compete with Bukayo Saka in the summer of 2022 and were linked with numerous targets. However, a blow to Mohamed Elneny in the final week of the transfer window led to the club pivoting to focus on a deal for Douglas Luiz that eventually proved too late to complete.

One of the potential wide players the club looked at was Wolves winger Pedro Neto. According to The Athletic, intermediary Jorge Mendes was at the centre of talks over a potential move from Wolves to Arsenal.

However, with the injury to Elneny and the asking price deemed too high, Arsenal opted against the move. Daniel Cutts suggested that Arsenal wanted to pay in the region of £35m compared to Wolves’ demands of around £50m.

That said, it perhaps has been a blessing in disguise that Arsenal did not move for the Portuguese international. Having just recovered from a serious knee injury that required surgery, the 22-year-old is now set to undergo another operation this time to fix an ankle issue.

A statement from the Wolves medical team read: “Pedro sustained an ankle injury against West Ham on Saturday where he strained the lateral ligaments.

“Following further evaluation and a specialist opinion this week, it is planned for him to undergo surgery. This means that, unfortunately, he will not be fit for the upcoming World Cup.”

Despite starting the season brightly with his displays, Neto has failed to chip in with a single-goal contribution. However, another Arsenal target has meanwhile been smashing in on the European scene and perhaps moved ahead in Mikel Arteta’s list of targets.

Mykhaylo Mudryk has scored two goals and claimed a further two assists in three Champions League games. His lightning speed and direct style make him a nightmare for defenders, especially on the counterattack.

The price for Mudryk seems to be rising all the time however if Arsenal move fast in January perhaps they can curb the increase. An investment that suddenly looks far better than trying to lure Neto to the Emirates.

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