Good things come to those who wait but the opposite may be true for Arsene Wenger and his transfer policy. Arsenal have a total of one transfer target, Gonzalo Higuain, and they’re looking to replace Olivier Giroud, but one club might just steal Higuain in front of Wenger’s nose.
Juventus are looking for a striker and have been watching Higuain score 71 goals in 104 games since he landed in Serie A, and especially his last season tally – 36 goals in 35 games!
Juventus just sold Alvaro Morata, 23, to Real Madrid for £25.5m. If we exclude some youngsters and Simone Zaza who is a hit or miss experiment that turned out to be a miss, Juventus are down to young prospect Paulo Dyabala who they signed in 2015 for £27.2m and Mario Mandžukić.
Now this is where the story gets interesting.
As Mario Mandžukić has changed as a player recently and is no longer a profilic goalscorer, and Dyabata is fantastic but still has a long way to go, Juventus know it’s not enough for the Champions League and are looking to add a proven goalscorer to their ranks and they set their sights on Gonzalo Higuain, the best striker in Italy right now.
Juventus will sell Paul Pogba to Manchester United for an expected fee of £105m, and they’ve already signed Miralem Pjanić, Marko Pjaca, Dani Alves and Mehdi Benatia and are also looking to add Marcelo Brozović. Higuain would blend in with this new setup perfectly.
Should Higuain actually sign for Juventus, Mario Mandžukić will be free to search for a new club, and this is where West Ham and their Croatian coach Slaven Bilić would very much like to get involved.
As it turns out, players are largely reluctant to sign for West Ham despite their high finish last season and the fact that they’ll play on the best stadium in the league, and the Hammers haven’t been able to attract any big signings in the 2015-16 transfer window. As Mario Mandžukić is looking for a way to recover his lost goalscoring abilities, there is nothing he’d enjoy more than reuniting with his former boss in the Croatian national team who is largely responsible for making him the player he is today. It could be a match made in heaven.
In this setup, of course, Arsenal would be the big loser and would have to keep fielding Olivier Giroud and hope Granit Xhaka will turn out to be a title-winning signing.