Arsene Wenger looks to strengthen his Emirates midfield with Argentine battler.
Barcelona v Arsenal Tickets at Tixdaq.com
Juventus will battle Arsenal over the signature of Javier Mascherano at the end of the season.
The Barcelona midfielder has struggled for game time since his £22m move from Liverpool to Barcelona last summer largely due to the form of Sergio Busquets who has proved immovable from the first team. With Busquets signing a contract extension, Masherano is considering his future in Catalonia as he bids to keep hold of the captaincy of Argentina.
Tuttosport are reporting that Juventus are keen on bringing him to Turin as part of an overhaul to their squad which will take place when this campaign is over. However, they are bound to face competition from Arsenal who have held a strong interest in the player ever since his days at Anfield. Manager Arsene Wenger wants to add his blend of style and substance to his midfield and instil that missing element of steel in the spine of his team.
Javier Mascherano’s move to Barcelona as not gone according to plan but it does appear to have gone the way most would have predicted. The Argentine international arrived at the Nou Camp and probably thought that first team football was reasonably likely, however the 26 year old has failed to push ahead of Sergio Busquets in the club’s midfield and has therefore only been a bit part player at the Catalan giants, leading to much speculation he may leave in the summer.
The former Liverpool and West Ham man has started just nine La Liga games and given Busquets younger years, it may be a problem the battler will have to either live with or consider leaving the club, not least because the Spanish international has been in great form this season whereas Mascherano has looked off the pace and something of a liability when he has been called upon. Indeed Javier started the one and only defeat the club has suffered this season and was in fact subbed at half-time in that loss to Hercules, so poor was his performance.
One would have thought that Arsenal’s hopes of signing the San Lorenzo born defensive midfielder may be hindered by the sour relationship between the club that has built up as a result of the whole Cesc Fabregas palaver. There is no doubting the impact that the Barcelona man could make back in the Premier League, Mascherano put in three quality seasons in the Liverpool first team before he fled just at the start of Roy Hodgson’s doomed stint at the club.
Wenger has some solid defensive midfielder options at present though with Alex Song being a very reliable customer and Denilson can also get stuck in when needed as can impressive youngster Aaron Ramsey. However it seems that the Arsenal boss wants an even more steely presence and has earmarked a move for the one time River Plate man and given that Juventus look unlikely to secure a Champions League place, one would imagine a move to the North London club would be more tempting than a move to Turin.