Emirates Stadium side prepare for the worst.
Whilst clearly Arsene Wenger does not want to concede defeat in the race to get Robin Van Persie to sign a new deal before the current transfer window closes, because the moment it does the player’s value greatly decreases, the Gunners boss knows all to well that he faces something of an uphill task in the matter.
The Daily Mail reveals that three clubs have put in £15m offers for the Dutch international, an offer that is unlikely to tempt Arsenal into making a sale whilst at the same time informing the player himself of those clubs who would very much like to acquire his services.
With that in mind this source believes that the Arsenal manager has a three player wish-list of possible replacements for the 28 year old Gunners skipper. Here are our thoughts on the likelihood of their capture as well as their suitability for the role.
Fernando Llorente (Athletic Bilbao)
Giant Pamplona born forward is perhaps suited to life in the Premier League but perhaps not necessarily suited to Arsenal’s style of play, which isn’t to say that the Spanish international doesn’t possess good touch on the floor but he is more renowned for his aerial ability and his hold up play, two areas of the game one doesn’t usually associate with Arsene Wenger signings.
The 27 year old has been repeatedly linked with a move away from San Mames and Llorente has arguably outgrown the La Liga club. The 6ft 5in forward has been in masterful form over the past three seasons, netting 71 goals in 140 appearances.
Llorente won’t come cheap and this source states it would cost a massive £28m to trigger his release clause, a fee well in excess of the club’s record £15m transfer spend.