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Emirates Stadium side keen on Nou Camp duo.
Arsene Wenger is readying moves to bring in Barcelona attacker Ibrahim Afellay this summer. The Arsenal boss believes he can lure the Dutchman to the Emirates Stadium following the completion of his season long loan spell at Bundesliga side Schalke.
The 26 year old struggled to retain a spot in the Nou Camp starting eleven following his move to the La Liga giants from PSV Eindhoven and was farmed out to the Gelsenkirchen side in the hope of attracting interest in a player who doesn’t appear to have much of a future at Barcelona.
Wenger has previously targeted the adaptable attacker and will re-ignite efforts to bring in Afellay in the knowledge that he may be able to pick up the talented flair player for a relatively low fee.
Afellay has been a moderate success in Germany, netting four goals in 13 games and playing his part to help Schalke into the last 16 of the Champions League, impressing Wenger when his side came up against Arsenal in the group stage of the competition.
The Utrecht born Dutch international is currently sidelined with a thigh injury suffered during winter training.
Wenger will also look to re-ignite his interest in Barcelona striker David Villa, who the French boss had hoped to bring in this month, as he looks to bring in the experienced Spanish international to boost Arsenal’s strike-force.
The 31 year old is somewhat older than targets usually associated with the North London club but Arsene Wenger is willing to make an exception in this case due to the quality of the individual concerned.
Villa has become something of a bit-part player at Barcelona this term and with boss Tito Vilanova being known as a manager who likes to trust to youth there is every chance the former Valencia forward will have an ever diminishing role to play in the Catalan club’s first team set-up.
Though David Villa hasn’t hit the heights many expected following his £33m move to Barcelona two and a half years ago his record of 40 goals from 97 appearances is not to be sniffed at.
Wenger hopes he can lure Villa to the Premier League for a fresh challenge in the summer and may look to offset the cost of moves to land the Barcelona pair using the as yet unpaid portion of Alex Song’s transfer fee to the club to fund any potential deal.
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