Arsenal Close In On Wenger’s Top £12m Centre Back Target: Arsene Ready to Lure Ajax Man Vertonghen

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Mar. 14, 2010 - Amsterdam, Netherlands - epa02079759 Ajax soccer player Jan Vertonghen (L) vies with Ola Toivonen (PSV) during the Premier League soccer match against PSV in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 14 March 2010.

ARSENE Wenger wants to give Thomas Vermaelen the perfect boost before the new season – his former defensive partner Jan Vertonghen from Ajax.

Wenger has at least £30million to spend on new talent and has pledged to add to the Gunners defence before the World Cup finishes on July 11.

He is looking at his options with William Gallas, Sol Campbell, and Mikael Silvestre all set to leave the Emirates on free transfers this summer. And Vertonghen tops Wenger’s list of potential central-halves – with the added bonus being that he and Vermaelen used to play together at Ajax.

Vermaelen, 24, has been a revelation for Arsenal since his arrival from the Dutch league last summer.
He earned the move after building up a superb understanding with Vertonghen, 23, during their partnership in Amsterdam.

Wenger said: “There will be something happening before the end of the World Cup – certainly on the defensive side.” (Daily Star Sunday)

Clearly Wenger is hoping that lightning would strike twice having seen fellow Ajax man, captain no less, Thomas Vermaelen so easily take to Premier League football. That signing was a pretty inspiring one. And whilst I, like many of my fellow Arsenal fans, would love us to sign big name players I think a move for Vertonghen would be a wise one.

We all know what Ajax players can do. They are taught how to play football the right way, they know how to move the ball around and are excellent at running off the ball. These are all traits our esteemed leader values. Martin Jol will try as hard as he can to avoid losing the 23 year old Belgian international but is his head is turned by interest shown by the Gunners he could be fighting a losing battle.

The added bonus is of course that the well built powerhouse is also very adept at playing as a defensive midfielder and is therefore well worth the reported valuation of around £10-12m.

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