Arsene Wenger has stated his willingness to sign an ‘exceptional’ player this summer, with Spanish source AS claiming that Arsenal are ready to pay €65m (£46m) to capture Real Madrid forward Karim Benzema.
The 27-year-old Bernabeu star has netted 133 goals in six seasons in the Spanish capital and would offer the Gunners a more rounded, and more prolific, option to spearhead their attack than current first-choice starter Olivier Giroud.
The French striker was a virtual ever-present under former boss Carlo Ancelotti, playing a key role in Real Madrid’s successful Champions League campaign in 2013/14, but reports suggest that newly-appointed manager Rafa Benitez is ready to play Gareth Bale in a central striking berth (via Goal.com) which could leave the former Lyon man out in the cold.
Giroud has scored 54 goals in 134 appearances for Arsenal since his move from Montpellier to North London.
The sum referenced by AS would represent a club-record fee for Arsenal, and some reports suggest that such a fee would be a drop in the ocean for the Emirates Stadium side with club director Lord Harris stating recently that as much as £200m was available to Arsene Wenger (via Daily Mail).
Arsenal have made just one high-profile signing this summer, that being the capture of Chelsea keeper Petr Cech, and Arsene Wenger’s hopes of securing major silverware would certainly be boosted by the addition of a world-class forward to lead the Gunners attack.