Rennes midfielder Yann M’Vila has for the first time publicly admitted that he would like to join Arsenal in the summer. However, Montpellier striker Olivier Giroud was a little more evasive when asked where he would be playing next season.
M’Vila and Giroud look pretty certain to join Arsenal this summer. Arsenal have always had a core of talented French players under Arsène Wenger, who is well-known for his ability to pick world-class players from the depths of Ligue 1. Arsenal and Rennes have yet to agree on an appropriate fee for M’Vila, but a figure of somewhere in the region of £17 million is being bandied around.
M’Vila was quoted in the Daily Mail as saying:
“I have heard Arsenal are interested in me. I like Arsenal and I like the Premier League.
“I don’t know what is happening with the clubs, but yes, I would be interested in the Premier League and Arsenal.”
Discussions with Montpellier about a move for their top goalscorer are thought to be at a much more advanced stage. Speaking to French radio station RMC, Montpellier manager René Girard confirmed Arsenal’s interest in Giroud and suggested that the Frenchman wants to play in England.
“Arsenal are very interested and Giroud wants to play in England, if Arsene agrees with the president [Louis Nicollin], he will sign for them”
Giroud himself, however, was very noncommittal, having previously said that he will make his decisions after Euro 2012. He has apparently also attracted the attention of Bayern Munich and Inter Milan, so maybe he feels that keeping quiet allows him to keep his options open. That said, the fact that Laurent Koscielny is his best friend and that there are other French players at Arsenal is in our favour.
“It’s nice that people talk about me but I can’t talk about my future right now.”
This summer could be a defining transfer window for Arsenal. The signing of Lukas Podolski so early into the window shows Arsène Wenger’s intentions, and Arsenal’s CEO Ivan Gazidis has reiterated that the club are very much on the lookout for world-class players who can help us push for our first major trophy since 2005. This is in direct contrast to Arsenal’s normal transfer activity in recent years, where we replace out best players with others who are cheaper but of slightly inferior quality. Holding on to Robin van Persie is key, while there are a number of fringe players who are probably on their way out. Reorganizing the clubs wage structure is also a top priority.