Arsenal’s big push to secure the Dusan Vlahovic transfer this month is unlikely to go through until the Gunners can offload a problematic star first, according to one observer.
The 21-year-old’s future has already become one of the stories of the January window so far. While he has turned heads with his near goal a game form for club and country, attention is also turning to his contract situation.
Vlahovic has 18 months left on his current deal and it remains unclear if he will renew. In October, Fiorentina owner Rocco Commisso revealed that the Serbian had rejected a number of extension offers.
As 2022 has come around, serious interest has emerged from Arsenal. The Gunners are in fact reportedly willing to pay a total of £150million to sign the striker.
And following extensive talks, reports on Saturday reported that a begrudging Fiorentina have ‘reluctantly accepted his sale’.
Indeed, that report claims the Gunners are willing to meet La Viola’s £58m valuation of the player. The deal will amount to a club-record sale for the Serie A side. Furthermore, the £12.5m fee to take Lucas Torreira to Florence permanently will be kept as a separate deal.
As such, the report claims the transfer can go through once negotiations with Vlahovic’s agent are complete. To that end, the report, via La Repubblica, claims he is seeking a £6.6m (€8m) fee to get the deal over the line. He also wants 10% of his transfer fee.
However, another problem appears on Arsenal’s radar, according to pundit Paddy Kenny.
He reckons the Gunners will be unable to finance Vlahovic’s huge financial package until they can offload Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
Arsenal are looking to offload the striker, who was stripped of the captaincy back in December.
And, speaking to Football Insider, Kenny believes Arsenal must shift Aubameyang before they can sign Vlahovic.
Aubameyang out before Dusan Vlahovic in
“Arsenal have to find someone who is willing to pay his wages,” Kenny said.
“I doubt there are many clubs who will want to pay even half of what he’s earning.
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“He’s at the wrong end of his career and everyone knows about his disciplinary record.
“Clubs won’t want to pay a big fee for him. He’s not out of contract until the summer of 2023 so it’s not like he can go on loan and leave for free at the end of the season.
“Will clubs want to take him on loan? I’m not sure. But if Arsenal are going to make this big Vlahovic signing then Aubameyang is going to have to go in one form or another.
“I don’t think Vlahovic comes in unless Aubameyang leaves.”
Dusan Vlahovic transfer not only Arsenal aim
A new attacker is not Arsenal’s only transfer priority this month and in the summer.
The Gunners have a shortage of midfielders, made worse by Granit Xhaka’s straight red card against Liverpool on Thursday.
Arthur Melo has had links with a move to the Emirates Stadium. As such, reports on Saturday claim Juventus are willing to negotiate a six-month loan to the Gunners.
That will come as a welcome relief for Mikel Arteta, who has just one senior central midfielder available for Sunday’s clash at Tottenham.
However, Lyon’s Bruno Guimaraes is also on Arsenal’s radar and Sky Sports has revealed the latest on his valuation and future plans.