Arsenal rejected the chance to sign Mauro Icardi while they were focusing on Gabriel Jesus as a priority striker signing, it has been confirmed.
Going into the summer transfer window, it was evident that Arsenal would be in the market for a new striker. They offloaded Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in the winter and knew Alexandre Lacazette would be leaving at the end of the 2021-22 season as well.
Eddie Nketiah ended up signing a new contract after ending the campaign in strong form. But it was obvious he would not be able to go through the full forthcoming season as Arsenal’s only number nine.
Ultimately, they managed to bring in Gabriel Jesus from Manchester City. It is giving him the chance to work with Mikel Arteta again.
However, another option that could have been considered, according to Fabrizio Romano, was Mauro Icardi.
The Argentina international is surplus to requirements for Paris Saint-Germain. He will therefore be on the lookout for a new club this summer, even though his contract at the Parc Des Princes is due to run until 2024.
Transfer reporter Romano has now confirmed that Arsenal were offered Icardi’s services before they signed another South American in the shape of Jesus.
“Arsenal have had many opportunities that they have turned down, but this happens in all the top clubs every day,” Romano wrote for Caught Offside.
“For example, Mauro Icardi was an option offered to the club in recent months and it was decided not to proceed because they were looking for a different striker. Edu has always had Gabriel Jesus in mind as a priority.
“Sometimes the refusal is for technical reasons, other times for economic reasons.”
Mauro Icardi an elite option, but Arsenal did well to choose Gabriel Jesus
It remains unclear where Icardi will end up instead. At the age of 29, he will still want to be playing for a high-level club.
Icardi has never played in the Premier League before, but would have been a high-pedigree option for Arsenal. Still, the deal for Jesus seems like a sensible one.
He is younger than Icardi but has plenty of experience – and it is specific to the Premier League. Hence, Arsenal may have made a wise choice. His pre-season form certainly indicates so.
But whoever picks up Icardi instead will be getting their hands on a prolific goalscorer. With 38 goals to his name from 92 appearances for PSG, he could be ready for a fresh start this summer.
Icardi has played in Italy’s Serie A and France’s Ligue 1 before. Whether he continues in either league or heads in a different direction, only time will tell.