Arsenal ready to sell £50m star to Chelsea as Wenger looks to sign Barcelona man as ideal replacement
Arsenal will allow Alexis Sanchez to join London rivals Chelsea in a £50million deal this summer, according to the IB Times, with Arsene Wenger pinpointing Barcelona misfit Arda Turan as the ideal replacement for the Chilean.
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Sanchez, 28, is only under contract at the Emirates Stadium until the end of next season, and the chances of him signing a new deal are looking slim. Wenger, who has not yet announced his future intentions himself with his contract expiring in the summer, says talks with their talisman will be left until the summer. The 67-year-old has repeatedly called for calm from fans over his future.
But the supporters, who are growing all the more frustrated with Wenger with the club currently sitting outside the top four in the race for the Champions League, with some calling for him to leave. It is said Sanchez shares the feeling of a lack of progress and recently fuelled the Chelsea talk by claiming he wanted to play for a club in London with a “winning mentality”.
Having signed for the club in 2014 from Barcelona, Sanchez has become a very popular figure at Arsenal. He helped the club lift a second successive FA Cup trophy in his debut season, but has not been able to inspire the team to more success in the Premier League or Europe. This season, he is the Gunners’ top scorer with 22 strikes to his name.
Selling him would bring back memories of past stars leaving and particularly joining rivals, with the likes of Samir Nasri, Robin van Persie and Emmanuel Adebayor signing for fellow Premier League sides previously.
But Wenger wants to act swiftly to bring in a replacement in Arda Turan, per the Metro. Life at Barcelona has not worked out very well for him, with the Turk not being able to play for six months upon signing in 2015 due to a transfer ban. Now 30 years old, he has not been able to usurp midfielders such as Andres Iniesta, Sergio Busquets and Ivan Rakitic and is now battling Andre Gomes for a spot too.
During his time with Atletico Madrid, Turan carved out a reputation as a versatile creative midfielder with a tenacious streak. One of the many criticisms of Arsenal, particularly this season, has been the lack of fight in the squad. Turan would certainly supply that.
Arda Turan on Facebook: "Happy Sunday" pic.twitter.com/EJOSClzMsh— FC Barcelona Fl (@FCBarcelonaFl) April 2, 2017
His age casts doubt over whether any deal would be a good one, as does the fact he has struggled at Barça. It is unlikely the fans will warm to the news of swapping Sanchez for Arda Turan.