Arsenal FC captain Thomas Vermaelen is a subject of transfer interest from Italian club Napoli.
Thomas Vermaelen’s future at the Emirates has been up for speculation ever since Arsene Wenger dropped him from the starting line-up in favour of Koscielny. The Belgium international has endured an awful season on a personal front and now finds himself as the third choice center-back at the club, after Per Mertesacker and Koscielny performed wonderfully in the closing stages of the season.
Many European clubs are closely monitoring Vermaelen’s situation at Arsenal, and the London club can expect a lot of enquires about him in the summer. Barcelona were reportedly interested in him initially, before they decided to look elsewhere following his poor performances, while Manchester United have been recently linked with a move for the former Ajax defender.
Now reports emerging from Italy says that Napoli are prepared to make a move for the 27-year-old in the summer. The Italian club finished second in the Serie A this season, which confirmed their participation in the Champions League, but are expected to lose two key figures before the start of next season – striker Cavani and manager Walter Mazzarri (who has already confirmed his departure). The Naples based club will be looking to build on their second place finish and are expected to be busy in the transfer market, especially with the money they are expected to receive from the transfer of Cavani.
Arsenal on the other hand are expected to have a busy summer as well. Arsene Wenger has indicated that the club will spend heavily in the upcoming transfer market and already a host of players have been linked with a move to the Emirates. Along with new entries, a massive deadwood clearance is also expected at the club – with as many as seven players expected to be sold to clear out the wage bill.
But Thomas Vermaelen is unlikely to be among those names. The Belgium might have had one bad season, but he can still be a major part of the squad in the future, although Arsenal are expected to announce a new captain in the summer – with Mikel Arteta being the likeliest candidate for wearing the armband. Having said that, Arsenal might consider offers for him if interested clubs are willing to pay a significant transfer fee and Arsene Wenger is confident of landing a good replacement. Thomas Vermaelen on his part hasn’t indicated any interest in the leaving the club, but it is hard to imagine that he would be too happy sitting on the bench at this stage of his career. The next season will be the most important one in his career so far.