Tottenham Hotspur have reportedly made a bid for AS Roma’s highly rated Erik Lamela while arch rivals Arsenal FC might once against lose out on a player to Napoli.
Tottenham to make a move for Erik Lamela?
Erik Lamela is one of the brightest prospects in world football today and there’s little debate over it. Those having followed AS Roma from close quarters over the last two years have a fair idea of what the prodigious youngster is capable of doing and Tottenham Hotspur’s current Technical Director Franco Baldini is one of those having closely observed the Argentine develop and grow from strength to strength in the Italian Capital. Although Roma’s league campaign in the last two seasons has ended on a disappointing note, Lamela is certainly considered a find and is expected to peak during the next few seasons.
The recent reports of London based Tottenham Hotspur extending their interest on signing the wing forward have been doing the rounds for a while. Spurs are reportedly willing to make an offer worth £ 30M and the discussions over the deal should take place soon. Baldini’s past association with the Romans might help the Londoners in negotiating with the Italians and should the deal go through, Spurs will have added a dynamic forward to their roster capable of playing into multiple roles in AVB’s proposed 4-3-3 frontline. Tottenham have splashed the cash in market signing Paulinho and Roberto Soldado for £ 17M and £ 26M respectively and while they aren’t exactly known for their spending capabilities, a third big money move will only confirm Gareth Bale’s imminent looking departure – which many believe is only a matter of time and agreement over negotiations with Real Madrid.
On the other hand however, Roma have already balanced their books to a good extent having sold Marquinhos for a gigantic sum of money and are presently more focused at rebuilding the squad to challenge for the Champions League spot and perhaps the title too as the next season inches closer. It goes without saying that Lamela is the key component in the attacking department and his departure at this stage could greatly affect the team chemistry that the coach must have worked so hard on during the pre-season games. Moreover, losing out on both the sparkling young talents in the squad during the same window could not go down very well with the fans too and hence from the outset, it doesn’t look like Roma will be too keen on doing business with Spurs or any club for that matter over the future of Erik Lamela. The Argentine is destined for great things and from the looks of it, his first few years of greatness are scripted in the Capital city.
Luiz Gustavo certain to move; But Napoli, Wolfsburg in Arsenal’s way
The Brazilian defensive midfielder had been relegated to the bench for the major part of the last season following the arrival and mercurial rise of Javi Martinez. With Thiago Alcantara having made his move from Barcelona, Luiz Gustavo’s chances of regular first team action have gone down even further and this being the World Cup year, it is understood he is seeking a move away from Bayern to gain more playing time.
While Arsenal were earlier linked with the midfielder reportedly making a £ 17M offer, German newspaper Die Welt now understands Gustavo is interested in staying in Bundesliga and that he’s considering a move to the fellow German side Wolfsburg.
In another twist in the tale, it is now believed Arsenal’s transfer nemesis Napoli too are interested in the services of the player and are already in talks with his agent. Gonzalo Higuain was another player Arsenal were heavily linked to but once Napoli expressed their desire, Wenger failed to show any resistance and if the Southerners from Italy are once again successful in persuading a player away from Arsenal, Wenger will have many a question to answer, it seems.
Gustavo’s agent was particularly assertive making it very clear that there is no mention of a buyout clause in his client’s contract with Bayern and the said sum of £ 18M is only an asking price set by Bayern.
“Luiz Gustavo is a very important player who would suit any club in Italy, not just Napoli. However, the Partenopei already have three midfielders of a good quality, so they’d have to sell one.
“I can say the stories claiming Luiz Gustavo has a clause worth €18m in his contract is absolutely false.
“There is no clause and that sum is simply the asking price Bayern have decided on. He is clearly on the market after Pep Guardiola’s arrival.”
The Gustavo situation has been shaping up in an interesting manner and it appears it will once again be a battle between Arsenal and Napoli if things lead to a bid war from here on. However, if the player is committed at staying in the Bundesliga, then Wolfsburg should not face any real competition in securing his signature.