Reports from the Italian media suggest that Inter Milan centre-back Jeison Murillo is on Arsene Wenger’s radar for a possible summer transfer.
The Inter Milan man has had a decent season in the Serie A after making a £6.2 million move from La Liga side Granada. His performances helped Inter finish fourth in Italy’s top division in 2015-16, with Roberto Mancini’s men conceding just 38 goals in as many matches.
Inter had finished eighth in the previous campaign, which is why the fourth-placed finish will be seen as relative success for the Italian giants, who have qualified for next season’s UEFA Europa League.
Arsenal, on the other hand, have suffered in the Premier League yet again due to the lack of a consistent performer in defence. Although goalkeeper Petr Cech has been rock solid in goal, managing to keep 16 clean sheets — the highest in the campaign — their defence has been weak.
While Laurent Koscielny has been Wenger’s top choice in defence, the likes of Per Mertesacker and Gabriel Paulista have failed to show the consistency that teams generally need in order to win a Premier League title. Hence, manager Wenger has marked Jeison Murillo as one of his prime transfer targets for the summer transfer window, according to Italain newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport.
Arsene Wenger has said that he is looking to make three more transfers this summer. The Gunners have already shown that they are not afraid of spending big bucks by announcing the signing of Swiss international Granit Xhaka. Now Wenger looks set to splurge another £20 million to add Murillo to his squad.
Inter Milan in financial trouble
Inter are in troubled waters with UEFA with regards to their finances at the moment. The UEFA Financial Fair Play rules suggest that clubs can show a maximum of £23 million deficit over three seasons (2015/16 to 2017/18). However, Inter Milan are currently showing a deficit of £39 million, due to which they have been fined by the governing body.
According to Sky Sports, Inter had to pay £14.5 million in fines to UEFA this season and have to show no break-even deficit by the financial year end of 2017. In order to do so, the Nerazzurri will have to sell some of their top players. While club owner Erick Thohir is reportedly ready to sell some of his stake in the club to make up this money, getting £20 million from the sale of Murillo will certainly help their cause with regards to finding a way to balance their books.