Arsenal have received a transfer boost as Real Madrid have reportedly put midfielder Isco up for sale.
Arsene Wenger has often come under scrutiny for the lack of big name signings during his last few seasons at the Emirates. Even in the present window, Granit Xhaka remains the only big signing made this summer. A number of players previously linked with Arsenal have turned a cold shoulder on the London club. But if recent reports are to be believed, a high-profile name is nearing a move to the Emirates.
According to Sergio Santos Chozas of AS Sport (h/t Metro), Real Madrid have put Spanish midfielder Isco up for sale. The former Malaga star is understood to be out of favour at Santiago Bernabeu as manager Zinedine Zidane has preferred to go for Brazilian Casemiro in midfield. This could mean good news for Wenger who is believed to be a long term admirer of Isco.
Isco joined Real Madrid from Malaga for a reported fee of €35 million. Despite former manager Manuel Pellegrini showing an interest in him, the Spanish midfielder decided against moving to Manchester City, and signed for the Los Blancos. He shined in his debut season under Carlo Ancelotti, scoring eleven goals. He was also a regular part of the Italian’s plans and made a total of 53 appearances across all competitions.
But ever since the signing of James Rodriguez and emergence of Casemiro, Isco has struggled to establish himself as a regular and could only make 21 La Liga starts in the 2015/16 season. In July, it looked like the midfielder would be continuing at Real, but recent reports suggest that a move away from the Bernabeu is imminent for the 24-year-old.
Will Isco be a good signing for Wenger?
Despite predominantly being a number 10, Isco was played in a deeper role during his stint at Real Madrid. Known to play quick passes to release the striker ahead, the 24-year-old was required to play more of a subdued role and could not get himself in the game as much as he did at his previous club. That being said, a move to Arsenal may not guarantee him a place in his preferred position due to the form of German playmaker Mesut Ozil.
Also, with the signing of Granit Xhaka this summer and Mohamed Elneny in January, the Gunners’ midfield looks to be extremely packed. Santi Cazorla and Francis Coquelin have also been impressive in the off-season, while Aaron Ramsey’s performances at Euro 2016 make him a strong contender to be a regular in Wenger’s plans.
Thus, adding another midfielder would not make complete sense for the Frenchman. If brought in, Isco would be expected to play as an understudy to Ozil – something he may not be too comfortable with. It would seem wiser for the Spaniard to move to a club that could guarantee him first-team football, and also compete among Europe’s elite.